The Austin Politics Newsletter

There’s actually a solution for scooter injuries

The beginning of the Shoal Creek Trail, near the Central Library.

Another day and more outrage about scooter-enabled carnage. For instance, this tweet from the editor-in-chief of the Texas Tribune:

I gave the predictable urbanist response:

To which Michael King of the Chronicle replied:

I agree! And there’s actually a really easy way to reduce the injuries done by scooters without banning them: bike lanes. We’ve already got quite a few of them in Austin, but we need far, far more.

The 2014 Bicycle Master Plan called for $151 million investment in urban trails, protected bike lanes and other infrastructure that would make the city far more hospitable to bikers and lead to a substantial increase in people biking over driving (at least some of the time). The 2016 & 2018 transportation bonds only put small dents in the problem. We should pass a bond approving at least another $100 million on bike lanes and urban trails. That is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to make meaningful progress on transportation, the environment and public health. And it will make our transportation system much safer. Mostly by getting people out of cars, but also by getting bikers and scooters off the sidewalks.