KYW In Depth: How Pennsylvania has been kept mostly scooter-free for more than a decade

KYW In Depth
February 28, 2020 - 4:00 am
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Go to pretty much any big city in the U.S. and you'll see people zooming around on electric scooters. But not in Philadelphia. Or Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, or Allentown for that matter. At least, not legally.

"Well, because they (e-scooters) are illegal in the state of Pennsylvania," KYW Newsradio's City Hall bureau chief Pat Loeb explained. "One of the interesting ironies is that this is all being determined by a guy that lives in Centre County, in the middle of the state, where there are no cities."  

Advocates of personal electric vehicles, or PEVs, say having a shared e-scooter program similar to Philadelphia's current bike-share program would benefit commuters and tourists that need to go that extra mile public transportation just can't provide. 

Matt Nichol, co-founder of Philly E-Riders, uses his electric skateboard to get all over the city, whether that be to work or on a group ride that members organize.

"It's where we have to go. Our population is growing, and all we're doing is gathering more traffic on the streets and the highways," Nichol said. "The next step for me and many people in our group is these personal electric vehicles that will actually, hopefully, eclipse any other need for any other type of transportation."

This week on KYW In Depth, we break down how a senator from Central Pennsylvania and a Segway lobbyist have kept Pennsylvania (mostly) scooter-free for more than a decade, and a look at a high tech, green version of the future of urban transportation.

Each week, KYW In Depth will take you inside a story that matters to the Philadelphia region. With original reporting and compelling interviews, the most experienced news team in Philadelphia radio goes beyond the headlines and into the captivating details surrounding a local story. Subscribe here, on the RADIO.COM app on your smartphone, or wherever you listen to podcasts.