E-scooters are here to stay in Auckland.
It has been confirmed that licensing will be continued, but operators will face changes in licensing conditions.
Auckland Transport and Auckland Council made the announcement today, but said there would be increased safety precautions in place.
More than 2000 riders have been injured on the popular scooters, which were launched in Auckland a year ago, before being rolled out in other cities.
Earlier this year Auckland Council temporarily pulled them off the streets because of a braking fault.
In September, a 23-year-old died after falling off a Lime electric scooter in downtown Auckland. However, Auckland Council said there was nothing to suggest a mechanical failure played any role in the death of the young man.
Despite the risk and plenty of injuries, their popularity continues to climb. More than two million rides have been recorded in the city to date.
Auckland Council director of regulatory services Craig Hobbs said the council was cautiously optimistic about the future of micro-mobility in Auckland.
"As a mode of micro-mobility, e-scooters offer a viable transport solution for many Aucklanders moving around our city. They encourage people to connect with public transport and offer an alternative to cars for short trips," Hobbs said.
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"That said, the benefits of micro-mobility options do need to be balanced with the safety of everyone on our footpaths and this has been paramount to our decision-making around e-scooters.
"While we have little influence right now on the rules for where e-scooters can be ridden, how fast they can go and whether or not people need to wear helmets, we have done as much as we can to promote public safety.
"This is why we have agreed to license on a six-month basis moving forward. Part of the council's approach is about acknowledging that regulating the safety and use of e-scooters on our streets ultimately sits with central government. We are looking forward to an update from respective government agencies about e-scooter safety."
Hobbs said part of the conditions for awarding a licence to all future operators included an enhanced focus on safety and public nuisance concerns.
Applications must meet the conditions of the bylaw and its associated e-scooter Code of Practice, and will also be assessed for any value-added initiatives they provide.
"One of our immediate priorities moving forward includes advocating to central government on safety and the need for a regulatory framework for e-scooters – both private and rental," Hobbs said.
A spokesman for Living Streets Aotearoa said the group was "shocked" at Auckland Council's decision.
"Electric scooters are on the footpath owing to a law that lets small children ride small bikes. It is not intended for heavy electric scooters with a 100kg person going 25km/h."
"E-scooters have caused ACC to spend $400,000 on crashes [in Auckland] and have caused two deaths in the year they have been on our streets," he said.
The group wants to see the "high speed machines" on cycleways and low-speed roads.
"People who have no choice but to walk or to use a wheelchair need the footpaths free of high-speed electric vehicle-like devices."
Other changes to e-scooter licence conditions include an increase in fleet size up to a maximum cap of 3200 e-scooters across Auckland.
Living Streets Aotearoa has a current Parliamentary Petition asking for e-scooters and new forms of motorised vehicles to be banned from footpaths.
There will also be additional fees to operators for monitoring and compliance services.
To ensure the smooth transition between the current and next phase of licensing, the council will have up to a six-week licence rollover period from November 1 to receive, assess and approve new licences.