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Electric scooters to go on trial in Taupo

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Electric scooters for hire will be trialled in Taupō town centre from next month after Taupō District Council approved the proposal at its May council meeting.

Taupō company Glide Scooters put forward the proposal, which is set to start in July and run through to March 2020. The scooters will be available for use on footpaths in the town centre, lakefront reserves to Three Mile Bay and Spa Thermal Park during set hours.

Infrastructure manager Denis Lewis said the Glide e-scooters were different from those used in other towns and cities because technology could be used to control their speeds in certain locations, determine places they could and could not go, and manage locations where the scooters had to be returned to. Council is currently negotiating a memorandum of understanding to manage these elements.

"The memorandum of understanding will cover conditions such as speed limits, times of operation and safety, and will have to be agreed upon in order for the trial to commence in July," he said. "Safety and community well-being is our primary concern and we want to ensure these are prioritised throughout the trial."

The speed limit in the town centre area would be limited to ensure safety for other footpath users.

Council will closely monitor how the scooters are managed over the trial, before making a future decision of if it will be renewed or become a more permanent feature.

"We will be working closely with the operator, police and other stakeholders to monitor the operation and support safe operation for users, pedestrians and motorists," he said.

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