The streets of Meridian will soon be filled with the hum and zip of electric scooters. The city recently approved an agreement allowing Bird Scooters to deploy between 100 to 150 scooters at first, but eventually 500.
Last fall, the city launched a program with another company, Lime Scooters. Bill Nary, Meridian's City Attorney, says the lack of communication and community outreach by Lime led to a quick failure.
“There was no public education to people on how to use these or how to deploy them safely, where to put them, where to park them," says Nary. "There was none of that so it really became really problematic and so it started on a Thursday and by the following Tuesday the council had asked them to pause, give us time to regroup."
The contract with Bird Scooters includes two weeks of community outreach in hopes of a successful, safe launch. Meridian is moving into this contract cautiously, however, and will reevaluate the program in the fall. The scooters are only contracted until the new year.
“In the fall the council will evaluate how the program has run, what has worked, what hasn’t worked, and then make a decision moving forward for 2020 on whether we put out a new request for proposal or something else," says Nary.
The predicted launch of these scooters is Thursday, August 1.
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