An electric scooter network could be coming to Manchester as part of a national drive to promote safe, sustainable transport in cities.
The Department of Transportation recently introduced a proposal permitting the use of e-scooters on public roads in certain parts of the UK, as the government continues to assess the standards, restrictions and safety elements.
Trials are currently being held in Birmingham and Coventry to test e-scooter technology and evaluate the benefits that the vehicles could bring to cities.
If successful, these trials would be rolled out to other cities such as Manchester.
The Mayor of West Midlands Andy Street commented: “This trial will help bring more flexibility, choice, and greener travel solutions for the region, at a time when we are facing a climate emergency and urging people to leave the car at home.
“We will also use the trial to look at the current transport challenges the coronavirus pandemic has presented us with and explore how e-scooters could be used to help tackle them.”
E-scooters are already available to hire in European cities such as Barcelona and Vienna – operating via a secure docking system.
Driving these vehicles is less physically demanding than travelling by bicycle, potentially appealing to a wide range of demographics.
Jonathan Ratcliffe from Manchester Office Space Provider Offices.co.uk said: “The Government is going to drastically change the way we commute and move around our cities and towns – the shift toward moving people, not vehicles. Electric scooters could be a common sight on the roads around Manchester within a year”.
“We are looking at ways to incorporate the demand for electric scooters into the fabric of our Manchester properties, we think they could be as popular as they are on the continent.”
“The rollout of a Boris bike style e-scooter network in Manchester could mean the need for short hop taxis would be redundant – lowering emissions and encouraging less car use. We are really excited about this news.”