The Year in Micromobility

The industry is seeing uneven support despite high ridership numbers.

1 minute read

November 21, 2023, 7:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Chicago Divvy Bikeshare

Jaysin Trevino / Flickr

“Is U.S. micromobility industry on the brink of a breakthrough? Or is the bottom about to drop out?” asks Kea Wilson in Streetsblog USA.

The signs are, in some ways, all over the place: while docked bike share systems are clocking record rides, “roaring back from pandemic-era lows and eclipsing last year’s record-setting trip numbers with reported 71.5 million journeys across U.S. and Canada in 2022,” operators like Lyft are pulling back on their systems and publicly subsidized systems are running out of funding, while dockless operators feel maligned and over-regulated.

The debate over whether shared micromobility systems should be part of public transit systems or receive public funding at all continues. “If holding the bike- and scooter-share universe captive to the whims of private shareholders feels inherently unstable, some micromobility leaders argue that holding it captive to the whims of transit-hostile U.S. governments is unstable, too — and while they say those governments shouldn't charge micromobility companies to operate on their roads, lest they be forced to pass those costs along to riders, governments also shouldn't necessarily be counted on to keep fleets running.”

Monday, November 20, 2023 in Streetsblog USA

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