Less than a year after zipping into town, Lyft is putting the brakes on its dockless scooter service in San Antonio. On November 16, the ridehailing company announced it will remove its scooters from six cities across the country, including San Antonio, on November 22.
In addition to San Antonio, Lyft is also pulling scooters from Dallas, Nashville, Atlanta, Columbus, and Phoenix. According to a rep, they will still operate in Austin, which will be the company's only scooter market in the Lone Star State.
In a statement to our colleagues at CultureMap Dallas, Lyft says it is shifting resources and focusing on other cities and markets where they'll have a bigger impact. Cities that will still have Lyft scooters include the aforementioned Austin; San Diego; Denver; Los Angeles; Miami; Minneapolis; Washington, D.C.; and San Francisco.
Lyft launched its local e-scooter program in February with a special downtown celebration that attracted city leaders including Councilman Roberto C. Treviño and Janel Sterbentz, executive director of Bike San Antonio.
Of course, San Antonio's scooter rollout has not been without some controversy. In December 2018, Olmos Park adopted a fairly strict series of guidelines for the dockless bikes, which includes fines levied against individual companies for impounded scooters and $1,000 yearly permit fees. This past July, the City of San Antonio banned scooters from all city sidewalks in addition to Alamo Plaza, the River Walk, and city parks and trails.
This summer, Uber also pulled its dockless scooter and e-bike service, Jump, from San Antonio streets. Popular companies Bird and Lime, however, are still operating locally. In August, Lime even selected the city to house its Regional Repair Center, which services Central and South Texas.