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Bird submits permit application for motorized scooters in Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The motorized scooter company Bird has officially applied for a permit to bring motorized scooters to Indianapolis.

It comes after months of controversy in Indianapolis around the new way to get around town.     

Bird was one of the two companies that had been operating in Indianapolis before the city adopted its permit system to help regulate the motorized scooters back in July. 

Two weeks ago, the city said it does not anticipate the process of accepting or denying a permit to take very long. A specific time frame was not provided. 

This development comes after a spring of excitement. Many in Indianapolis excited about the new eco-friendly way to get around. But many also concerned about the dockless scooters being a hazard on the roadways and possibly causing accidents. 

The city put into place a permit system so it can regulate which companies can come in and which can’t. 

“No matter what  company comes in it’s going to be the individual who’s operating it right,” said Bob Brown, who was walking around downtown Indianapolis on Thursday.     

It’s been nearly a week and a half since the permit process began. It’s been about a month since scooters deserted the streets of Indianapolis. Scooter fans expressed a concern about how long it could take to get the devices back on the street, fearing it could affect its popularity if it took too long.     

Lime, the other company that had scooters in Indy, told WISH TV this week it is still reviewing the permit application.    

When it was a proposal, Lime representatives supported creating a permit system but had concerns about the fees — $15,000 per year and $1 per day per scooter.     

They said at the time the fees could change how many scooters and how large of a footprint they could have in Indianapolis.     

The city had argued its fees were comparable to other cities. 

WISH TV will provide an update on any other companies submitting permit applications and the city’s decision on Bird.