AUSTIN — The electric bike and scooter craze in Austin continues and soon you will start seeing these scooters on trails in the area.
Whether you like them or not, the scooters have become very popular and starting next month the electric bikes and scooters will be allowed on five trails.
- Johnson Creek
- Shoal Creek
- Northern Walnut Creek Trail
- Southern Walnut Creek Trail
- Ann and Roy Butler Trail (Electric Bikes only)
For a map of all of these trails, click here.
The new pilot program will last for about nine months as city officials come up with possible code changes. For now, motorized vehicles, which includes these bikes and scooters, are banned from public rec areas, but it's still happening.
The pilot project will:
- Gather feedback from trail users and nonprofit partners on their comfort level while using the trail through online surveys, intercept surveys and more targeted focus groups;
- Monitor speed of all users (including electric bikes and electric scooters) to understand if the current I 0 mph speed limit is being followed and if it is appropriate;
- Identify pinch points or areas of limited capacity;
- Include a trail etiquette education campaign to inform users on how to safely use multi-use trails;
- Update signage to inform users which trails will be part of the project;
- Identify areas where divided use trails might be appropriate; and
- Track crash reports or injuries related to all users (electric and non-electric).
City officials are working to figure out the best way to deal with the scooters, and whether or not they need to increase enforcement funding or invest in divided use trails.
The pilot program will go from December 2018, through Fall 2019. During this time period you can take, and expect to see the electric scooters and bikes on the trails.