With Micromobility, Tech Sparks Nimble Innovations In Oregon Transportation

The electric bike allows me to not have to exercise as much,” she added. “It really is just a mode of transportation.”

Ruwick’s 12-foot-long bike-and-trailer combination is not the only vehicle that turns heads in the bike lanes.

She’s part of a new trend that transportation experts are calling micromobility. It’s the idea that new technology – including smartphones and more efficient batteries – is sparking a big jump in small, nimble vehicles suited for increasingly crowded city streets.

“We’re seeing a lot more users in bike lanes – bicycles, electric scooters, electric bikes. I see people on kind of skateboard sort of conveyances,” said Jillian Detweiler, executive director of The Street Trust, formerly known as the Bicycle Transportation Alliance.

Most notable are those rental scooters that have been sprouting up in cities around the world. About 2,600 are now on the streets of Portland.