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Brisbane's love affair with the electric scooter will continue for another 12 months, after the council extended a year-long trial with 1000 scooters deployed across the CBD and some suburbs.
On Tuesday morning, Brisbane City Council public and active transport committee chairman Ryan Murphy announced the trial extension with more focus on scooters being rolled out in suburbs.
Eight Mile Plains, Greenslopes and other suburbs along the bus and train lines will be targeted with scooters from Lime and Neuron to encourage Brisbane residents to use them for the "last mile" trips.
Cr Murphy said designated parking areas using decals and painted signs would also be trialled to manage complaints about scooters cluttering footpaths and becoming a trip hazard.
Two parking areas will be trialled in the CBD and if successful will be added to suburban locations.
The contracts with Neuron and Lime will be rolled over under all existing conditions, allowing Neuron 600 scooters and Lime 400 across the next year.
Last year, independent and opposition councillors questioned the value of the contract to the council, saying the commercial-in-confidence agreement did not offer ratepayers good value.
The exact agreement between the council and the scooter companies has not been revealed with the financial agreements under confidence.
Cr Murphy said Lime, which had pulled all its scooters off the streets globally at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, was expected to bring out its next generation scooters in July.
The council was told on Tuesday that each scooter on Brisbane's streets is used for about five to six trips per day, with most being between 8 and 10 minutes.
Opposition leader Jared Cassidy said the trial extension was "tinkering around the edges" and didn't address Brisbane's need for a comprehensive mobility plan.
Cr Murphy said the council was working with the state government to develop just such an active transport plan to accommodate the needs of all residents.
The council had also flagged its willingness to allow scooters to be used in bike lanes, he said, which could help reduce the number of complaints about safety risks for scooters being used at speed on footpaths.
Cr Cassidy also questioned the ability of scooters to be used in suburbs where broken and damaged footpaths could cause a greater hazard, but Cr Murphy also said the council had a dedicated footpath repair and maintenance program.
Neuron's Jaydent Bryant said the company had developed new "helmet lock" technology to ensure helmets were always available for safe travel on e-scooters.SOURCE: https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/brisbane-s-e-scooter-trial-to-continue-for-another-year-20200526-p54wi1.html