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E-scooters could raise real estate prices, startup executive says

David Richter, chief business officer of Lime (Credit: Getty Images; David Richter photo via LinkedIn)

David Richter, chief business officer of Lime (Credit: Getty Images; David Richter photo via LinkedIn)

E-scooters could mean a boost in real estate values in congested U.S. cities.

This is the assertion of David Richter, the chief business officer at e-scooter startup Lime, which has deployed thousands of scooters in cities across the country.

Speaking at a conference hosted by Fortune Tuesday, Richter said that the rise of e-scooters, coupled with an increase in bicycle use and ride-sharing, could drive down traffic from traditional car use.

In turn, urban planners could redesign neighborhoods with fewer parking spaces and less traffic, which could increase the value of real estate, Richter said, according to Fortune. Another panelist, Ken Washington, the chief technology officer of Ford, reportedly said that in San Jose, California, some new developments were being built without parking garages, as city planners focus on decongestion.

The e-scooter craze has drawn significant investment. Lime, which has raised $765 million, is now is available in 100 U.S. cities and 27 international cities. In February, the San Francisco-based startup raised $310 million in a series D funding round that valued the firm at $2.4 billion. That round was led by Bain Capital Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and Fidelity Ventures.

But not everyone is cheering on the wave of e-scooters. In Los Angeles, a city council advisory board imposed a voluntary ban on Lime and another firm, Bird, from deploying more scooters while it determined regulations around their use. Some residents there complained about the scooters being parked haphazardly or being used on sidewalks. [Fortune] — David Jeans

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