E-scooter sharing service rolls into Richmond

Richmond has welcomed an e-scooter sharing service from a company called Lime. (CTV)

Richmond residents and visitors now have a zippy new way to get around. The Island City has welcomed an e-scooter sharing service from a company called Lime.

“(Users) don’t need to get in a vehicle. They can take a form of transportation that is shared, affordable, and most importantly, carbon free,” said Derek Robertson, the micro-mobility company’s manager.

For now, the e-scooters are only available in a limited area around Richmond city centre, along with some electric bicycles.

In total, Lime rolled out 75 two-wheeled machines on Wednesday, with plans to ramp that up to 200 in the coming days.

The company also plans to expand the zone where they are available for use.

“As the program continues to grow over the course of the summer, we hope to expand out to the rest of Richmond,” said Robertson.

Lime has been operating in 175 different cities around the world, including an e-bike share program that’s been available on the North Shore since last summer.

Richmond is the first Lower Mainland municipality to get Lime’s e-scooter share service — which is also available in Kelowna.

The company says it is in talks to expand to cities across the region, and it has partnered with HUB Cycling to offer e-scooter and e-bike safety workshops.

“So that people getting on shared micro-mobility devices can feel safe getting themselves from point A to point B,” said HUB Cycling’s Jenny Tan. “And that’s what we want. For people to feel safe and comfortable and get where they need to go.”

It costs $1.15 to sign out one of the electric two-wheeled machines, and then 35 cents for each minute its in use.

Riders must be at least 18 years old, and in order to comply with provincial law, helmets are mandatory.