City releases RFI for electric cargo bikes as a delivery solution

In 2017, Mayor Martin J. Walsh committed to make Boston carbon neutral by 2050. We’ve also set an aspirational goal to quadruple the mode share of bikes. But over the past 10 years, deliveries of online purchases in Boston’s metro region have surged, contributing to congestion and air pollution. More recently, during the COVID-19 pandemic, many residents have turned to online delivery to get groceries and many other essential goods, in order to remain physically distant and healthy. 

As we chart our way towards a cleaner, healthier transportation system, we need to explore and deploy new technologies. Electric cargo bikes are light electric vehicles (LEVs) that can be used for both point-to-point and last-mile deliveries, without contributing to air or noise pollution. 

Our goal with this RFI is to understand how e-cargo bikes could fit into Boston’s delivery landscape, existing initiatives in the Boston metro area and elsewhere that could inform our potential approach, current obstacles to e-cargo bike adoption by private businesses, and other opportunities to green last-mile deliveries. This RFI will also give the City a picture of who (private business, logistics solution providers, supply chain experts, e-cargo bike providers) may already be experimenting with or thinking about e-cargo bike deployment in the Boston area, or who may have an interest in partnering or supporting potential pilots. 

While specific contracts are outside the scope of this solicitation, the City of Boston hopes to gain a comprehensive understanding of options currently available. This RFI is seeking recommendations on how the City can support the electric cargo bike last-mile delivery network. Recommendations should include partnership opportunities, current barrier analysis, current demand analysis, density considerations, and impact analysis. All recommendations should strive for a sustainable, long-term solution. 

The response deadline is Monday, August 17, 2019, at 5 p.m. View the Request for Information to learn more:

Download the request for information

Contact Department: Transportation

Publish Date: Mon, 07/20/2020 – 12:00am