Fayetteville’s micromobility program once again includes electric bicycles.
Spin, one of two companies to operate e-scooters in the city alongside Veo, last week unveiled a new fleet of e-bikes.
The launch marked the first time in over a year that residents can hop on a shared e-bike for a trip around town. Veo was the last to operate electric bicycles in Fayetteville, but the company pulled its entire fleet in June 2021 due to a decrease in ridership related to ongoing maintenance issues and the overwhelming popularity of e-scooters.
Dane Eifling, the city’s mobility coordinator, said Spin dropped off 100 of its S-300 model e-bikes in Fayetteville, which are more tamper-resistant and easier to clean and repair than some of the earlier generations of shared electric bicycles. With shielded brake cables and drive trains, the newer models are said to be less susceptible to wear, tear, abuse and vandalism.
The new bikes will reach speeds of 20 mph in many areas, but are programmed to top out at 15 mph on the city’s trail system using geofencing technology.
Eifling said all signs point to a strong start for the new fleet.
“The ridership data we’ve gotten so far is showing that the new e-bikes are just as popular as the scooters,” he said.
The city’s e-scooter program has grown considerably since it began with 250 scooters in late 2019. Both Spin and Veo now have a combined fleet of 1,000 scooters for rent that can be used in a 20-square-mile service area in Fayetteville.
Both companies recently expanded to a 3-mile area west of Interstate 49, and Veo launched a fleet of seated scooters that allow riders to sit on a cushioned seat much like a gas-powered scooter or moped.
Eifling earlier his year said Spin is also working on a new 3-wheel scooter model that provides more stability and has self-driving technology that allows the scooter to park itself in a proper location.