We find ourselves in a defining moment for urban transport.
With the government greenlighting rented electric scooter trials ahead of schedule, we may be taking the first steps towards the electric vehicle revolution sooner than expected.
Admittedly, it’s early days.
The vehicles can only be rented.
They can only be used on roads.
So, although it’s not necessarily a U-turn from the government, it does suggest they are revising their stance on something that was once considered more of a nuisance than a solution.
Electric mobility is already receiving plenty of press for the role it could play in minimising overcrowded public transport as people return to work.
However, it has the potential to change the way we get around in so many more ways.
And that includes the property industry.
The ability to quickly navigate large, multi-phase developments could make electric scooters indispensable to site managers and sales teams. Whether they are showing buyers around, checking build progress or attending to issues, electric scooters could provide the solution, helping staff achieve more tasks in less time, without the worry of showing up to an appointment hiding sweat patches!
It's not just staff who are affected, either. As electric bikes and scooters become more commonplace, especially in urban environments, developers will need to consider how suitable their roads are for residents with these vehicles and whether sufficient secure storage is available on site. Especially in cities, where some developments are subject to severe parking restrictions, developers may even look at incorporating electric scooters in any green initiatives they are required to submit. Offering electric scooter or bike rental on the development could enable residents to stay connected with the city, while looking after their own health and that of the environment. What’s more, proximity to an underground station may not be the be-all and end-all when acquiring land for development, as more people embrace the freedom afforded by two wheels!
Throw into the mix tradespeople, contractors and assessors, and we might start to see less of a reliance on visitors’ parking but more expectation for visitors’ scooter and bike storage.
While this is ‘looking into the crystal ball’ territory, the signs are certainly there that it’s time to take electric transport seriously, and keeping this in mind when planning developments could save expensive retrofitting and revisions of infrastructure down the line, while also getting a wheel up on the competition.