COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — While it’s not an outright ban on electric scooters in certain Columbus parks, users will have to use their feet more after companies installed a new limiter on them at the city’s request.
The Columbus Department of Public Service told NBC4 that the change came after getting safety concerns from the Columbus Division of Police and the Department of Public Safety.
“Columbus Police began looking into safety concerns at Bicentennial Park related to violence and large crowds gathering,” said Public Safety Assistant Director Glenn McEntyre. “These gatherings involved large numbers of scooters, including people riding recklessly in the area, creating safety concerns for pedestrians.”
The Department of Public Service then worked with companies like Bird Co. and Lime to establish new “geofenced” parking zones in Goodale, Franklin and Schiller parks. Using GPS technology on the companies’ scooters, the zones prevent them from working within those areas, according to the Department of Public Service.
A Bird Co. spokesperson confirmed the company set up zones that completely stop their scooters in the three parks. NBC4 checked the Lime app’s map Tuesday and confirmed it has “no-ride” zones marked in the parks as well.
The new zones are an attempt to address police, residents’ and park users’ concerns about e-scooter use and pedestrian safety at the parks, the department said. Similar no-ride zones for e-scooters were established on High St. in the Short North Arts District between 5th Ave. and Goodale St. in September of 2021.