LAKELAND, Fla. — A Lakeland city commissioner is pitching the idea of electric scooters for the city's downtown.

  • Stephanie Madden floats idea of electric scooters
  • City's traffic operations department is studying the issue
  • More Polk County headlines

Stephanie Madden rode a scooter on a recent visit to Austin, Texas and became intrigued by the idea.

"I think we have what it takes. If we take some time and patience, we could come up with a best practice," she said. 

A small start up electric scooter company from Duluth, Minn., named Leaf has expressed an interest in providing rental scooters for downtown. The college age couple behind Leaf spoke at a recent city commission meeting. 

So far, commissioners other than Madden appear cool to the idea of scooters in downtown. The idea got a mixed reaction from some downtown visitors who spoke to Spectrum Bay News 9.

Travis Settineri and his wife Amber ride electric bikes in downtown and both felt scooters could be a hit. "Especially just people wanting to get locally and have fun. It's definitely enjoyable," said Travis.

Others like Elisa Harden worry about scooter safety.

"I’m a little bit older so I probably would not," said Harden. "I wouldn’t want to fall and hurt myself."

Madden understands any scooter proposal would have to address some real concerns of other commissioners.

"Well I seem to be the only lonely so far but I think it all starts with an idea. But I think they would soften on the idea if we addressed some of the safety concerns and risk factors," she said. 

The city's traffic operations department is studying the issues surrounding electric scooters for downtown.