Jump bikes will once again be visible on the streets of Brussels next week for the first time since the start of Belgium’s coronavirus lockdown.
The red electric bikes, which were first run by Uber, will now be operated by electric scooter provider Lime, which bought the bikes in May as part of a funding round in which Uber was the main investor.
“We hope to be back by next week,” Lime’s general manager for the Benelux, Benjamin Barnathan, told La Dernière Heure. According to the announcement, some 500 to 1,000 Jump bicycles should return to Brussels as of next week, and they will keep the same strinking look as before.
Lime is hoping that the Jump bikes will help alleviate Brussels’ need for alternative transport means, as the people of Brussels have “largely modified their habits” when it comes to transport, Barnathan pointed out, with an increase in cyclists. “We hope that they will continue to do so,” he said.
Uber put its Jump service on pause at the end of March “due to exceptional circumstances,” referring to the far-reaching measures taken by the government to curb the initial spread of coronavirus, which included people staying at home as much as possible. The bikes then disappeared from the streets of Brussels at the end of May.
Before the e-bikes left Brussels, the city was the tenth largest user of Jump bicycles worldwide.
By relaunching the bicycles next week, Lime will miss the window of profiting from the upcoming car-free Sunday.