Scooter rollout goes smoothly in downtown Springfield

More of them are expected to be available in the city throughout the week.

A handful of shared electric scooters were available to ride in downtown Springfield Monday afternoon as that day marked the arrival of those motorized devices.

A little over 20 of those scooters where available outside of COhatch Springfield during the afternoon and another batch was located near Mother Stewart’s in the evening.

The scooters will be gradually rolled out and more are expected to be available in the downtown area throughout the week.

ExploreSpringfield restaurant employee featured in national publication

The goal is to have 55 scooters available to ride in the downtown area by Friday, said Nathan Smith, who is overseeing the scooter operation in Springfield.

Smith said on Monday that he is limiting where the scooters will be located for most of the week in order to educate potential customers on how to use them.

He said the rollout of the scooters has been smooth so far and several dozen people had approached him by Monday afternoon to ask about the motorized devices.

The scooters are a result of a partnership between the city and the shared electric scooter company Bird Rides. That company has been in talks with the city since late last year regarding having their scooters in Springfield.

Explore$1.4M grant to go toward Middle Urbana Road improvement

Smith said that eventually those scooters will be located in small groups of three or five on street corners and other areas in the downtown. The scooters will be located in areas that do not block traffic, pedestrians, driveways or businesses, while still being accessible to customers.

Those scooters can be rented off the street by using a mobile phone application, known as the Bird app. There will be a $1 charge to use the scooters and rides will be priced at $0.39 per minute, or about $25 an hour.

The app also shows where the scooters can be ridden.

The current boundary in which the scooters can be operated is between East McCreight Avenue and West Pleasant Street as well as North Plum Street and East Street.