You can rent a car. You can rent a bike. So, why not rent a scooter?
A relatively new company, named Bird, just rolled out dockless electric scooters in Tempe, but not without some resistance.
“I saw this a few days ago and I was a little skeptical at first,” said first-time Bird user Vinny Viti. “I think it's really cool, honestly."
You’ve likely seen the green and yellow bikes around Phoenix. Bicycle sharing companies, like Ofo and LimeBike, have been in the market for several months. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of them and they can be parked anywhere-- which has made their presence controversial.
“There are a lot, with the different companies that bring them out. It kind of is overwhelming for some,” said ASU student Lindsey Covell.
Not everyone is on board with having more freestanding vehicles around.
The City of Scottsdale sent Bird a cease-and-desist order, saying that the scooters violate the City's ordinance about motorized skateboards. But Bird promises to be a good neighbor.
Come nighttime, you won't see a single scooter. Bird scooters are only available during the day. Bird personnel pick up the scooters at 8 p.m. for recharging and drop them off at popular locations at 7 a.m.
Right now, Bird scooters are only available in Tempe. Bird won’t disclose the exact number of scooters it has placed around town, but the app shows around 200 available scooters in the area.
The company says it won't bring any additional scooters to the area unless each one averages at least three rides per day. It also promises to give $1 per scooter per day to the cities it operates in to help pay for more bike lanes and fund safe-riding programs.
"I definitely think that adds a lot of variety to the already large amount of options that you have,” Covell said.
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