Lime Bike and Scooter 2019 Year-End Report
Colin Quinn-Hurst, Pedestrian and Bicycle Planner, 509.625.6804
Wednesday, January 8, 2020 at 3:26 p.m.
Spokane’s WheelShare program, operated by Lime, ran for seven months in 2019, from May to November. During this time, the City and Lime worked together with local partners to support public safety while providing new transportation options for getting around Spokane. Through mid-November, riders logged 643,000 miles and 581,000 individual trips on the shared bicycles and scooters.
Here’s a look at highlights from 2019 and a preview of preparations for 2020.
Programs, activities and installations promoted safe use of the scooters and vehicles, as well as public safety for everyone else sharing the streets with the shared vehicles. These efforts support a vibrant downtown and access throughout the City for residents and visitors alike.
- First Ride Academy - June
Offered monthly, these classes provided free safety training, a mobile app tutorial and an easy ride for people just learning how to use the scooters and bicycles.
- Wheel Safety Week and Wheel Safety Day - August
Wheel Safety Week activities included painting over 150 “Walk Your Wheels” messages on corners of downtown sidewalks and installing Spokane’s first on-street Bike and Scooter Parking Zone. Wheel Safety Day included free scooter test-rides during lunch-hour, a helmet painting activity for kids, and bike registration and bike commuting resources, hosted by the Downtown Spokane Partnership, East Spokane Kiwanis, Spokane Regional Health District, Spokane Bicycle Club, Commute Smart NW, and Spokane Fire and Police Departments.
- Lime Patrol
Lime committed staff to patrol downtown streets and provide scooter safety tips throughout the summer and at Hoopfest and Pig Out in the Park. Lime Patrol also cleared improperly parked scooters and bikes blocking downtown sidewalks and curb ramps. Spokane was the first North-American city to host a Lime Patrol program.
- Helmet Giveaways
Over the course of the year, Lime distributed more than 4,000 helmets at events such as First Ride Academies and at designated community destinations.
Supporting shared mobility options for underserved users, the Lime Access Equity program provided $70,000 in discounted rides for people on social service programs.
In weekday on-street counts, City staff found that approximately half of people on scooters and bicycles were on the sidewalk. To help address this issue, the City is pursuing enforcement programs and installing signage, markings and other infrastructure as detailed below.
- Sidewalk Stencils
The City, Lime, and the Downtown Spokane Partnership installed 150 sidewalk stencils on downtown street corners, marking scooter and bike dismount zones.
- Scooter and Bike Parking Zones
On-street parking zones for scooters and bicycles were tested in 2019, and will be installed in 2020 to encourage riding in the street in bike lanes and travel lanes.
- In-App Messages
Lime distributed notifications and messages through the mobile application throughout 2019, reminding users that riding on sidewalks is prohibited downtown.
- Protected Bike Lane Demonstration
The City and Lime looked for options to improve off-sidewalk riding options for scooters and bikes as part of a “pop-up” bike lane event. Data from the project indicated a need for more separated on-street infrastructure for people on bicycles and scooters.
Coming in 2020
With lessons learned from the past year, goals for the upcoming 2020 season include:
- Establish Scooter and Bike Parking Zones throughout downtown and in neighborhood business districts.
- Expand outreach and education programs to more neighborhoods and communities.
- Install signs identifying off-limit areas will be installed downtown to reinforce the existing sidewalk stencils.
- Continue improving shared vehicle management during major community events such as Bloomsday, Hoopfest, and Pig Out in the Park.
- Establish code enforcement mechanisms to charge users for improperly parking vehicles and sidewalk riding.
We are committed to continuing the hard work of making the program more effective, safe, and sustainable through 2020. Shared vehicles will return to Spokane’s streets in March, 2020.
Thank you for staying involved in Spokane’s WheelShare program. For more information, visit our webpage.