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Lime Scooter Company Is Leaving San Diego

A group of Lime scooters are parked in preparation for removal from San Diego...

Photo by Matt Hoffman

Above: A group of Lime scooters are parked in preparation for removal from San Diego, Jan. 9, 2020.

Lime announced Thursday it was ending operations in San Diego, one of a dozen markets the scooter company is leaving as it aims toward profitability in 2020.

“As part of our path to profitability, Lime has made the difficult decision to exit San Diego and focus our resources on markets that allow us to meet our ambitious goals for 2020," a Lime spokesman said in a statement.

Listen to this story by Matt Hoffman.

Photo by Matt Hoffman

A screenshot of the Lime app with a message saying that Lime is no longer operating in San DIego, Jan. 9, 2020.

Some Lime employees in San Diego are being laid off.

Lime officials said the decision to leave was not an easy one.

Lime said ridership declined after new regulations went into effect in 2019. Lime also said there has been limited transparency when it comes to it's scooters being impounded. During Comic-Con last July, the city impounded more than 700 Lime scooters, which cost Lime $46,000.

RELATED: Thousands Of Scooters And Bikes Impounded During Comic-Con

Last August, the city of San Diego tried to revoke Lime's operating permit, claiming the company violated speed and geofencing rules. A hearing officer determined the city failed to prove the accusations and denied Lime due process.

RELATED: Lime Scooters Aren’t Going Anywhere, City Loses Battle To Revoke Operating Permit

The San Diego City Council voted in December to ban scooters on boardwalks, an area where ridership was high.

The company says customers can use existing funds in their Lime accounts in other cities or request a refund.

Even though Lime is leaving the San Diego market, the company did not write off America's Finest City completely.

"We’re grateful to our team members, riders, juicers and communities who supported us throughout this journey," said a Lime spokesman. "We appreciate the partnership we’ve enjoyed with San Diego and remain hopeful we can reintroduce Lime back into the community when the time is right.”

Uber pulled it's bikes and scooters from San Diego in September, saying regulations created an unsustainable operating environment.

Video by Roland Lizarondo


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Photo of Matt Hoffman

Matt Hoffman
General Assignment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI am a general assignment reporter for KPBS. In addition to covering the latest news and issues that are relevant to the San Diego community, I like to dig deeper to find the voices and perspectives that other media often miss.

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