Great Falls is Now Allowing e-Scooters, Will Missoula Follow?
If you go way back to BC times.....I'm talking "before COVID".....there was some talks about e-scooters and if/when they would make their way to Missoula the way they have in other cities across the country. In July of 2019 the subject was basically put on hold by the Missoula City Council's Public Works Committee. A story this week about e-scooters now being available for use in Great Falls has me wondering if Missoula will ever warm up to the idea.
I went to Boise for a concert in 2019 and it was my only experience with e-scooters. Being a tourist and not wanting to battle traffic - it was the ideal scenario. They were convenient, simple to use, and saved us a bunch of time with the concert commute. We used the scooters from our hotel to the stadium and it was less than 10 minutes. After the concert was over we didn't have to fight the post-concert madness that comes with trying to get out of the parking lot - and they were pretty cheap to rent. I'm not saying I'm for or against having them here in Missoula - but it was pretty awesome to have them for that weekend. I'm not sure how I would feel if I was trying to walk around downtown and there were scooters laying everywhere.
But even though I had a good experience, I also get the arguments from those that are on the other side of things. Rider safety, scooters blocking driveways, and where are they ok to ride are just a few issue that come up every time the idea of e-scooters in Missoula gets brought up. And you have to think the idea will get brought up again soon.
When will the conversations start back up again? Will Missoula eventually follow the lead of places like Great Falls and approve e-scooters? Do you think we'll see them in use around town anytime soon?