Shared scooters and bikes are about to return to the streets of Dallas.
Now, Lime is one of three vendors selected by the City of Dallas to provide a smaller fleet of shared scooters and bikes. Each vendor will have just 500 for now.
“Yes, there were some issues. We have learned a lot from the previous pilot program,” Lime Dallas Operations Manager Kelly Pierce said.
Lime’s new scooters are better than before. They have a lower center of gravity for a more stable ride. They have better brakes and suspension, like a mountain bike, to handle bumps.
“We’ve done a lot of research. We designed everything in-house,” Pierce said.
For those who prefer a seated ride, Lime will have 50 bikes in the mix.
Both bikes and scooters have top speeds of 20 miles per hour, and 10 in slow zones. They’re programmed to stop if riders try to take them where they don’t belong.
Some scooter riders were seen on Dallas freeways in the past.
“That will be impossible now. With the latest technology we’re implementing now in geofencing, both on device and in the back end, you won’t be able to take it into specific zones,” Pierce said.
Educating riders about the rules is another requirement of the city’s new so-called “dockless vehicle” program.
To teach rules like no sidewalk riding, safety training is required on the smartphone app riders use to arrange rides.
The city is setting up parking zones like the one already in place in Deep Ellum.
To promote equity, firms will be required to park some of their equipment in underserved areas that were overlooked before.
The city had early forecast launching the new service in February but now in March, it is still not quite ready to start.
“We’ll be launching in the coming weeks and we’re working with the City of Dallas to be sure the program is a success from day one,” Peirce said.
Lime has a Dallas warehouse full of equipment ready to roll.
The other two providers, Bird and Superpedestrian, did not respond to requests to demonstrate their new products.
ONLINE: More information about the city program can be found here.