The company that brought e-scooters to Vernon in 2021 on a pilot project will launch an e-bike program in the city in 2022, making Vernon one of the first cities in Canada to have e-scooters and e-bikes for use. (File photo)

The company that brought e-scooters to Vernon in 2021 on a pilot project will launch an e-bike program in the city in 2022, making Vernon one of the first cities in Canada to have e-scooters and e-bikes for use. (File photo)

E-bikes to join e-scooters in Vernon in 2022

Neuron Mobility will launch e-bikes to go along with its e-scooters in Vernon for the next riding season

First it was e-scooters in the city. Next it will be e-bikes.

Neuron Mobility, which launched an e-scooter pilot project in Vernon in 2021, announced at Vernon council Monday, Dec. 13, that it will add e-bikes to the Vernon fleet for the 2022 riding season.

“It will make Vernon one of the first cities to have both e-scooters and e-bikes in Canada,” said Isaac Ransom, Neuron’s head of government relations for Canada.

Neuron’s Canada general manager Ankush Karwal said the program will look at expanding in 2022.

“Hopefully next year in May we’ll look at data and demand and maybe we can push the number of scooters up to 500 but we’re also cognizant that we will have e-bikes next season so maybe the demand will be shared between the two,” said Karwal. “But we are going to take a look at this again.”

Neuron Mobility’s project in Vernon began with 150 scooters and added 100 more due to demand during the season.

Ransom was presenting final numbers for 2021 on the e-scooter project to council and the how two-wheel devices were quite popular.

Ridership statistics show 13,400 users signed up with Neuron in Vernon and there were 67,000 trips taken since launch day, July 29.

The average trip distance is 2.7 kilometres and there were 1,400 three-day, weekly and monthly passes used in Vernon since launch.

The average rating on Neuron’s services is 4.6 out of five, with 16,500 users rating their Neuron ride as a 4 or 5.

The total trip distance in Vernon during 2021 was 161,600 km.

”It’s been extremely exciting to see how Vernon residents and visitors have embraced Neuron Mobility’s e-scooters to shop, commute or explore the community,” said Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce general manager Dan Proulx. “We are excited to see Neuron’s plans roll out for 2022 and the increased benefits the e-scooter network will provide Vernon and the economy.”

Ransom said 40 per cent of all Neuron trips replaced a car trip, saving on carbon dioxide emissions; 93 per cent of users said Neuron created a positive impact for the city; and 53 per cent of users used e-scooters to commute.

“I think it’s a great program,” said Coun. Brian Quiring. “I see tons of people using them.”

Concerns were expressed by council over helmet use – or the lack of – by Neuron riders, and people riding tandem (double) on the scooters. Ransom said both issues will be addressed for 2022.

“Riders can expect continued focus on helmet safety in 2022, and ongoing riding rule education programs and events,” said Ransom.

Scooter rules include a rider must be 16 years of age, not impaired and helmets are mandatory. Riders must be the only one on the scooter – no passengers (children or pets) – and make way for pedestrians. Devices such as earbuds or cell phones are not allowed to be used during a ride, traffic rules must be obeyed and riders are asked to park responsibily.

The 2022 riding season is expected to launch in March (weather permitting).

Editor’s note: This story has been changed after the Morning Star received an e-mail from Neuron Mobility’s communications department Tuesday, Dec. 14, saying the program originally started with 150 scooters and that the maximum number of scooters agreed upon with the City of Vernon for 2021 was 250. Neuron Canada general manager Ankush Karwal said during council Monday that the program started with 250 scooters and added another 100 to make it 350 during 2021. Those numbers were incorrect.

READ MORE: Public rolling along with Neurons in Vernon

READ MORE: E-scooter age limit reduction rolls out in Vernon



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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