Riders can locate, unlock, rent and return the scooters by using an app on their smart phones. (courtesy of City of Gainesville)

Rentable E-Scooters Arrive As New Form Of Transportation In Gainesville

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The University of Florida and Gainesville city government have partnered to launch a one-year pilot program to bring to town two-wheeled, electric scooters for rent.

The program starts Monday.

Three companies will provide the e-scooters for use: Bird, Spin and Veo.

Riders can locate, unlock, rent and return the scooters by using an app on their smart phones.

Each e-scooter is equipped with GPS to show zones of no parking and no riding. The university established specific parking areas on campus for e-scooters.

Residents must be 18 or older to rent a scooter. The scooters are available between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., seven days a week.

City Commissioner David Arreola said he welcomes anything that gets people to work and school more quickly, but also supports strict regulations when using the form of transportation.

Local law enforcement is trying to be proactive in encouraging riders to limit risk in a college town where people have a propensity to mix drinking alcohol with other activities.

“We encourage everyone renting an e-scooter to wear a helmet, follow all traffic and pedestrian laws,” Gainesville Police Department Chief Inspector Jaime Kurnick wrote in an email to the university, “and refrain from operating them while impaired.”

About Jessica James

Jessica is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.

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