An initial 200 e-scooters will be rolled out in Coventry next week as the start of a 12-month trial begins in the city centre.

Swedish company Voi has been appointed to operate the vehicles, it has been announced by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) today.

The devices, which are limited to 15.5mph on any 30mph road or less, will cost £1 to ‘unlock’ and 20p per minute to ride.

They will be available for use in Birmingham and Coventry next Thursday, September 10, with the intention of deploying it in further areas across the West Midlands and Warwickshire soon after.

Members of the public will initially only be able to ride e-scooters within the immediate vicinity of Birmingham and Coventry’s city centre.

However, Coventry City Council has identified four potential future trial areas, including two in the north east of the city, one in the city centre, and another ‘Coventry and Kenilworth’ route incorporating the University of Warwick.



A map showing where e-scooter trials could run in Coventry has now been released by the city council. Four trial areas have been drawn up, including two in the north east of the city, one in the city centre, and another ‘Coventry and Kenilworth’ route incorporating the University of Warwick.

Details on the final routes are yet to be confirmed by the city council.

Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street, said: “The West Midlands is proud to be leading the way on future transport development, and it is great to be able to partner with Voi and reveal our plans for e-scooters across the region.

“E-scooters will help bring more flexibility, choice, and greener travel solutions for the West Midlands, at a time when we are facing a climate emergency and urging people to leave the car at home.

“E-scooters unquestionably offer a healthier, more environmentally friendly, alternative to the car for shorter journeys around our towns and cities, which will in turn help to ease traffic congestion and tackle air pollution.”



Voi Technology makes an e-scooter pledge to Birmingham ahead of the city’s trial of the tech transport

The government brought forward national e-scooter trials by 12 months and passed legislation in May making rental e-scooters legal on public roads, in a bid to help accelerate alternative post-lockdown travel.

It is hoped there will be 10,000 e-scooters on West Midlands roads as part of the trial.

Riders will need a provisional or full driving licence to unlock an e-scooter.

There will be reduced rates for NHS workers, students and those on low incomes, and those looking to use the e-scooters regularly can also have unlimited rides for £40 per month.

Private e-scooters will not be permitted as part of the trial and users are asked to download the Voi app on their smartphones to take part.

Voi launched Europe’s first dockless e-scooter service in 2018 and now operates in 45 cities across 11 countries.

Lucy Yu, Voi’s Director of Public Policy, said: “In the UK, 60 per cent of car journeys are between one and three miles, which significantly increases congestion.

“Cars no longer suit the way we live today, and we estimate that 20 per cent of short journeys could be replaced by low-carbon e-scooters with a minimum five-year lifespan. E-scooters provide a compelling alternative that will outrun the car.”

The e-scooter trial will launch with an event outside Coventry Transport Museum between 10am and 4pm on September 10.

If a licence is granted by the Department for Transport by that date, the e-scooters will be able to hire to get around the city.

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