“In Paris, we have adopted an open-minded but firm approach with operators. We can’t let just anyone
do just anything in the public space.”
Christophe Najdovski, Deputy Mayor of Paris (France), with responsibility for transport, roads, travel and public spaces
“Paris is open to innovation in public transport, and to personal mobility devices (PMDs) in particular because they provide services that meet new mobility needs, in addition to those already on offer. Nevertheless, we are facing major challenges. These mainly concern parking of PMDs, their occupation of the public space and proper integration into the city. A year ago, the unclear and incomplete legal framework meant electric scooter services could proliferate any which way. Since then, operators have had no scruples about rolling out their fleets in districts that are already extremely crowded. This compromises safety for all and the accessibility of pavements for pedestrians. At the start of 2019, we decided to issue fines for riding and parking free-floating electric scooters on the pavement. Over the following six months, 1,200 devices were impounded.
We have also drawn up a code of conduct which was signed by free-floating bike and moped operators in June 2018, and by electric scooter operators in May 2019. For the latter, the Conseil de Paris (Paris Council) has approved a fee to be paid in exchange for occupying the public space. The revenue generated will be used to fund the creation of dedicated parking ‘hubs’ and introduction of services that are ‘less floating’.
In a further step, we have capped the number of electric scooters. In Paris at the beginning of June 2019, we counted 12 scooter operators and over 20,000 shared scooters in service; one month later, several operators had suspended their operations and we counted just under 15,000 scooters on the city streets.
Despite such moves, we still need to take further action, in relation to employment standards, the life cycle of the scooters, and so forth. When the new mobility orientation law (loi d’orientation des mobilités, LOM) is finally adopted, we will be able to issue a call for tenders in the fourth quarter 2019. Just two or three operators will be selected and they will be obliged to guarantee good working conditions for their teams and monitor the sustainability of their fleets.”