Milwaukee Wants Your Input on Future of Dockless Scooters
432,794 trips taken through end of September, but downtown ban cut ridership 50%.
Do you have an opinion on the dockless electric scooters that dot Milwaukee’s streets and sidewalks?
The 2021 pilot study, which enables the three scooter providers to operate in Milwaukee, ends on Nov. 15. Lime, Bird and Spin are each allowed to place up to 1,000 scooters per day across the city, with a maximum of 100 per-provider in the greater downtown area.
But a big change came on Aug. 3. Scooter trips were prohibited from starting or stopping in the greater downtown area (the study’s Zone 1). A third-party consultant found that 30% of riders in the city-designated Zone 1 were riding on the sidewalk, tripping a legislative provision that prohibits scooters in the greater downtown zone if sidewalk riding exceeds 10%. The remainder of the city is divided into six zones.
At the time of the restriction, 21% of the 298,000 trips taken in 2021 originated in Zone 1. The consultant, hired by the Department of Public Works, and paid for by a fee assessed to the scooter companies, monitored 15 intersections for 15 total hours over a two-week period in late June and early July.
Milwaukee first allowed the scooter companies to legally operate on city streets in 2019. A total of 350,130 rides were taken that year, with the three participating companies reporting 67 crashes and 141 citizen complaints. An average of 3.6 riders per vehicle per day were taken. A Department of Public Works survey conducted at the end of 2019 generated 7,658 responses, with sidewalk riding as the primary complaint.
The 2019 survey found that 57% of respondents reported never having taken a scooter ride. Of those that took a trip on a scooter, 44% of survey respondents reported their last trip replaced a personal vehicle or rideshare (Uber/Lyft) trip. Forty percent reported it replaced a trip that would have otherwise been completed by walking. Approximately 7% reported it replacing a bus or streetcar trip.
The 2021 pilot study has three goals: provide equitable transportation services, increase the availability of transportation options and evaluate the scooters’ impact on access to the public right of way.
DPW estimates that fees from the study could bring in up to $350,000. A $25-per-scooter fee and $0.15-per-trip fee are being collected by the city. An additional $10 per scooter is being imposed to hire the consultant. Excess revenues from the study, according to a DPW presentation, could be used to fund improved bicycle and scooter infrastructure. The city collected $68,400 in 2019, only imposing a $50 per scooter fee.
The results of the 2019 study are available on the DPW website.
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- Transportation: Milwaukee Wants Your Input on Future of Dockless Scooters - Jeramey Jannene - Oct 19th, 2021
- Transportation: Scooters Banned From Downtown - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 3rd, 2021
- Transportation: Scooters Could Return To City In May - Jeramey Jannene - Mar 10th, 2021
- City Hall: Scooters Could Return to Milwaukee - Jeramey Jannene - Sep 30th, 2020
- Transportation: Lime Unveils ‘Group Ride’ Scooters - Jeramey Jannene - Sep 6th, 2019
- Transportation: Lime Debuts New Scooter - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 28th, 2019
- Transportation: Who Has the Cheapest Scooter? - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 14th, 2019
- Transportation: City Will Double Number of Permitted Scooters, Ends “Pause” - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 10th, 2019
- Transportation: City Blocking New Scooters, 100+ Complaints About Bad Riders - Jeramey Jannene - Aug 2nd, 2019
- Transportation: The Scooters Are Here! - Jeramey Jannene - Jul 23rd, 2019
Read more about Bird vs Milwaukee Controversy here