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Seattle is moving forward with a plan to allow private scooter companies preferential access to public streets » Publications » Washington Policy Center

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Seattle is shifting ahead with a plan to permit non-public scooter corporations preferential entry to public streets » Publications » Washington Coverage Heart

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The Seattle Transportation and Utilities Committee not too long ago voted to permit non-public scooter corporations preferential entry to Seattle streets, successfully utilizing taxpayer {dollars} to subsidize the scooter firm’s operational prices.

That is in regardless of of rising evidence that electrical scooters aren’t as price efficient or replacement for extra conventional modes of transportation akin to non-electric bicycles, strolling and even motorized automobiles.

Seattle has determined to proceed with the experiment and provides scooters entry to metropolis streets for a nominal $150 charge per yr. This can be a related association to the bike sharing program run by Lime and Bounce in 2019. Lime, the electrical bike sharing firm, failed to renew their bike sharing program in Seattle earlier within the yr and as an alternative merged with competitor Bounce to supply a extra restricted service. The jury continues to be out on this system’s price effectiveness and if Lime could make it worthwhile with out public subsidies for highway use.

Security is big concern for the brand new scooter program. Since scooters are required for use on the roadway as an alternative of on sidewalks, it introduces the very actual threat that the scooter rider might be in shut proximity to quicker, heavier automobiles together with automobiles and buses. The Metropolis of Seattle already requires scooter riders to wear helmets to assist with security, however that is nearly inconceivable for town’s police to implement. Accidents are rare, however after they occur, they’re vital.

As with different cities, scooters will likely be abandoned on sidewalks and different locations the place they turn into a hazard for different sidewalk and highway customers. This provides to the price of operating the service because the scooters have to be retrieved and repaired, shortening the lifespan of the scooter.

Many native governments which might be pushing the advantages of getting electrical scooters of their downtown areas don’t actually have a transparent image the general fiscal affect.

Cities which have tried the experiment and failed are embroiled in controversy and are experiencing “scooter rage” with their residents. Bounce already pulled out of San Diego when the scooter program failed there.

For now, the one advantage of utilizing scooters nobody can actually argue towards is how enjoyable they’re for tearing round such as you did as a child. That’s about the place it ends, although. Cities and cities ought to rethink the full environmental price and public advantage of scooters earlier than permitting them into our downtown areas as a critical mode of city journey.

https://www.frebike.com

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