So, St. Petersburg is moving forward on e-scooters, and we could see them in the mobility mix next year. Here’s hoping that St. Pete rethinks and scoots around this commitment, even with restrictions. We all know the gut issue–and it’s not non-hipster types who are too easily annoyed. It’s safety; its jeopardy is a function of carelessness, cluelessness and coolness, the perfect storm of scooter reality in notorious, traffic-challenged cities such as St. Pete and Tampa.
We also know what it’s going to take to change the minds of elected decision-makers. What ultimately awaits is a tragedy borne of too many vehicles, too many pedestrians and too little attention paid to rules of the road that, yes, still apply. The media coverage, likely more than local, will be over the top. St. Pete will look negligent and Visit Tampa Bay will cringe. The post-mortem rehashes will spotlight sorrow, outrage and recriminations–not hipness.