Scoobi Scooters Hit the Pittsburgh Streets
Did you notice the hundred or so blue and lime green scooters that popped up this weekend? Or maybe one scooting along Forbes Ave (that could have been me!)? In the latest in mobility moves for the city,PGH-based firm Scoobi has launched the country’s third network of moped scooters — and we are pretty excited about it.
Founded by Pitt graduate Mike Moran, the fleet of fully electric scooters operate on a dockless system, meaning you can pick up or park the scooter anywhere within a zoned map that includes Downtown, the Strip District, Lawrenceville, Bloomfield, Oakland, Hill District, Uptown, East Liberty and South Side. Look for more neighborhoods to be added to the zone with the addition of more bikes, as the full network aims to have 250 – 300 scooters.
Like its car-sharing and bike-sharing counterparts, the scooter share is reserved, unlocked and locked via their app. For $5, you can ride for 15 minutes (with additional time offered at $.25/minute). When you’re done, you can park in any city parking space, paid or permitted, with insurance and charging included in the rental rate.
Why Scoobi? Well for starters, it’s just plain fun. The scooter is easy for non-seasoned riders like myself to hit the streets without much practice (disclosure: I did head to a quiet street to get my bearings) and can get up to 35 MPH. Unlike its smaller, more-Razor like competitor Bird (which has its eyes on Pittsburgh for their next expansion market), the Scoobis feel substantial and safe to use on the roads and come with a helmet in the trunk of each scooter. Second is the economics: that Uber ride that is close, but not that close comes with a $10 price tag, and a Healthy Ride to that location might have a massive hill, resulting in a sweaty arrival. So the $5 spend on Scoobi gets you there faster and cheaper with little-to-no worry about fighting for parking, given that they can squeeze just about anywhere. Third, the electric scooters join Healthy Ride in reducing CO2 emissions across the city, with each ride displaying your contribution to CO2 savings. Overall, the ride is pretty damn fun and functional.
To get started, simply download the app, watch a couple introduction videos, plug in your information (like driver’s license and credit card) and get ready to hit the road. We’re sure we’ll see you out there, cause after just two rides, we’re total converts!