Corpus Christi to Regulate Electric Rented Scooters
Possible regulations of rented electric scooters are expected to be on an upcoming Corpus Christi City Council agenda. The Bird and Blue Duck companies have been offering scooter rentals in the downtown area since late October. Bird has 150 scooters available, while Blue Duck has 100.
The Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone No. 3 board will make a presentation to the council on suggested city ordinances at a regular council meeting Jan. 8. Under consideration will be licensing fees, locations, parking rules, and training requirements.
State regulations already handle two issues the city will not need to address: Scooters must yield to pedestrians and cannot be ridden on streets with a speed limit higher than 35 mph.
Current proposals by the TIRZ include a flat licensing fee of $500 plus $10 per scooter along with an additional $1 per scooter per-day fee. Contact information for a local fleet manager would have to be kept current with the city and phone numbers for reporting problems posted on each vehicle.
Also, companies would have to provide safety information to every rider, including information on wearing helmets, where to park, and how to operate the scooter.
Companies may be asked to provide monthly usage reports to the city, including routes, trends, pickup and drop-off points, trip durations, time and day as well as other information on injuries and breakdowns.
And, finally, scooters would have to be parked upright on sidewalks, not on streets or in parking places, and must not block bicycle lanes, transit stops, commercial loading zones, railroad tracks, benches, building entryways, driveways, pedestrian and disabled access ramps, or disabled parking zones.
The cost to ride a Blue Duck scooter is $1 to start and 15 cents per minute. Riders us a smartphone app to become a member of the flock (meaning you can unlock and ride the scooter). Blue Ducks are in mostly campus communities in the Southern and Western United States, including Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi.
Bird also uses an app to unlock and pay for a ride. Birds are in 100-plus cities, including Austin, St. Louis, Atlanta, Louisville, Nashville, and Paris.
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