Sign up to receive 5 free days of our daily summary for tech news.

Read this article for free.

Already a subscriber? Log in here

Autonomous Vehicles Uber/Lyft

Tech Firms See Opening to Tackle L.A. Traffic

Travis VanderZanden, an investor in autonomous car companies like General Motors’ Cruise and a former executive at Lyft and Uber, wants to get people out of cars. After moving to Southern California last year—and confronting the city’s notorious traffic—he began work on a startup called Bird. The company recently launched a fleet of lightweight, electric scooters after raising more than $10 million in venture capital, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Bird is the latest entrant into the Los Angeles area’s push to develop new technologies and policies that will compel commuters to switch to shared vehicles, bikes, scooters or public transit—in short, anything other than driving alone in their cars. While the region’s last 100 years have been shaped by the automobile, many residents and policy makers are worried that self-driving cars will create even more traffic once commuting distance is no longer restricted by humans’ tolerance for long drives. In response, some venture-backed companies are looking for opportunities to reshape commuting habits.

What Is The Information?

Notebook b5103017ee163370a1667c9ce59ab0ef023875a17888105d26c185cadf31bb69

Daily news analysis

Every weeknight, we'll send you our reporters’ views on the day’s top tech news—distilled into one email.

Notes bb3aa5069205d702dda37fc71dc6f1c59df2310c4379304e9f1199f052af4884

Exclusive Articles

We broke it first. Receive original reporting, stories, and exclusives you won't read anywhere else from the largest newsroom in tech.

Conference calls c9e664e8b96ee347d3e92b8309938f268422b9db98cfabca5c826fbb75054b23

Conference calls

Go deep into areas like crypto and VC diversity—or get real-time analysis of breaking news—via conference calls with our reporters and other experts.

Events 499acedd16cffc41445edd76bfd302b2836c2a27419890f17130a6b10e2aa3df

Special Events

For no extra fee, subscribers get access to more than a dozen events yearly, from intimate dinners to larger gatherings with marquee speakers.

Access the best reporting on the tech industry read by tens of thousands of global executives.

Become a contributor

Share your views and find other subscribers by completing your profile. You’ll be listed in our contributor directory.

Org Charts

Access the only collection of tech company org charts. Our expanding database includes companies like Amazon, Snap, and Uber.

Slack community

Discuss topics and current events with our subscriber-only Slack group and share news about your company with other subscribers.

Share with your team

Subscribers can unlock any article and share it with friends and co-workers through a special share link.

Stay up to date on Silicon Valley

Sign up for Jessica Lessin’s (The Information’s CEO & Founder) free Saturday newsletter and also receive a complimentary week of our daily afternoon tech commentary email.

Already a subscriber? Log in here

Recent Articles

Startups Markets

Tech Founders Cede Some Power to Shareholders

By Alfred Lee

Autonomous Vehicles

Tesla Turnover Revamps Executive Team

By Amir Efrati

Venture Capital Uber/Lyft Markets

Tech IPO Mania? Not So Fast.

By Jessica E. Lessin

Cities Uber/Lyft

Inside Bird’s Scooter Economics

By Amir Efrati and Cory Weinberg

“L.A. is a symbol of car culture and congestion. If we can offer something of value that fundamentally changes that dynamic in the L.A. area, it will be a replicable model for many environments around the country.”