Reno to decide fate of bike share company after Sparks cuts ties with Lime

LimeBikes -- as seen in Reno, Nevada -- in this file photo.

Two days after the City of Sparks ended its partnership with a bike sharing company, the City of Reno is expected to decide the fate of Lime Bikes at its Wednesday, Sept. 26, council meeting.

Sparks ended its partnership with Lime after testing the bike share service for about five months on Monday, Sept. 24.

The Sparks City Council voted unanimously to not renew its franchise agreement with Lime when the pilot expires January 2019.

City officials told News 4-Fox 11 that they decided to cut ties with Lime due to lack of communication, especially when Lime launched its e-scooters after being asked to hold off.

According to spokeswoman Julie Duewel, the Council said they didn’t feel comfortable with launching the scooters during a September 10th meeting. They had outstanding questions regarding the safety and legality of the scooters, similar to the concerns of the City of Reno.

Then Duewel said city officials told Lime “under no circumstances are you to launch scooters in Sparks” during a September 13th conference call. The scooters were on the streets the following Tuesday.

Duewel said the City's transportation manager sent an email to Lime on September 19th expressing disappointment about launch. Duewel said the company never responded to the email.

Lime's Response

Lime is disappointed in the City of Sparks' decision to discontinue Lime services. The residents and users within the city have spoken in support of Lime en masse and we are dismayed we cannot meet that demand. Lime is dedicated to working with communities to provide sustainable, alternative methods of transportation and hopes to find a way to work with this city and its residents in the future.

The City of Reno recently sent a 'cease and desist' letter to Lime after they launched e-scooters last week.

According to the City of Reno, Lime did not notify City officials of its intent to launch, nor did it demonstrate compliance with the operation and equipment standards for mopeds set forth in NRS Chapter 486.

The city will be discussing the future deployment of electric scooters, and possible termination of the Dockless Bike Share System Franchise Agreement at this Wednesday's council meeting.

Wednesday's agenda item:

Staff Report (For Possible Action): Presentation, discussion and potential
direction to staff regarding operations, the future deployment of
electric scooters, and possible termination of the Dockless Bike Share
System Franchise Agreement.

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