The Ames City Council will discuss the possibility of bringing mobilized scooters to Ames on Tuesday.
In June 2019, the staff was directed by the council to investigate how other cities regulated micromobility, which includes several modes of transportation, though the defining factor is that the gross vehicle weight is less than 1,100 pounds.
Micromobility can include electric skateboards or shared bicycles, but in this case, the Council will look at motorized scooters and the consideration to offer them in Ames.
A committee was formed that consists of Iowa State University and the city of Ames staff to review information and identify benefits and concerns of scooters.
The scooters could reduce carbon emissions as well as create more jobs, according to the city of Ames staff report, while also contributing to the fun factor within the council’s goals. Additionally, the scooters will complement the existing form of public transportation.
A primary concern of scooters is safety, and it is dependent on the jurisdiction of where and when they are operated. There is also a concern of enforcement and who will be responsible for enforcing the parking of scooters. The staff reported that the police department or another city department would not be advisable to assign this task to.
During the meeting, the council will have the option to direct staff to pursue the development of a pilot program specifically for motorized scooters, conduct further research on micromobility transportation or decide not to support this type of transportation in Ames at this time.
In addition to micromobility, the Council will amend and adopt the final 2020-21 budget for the city of Ames.
The $263,300,236 budget is broken down as 32.3 percent on utilities, 25.1 percent on capital improvements plan, 9 percent on public safety, 8.2 percent on transportation, 8.4 percent on internal services, 7.6 percent on debt service, 6.6 percent on community enrichment and 2.9 percent on general government.
The budget is developed by staff members within the city of Ames and recommended by Ames City Manager Steve Schainker based on the research conducted by staff.
The council meeting is at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Council Chambers at Ames City Hall.