E-bikes and E-scooters on Austin Trails Pilot Program

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Butler Hike and Bike Trail at Lady Bird Lake. Motorized scooters will not be allowed on this trail.

The goal of this pilot is to understand whether Austin trails might be suitable for electric-assist bikes and electric scooters. This Pilot Program will examine how these vehicles impact the comfort, mobility, and safety of trail users as well as trail integrity.

Survey results and online feedback can be found here.

Where will the Pilot Program take place?

Electric-assist bicyles and electric scooters with a maximum capability of 20 MPH or less will be allowed on the following trails for the duration of the Pilot Program:

  • Johnson Creek,
  • Shoal Creek (south of 15th Street),
  • Northern Walnut Creek,
  • Southern Walnut Creek Trail,
  • The Boardwalk,*
  • Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail at Lady Bird Lake*

*Note: the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail and Boardwalk as part of the Hike and Bike Trail will only allow electric bikes as part of this pilot. The speed limit on all trails is 10 MPH.

Community Engagement

Community conversations, surveys, and meetings will be hosted in spring 2019 to get feedback on the pilot study. In addition, multiple methods of sharing your feedback can happen on this SpeakUp Austin page.

Please see the timeline for additional information on the Pilot Program.

The goal of this pilot is to understand whether Austin trails might be suitable for electric-assist bikes and electric scooters. This Pilot Program will examine how these vehicles impact the comfort, mobility, and safety of trail users as well as trail integrity.

Survey results and online feedback can be found here.

Where will the Pilot Program take place?

Electric-assist bicyles and electric scooters with a maximum capability of 20 MPH or less will be allowed on the following trails for the duration of the Pilot Program:

  • Johnson Creek,
  • Shoal Creek (south of 15th Street),
  • Northern Walnut Creek,
  • Southern Walnut Creek Trail,
  • The Boardwalk,*
  • Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail at Lady Bird Lake*

*Note: the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail and Boardwalk as part of the Hike and Bike Trail will only allow electric bikes as part of this pilot. The speed limit on all trails is 10 MPH.

Community Engagement

Community conversations, surveys, and meetings will be hosted in spring 2019 to get feedback on the pilot study. In addition, multiple methods of sharing your feedback can happen on this SpeakUp Austin page.

Please see the timeline for additional information on the Pilot Program.

Guest Book

Leave your thoughts, feelings, advice, suggestions, tips and tricks here.
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I see a lot of "no e-bikes" on trails, but I urge to think about the implications. The 0.6 miles along the Shoal Creek trail I bike allows me to avoid two dangerous intersections during my daily 27 mile commute. The "no motorized bikes or scooters" signs send the wrong message... it's OK for me to pedal 20 MPH on my non-powered bike but NOT OK for me to travel 5 MPH on my e-bike? Signage needs to match the intent. I don't want bikes traveling 20 MPH on the trails around me... powered or not.

jradcliff 3 months ago
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Please note that most scooter users downtown and around Lady Bird Lake are tourists, who would never be NIMBYs / all-things-new-must-die local types that make all these comments. I've never ridden a scooter myself and they are mildly annoying especially in this central area, but as for forcing them into streets and bike lanes and sidewalks, I disagree. They're not as bad as the rental bikes that attacked Dallas and were thrown off bridges and left to litter the entire city.

northrupr 7 months ago
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E-bikes? A lot of older people cannot ride as far or fast without them. Please allow e-bikes! These comments act as if they're Harleys. A 130 lb lady on a 60 lb e-bike still weighs 20 lbs less than a 200 lb man on a 10 lb carbon-fiber race bike... re-arrange the math as you please, they're hardly the dire threat some make them out to be. If you took high school physics, you know the momentum at 15 kph is hardly life-threatening. These same people go 70 mph up Mopac and think nothing of it.

northrupr 7 months ago
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They are heavy, have a motor which gives instant speed, they are not a bicycle, these trails were built as hike and bike trails. I believe these things, with instant speed on trails as accidents in waiting. Right now we have the privilege of sharing some great trails with hikers, the first time someone gets seriously hurt, well you know what happens to privileges. I just don't think it is worth it. And I just cannot wrap my head around anything with a motor being the same as a "bicycle".

dnamtbATX 10 months ago
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Ye lorde mayor - I prayeth ye shalt banneth these horses! They are large and, yea verily, their riders are most discourteous! Have we not all seen them left everywhere? Tied up outside the bank, the saloon, the brothel? And the poop; the (bags of) poop are everywhere! Plus, it is known to the wise that dragons eat horses. If we allow these beasts, then dragons shalt surely devour our faire towne. As for health, wilst our govt put the rotund in rotunda? We must sayeth Neigh! Yours truly, -Luddite

avickers 10 months ago
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I would strongly encourage the city to fix the safety hazard present on the Ladybird Lake damn. pedestrian/bicycle/e-scooter traffic should be on-way on the sidewalks. sidewalk space over the damn is not wide enough for two bikes to pass safely. Pick a direction and pedestrians/cyclists should have to cross the street and use the sidewalk on the east/south side of the damn to go the other direction.

jonathan park 10 months ago
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That survey is hella long. Might want to shorten it. Keep e-scooters off of trail. Don't want to have to jump over them (after they have been tossed aside) or see them in nature while I am walking/running. Let's try and have something nice.

ReasonableDude 10 months ago
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Keep e-scooters and other motorized vehicles off all trails. We go out onto the trails to be in nature/get away from traffic. Some company located on Walsh Street between W 5th and 6th takes tour groups on electric motorcycles. They ride east on the bike lane on 5th street and turn south on Baylor, then take the bike trail along W 3rd street. These are BIG electric vehicles, traveling in groups, with inexperienced riders .... this is the last thing we need on trails.

Jim Mauseth 10 months ago
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Please keep scooters off of the trails, especially the Butler trail. They aren't designed for the surface of the trail and are a hazard for the people who are on-foot or on-bike. People carelessly leave them all over the place, which is both an eyesore and clutter that risks the safety of others on the trail. If there is a geofence already, it needs to be adjusted because I see people on scooters on the trail at least once a week.

abwildman 10 months ago
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PLEASE ban scooters and e-bikes on the trails! I have been scooter/e-bike riders clip people, hit people, almost collide with dogs and kids. The trails are for exercise and enjoying nature. Having the scooters zipping by, no matter the speed, makes the whole experience on the trails so anxious- you always have to be looking out for them, when they should be looking out for the walkers/runners. They are so dangerous-- PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE ban them.

MHDS 10 months ago
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Allowing scooters and e-bikes on the trails is a terrible and dangerous idea. Let’s keep Austin’s runners, walkers, cyclists, and leashed pets safe by keeping scooters and e-bikes off the trails.

KT 12 months ago
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Would like to see scooters stay off trails. Since they do not own the scooters, there is a general attitude of carelessness when it comes to riding and parking. I guess it's old school but it makes the trail seem too electronic and not nature-like.

catejwbarrett 12 months ago
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Allowing scooters and e-bikes would be careless and would overcrowd the trails. Plus, there are plenty of sidewalks for them to use. Trails are specifically for walking, jogging, running, and cycling (non e-bikes) ONLY.

Kmh22 12 months ago
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Allowing scooters and e-bikes would be careless and would overcrowd the trails. Plus, there are plenty of sidewalks for them to use. Trails are specifically for walking, jogging, running, and cycling (non e-bikes) ONLY. Allowing scooters and e-bikes on the trails would be a completely stupid decision. Do something right for once in this city and do NOT allow scooters or e-bikes on the trails.

mteetes 12 months ago
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allowing scooters on the trail causes significant losses to the companies who operate them and creates a public nuisance. Every day walking or cycling I see new scooters dumped in the middle of the walkway, left somewhere out of reach, or dumped in the lake. Penalties should be clearly labeled and higher if we are to enjoy our city’s public spaces.

ArturiusKN 12 months ago
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I run on on the hike and bike trail every weekend. It's already difficult enough to compete with the foot traffic and regular bicycles. You run the risk of increasing injuries by allowing scooters and e-bicycles. It is in no way promoting health to allow the hike and bike trail to become overrun with scooters. Some of us are actually exercising, which this City should favor. Please do not allow scooters or e-bikes on the trail.

amybresnen 12 months ago
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E bikes and scooters should not be allowed on trails, I often see elderly and children walking the trail. Most of the e-bike and scooter users are irresponsible and careless. There are countless number of "dead" bikes & scooters" abandoned on the path that become an obstacle for runners and walkers.

Cor5mi about 1 year ago
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The "10 MPH" on the signs is interpreted by some regular bike riders as to apply only to the pilot program , as that what it says on the top of the signs. So I suggest you have signs that say 10 MPH for ALL bicycles.

austinresident2017 about 1 year ago
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Part 2: The pilot program has lessened scooter usage on the Butler Hike and Bike Trail, but not completely. The signs announcing "no scooters" are too small (12" x 18") dark gray (so not visible), and limited. These signs need to be bigger (18" x 24"), a neon lime-green for visibility, printed on both sides, and three of them placed at each access point to the trail (one on each side of access point and one directly in front of scooter riders as they enter the trail).

tejana about 1 year ago
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Please keep the scooters off the Butler Hike and Bike Trail. The trail is overrun with cyclists who go too fast and rarely let someone walking know that they are approaching from behind. Add scooters to the mix and the trail is like being on a city street instead of a "nature" trail in the city. Cyclists have demanded bike lanes on the streets. Both cyclists and scooters use the street, the sidewalks, and the trail. Where can one walk without having to deal with them?

tejana about 1 year ago
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