Pittsburg City Council considers adding new form of city transportation

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Something new may be coming to a Southeast Kansas town — Motor scooters!

Over the past couple of months, Pittsburg city leaders have been meeting with vendors..

“We have a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere in Pittsburg and I think the fact that we’re a college town makes it a good match,” explained city manager Daron Hall.

These scooters would bring Pittsburg into the ranks of larger cities like Dallas, San Diego, and St. Louis.

But, there are risks.

“Sidewalks would be off limits, so we’re looking to operate them on the street,” Hall continued. “We’ve heard both sides and obviously, they can be dangerous. We understand that, but we want to make them safe as possible.”

As for Pittsburg State Students, these scooters would offer a way around town and maybe a quicker option to class.

“It would really, really help me get to class on time,” explained Pitt State student Jesse Porter. “I need this, I don’t have a car.”

Porter is a student at the university from Oklahoma City. He says the scooters have made getting around his hometown a lot easier.

“It’s been pretty fun because like the downtown area, everything is kind of spread out and it gets really hectic, so if you’re a tourist, it’s kind of a faster way to get a look at everything,” Porter added.

And as Pittsburg continues to develop, bringing these scooters downtown would bring in more foot traffic, as well as alleviate concerns with parking as more people come downtown.

“The one thing we always hear is where is everyone going to park,” Hall explained. “Well our idea of downtown is A) parking becomes a problem because there’s so much to do. And B) people will look at an alternative to parking their car, which would be to walk, take a scooter, rent a bike, take their own bike. So, it’s right up our alley — it’s what we’re looking to do.”

The city let about fifty residents demo the scooters during last week’s Paint the Town Red event to get public input. City leaders are now reviewing ordinances in other cities to understand what policies should be put in place before they hit the roads.

The next Pittsburg City Council meeting is set for Tuesday, September 24th.

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