The first e-scooters were set up in the cities in the summer of 2019 - and since then have been causing a lot of trouble in addition to a lot of driving fun. Because the small electric scooters, which can be easily rented via app, are often not parked properly. They lie on the sidewalk, stand in the middle of the bike path or end up in the bushes. The cities are trying to set tighter limits for the rental companies - but are sometimes not satisfied with the success so far.
Frankfurt relies on fee-based special use permits for the four scooter rental companies that are active in the Main metropolis. This bans parking on green spaces, cemeteries, bridges and playgrounds. There must also be enough space for pedestrians. Parking zones for the scooters have been marked in the side streets of the Zeil shopping mile, they are not allowed to be parked within a radius of 100 meters. More are to follow. The maximum number of scooters in the city has been limited to 12,000.
Despite significant improvements, the result is not satisfactory, according to the traffic department. A selection process such as a call for tenders would offer more design options. "We are therefore driving this path forward in parallel," said the designated head of transport, Wolfgang Siefert (Greens).
The cities of Wiesbaden and Kassel are also working on special uses and parking zones and are preparing pilot projects for this. Darmstadt has also tried out fixed parking zones.
Markus Schmidt from the pedestrian association Fuss e.V. calls for a more decisive approach. In Frankfurt, the scooters are on the sidewalks - and usually not on the edge, but crisscrossing. The authorities should demand proof from the operators that they offer functioning technical solutions against the parking chaos or take appropriate action.