Author Archives: Liz Harris

Users speak up: 2019 Bikeshare survey results

Kansas City has been bitten by the bike and scooter share bug, and we’ve compiled a few quotes from our recent 2019 RideKC Bike + Scooter User Survey. Riders have a lot to say about how they use classic bikes, e-bikes and scooters to get where they need to go!

Commuters get to work on time and ready to go:

“I’ve used it to commute to meetings in Westport from the Crossroads. Using an e-Bike to go up the hill around the Liberty Memorial makes that so much less daunting and the whole process more fun. These meetings are before work, so when I arrive at work, I feel so much more awake and energize having ridden a bike a few miles (even if with e-assist).”

“Many days, I am going from school and home a lot. Scooters help me stay on time between trips without the hassle of parking.”

“One of my favorite parts of the day is riding the RideKC E-bikes to and from work.”

 

Recreational users love seeing the city from a different angle:

“No better way to take in a beautiful day than on a scooter.”

“I was able to use the rideKC scooter to get out from the event I was at and quickly get to my car that was parked several blocks away and beat the after show traffic”

“It was a wonderful way to travel for my day to day route. I enjoyed seeing different aspects of the city by bike. I got primo parking at work by using a bike!”

 

And many are trading four wheels for two:

“It has expanded my travel distance since I don’t own my own car.”

“Using the scooters and bikes has given me a sense of freedom and more neighborhood visibility as well as a connection to nature that I couldn’t get with a car. I was an avid car user; obsessed with always having my car like a security blanket. Using a scooter and/or bike has opened up my mind to finding other forms of transportation and even possibly walking and using other forms of public transit. Even with 3 small children, we have diminished our personal vehicle use exponentially. Therefore, we are even considering downsizing to a one car family. This is HUGE!”

“It inspired me to make bicycling my primary form of daily transportation.”

“It’s really connected the city for me in a way I couldn’t experience by car. From Shawnee Mission to Raytown to North KC, I have a greater appreciation for how our communities are physically connected. It’s also made me a better driver for the few car trips I still take. I would never have imagined myself a “cyclist” but electric assist bikes have made me a believer. It’s improved the health of my children as well because we take more walks that I bookend with bike trips to avoid using the minivan. This has been the greatest benefit by far. Thank you!”

“I’ve used a bike and a scooter for a fun outing and as a transit alternative when a car was not available, so for pleasure and necessity. In all instance, I found the experience to be joyful and easy. I do wish I had a helmet and there were more dedicated bike lanes.”

“I was pretty skeptical of the scooters. I just didn’t see the point. After actually trying one, it was a ton of fun, and really made it much easier to get from one place to another when you’ve only got a few blocks to go.”

Big thanks to everyone who responded to our survey. Your feedback is important to us, and we are looking forward to implementing some of your ideas to help better serve our riders. We’re excited for another year of biking and scooting in Kansas City. Stay tuned , because we have some big news coming through in 2020!

And congrats to Sarah K. for winning our survey response drawing!

Keep in touch on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram at @ridekcbike!

 

Getting free on RideKC Scooters

Aaustin Bornman has been around the world many times. “In the Air Force, sometimes I’d visit five countries in one day.” But he’s always had a soft spot for Kansas City. “When someone asked me where I wanted to end up, I’d always say Kansas City. It’s just big enough, you know?”

Aaustin doesn’t drive. He uses his RideKC Veterans Pass to travel on RideKC buses. And he scoots. A lot. “Scooting brings out the youth in you. It energizes you,” Aaustin says. On his scooter trips, Aaustin strives to be a “local tourist” in his adopted hometown. He makes a point to notice unique views of familiar landmarks and pulls over immediately to snap a picture. Kansas City’s fountains remind him of Spain (“Some of these fountains are exact replicas of the ones I saw in Seville!”) and he meets a lot of people on the street. “I met another Air force guy on a scooter. He was older. Maybe in his late sixties. And we rode together for a while.”

That human connection is especially important to Aaustin. His life’s purpose is ensuring that everyone he meets knows that they’re needed and loved, and that informs how he interacts with folks along his scooter rides. He loves chatting with folks on the sidewalk while he’s waiting for the light to change, and he rings his bell in greeting at other bike and scooter riders. “I’m trying to start something. Like motorcycle riders have their own wave.”

Beyond adventure and meeting new people, Aaustin says that RideKC Scooters offer him the freedom to go where he wants to go. He has some vision problems at car speeds, and he often walks with a cane or walker, but the scooters are slow enough that his vision isn’t impaired, and they give him a boost when he needs it. “I feel free. Free like a child.”

And that’s exactly what we  at RideKC Bike/Scooter like to hear: that you have the freedom to get places, explore your community, make connections along the route. Happy riding!

 

Photos courtesy of Aaustin Bornman

 

 

Scooter School at Alma Mader Brewing

 

Get the scoop on how to scoot in Kansas City! Join RideKC Scooters and BikeWalkKC for an afternoon of fun at Alma Mader Brewing Co. right on the Southwest Boulevard bike lanes.

* Get detailed instruction on local scootering rules and regulations

* Learn how to interact with other street traffic

* Practice your scootering skills on a group scoot after class

* Stick around for a Handlebar Happy Hour!

This class is FREE, but please register so we can bring enough scooters for everyone!

Helmets are required, and we’re happy to loan you one. Just email us at info@bikewalkkc.org.

Please save the beer for after class– buzzed scooting is drunk scooting, and we don’t allow it!

REGISTER HERE: Scooter School at Alma Mader

 

RideKC Scooters take to the streets

Photos by Zach Bauman

A quick zip on an electric scooter is a fun way to get to around town, and hundreds of people in Kansas City are choosing two wheels over four every day. This means traffic is lighter and slower, people are more active, and we’re all getting our daily vitamin D! But with the great power of that little motor comes the great responsibility to follow the rules of the road.

Kansas City, Missouri ordinance requires motorized vehicles (including e-scooters) to be operated on the street (NOT the sidewalk). Ordinance 70-253 states “No person shall drive any vehicle other than by human power upon a sidewalk, sidewalk area, park or public property, except upon a permanent or duly authorized temporary driveway.” This rule protects pedestrians (including people using wheelchairs, walkers, and strollers) moving at walking speeds from vehicles capable of at least 15 miles per hour. It also makes people on scooters more visible to people driving cars. If a scooterist crosses an intersection on the sidewalk, a driver may have difficulty seeing them through cars parked in the street.

YOU can advocate for safer streets!

Many people who scoot ride on the sidewalk because they fear being hit by a person driving a car if they ride in the street. This is a legitimate concern, and one that must be addressed through action by city leadership and by road users.

* The City of Kansas City Missouri encourages people to ride scooters in bike lanes where they exist. As the city continues to build bike lanes and apply the Complete Streets ordinance to redeveloped roads, we expect that streets will become safer for all users.

* Drivers should allow bicyclists and scooterists plenty of room and only pass on the left and when they can safely give the more vulnerable road user at least 3 feet of space. Put down your phone. Remember that you are operating a vehicle that can severely injure or kill someone in a collision.

* Bicyclists and scooterists should behave predictably. Ride safely in a straight line to the right side of the road unless it is necessary to take the lane. Stop at stop signs and traffic signals, use turn signals, and don’t weave in and out of cars parked on the street.

And we have good news: YOU can make active transportation easier and safer here in KCMO (the only city in which we currently have an operating agreement)!

* Learn more about the pending KCMO Bike Master Plan and how it can make streets safer throughout the city.

* Sign up to join BikeWalkKC’s growing list of  voices in support of the Bike Master Plan.

* Share your story if you feel unsafe on city streets or if you or your loved ones have experienced harassment or injury while scooting/walking/biking.

* Attend the next KCMO City Budget Hearing on August 15. Infrastructure costs money, and city leaders need to know that safe streets are important to you.

*  Stay tuned for Confident City Scootering workshops coming up. Get real life practice in a safe and controlled environment before we head out for a group scoot. Dates coming soon!

Shared micro-mobility devices like electric scooters and bikes are introducing hundreds of people to the joys of life outside a car, and we couldn’t be more delighted to be a part of this “movement.” Let’s take it to the next level and make our streets and sidewalks safer for everyone!

Click here to learn more about RideKC Bikes and RideKC Scooters. Daily, monthly, and annual memberships are available.

RideKC Scooters are locking up success!

Photo by Zach Bauman

We are pleased to announce that user-submitted end-trip photos indicate 99% of RideKC Scooters are parked correctly! That means they are locked to bike racks, bike share stations, sign posts, or other secure structures that are on public property and not blocking the public right-of-way or a building entrance.

You won’t find RideKC Scooters tipped over in an ADA ramp or lined up unattended on a sidewalk, because users can’t end a trip without locking the device to an approved bike rack or “hub” and snapping a picture to prove it’s parked properly. And that 1% of badly parked scooters? Our local operations team is quick to address any issues.

Scootering is a fun and social way to get around, but as with any new technology, there has been a learning curve for cities, vendors, and users. Before we launched Ride KC Scooter, we studied the situation carefully in both Kansas City and other cities. Businesses, pedestrians, and cities were voicing concerns about scooter parking. The vehicles have been left on driveways, in front of entrances, and in ADA ramps, blocking the public right-of-way. When we applied for the City of Kansas City, Missouri’s Scooter Pilot Program, we offered a new solution: scooters that lock to a bike rack or other secure structure. As active transportation advocates, we believe that mobility is freedom, and blocking someone else’s access to a sidewalk is not an acceptable option.

Shared e-scooters are giving local active transportation a boost! The novelty and convenience of these new mobility devices is drawing people out of the isolation of a personal vehicle and into the public sphere. They are creating more demand for bike lanes (KCMO doesn’t allow scootering on the sidewalk) and more demand for bike racks at businesses, government buildings, and tourist destinations. In response, the City of KCMO has installed two “micro-mobility parking hubs” downtown, and is preparing to add more in other popular areas.

While our employees stock RideKC Bikes and RideKC Scooters only at official mobility hubs and bike stations, users vote with their wheels for locations with the best parking amenities. Businesses that are interested in attracting more scootering customers, or whose bike racks are already overflowing, should contact BikeWalkKC to inquire about their bike parking services, or the City of KCMO to inquire about a micro-mobility parking hub. (Fun fact: 12 bicycles/scooters can fit into one car parking space!)

Click here to learn more about RideKC Bikes and RideKC Scooters. Daily, monthly, and annual memberships are available.

RideKC Scooters have landed!

RideKC connects people to opportunity, and the latest way to get around town is by electric scooter! Find our sturdy and stable scooters near downtown Kansas City starting July 12th, and watch for more scooters and bikes in more neighborhoods throughout KCMO as we continue our rollout over the summer.
How to use RideKC Scooters:
  1. Download the Drop Mobility app
  2. Find a scooter near you
  3. Scan the QR code or type the number into the app
  4. Unlock the scooter and ride to your destination (KCMO does not allow scooter riding on sidewalks, but bike lanes are open to pedestrians, bikes, scooters, wheelchairs, skateboards, and roller skates)
  5. Lock it up to a bike rack or other secure structure on public property (please make sure that it doesn’t block transit stops or sidewalks)
  6. Snap a picture to end your trip

Follow RideKCBike on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram for special promo codes, service updates, and all the latest news on micro-transit in the Kansas City region!

 

We are testing out the scooters and software over the next few weeks, and we want your feedback. Report problems or send suggestions within the Drop Mobiilty app, email info@ridekcbike.com, or call customer support at 816-945-9545.