New Five-Year Pilot E-Scooter Project Begins On Jan. 1
TORONTO: Ontario is launching a five-year pilot project beginning January 1 to allow e-scooters on the province’s roads.
The two-wheeled, motorized vehicles are currently illegal to operate anywhere in the province other than on private property. The pilot will let municipalities decide whether to allow e-scooters on municipal roads, including parks and trails.
Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney says the five-year trial will help businesses expand, enrich local economies and offer people more options to get around safely. “Our government is strongly committed to promoting the highest standards of safety for all Ontarians who travel on our roads.”
“With Ontario adopting regulations for its e-scooter pilot, we’re excited by the momentum micromobility continues to gain across Canada,” said Chris Schafer, Senior Director, Strategic Development at Lime in Canada. “
“This development means that Ontario’s municipalities can now offer their residents new and sustainable ways to get around in their communities. We look forward to working in partnership with governments across the province and continuing to advance our shared transportation goals.”
Parliamentary Assistant to Mulroney, Vijay Thanigasalam, said: “:E-scooters have the potential to reduce congestion and open the Ontario market to a new and growing sector. This project will give people a new, clean and green way to get from point A to point B in their communities.”
The province has developed best practice guidelines to help municipalities safely integrate e-scooters in their communities. E-scooters have been launched in over 125 U.S. cities and are being allowed under pilot conditions in Quebec and Alberta.
E-scooter drivers will have to be at least 16 years old and wear a helmet, and their vehicles will need to have a horn or bell and a front and rear light.
Municipalities that choose to permit e-scooters will be responsible for considerations such as whether to allow or prohibit them on municipal roads including parks and trails; where parking will be located; and how e-scooters will be managed in their municipality.
Municipalities can choose to pass by-laws to allow use of e-scooters and determine where they can operate most safely in each unique environment.
Mayor John Tory says Toronto will continue to move forward with caution and careful planning, “To ensure we go about this in the right way that listens carefully to our residents, community groups, and businesses.”