urban planning

Scooters and cars

Scooters do not replace cars.

Scooters are coming to Canberra. It is not clear what will come of this. One possibility is that people will travel differently. A German study of three big cities suggests people that hire an e-scooter will not leave their cars at home. Only in one of the cities were the gains significant.

“Mode Share
The percentage of people using a particular mode of transport; the ACT has targets to achieve a mode share of 7% by walking, 7% by cycling and 16% by public transport of all journey to work trips by 2026. “

Building an Integrated Transport Network: Active Travel (ACT Government, May 2015)

Currently around 83% of Canberrans commute with the car. Part of the active travel agenda is providing drivers with other choices. A hire scooter scheme should be one of these options.

The study from Germany, Agora-Verkehrswende Shared E-Scooters Paving the Road-Ahead, reports on scooter hire schemes in four large cities, three of which are in the USA.

Modal shift for e-scooter riders in selected cities is shown in figure 4 below. The questioned asked is: “how would you have reached your most recent destination, had an e-scooter not been available?” Only in Portland was there a significant substitution of scooters for cars. In France and San Francisco, the effect was less than 5%. This does not bode well for the ACT mode share targets.

Shared e-scooters – paving the road ahead, Agora Verkehrswende, 2019, page 11
Photo by Caio on
Photo by Caio on

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