In order to grow a sustainable e-scooter business, city partnerships are of utmost importance. A constant exchange with local stakeholders and joint implementation of regulative measures helps both sides direct the flow of scooters in the right direction and grow an intermodal transport alternative through combined efforts.
Therefore we are very happy to announce that the Swiss capital Bern, where we started operations one year ago, has extended their cooperation with Voi.
Bern is a tendered city that allows a maximum of two e-scooter providers with a combined fleet limit of 250 scooters, which has now been raised up to 350 after a successful first year of operations. Additionally, together with the city, we put in place a set of measures to regulate riding behaviour, which we evaluated over the course of the last year. Here’s what we came up with:
To guarantee safe passage for all traffic participants in the city centre, Voi uses the GPS function of their scooters to restrict usage in pedestrian areas. Upon entering the historic city centres, a Unesco World Heritage site, Voi scooters are stopped automatically and only retain the necessary functions in order to leave the area again. Additionally, an area around the soccer stadium Wankdorf has been imposed with a speed limit to prevent irresponsible riding – and as means to prevent improper parking, Voi implemented No Parking Zones on bridges, in parks, cemeteries and highly frequented areas, such as at the outdoor swimming pool Freibad Marzili.
Katharina Schlittler, Regional Operations Manager Switzerland says: “Our partnership with the city of Bern – which is a very dear place to us – has been the source of many new technical developments that are now becoming industry standards all around Europe. We want to thank the city for a great first year and being a strong and reliable partner. Now we are looking forward to keeping the people in our beautiful Swiss capital mobile and expanding our reach together with public transportation options.”
Because integrating scooters with local public transport is one of the big keys in supporting modal shift, Voi has initiated a cooperation with Bern public transportation operator BLS AG to extend development of their Swedish concept of mobility hubs to Switzerland. With the aim of creating a reliable first and last mile transport solution for commuters – while at the same time retaining orderly parking – Voi parking stations were installed at multiple locations around Bern. Initial results show that 84% of all Voi riders with the destination of Bümplitz Nord train station parked their scooters in one of the stations.
In light of the positive results the city of Bern and the Police Inspectorate for Safety, Environment and Energy have now decided to renew Voi’s licence not just for another year, but all the way until January 2024.