The District Department of Transportation said Tuesday that it has selected four of the eight companies operating scooters in the city to continue their operations in the nation’s capital in 2020.
The four companies — Jump (owned by Uber), Lyft, Skip and Spin — will be allowed to deploy up to 10,000 scooters starting Jan. 1, nearly doubling the number of devices available for rent in the city. In addition, the city is issuing two permits for e-bike operations to allow a total of 5,000 e-bikes beginning Jan. 1.
Scooter companies Lime and Bird, two of the early entrants into the scooter scene in the District and nationwide, were not awarded permits to continue their operations in the city. Neither were Bolt and Razor. Come Jan. 1, scooters provided by those companies will not be allowed within the city limits, even if they are rented in the Washington suburbs
The city had announced plans in October to reduce the number of scooter operators and put four slots for scooter operations and four for e-bikes up for bid. Thirteen scooter companies and five e-bike companies applied, according to DDOT. An interagency committee evaluated the applications on a 198-point scale and selected the top point earners.
Helbiz, an Italian company that launched its first e-bike operation in Rome last month, and Jump, which already operates e-bikes in D.C., secured bike permits. Each will be allowed to deploy up to 2,500 of the devices.
Under new rules to go into effect next month, the companies will be able to apply to expand their fleets — up to doubling them — on a semiannual basis. DDOT says it will grant expansions after evaluating a company’s performance. For example, a company that starts with 2,500 scooters in January could potentially have 5,000 in service by midyear, and if all four companies were to be approved for the maximum expansion there could be 20,000 scooters by summer.