University Park Scooter Pilot Not Going Well

University Park council members have asked city staff to meet with SMU so the university can take steps to make sure that all scooter providers are in compliance with ordinance requirements.

The request comes after a six-month report into a pilot program that showed companies are not adhering to the requirement on programming scooter speeds and geofencing conditions.

According to a report given at the last city council meeting, Lime and Jump scooters have been seen operating outside boundary areas. Bird Scooters, though, have been compliant in using the geofencing laid out in a trial program.

Earlier this year, following a request from SMU, its student body president and student senate, the city council approved the use of motorized scooters on specific streets and sidewalks adjacent to campus for a six-month trial period, city staff said.

The six-month compliant report shows that the campus is averaging 600 rides a day with scooters from two main companies. Lime scooters have been rented 25,000 time and Bird scooters have been rented 30,000 times.

During the reporting period, UPPD issued 24 citations to riders for operating scooters outside allowed boundaries.

The specific requirements that came with the approval of scooters at the campus also stated that the scooters would be programmed to travel no more than 10 miles per hour.

Companies, however, are not adhering to the requirement on programming scooter speeds as UPPD officers report an average speed of 14 miles an hour – four miles higher than allowed.

According to the report, the city also has received 22 complaints about discarded or illegally parked scooters. (Riders are supposed to park scooters upright on hard surfaces in designated areas only).

There have been five scooter-related accidents, with no serious injuries. In the only accident involving a moving vehicle, the scooter rider had minor cuts and abrasions, according to city staff.

In a second incident, an elderly resident on Greenbrier tripped over a scooter near the front of his home. He did seek medical treatment.


Bianca R. Montes

Bianca Montes is an award-winning journalist and former Managing Editor of Park Cities People. She currently serves as a Senior Editor with D Magazine's D CEO publication. You can reach her by email at Bianca.Montes@Dmagazine or follow her on Instagram @Bianca_TBD. For the latest news, click here to sign up for our newsletter.

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