Spin and Wheels have not received permits to operate in Seattle under the city’s 2022–2023 permit, SDOT announced. But for the first time, scooter company Bird will operate here.
LINK scooters have retained their permit, as have Lime’s scooters and bikes. The most recent entrant into Seattle, Veo, has also retained its permit for its bikeish-scooters.
SDOT says it selected the permits based on each company’s “commitment to safety, community engagement, and continual improvement.” From the SDOT Blog:
All three of the selected companies submitted robust proposals detailing their commitment to safety, community engagement, and continual improvement, as well as considering the needs of other people traveling on streets, sidewalks, bike paths, and trails.
The selection was difficult, and we are grateful for Wheels and Spin, two current scooter companies that will not continue operating in Seattle, for the transportation service they provided between 2020–2022.
We are issuing three permits at this time. We may issue an additional permit to another company in the future if we see a good opportunity to benefit the public.
People took more than 1.4 million trips on shared scooters and bikes between October 2020 and September 2021, a figure that is likely to increase as more destinations fully reopen and the number of events grows. The top trip destinations were crowded areas like downtown or busy business districts, SDOT noted in their pilot permit summary. The average scooter trip was 15 minutes, traveled 1.4 miles and cost $6.63.
A portion of the fees collected from scooter and bike services help fund an adaptive cycling program the city hosts in partnership with Outdoors For All in Magnuson Park, providing people a chance to ride accessible cycles designed to work for people with many different disabilities.
Spin and Wheels will have “a few weeks to wind down their operations,” SDOT wrote. It will likewise take Bird a few weeks to get up and running.