Huntsville considers pilot program downtown for electric scooters

Berlin, Germany - June 21: A man drives an e-scooter of the bicycle and e-scooter rental company Lime in traffic on June 21, 2019 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Huntsville city leaders are proposing a pilot program that would introduce electric scooters for people wanting to get around downtown.

Huntsville City Council is proposing an ordinance that would allow the city to issue a request for proposal for a single scooter provider. That provider would work under a set of rules and parameters set by the city, including where they should park, how many can be in use and consequences for scooters that are illegally parked or dumped on sidewalks.

The goal is to learn from experiences and mistakes in other cities where scooter programs have not gone so well. Nashville leaders voted earlier this summer to force scooter companies there to cut their numbers in half, according to CBS affiliate WTVF. The change came after a man was hit and killed while riding a scooter in May and later died.

“We’ve had the benefit of watching how other cities have managed the scooters and we’ve learned from their mistakes and successes,” city long-range planner Dennis Madsen said in an article on the city’s website. “By starting small in a concentrated area, we’ll be able to incorporate these best practices and shape the way scooters will serve the public.”

In Huntsville, the proposed pilot program would make scooters available for trips of 1 or 2 miles around the central downtown area.

City Council is expected to vote on the scooter program ordinance at its Sept. 12. meeting.

You can read the ordinance here.


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