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UT among top users of Lime scooters; vehicles to be unavailable during colder months

Since The University of Toledo introduced Lime scooters on Main Campus at the beginning of fall semester, more than 5,500 students, faculty and staff have logged more than 19,000 miles during the scooters’ first two months at UT.

This usage translates to 12,700 driving miles avoided, saving approximately 533 gallons of gasoline and 17,200 pounds of carbon dioxide. The electric scooters were used for 32,000 trips, with the average UT trip distance totaling .42 miles.

Brendan Wyatt hopped on a Lime scooter outside Memorial Field House.

“We’re very pleased our campus community has embraced this new mode of micro transportation, which is more environmentally friendly and helps riders to navigate campus more easily,” President Sharon L. Gaber said.

“Because the scooters were used so heavily within the first month of classes, we actually doubled the number available on Main Campus — from 125 to nearly 250 — to ensure we were meeting the high demand,” said Sherri Kaspar, director for parking and transportation.

As a result of their heavy use, UT is among the top-performing universities in the U.S. for Lime scooter adoption. The California-based electric mobility company, Lime, provides its scooters in dozens of cities across the country and recently started international operations in France, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Spain and Canada.

“I’ve used the scooters about six times now, such as going back and forth to Rocket Hall,” Reece Pohlman, a freshman majoring in nursing, said. “They’re fast and fun, and I probably would have been late to class without them.”

Scooter users are reminded to follow safety guidelines provided on Lime’s website. Other helpful information — including the free, downloadable Lime app, instructions for use and UT-specific scooter guidelines — may be found on UT’s Parking and Transportation Services’ page about scooters.

“We especially want to remind users to avoid parking the scooters near building push buttons for handicap door access,” Kaspar said. “And, of course, be careful whenever you’re approaching pedestrians. The scooters make very little noise, and so it’s hard for people to know you’re driving up behind them.”

Due to colder temperatures and inclement winter weather conditions, Lime scooters will be removed from campus in November. They will return to campus in mid-March or whenever the weather no longer poses safety risks due to snow and icy roadways, Kaspar said.

“The University is continually looking at ways to expand transportation options and reduce its footprint, such as through Rocket Wheels — our bike-sharing program that began in 2015 — our recent TARTA bus agreement, and now the new Lime scooter program,” said Bonnie Murphy, associate vice president for auxiliaries. “We’re grateful that our students and other campus members are using these greener transportation options because they’re better not only for the University, but also for our community.”