Scooter Trial Gains Momentum

E-scooters could soon be wheeled out around the District after the Council approved a six-month trial with hire company, Flamingo Scooters.

Flamingo Scooters such as the one pictured above, could soon become a common sight in Rangiora, Woodend, Kaiapoi and Pegasus.

The permit is yet to be finalised, but it’s planned that around 400 e-scooters will be made available for hire across Rangiora, Kaiapoi, Woodend and Pegasus from November until April next year.

To hire a Flamingo scooter, riders will need to download and open the Flamingo Scooters mobile app, search the map to locate their nearest scooter and unlock it by scanning the QR code on the handlebar. Users will be charged $1 to unlock the scooter, then 45c per minute of use. Riders will need to be over the age of 18.

Council staff have already discussed the trial with Waimakariri Access Group, Age-Friendly Waimakariri and the Youth Council, their concerns included the speed of scooters and congestion on footpaths. In response, the Council have put safety measures around the trial such as speed restrictions in busy areas and geo-fenced, no-go areas such as part of the High Street in Rangiora. The trial has the support of Waimakariri’s four community boards.

Flamingo Scooters will be responsible for covering the infrastructure and operational costs. Community feedback will be monitored during the trial period and a full report will be brought back to the Community Boards and Council for a decision on the future of commercial e-scooters in the District.

Selwyn District Council held a similar trial in 2019 with up to 300 scooters which was deemed successful. 22,000 e-scooter trips were taken throughout the trial’s duration and the Selwyn District Council subsequently issued permits to both Lava and Lime to operate commercial hire e-scooters.

The Waimakariri District Council cannot currently prevent commercial hire e-scooter companies from operating in the District without permission, it’s hoped that the trial will allow the Council to collect usage data and take a proactive approach in managing the presence of the technology and any impact on public spaces.

Flamingo Scooters will be offering Learn to Ride community events for people who want to learn how to use the scooters and have a ride. An advertising campaign will also be launched before the scooters arrive on the streets to educate the community about the trial.