The City of Alexandria, Virginia has approved a permit application from San Francisco-based company Lime to operate dockless mobility devices, such as electric scooters and bicycles, within the City right-of-way. The approval of the first operator permit marks the start of a nine-month pilot program, approved by City Council in November 2018. The City continues to accept permit applications from other operators.
Dockless mobility devices are similar to shared devices such as Capital Bikeshare bicycles, but are not stored at fixed docks. Instead, users will leave devices at appropriate locations in the public right-of-way (such as the edge of a sidewalk) and locate available devices through a website or mobile app.
The pilot program will evaluate the safety and popularity of dockless mobility devices and the overall performance of the participating companies, each of which is required to sign a Memorandum of Understanding outlining the City’s requirements and expectations before operating within city limits. The City’s evaluation will look at how and where the devices are used, company responsiveness, safety and other outcomes to determine if shared mobility devices will be permitted after the pilot program ends. The City will evaluate the pilot program throughout its nine-month duration, and will request community feedback.
Users of mobility devices must abide by the safety guidelines and other terms of service provided by the operators, and everyone using the public right-of-way should share this space and be mindful of people using all forms of transportation—whether walking, biking, riding a scooter, or driving a car. Mobility devices should not be used on sidewalks, and users should obey all applicable traffic laws such as stopping at stop signs and signaling before turns.
If dockless devices are parked on private property without permission or located somewhere that impedes access by others, the devices may be moved to more appropriate locations or the operator may be contacted directly.
To learn more about dockless mobility and the pilot program, visit this link.