In 2013, VeloMetro founders envisioned a future where the vast majority of people in a city had access to clean, inexpensive, electric personal transportation. Electric automobiles of the day are becoming better, but they are still too expensive for many people and too inefficient for most trips. Electric bicycles are rapidly gaining interest, but inherit many issues that non-electric cycling currently have, such as theft, safety, and comfort. We have devised a new service called Veemo, which is a shared fleet and “go anywhere” rental service of three-wheeled, weather-protected, safe and secure, electric-assist pedalled vehicles. Read more about Veemo below…
The Veemo Advantage
VeloMetro is planning to develop large fleets of modern, lightweight Veemos for use in one-way sharing networks, similar to Car2Go. The Veemo advantages are many:
- No required driver’s license, since the Veemo vehicle is an electric-assist bicycle
- Sign up and use the vehicles on the spot with a smartphone and a credit card
- Added safety, convenience, and comfort over a bicycle
- Reduced cost and parking limitations, and avoidance of gridlock automobile traffic.
We hope to incite modal shift for people within cities, away from dependence on fossil-fuel burning automobiles and towards active, sustainable transportation. We are doing this by offering a novel, sustainable vehicle and service that provides fun, convenience, safety, affordability.
It Starts with a Smart Vehicle
The novel vehicle we have developed builds upon a high performance electric bicycle by adding several features:
- A strong, lightweight enclosure to protect the rider from bad weather to collisions
- A smart, patent-pending drivetrain that uses a powerful electric motor and automatic transmission that makes long rides or steep hills easy and effortless
- Internet and GPS technologies to allow people to find and book the nearest Veemo on their smartphone
Sharing is Caring
VeloMetro founders asked ourselves, “a fancy, enclosed electric bicycle is fine and dandy, but can people afford one?” That is where the magic of a shared fleet comes in. By making a fleet of Veemos available to all, members only need to pay for what they use. This makes it very accessible and affordable to use Veemo. Car sharing has increasingly demonstrated that the business model works for automobiles, now we want to show that it works for modern methods of active transportation that does not require a driver’s license.
Why the Recognition?
This project is worthy of recognition because:
- We hope for Canada to regain a positive reputation for climate leadership on the international stage, and VeloMetro intends to be a globally recognized brand that offers sustainable transportation solutions.
- We have done an incredible amount of development with very little funding and exposure. It is time to start gaining exposure to put the spotlight on our next stage of development.
- Our team is freaking amazing! We have covered all bases of business and technological development since our inception. Our team deserves recognition for their immense contributions.
To be successful at this significant undertaking, VeloMetro has collaborated with some fine universities such as UBC, SFU, BCIT, Concordia, and McGill universities, and government organizations including NRC-IRAP, Green Municipal Fund, City of Vancouver, the Green and Digital Demonstration Project, and the Composites Research Network.
We worked with these groups to develop pilot phase agreements, funding agreements towards development of our prototype, and development collaborations towards key Veemo technologies.