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The micromobility industry took a hard hit in 2020 when the onset of the coronavirus pandemic influenced people's attitudes towards shared forms of transportation. Now, only months later, aversions and patterns of behavior are beginning to shift back in the favor of scooters and electric bikes. Patrick Sisson reports that micormobility could come back even stronger than before. "A notably different transit landscape may make the appeal of micromobility more durable. The need for additional space and new transit options in a socially distanced world has galvanized city leaders to rapidly designate car-free streets and create additional bike lanes," writes Sisson, referring to the nearly 1,600 miles of new bike lanes added during the COVID-19 lockdown around the globe.
When a recent IBM survey found that 20% of transit riders would not return to public transit, increasing attention turned to public-private partnerships between transit agencies and micromobility corporations. Sisson offers the example of Dayton, Ohio, where the city's transit agency runs operations for scooter rental company Spin. Partnerships like these could occur much more regularly as average trip lengths on scooters and electric bikes increase beyond last-mile mobility and ridership of public transit decreases.