TfL e-scooter trial set to begin in Camden
A TfL led e-scooter trial is scheduled to begin in parts of the borough on 27 September, following a public consultation which led to Camden council deciding to take part.
TfL has been working with London boroughs and other organisations such as the Metropolitan Police and London Councils to develop proposals for a rental e-scooter trial in London. The aim of the trial is to provide an alternative option to public transport and taxis, as well as helping to reduce the number of short local journeys made by private cars.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has changed how communities in Camden live, travel and work.
“We want our streets to have more space for everyone to walk and cycle, for you to be breathing cleaner air, for children to get to and from school safely and for businesses to be able to flourish.
“Rental e-scooters could be one solution, providing an alternative mode of transport that is emission free, potentially reducing the number of motor vehicles on our streets and easing pressures on the transport network. We undertook an extensive consultation to hear the views from as many people as possible.”
The trial will enable the public to hire free standing e-scooters, available for use on the road only across the borough, in a similar way to the dockless hire bikes already provided in Camden.
The council will be managing the e-scooter parking through its network of parking bays to keep the pavements free for pedestrians. Because of this, the trial will initially cover approximately two thirds of the borough (see attached map below) while the council continues to add further dockless vehicle bays.
At the end of each journey the e-scooter will be required to be left within a designated parking bay. These will make use of the existing, and planned, dockless bike parking bays in the borough.
We provide a majority of these on the road in place of motor vehicle parking spaces (rather than on the pavement), allowing the next user to then hire the e-scooter from the bay. Providing designated parking bays help us to meet a key piece of feedback ensuring pavements are kept free of clutter, allowing pedestrians to move easily.
Councillor Adam Harrison continued:
“It is important to note that there are several differences between the e-scooters involved in the trial and those that are privately owned, and how they will be able to operate.
“The trial e-scooters will only be able to operate on the road and will be limited to 12.5 mph. GPS technology on each e-scooter enables the speed to be managed remotely.
“Crucially, many of the consultation respondents, expressed a concern about locations in the borough where the e-scooters would mix with concentrations of pedestrians, so we have ensured that we have developed go-slow zones, including market streets and all Healthy School Streets, where e-scooters will have a maximum speed of 8mph, and they will not be able to operate in our parks and open spaces at all.
“The use of GPS enables us to power down a rental e-scooter in a safe manner in areas where they should not be permitted. The e-scooter would have to be wheeled out of the no-go zone by the user for the journey to be resumed.”
The council will also work with the rental e-scooter companies, TfL, and the police as part of the development and implementation of the trial, which would include e-scooter training and enforcement activity.
Councillor Adam Harrison continued:
“The ongoing feedback from the public during the trial is very important to us, which is why we will be setting up a commonplace page on our Safer Travel in Camden site https://safetravelcamden.commonplace.is/ to enable people to continue to feedback and provide comment during the trial.
“Following the conclusion of the trial in June 2022, data collected by TfL, the participating boroughs and operators will be used to decide on whether to extend, for a possible six months, discontinue or make permanent rental e-scooter operations in London, in accordance with DfT guidelines.
“We will also use all feedback we receive during the trial to help inform our next steps, and to help decide whether to continue beyond the trial period with e-scooters in the borough.”
- You can read more about the trial, consultation and plans for the operation of rental e-scooters here.
- The London rental e-scooter trial commenced on 7 June 2021, and currently 8 boroughs and the City of London are taking part.
- There are three rental e-scooter operators taking part in the trial - Lime, Tier and Dott
- The council undertook a consultation from 21 June to 12 July 2021, with the feedback providing valuable information on how the public and key stakeholders perceive the proposals. Following a Single Member Decision on 6 August 2021, Camden plan to join the London Rental E-scooter Trial on 27 September 2021.
- The final phases of the bays will be completed in the West Hampstead, Fortune Green, Hampstead and Highgate areas of the borough in October 2021, after which date the trial will extend to cover the whole borough.
- Each operator will have its own fleet of e-scooters branded in their own distinct livery and each e-scooter carries an unique fleet number.
- Each operator will also have their own mobile phone app through which users will book a rental e-scooter. Each user will be required to at least have a provisional driving licence and also provide payment details through a bank