ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — The first electric scooters from the rideshare service Bird arrived in Rockford on Wednesday.

The scooters are available to rent through the Bird app.

Residents are only able to use the scooters in certain areas of the city. In fact, the vehicles would slow down and become inoperable if riders traveled outside of these spaces.

Scooters are allowed on streets, bike lanes, and bike paths–not sidewalks.

“Then I was excited, I never rode one of these before, these scooters, I’m very interested in giving it a try. I usually take the bus, or I usually walk a lot. So, this would actually help,” said Rockford resident Kris Harden.

Scooters are limited to the Electric Scooter Zone which is bordered by Central Avenue, Auburn Street, Morgan Street and 3rd Street. Scooters taken out of the zone will be remotely disabled and users will be charged until returned to the zone and properly parked.

Photo: City of Rockford

Bird offers the following programs that are available for all who qualify:

  • Community Pricing – Bird’s Community Pricing Program offers a 50% discount to low-income riders, Pell grant recipients, select local nonprofit and community organizations, veterans and senior citizens. It’s designed to be the most inclusive micromobility discount program available anywhere. To sign up for the Community Pricing Program, download the Bird app, create an account and email your proof of eligibility to
  • Free Rides for Healthcare Workers and Emergency Personnel – Bird is proud to offer free rides to healthcare workers and emergency personnel. To sign up, simply email a copy of your medical identification card along with your name and phone number to Eligible riders will receive two free 30-minute rides per day for as long as it takes to help our communities to recover from this global health crisis.

The scooters offer the first portable public transportation rideshare program since LimeBike pulled out of the city in 2019.