Bird removing scooters from UNC campus while parties explore possibility of partnership

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Friday, August 24, 2018
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Electric Bird scooters arrive in Chapel Hill

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- The popular electric scooter company, Bird, will remove its scooters from UNC's Chapel Hill campus while they explore the possibility of a partnership with the university, officials said Friday.

According to the university, the scooters arrived on campus this week without a partnership in place.

Bird said it was part of the "University Pop-Up Tour" to introduce students and faculty to its fleet of low-cost, carbon-free devices.

"Bird is working with UNC-Chapel Hill so that university students and staff can have access to our affordable, environmentally friendly transportation option," the company told ABC11 in an email. "The UNC community has already embraced our last mile solution as a way to more easily get around campus and access local businesses in the area, and we are encouraged by their support of our service. We have agreed to voluntarily remove our vehicles while we build a partnership with the university, and we look forward to being back on the road September 27."

The tour ranges from large public universities to smaller private colleges.

In mid-July, Bird launched in Raleigh. The California-based company deployed 150 of them overnight on July 10 and 11, without announcement or notice to the city.

RELATED: City of Raleigh wants to regulate Bird scooters

Scooter users download an app to unlock the scooters for $1, plus 15 cents a minute.

Read the full statement from the university below:

This week, Bird scooters arrived at UNC-Chapel Hill without a partnership agreement with the University. Bird has agreed to voluntarily remove its scooters from UNC-Chapel Hill while the University explores the possibility of a partnership with the company. This partnership would be subject to reasonable safety and financial considerations in compliance with all regulations concerning partnerships with public institutions in North Carolina. The University and Bird have agreed to work toward a reasonable resolution by the end of September.