Founder and CBO
The poet T.S. Eliot once wrote that “April is the cruelest month.” At Zagster, we love April because it marks the launch of so many of our shared mobility programs around the country. This week’s newsletter includes a new CEO at Zagster, research from our nation’s cities on the size of the micro-mobility boom, a fun Bay Area experiment in multi-modal mobility, how Zagster joined in this year’s Earth Day festivities, and much more. Let’s get rolling!
The week’s biggest news at Zagster was the arrival of new CEO Dan Grossman, who brings a wealth of experience in the shared mobility space. Dan replaces interim CEO Daniel Herscovici, who re-assumes his leadership role on Zagster’s Board of Directors. “I’m excited to join Zagster at this point in its evolution,” Dan Grossman said, “Zagster’s decade-long experience of building operational excellence makes us the ideal partner for communities. We want to partner with them to ensure that micro-mobility programs are efficient and safe and a viable option to cars and other modes of transportation.” To hear more from Dan (and watch him ride a scooter in the office) watch this great video. Welcome aboard Dan -- we’re looking forward to working with you!
We all know the micro-mobility space is booming, and new research confirms it. Data released recently by the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO) shows that trips on shared micro-mobility vehicles (bicycles and e-scooters) more than doubled from 2017 to 2018, with 84 million trips taken in 2018. In perhaps the best news of all, the massive growth in e-scooter ridership is not “cannibalizing” or reducing the adoption of other modes of micro-mobility. In fact, bicycle ridership grew by 9% last year compared to 2017. We’ve noticed the same trend in our programs, where the popularity of e-scooters actually helps increase bike ridership, a win-win for all micro-mobility modes.
Speaking of multi-modal mobility, Inc. magazine asked one of its writers to experiment with, and write about, various forms of shared mobility (cars, e-scooters, bikes, etc.) for getting around San Francisco. The result? “This experiment showed me that no option is a silver bullet. The various trade-offs require you to make choices based on your needs at any given point in time. The beauty is that these solutions are modular. You can swap them as needed,” the author writes. In other words, mobility isn’t “one-type-fits-all” -- users have choices. Zagster is all about offering users the right ride at the right time and in the right place to meet their specific transport needs.
In Washington, D.C., Senator Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) recently introduced a bill that would invest in improving our nation’s biking infrastructure. The bill would support communities in building trails, pedestrian and bike bridges, and other projects that connect people with the places they want to go. We’d ask members of the bicycle-loving community to consider contacting your local senators to support the bill, the Transportation Alternatives Enhancements Act.
Curbed highlighted five cities (Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit, Memphis and Ithaca, NY ) that are expanding bike-shares into underserved communities. These ride sharing programs are reaching out to seniors, Spanish speakers, and lower-income communities by offering special promotions and programming, as well as offering more types of adaptive bikes. As Zagster works with our community partners, we’re always looking for new ways to promote inclusion and bike equity.
Monday was Earth Day. At Zagster, we celebrate working in a shared mobility space that promotes sustainability by helping reduce carbon emissions at the local and global level. For example, Zagster joined Lehigh University’s Earth Week Celebration by organizing a Zagster Bike Ride through its beautiful Bethlehem, PA campus (Zagster’s VP of Product Development, Bob Mallon, is a proud Lehigh alum). Moving west to Denver (CO), 40% of our program’s rides replaced a potential car trip in 2018. The result? Over 300,000 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions were avoided, helping not just Denver’s air but our planet’s. Small choices, like choosing a bike instead of a car, can have big positive impacts on our planet, which is what Earth Day (and Zagster) is about.
Enjoy Your Weekend!