While still a relatively new means of transport, we’re finding there are more and more studies into e-scooter use. Only with more studies will we learn about how e-scooters are being used, what the environmental impact of their use (and manufacture) is - and what impact does their use have on urban traffic.
Reports produced from different institutions can produce different, sometimes conflicting results depending on how they are run and where they are run. After all no two countries, cities or their residents are the same.
As more studies are completed and their results analysed a clearer picture will eventually emerge.
A recent study from Vienna looks into the socio-economic profiles and usage patterns of e-scooter users. The report differentiates between e-scooter owners and renters using two methods. 1. based on an online survey, gaining age, gender and education and the kinds of trips taken and what other means of transport has been replaced by the e-scooter’s use. 2. Data from field studies at cycle paths in Vienna were undertaken to determine the share of e-scooter riders and their gender distribution. E-scooters are treated in a similar manner to bicycles in Vienna so they share the same space (so cycle paths not pavements).
A link to the report is provided below but in summary:-
- Trips with e-scooters mostly replace trips that would have been taken by walking, then cycling and public transport
- Main users are young to middle aged males who are educated
- No evidence of shift from bicycles to e-scooters
- City planners need to address the competitive relationship between pedestrians, bikes and e-scooters and also the relationship between these users and the space made available to car users
- In Vienna 67% of the space is for cars, 30% pavement, 1% pedestrian zones and 1% cycle paths
- Evidence suggests that users are using e-scooters for multi-modularity - so using e-scooter for multiple parts of journey (i.e. first and last mile).
- Private e-scooter owners are more frequent users with 70.7% using them several times a week.
- 44.5% of sharing scheme users use e-scooters “several times a month”, 23.6% used just once.
- Rental users also more likely to use for replacing commuting trips - while owners use their e-scooters for multi uses.
- Rental users are more likely to replace walking trips, then public transport
- E-scooter owners show a significant decrease in car journeys but walking trips are the most replaced journey by both groups