FORT WAYNE , Ind. (WANE) – VeoRide’s rentable electric scooters have been cruising around downtown Fort Wayne for almost a week, and they so far appear to be a hit with downtown visitors.
At least 50 of the 300 planned scooters are available for rent in the downtown area. Many of those appeared to move frequently as WANE 15’s Britt Salay attempted to track down riders.
First time rider Sal Lombardo, who lives downtown, said that while he could see himself using the scooters often, he preferred using them in areas with bike lanes. He said that meshing with the street and foot traffic was an initial challenge.
“They’re faster than I thought, a lot of fun though,” said Lombardo. “I could see them being dangerous because you come up to those intersections pretty fast. Coming into those intersections or especially all the little alleys hiding in downtown made me a little nervous coming up. A car could come up any time so I probably won’t wear a helmet but it’s a smart idea.”
VeoRide’s website recommends riders wear proper head gear and hand signals while on the scooters. They also urge people to obey all traffic laws. Each scooter has a headlight attached to it for better nighttime visibility.
The scooters are the first of their kind in Fort Wayne. The company has been rolling them out in stages as a part of a test program to help expand transportation options in the area. The company plan to begin introducing 150 pedal bikes to the city around the end of September.
Ten percent of the total number of bikes and scooters will be initially placed in city-designated low-income areas. Although the electric scooters will be contained to the downtown area and kept out of parts of Headwaters and Promenade Parks, VeoRide has said it will be more difficult to restrict the bicycles as they will not be electric.
It will cost $1 to unlock the units from the rack and 15 cents for every minute you ride a scooter. Bikes have a charge of five cents per minute. VeoRide currently has bikes and scooters in more than 40 cities across the country.