MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Seattle’s newest bikeshare provider expected to hit the streets in 2022

Dec 13, 2021, 12:35 PM

bikeshare...

Courtesy of Veo

Expanding Seattle’s car-alternative transportation options, a new bikeshare program is coming to Seattle.

Veo, which touts itself as the first profitable micro-mobility company, has been approved by the Seattle Department of Transportation as the city’s newest bikeshare provider. The company will join Lime as one of two providers of electric bicycle rental services.

Veo has been permitted to deploy 1,500 bikes in the Seattle area. The company plans to gradually ramp up operations in the next few months, beginning with just 500 bikes.

SDOT reports that since 2019, Seattle has taken nearly 2.9 million bikeshare trips, with roughly 9.8 million miles traveled.

Lime, formerly Limebike, resumed operation in the summer of 2020 after a merger with Jump (a subsidiary of Uber), acquiring 500 of the company’s red Jump bikes throughout the city. Lime was among three companies which participated in SDOT’s original free-floating bikeshare program in 2017. In 2019, the company phased out its traditional bicycles, pivoting to the electric bikes now seen throughout the city. Lime’s two competitors — Spin and Ofo — exited the market in 2018.

Seattle bikeshare history 101

As part of the city’s attempt to improve its micro-mobility infrastructure, SDOT also partners with four scooter share companies: Lime, Wheels, LINK, and the aforementioned Spin. SDOT reports that more than 2.2 million miles have been traveled via the scooter share program to date, for a rough 12 million total miles traveled through all of the city’s micro mobility, car-alternative commute options.

Founded in Chicago in 2017, Veo announced in July that it had raised $16 million in Series A funding. It operates similar bikeshare programs in New York City and Santa Monica.

Veo will provide discount pricing rates to low-income individuals “in support of their mission to provide mobility services to all,” as an SDOT update on the partnership reads.

Through permitting fees accepted by the city, SDOT plans to reinvest funds to improve its mobility services, giving “people with disabilities new opportunities to ride customized adaptive cycles that meet their specific needs,” the news release continues. That includes the Outdoors for All Foundation partnership, which provided free, adaptive cycling options for people of all abilities at Magnuson Park this past summer.

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Seattle’s newest bikeshare provider expected to hit the streets in 2022