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Lime Accuses San Francisco of Scooter Discrimination

  • Startup will attempt to delay SF’s planned scooter rollout
  • Dispute underscores the industry’s multi-billion dollar stakes
People use a smartphone to unlock Lime shared electric scooters on the Embarcadero in San Francisco.

People use a smartphone to unlock Lime shared electric scooters on the Embarcadero in San Francisco.

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Lime, the electric scooter company backed by Uber Technologies Inc., isn’t done with its fight to get its scooters back on San Francisco’s streets -- even if that means keeping other companies out, too. On Thursday, the company delivered the San Francisco city attorney an application for a temporary restraining order on the city’s scooter pilot program, slated to start on Monday. The company plans to officially file the order on Friday.

Lime has said that it has been unfairly denied a permit to operate its scooters in San Francisco, a charge the city contests. "It is unfortunate Lime has chosen this course," John Coté, a spokesman for the city attorney’s office, said in a statement. "The SFMTA’s permitting process for the pilot program was thoughtful, fair and transparent. It includes an appeal process that Lime should be pursuing instead of wasting everyone’s resources by running to court."