Sunday 23 June 2024
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Nottingham e-scooter trial extended until 2026

Nottingham’s e-scooter network will stay in the city until at least 2026 after the Government extended the project.

Nottingham’s e-scooter hire network first started in October 2020, in partnership with Derby City Council.

Starting as a trial involving 30 councils, city e-scooter projects were originally only planned to last for 12 months, but Nottingham’s has been extended every year since by the Department for Transport (DfT).

The trial, which licences riders to use the Superpedestrian provided scooters in public, was next due to finish in May next year.

However, while the DfT works on new laws for e-scooters it has extended all trials for a longer period of time, up until May 2026.

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Council documents, published ahead of a Commissioning and Procurement Executive Committee on December 12, say: The DfT have indicated the legalisation of all e-scooters will be forthcoming, however, delays have been experienced with securing a Bill slot to take the proposed legalisation through Parliament.

“This has resulted in the DfT extending trials for a further two years to May 31, 2026.”

The current operator in Nottingham is Superpedestrian. The network operaiton will go out to market again as part of the extension.

According to Superpedestrian, more than 1,300 e-scooters are available across 400 locations in the city and, on average, 3,500 rides are made each day.

Users can rent scooters from the street using an app, paying 20p a minute.

Riders must be 18 or older and hold at a full provisional driving licence at least. They must not ride on pavements – instead keeping all journeys to roads and bus lanes. Fines and bans can be given to users who break the rules.

Nottingham’s is one of the most popular e-scooter trials in the country, the operator says.

According to the council, problems with pavement riding and poor scooter parking are being addressed through the use of innovative technology, education, communications and new infrastructure such as parking bays.

Riders may also be asked to attend an education course if they are caught incorrectly using an e-scooter.

The council says it could have sought a shorter extension, however this would have not represented good value for money.

The scheme operates on a commercial basis and operators take on responsibility for all costs associated with the operation of the scheme, including vehicle supply, maintenance and repair.

The council is responsible for the approval of vehicle parking locations and any associated infrastructure, and this is funded through local transport grants.

“Continuation of the e-scooter hire scheme assists in meeting a number of strategic objectives,” the documents add.

“These include supporting access to work, education and other services, providing an affordable personal transport option for short journeys and a clean and green transport mode that supports the Carbon Neutral 2028 plan.”

It has been recommended councillors agree to place the tender for an operator out to market at the meeting on December 12.

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