The Boston City Council today approved an ordinance proposed by Mayor Walsh that would allow rental scooters on local streets and sidewalks - under the oversight of the city transportation department, which would license operators and set requirements for such things as ensuring even the city's most far-flung neighborhoods get stocked with the two-wheelers.
The scooters, similar to the old Razor scooters, only powered by batteries that can boost them to 15 m.p.h., are typically owned by companies, that like Uber and Lyft, tried to just bust into local cities and towns without bothering to check with local officials, only with less success than the car-based services.
BTD now has to draw up formal regulations - which will bar users from blocking handicap-access ramps, hydrants and the like - and sign up companies willing to try pilot roll outs of the scooters.
City Councilor Matt O'Malley (Jamaica Plain, West Roxbury), declared himself "really excited" at the prospect of tooling around on a scooter, which he said could help decrease the city's carbon footprint. "I can't wait to see all of us on scooters in the not too distant future," he said.