FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Per an agreement with the City of Springfield, e-scooter rental company Bird is expanding its boundaries of operation and nearly doubling the number of scooters deploying from Springfield right-of-way beginning Friday, June 23.
When Bird launched in Springfield in September of 2022, the boundaries roughly encompassed Missouri State University, and the downtown Springfield and Commercial Street districts. The expanded boundaries extend roughly from Kearney Street to the north, Glenstone Avenue to the east, Cherokee Street to the south and Kansas Expressway to the west (view map of expanded boundaries). The number of scooters deployed on City right-of-way is increasing from 55 to 100 scooters.
“We have seen much greater e-scooter ridership than we anticipated, with more than 30,000 rental rides since Bird launched in fall of 2022,” explains City Traffic Engineer Grady Porter. “This comes with a small number of formal complaints that the City and Bird have addressed quickly. So far, we have only seen one reported crash involving a rented e-scooter.”
Porter says the expansion area will provide an alternate mode of transportation to additional activity nodes in the City, including Mercy Hospital’s main campus, Bass Pro Shops, the Grant Avenue Parkway and other services and amenities.
The City and Bird are still determining designated scooter deployment locations in the expanded boundaries.
About E-Scooter Rental in Springfield
In the summer of 2021, the City of Springfield established regulations for electric scooters and other micromobility devices on public right of way and updated City Code.
E-scooters are limited to specific areas of Springfield using geofencing technology. Geofencing utilizes Global Positioning System (GPS) technology to establish a physical boundary devices will recognize. Once a device is taken outside the geofenced area, devices are programmed to shut off and will no longer operate. This area can be adjusted as needed.
Scooter companies are required to maintain their devices and collect them if left in places where they may endanger the traveling public. Each scooter provides contact information posted on the stem of the device that includes a phone number to contact the company directly with any concerns.
Bird is currently the only scooter company licensed to rent or deploy on City right-of-way. The company can be contacted with questions or concerns at 1-866-205-2442 or [email protected].
Safety tips for e-scooter riders:
All operators of e-scooters are advised to follow all rules and regulations that are enforceable by law in the City of Springfield, including:
- Every person operating an E-Scooter on City streets shall wear protective headgear (helmet).
- A valid driver’s license is required to operate an e-scooter.
- E-Scooter operators must yield the right of way to pedestrians and shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.
- E-Scooters will be limited to 15 mph in all areas and 10 mph on greenway trails using geofence technology, however operators will be responsible to limit their speeds on sidewalks, where allowed, to be no greater than 5 mph.
- E-scooters are not allowed to operate on roadways that have a speed limit greater than 30 mph.
- E-Scooter companies are required to stop rentals at 10 p.m. each night. If the rental occurs before 10 p.m. the rental will not be terminated until the ride has ended.
- For areas outside the Downtown and Commercial Street Business districts, no person shall park a micromobility device on a street other than on the roadway against the curb, on the sidewalk in a rack, dock, or storage area, or against a building or at the curb in such manner as to afford the least obstruction to pedestrian traffic.
For more information, visit springfieldmo.gov/escooters.
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Media contact: Communication Coordinator Kristen Milam at 573-819-3713 or [email protected].