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Lime scooters, bikes make their return to Spokane and Spokane Valley this week

Lime is interested in expanding to other neighboring cities, such as Cheney and Coeur d’Alene, but needs the approval of local leaders before moving forward.

SPOKANE, Wash. — Lime is relaunching citywide scooter and e-bike operations in Spokane and Spokane Valley this week after reducing service for winter. 

Lime recently expanded into Spokane Valley. The electric vehicle provider is also interested in expanding to other neighboring cities, such as Cheney and Coeur d’Alene, but needs the approval of local leaders before moving forward.

Spokane residents have taken nearly 900,000 trips with Lime since a pilot program launched in fall 2018, the company said in a press release. The scooters and bikes had a short season in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to a 50% decrease in ridership in Spokane.

RELATED: Lime plans to expand in Spokane area despite decrease in 2020 ridership

Lime hopes its scooters and bikes will prove useful as the Spokane area makes its economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

A recent study from Emory University in the U.S. found that e-scooters can generate "significant positive economic spillover." 

The study compared consumer purchase patterns in four cities that allowed operation of shared e-scooter systems to similar cities that did not at the time. Over six months across the four cities with e-scooters, every scooter on the street led to an estimated $921 in new revenue, particularly concentrated in the food and beverage industry.

This implies that Spokane’s fleet of 1,500 scooters contributes at least $1.4 million in economic activity that would be unrealized without them, Lime said in its press release. 

Lime is urging riders to wear a mask and adhere to proper protocols in line with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Spokane Regional Health District recommendations. 

Lime also offers reduced-price rides through its Lime Access program. Any lower-income individual who receives public assistance is eligible for Lime Access and can sign up on Lime’s website.

Businesses and community groups that would like to collaborate with Lime for special community events, festivals or other efforts can reach out to the company here.