Exploring Vancouver will be easier than ever this summer when two new modes of transportation hit the streets. Locals and visitors will have the opportunity to zip between neighbourhoods on Saturna Green System’s electric scooters, or peddle the bike lanes with a new public bike-share program.
Saturna Green Systems
Saturna has announced a plan to introduce approximately 100 shareable electric scooters to Vancouver streets just in time for the summer season. The bright orange mopeds are street-legal and have a top speed of 45 kilometres per hour, offering an even more eco-friendly alternative to car-sharing services like Evo and Car2go. Since the scooters are classified as ”light mopeds”, drivers will only need a valid driver’s license (no motorcycle license required).
But how does it all work?
- Scooters will be available for use under a membership plan; subscribers sign up and pay a monthly fee (approximately $15). A handy app shows the location of nearby scooters and allows members to reserve their ride.
- Scooters are activated by punching in a pin code, no key required. For safety, helmets are provided with the vehicles. (The company also plans to give subscribers their own private helmets upon sign-up.)
- A fee of around $.25 per kilometer is assessed on rides. Saturna has developed an innovative 7-inch colour touchscreen that shows range and speed, and also doubles as a GPS-navigation device.
- At the end of the trip, riders simply park the scooter –no need to return vehicles to special stations.
Vancouver’s Bike-Share Program
Vancouver has committed to launching a public bike-share program that will see 1,000 bicycles operating out of 100 stations this summer. The public bike share service area includes the downtown peninsula, plus the area between Arbutus Street, 12th Avenue, and Main Street. Vancouver joins more than 500 cities around the world, including Montreal, New York City, Boston, Seattle, and Barcelona, that have started public bike shares.
But how does it all work?
- 1,500 seven-speed, adult-sized bikes will be available at 150 solar-powered stations.
- Because the law requires all cyclists to wear helmets, helmets will be provided with bikes at no additional cost. Purchasing daily or monthly passes will give you access to the public bike share. A daily pass costs $5 (one-time sign-up fee), plus $2.50 per 30 minutes of usage. The monthly pass includes unlimited 30-minute trips; after 30 minutes’ additional charges will apply (price TBD).
- The public bike share rates will be better suited for short rides, while longer rides will be cheaper at bike rental shops.