EDITOR’S NOTE: RVA Bike Share suspended services in May 2023 due to the financial difficulties of contractor Bewegen Technologies. The city did not provide a timeline for reopening the program but said it was looking for a new contractor and promised a month of free rides when the program returns.
Micromobility has become an option for improving transit in the City of Richmond. The term refers to a range of small vehicles that operate at speeds around 15 mph — think bicycles, e-bikes, skateboards, and scooters.
The main focus has been on e-scooters and the city’s bicycle program, RVA Bike Share.
In the past year, two of Richmond’s licensed electric scooter providers have pulled out of the market, but several other companies have reached out to the Office of Equitable Transit and Mobility to expand service into the city.
There is also a proposed ordinance which might make it easier to scoot around the city. It would make it so that scooters can operate until 1 a.m. (currently, they shut off at 9 p.m.) and would mandate that 20% of each fleet would remain south of the river.
RVA Bike Share is also expanding options, particularly in Southside. The newest station at Carter Jones Park opened Wed., Aug. 17. It offers membership options as well as per-ride, day, and weekly passes.
Micromobility looks different around the country + the world. Minneapolis has mobility hubs that connect different forms of transit, including e-scooters and bikes. In Paris, the bike-sharing service Vélib’ Métropole boasts 20,000 bicycles — 40% of them electric — and 1,400 docking points.
Dream big — what do you think should be the future of micromobility in Richmond? Are you in favor of more scooters, more bikes, or some new innovation? Let us know.