Will the Czech capital follow Paris in the anti-two-wheeler crusade?
Prague 1 Municipal District has decided to prohibit the parking of e-scooters on public spaces under its supervision, such as parks and adjacent roads. Furthermore, it will appeal to the Czech capital’s city government to extend that ban to the entire historic conservation area.
The motion, which was agreed on by all parties in the district council, will make Prague (at least partially) a very restrictive and non-scooter-friendly place, following in the footsteps of Paris, which has outright banned two-wheelers from its streets.
The way the councillors defended their measure was explained through legislative interpretation stating that “parking e-scooters for the purpose of renting them in public places must be considered a so-called special use of roads, which has its own rules.
Currently, there are two mobility operators that offer rental scooter services in Prague – Bolt and Lime.
OK to pass through, not OK to park?
Pavel Marc, district councillor and co-sponsor of the proposed regulation explained that since these businesses are continuously occupying public spaces as part of their activities, they ought to seek rental agreements with the municipal authorities, together with road use permits.
Ironically, the prohibition doesn’t apply to the actual operation of the electric two-wheelers. This means that users can ride through the central district on the scooters, but they can’t park them there.
During the council meeting on Wednesday, Miroslav Stejskal, director of the Prague 1 municipal police, as reported by Prague Monitor, stated that officers had dealt with 4,352 scooter-related offences and issued fines amounting to approximately CZK 1.1 million (about 45,000 euros) from January till the end of July.
In comparison, the number of offences related to cyclists in the same period amounted to 560, or about eight times less.