(ABOVE: Image via City of Hoboken)
In a mile-square enclave packed with 60,000 people—and their cars, bikes, strollers, and running shoes—the City of Hoboken has today officially launched its Electric Scooter Pilot program, the first of its kind in New Jersey.
Hoboken Mayor @RaviBhalla leads electric scooter sharing charge, 1st in NJ. Challenges? My story tonight @NBCNewYork @KenFerrante @HobokenPD @HobokenIn @CityofHoboken @HobokenLifeCo @hobokenurbanist @HobokenGirlBlog @HobokenPatch @TotallyHoboken pic.twitter.com/2ZfgiSTgfm
— Brian Thompson (@brian4NY) May 20, 2019
“I am thrilled Hoboken is leading the way for the rest of the state to implement an additional mode of green transportation,” said Mayor Ravi S. Bhalla, when the project was first announced in April. “Electric scooters will help residents easily travel around our city, reduce congestion on our roadways, and improve access to transit stations and business districts. This is another way Hoboken is leading the way in implementing environmentally responsible transportation initiatives. Thank you to Director Ryan Sharp and his team for making this launch a reality.”
The six-month Hoboken scooter pilot program will offer Lime and Ojo scooters for public use city-wide through mid-November 2019. With this awesome power comes a list of responsibilities—including no scooting on the sidewalks, maintaining a top speed of 15 mph, and no drinking & scooting…
The fact that that needs to be said underscores a lot of concerns Hobokenites have with the new program.
“As far as enforcement, our traffic bureau and officers will continue to perform enforcement and initiatives that are fair, reasonable, and cover all modes—cars, trucks, car services, bicyclists, pedestrians and now scooters,” said Hoboken Police Chief Kenneth Ferrante, in a statement last month. “Our traffic bureau will digest the very new state laws, get involved in some education for our residents, and perform sensible enforcement.”
There will be a number of Hoboken Safety Education Events held over the next few weeks, aimed at acclimating potential riders to the scooters.
“eScooters and other emerging transportation technologies have the potential to revolutionize how we all get around Hoboken, so I’m very excited to see the city enter into this agreement,” said Councilman Michael DeFusco, a longtime vocal proponent of the program. “I look forward to hopping onto a scooter soon on my morning commute to Manhattan, and I hope all Hobokenites take the opportunity to try out this exciting new mode of transportation and let us know what they think.”