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Cyclists and scooter riders learn to share space in Denver

Posted at 5:56 PM, Oct 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-29 20:41:37-04

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DENVER – People in Denver are all aware of dockless scooters in downtown. 

Some people are even aware of scooter riders weaving in and out from the sidewalks to bike lanes and the road.

Some riders have had their encounters with both pedestrians and cyclists, and Denver7 has reported onthe conflict and what some solutions are to fix the problem.

“Oh yeah I’ve seen them clash together,” said Mack Mackey, who is a common walker and bike rider. “Out of the corner of 13th and Washington Avenue, there was a scooter that hit a cyclist. No one was really hurt or anything but you can that neither of them was paying attention. They were basically saying they were both were yelling at each other with a lot of profanity.”

Some viewers reached out to Denver7 stating there is some tension between scooter riders and cyclists.

“My biggest trigger point is the lack of understanding from cyclists even though they were in the same situation not that long ago,” said Jeremy Dunn. “Cars versus bikes, skiers versus snowboarders, it’s all the same. Times change and some people just have trouble adapting but it’ll work out sooner or later. Until the next newcomer comes along.”

According to the City of Denver, the scooters are supposed to be used on the sidewalks, not in the bike lane or the streets. However, some riders still use the bike lane.

“They can only be on sidewalks, but we know that those scooters aren’t going more than 6 mph,” said James Waddell with Bike Denver.

Waddell as a bike advocate lives by the cyclist code – share the road.

“If I’m riding my bicycle in a bike lane and then I see somebody else in the lane on two wheels – I’m down with that, and I’m okay as long as they’re riding in the right direction,” Waddell said.

Some of the main issues with the scooters and bicycles are the lack of space downtown for these two types of two-wheel transportation.

“The right place for scooters are in the streets and in bike lanes because they are too fast,” Waddell said. “They should be allowed on 25 mph roads, and also on the sidewalks if they’re only going 6 mph.”

“If there were more bike lanes in the streets, people would feel a lot safer being in the streets rather than the sidewalks,” Mackey said.

The city is currently piloting a program for these dockless scooters, so it will be looking for ways to improve all this in the future. However, in the end, all sides want the peace to be kept and learn to co-exist.

“If that’s your biggest problem in the day then I think you’re going to have a pretty decent day,” Waddell said. “There’s plenty of space in the bike lanes for people moving along on two wheels.”