E bike Waka Kotahi
Photo by Waka Kotahi

E-bikes, push bikes or vehicles?

The rising popularity of e-bikes, e-scooters and other micromobility devices is creating challenges for people planning transport around New Zealand. 

Recent research from Waka Kotahi expects lightweight vehicles such as electric bikes and scooters to share between 3-11% of transport modes by 2030. It expects public transport to grow by 9% and corresponding car trips will decrease by 2% in central business districts (CBD) and 1% in other areas.  

The benefits of this transport shift could include;  

  • an increase in physical activity  
  • an increase in positive mental wellbeing  
  • a decrease in air pollution  
  • more space on our roads - less traffic congestion, and  
  • more people enjoying our cycle tracks and trails! 

E-bikes provide more people with the ability to pedal from door to door when they may have previously driven or used public transport. It also provides the option for using two or more modes of transport (biking or scooting at the beginning or end of a journey to connect with public transport).  

This means e-bikes and e-scooters could become more popular than push bikes.  

The growth in mobility devices will depend on a variety of factors including attractive destinations and their proximity to people, and the quality of route infrastructure, including safety and accessibility.  

The commission is monitoring this new transport trend as it can alter the type of trails our communities will ride and enjoy in the future.