Scooters in Charlottesville

Get ready for scooters, Charlottesville. Because they are coming.

For some reason, I can imagine a gaggle of scooters heading into Woolen Mills.

What are they? To my eye, they are souped-up motorized versions of those razor scooters kids ride.

But really. Scooters have become enormously popular, and we’re going to see them on Charlottesville city streets soon. Might as well accept them, and seek to leverage them to try to reduce car traffic, and encourage more walking to scooters rather than driving. And maybe even more walking to bicycles, and – crazy thought – more walking to walk.

Bird scooters

Bird is a reliable last mile electric scooter rental service.

And their Terms of Use

Lime scooters

Dock free electric scooters, e-assist bikes and pedal bikes for your city or campus . Smart personal mobility for smart cities and universities.

 

The Daily Progress editorial page likes the idea

Charlottesville got off to a good start on the electric scooter question by authorizing a test of regulations for the ride-sharing program that has been racing across the country.

In some cities, the scooters have been unpopular with city officials; Richmond recently banned a ride-sharing program launched by the company Bird.

But by setting up regulations first, Charlottesville plans to see whether scooters can safely co-exist with other forms of transportation.

It’s a smart move by City Council.

In several ways, the use of electric scooters fits the city’s ethos. Charlottesville prefers to be seen as a hip city amid history, welcoming to young entrepreneurs and tech workers. The scooter trend matches that image.

Charlottesville also has a long record of environmental consciousness and encouragement of alternative transportation. E-scooters are yet another way for residents to move around without resorting to automobiles and adding to pollution.

In ride-sharing programs, scooters are scattered around town for potential riders, who pay for their use via a phone app. When riders reach their destinations, they just leave the scooters for the next person to find.

 

 

Related reading, if you’re interested

 

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention UBike, the UVA bike share program.

 

 

 

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