SANTA MONICA—On Tuesday, March 9, the Santa Monica City Council approved a second permit-based Shared Mobility Pilot Program and cleared the use of Class I and II electric bikes on Santa Monica’s portion of the beach bike path.

Shared mobility services are a transportation option where devices like bikes and electric scooters are shared among users. They are typically enabled by a mobile app, and emerging services are usually run by private companies.

“We’ve always taken a flexible approach to shared mobility given how quickly the industry and community needs shift,” said Mayor Sue Himmelrich. “What has not changed is the value these devices bring in offering residents and visitors a convenient, accessible alternative to cars that can reduce vehicle congestion and greenhouse gas emissions. Santa Monica is committed to safe, sustainable, and affordable transportation, and these values will guide the second pilot and future contracting process.”

The city will issue a Request for Applications seeking up to four shared mobility operators to operate from July 1, 2021, through March 30, 2023. Santa Monica will also move to a contract-based system to begin on March 31, 2023, following the conclusion of the pilot program.

The Santa Monica City Council removed the prohibition of Class I and II electric bicycles on the Beach Bike Path. Geo-fencing requirements that prohibit shared e-scooters on the Path remain in place and Class I and II e-bikes have a speed limit of 20 mph.