Skip to Content
Streetsblog California home
Streetsblog California home
Log In
Streetsblog USA

UPS Kicks Off Year-Round E-Trike Delivery Service in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh is the first city in the U.S. where UPS will deliver packages by e-trike year-round. Photo: UPS

International shipping giant UPS is dipping a toe into pedal-powered delivery in American cities.

Last week, UPS began making deliveries using an electric trike in downtown Pittsburgh. It's the first U.S. city with year-round UPS e-trike service, according to the Pittsburgh City Paper.

The company also tested e-trike deliveries in Portland during the holiday season last year. In both cities, UPS uses a vehicle made by Portland-based Truck Trike that provides a battery-powered assist.

UPS delivery service by e-bike has been common for several years in European cities, according to spokesperson Deanna Cain. In crowded urban contexts, the smaller vehicles can be more efficient, she said.

Pittsburgh was chosen for its narrow downtown streets, said Cain. "What's nice about it in a downtown city like Pittsburgh, it can go in the bike lanes, when the bike lanes are widen enough," she added. "It takes up less space, it’s quick and zero emissions."

The program in Pittsburgh is small -- just one trike that can carry 300-400 pounds. It remains to be seen whether UPS will scale up its use of trikes and get its bulkier trucks off the streets, but Cain said the company is looking to expand the practice in other American cities.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog California

Port Lobbyists Trying to Kill Bike and Pedestrian Safety in Oakland

Trucking/port lobbyists want to destroy a long-established plan to build protected bike lanes connecting Jack London Square, West Oakland, and downtown

July 12, 2024

Friday Video: Take a Spin on Boston’s Electric Cargo Bike Share

Can't afford a $7,000 Urban Arrow cargo e-bike ? In Boston, you can now rent one for just a few bucks.

July 12, 2024

Friday’s Headlines

5 recommendations for high-speed rail; Caltrans, stop building new freeway lanes already; "Data bikes" can collect information about bike path conditions; More

July 12, 2024

Next Week: Active Transportation Program Workshop

The good news is that there will be a Cycle 7. But it will be small, and there will be hard choices about what gets funded.

July 11, 2024

Metro and Caltrans Still Planning 605 Expansion, Plus Four Connecting Freeways

Metro and Caltrans are planning to spend billions of dollars widening the 605, 5, 10, 60 and 105 Freeways. Really.

July 11, 2024
See all posts