Scooters Hit Chicago

Jim Gudas
June 15, 2019 - 3:18 pm

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- There’s another kind of ride-sharing service being tested on the streets of Chicago. 

Lime is bringing rentable, electric, stand-up scooters to Chicago.

The idea is by using an app, you unlock an available scooter, ride to your destination, then leave the scooter.

Lime kicked off the first day of Chicago’s electric scooter pilot with a “First Ride Academy" in Union Park on the Near West Side Saturday.

“Chicago is on the map today because of its transportation network. For it to stay that way, we need every neighborhood in Chicago to have safe, reliable and frequent transportation options. Lime is committed to making scooters a part of that solution. This is just the start of the many ‘First Ride Academies’ Lime will hold, and we look forward to working with Mayor Lightfoot and her team throughout the pilot,” said Nico Probst, Lime’s head of government relations for the Upper Midwest.  

Saturday’s event is the kick off for Lime’s First Ride Academies that will be held several times per week in Chicago’s pilot area. These training courses will improve familiarity with scooters so riders know the basics of safe riding and responsible parking.

“This is an opportunity for people to have environmentally friendly transportation, for tourists to be able to travel around the city and see the landscape of our city, and to bring job opportunities to people in the neighborhood. I’m happy [Lime’s> warehouse is in our ward, and they are hiring people from our community,” said Ald. Walter Burnett Jr. (27th) during the event.

Lime has put safety first for the pilot and invested significant resources in safety education, initiatives and events ahead of the launch and will have ongoing efforts throughout the pilot. 

Before anyone rides a scooter, they will be required to watch a safety animation in the Lime app that explains permitted parking spaces, proper etiquette (i.e. no riding on the sidewalk) and other safety tips.

There will be a First Ride Academy hosted in each ward in the pilot area.

Lime will distribute free helmets. Lime’s local operations staff will also constantly patrol the pilot area to verify scooters are parked properly and to fix problems quickly.

The area of the initial pilot program includes the Near Westside, Little Village, South Austin and West Garfield Park.