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Segways banned on downtown sidewalks

Original post made on Dec 5, 2008

Segway scooters are not allowed on sidewalks in the downtown business area, but they are allowed on other city sidewalks as well as park trails, City Council members decided Tuesday.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, December 5, 2008, 1:32 PM

Comments (13)

Posted by bikes2work, a resident of The Crossings
on Dec 5, 2008 at 4:15 pm

You can buy Segways directly from the Best Buy on Charleston Avenue. They have a really cool looking off-road model on display.

I just wish they were more affordable.

Good job City Council!! You made the right decision.


Posted by bikes2work, a resident of The Crossings
on Dec 5, 2008 at 4:18 pm

Casey, who voted against it?

Posted by eric, a resident of another community
on Dec 5, 2008 at 10:54 pm

Great. People who are too lazy to walk can overrun kids on our trails.

Posted by bikes2work, a resident of The Crossings
on Dec 6, 2008 at 9:32 am

I think Segways are for people looking for an alternative to the all-mighty automobile. They are not too lazy to walk; they are too smart to drive. Bikes can travel a lot faster than Segways and they have always been allowed on our trails. It is everyone's responsibility to share the road and share the trail.

Posted by Renee, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 6, 2008 at 8:44 pm

That's right. Why don't more people realize that driving a car is off the charts lazier than anything else. And stop saying that Segways replace walking. They do not and were never intended to replace walking. They replace DRIVING. Remember that, people, the next time you sit down in your lazy-maker car and drive a mile to the store or your job....

Posted by Erin, a resident of Waverly Park
on Dec 6, 2008 at 8:50 pm

Bikes go waaaay faster and no one bats an eye at them, and the cyclists often have a bad-ass attitude like 'get out of my way'.

Posted by Jon Wiener, a resident of another community
on Dec 8, 2008 at 7:11 pm


If Segways were never intended to replace walking, why allow them on sidewalks?

Posted by Jon Wiener, a resident of another community
on Dec 8, 2008 at 7:21 pm

For the record, I also think the council is making a mistake in not banning bikes on sidewalks. The issue is not that they are unsafe for pedestrians (though they are), it's that riding on the sidewalk is unsafe for bicyclists unless they are moving at pedestrian speeds. Every driveway becomes an intersection, and usually one with poor visibility. And cross-traffic and turning drivers will not be expecting to see bicyclists riding out from sidewalks, often against the flow of traffic.

Posted by bikes2work, a resident of The Crossings
on Dec 9, 2008 at 3:57 pm


Certain roads are not safe for bicycles. Everyday I use the sidewalks of Alma Street and San Antonio. The sidewalks on these streets are in fact designated bicycle routes. It would be wrong to enact a complete ban of bicycles on sidewalks.

Posted by NW Resident, a resident of North Whisman
on Dec 10, 2008 at 11:16 am

Just to clarify about bicycles on sidewalks, the city code already bans them from sidewalks and parking structures in the business district, but not on other streets in town.

Refer to MVCO 19.51 and 19.54 in the muni code list, which is online here:

Web Link

Posted by mvresident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Dec 14, 2008 at 7:51 am

why are skate boards not allowed on the trail? It is my opinion that any non-gas powered vehicle should be allowed. Or in other words vehicles that don't harm the environment.

Posted by Mr. Big, a resident of North Whisman
on Dec 19, 2008 at 1:29 pm

As a regular trail user and pedestrian downtown, I think we should share the trail with both Segway's and skateboards. The bicyclists often exceed even 25 MPH on trails, so I see no problem with 12 MPH Segway's or skateboards.

Yes... every driveway and sidewalk crossing is an intersection. You are supposed to stop before crossing the sidewalk, so I see no problem allowing bicycles on non-downtown sidewalks as long as they go slow.

One problem with bicycles is when the rider transitions from vehicle to pedestrian at an intersection in order to beat a red light or stop sign. This practice should be illegal as the pedestrian has the right of way but as the vehicle, they must wait their turn.

Problem: 4-way stop, arrive at the intersection at the same time, I have the right of way and all of a sudden the rider dismounts and begins to walk the bicycle across the crosswalk. What the hell? I just go since I had the right of way as we approached the intersection.

Posted by QM, a resident of North Whisman
on Dec 19, 2008 at 8:01 pm

The California Vehicle Code defines a pedestrian as the following:

467. (a) A "pedestrian" is a person who is afoot or who is using
any of the following:
(1) A means of conveyance propelled by human power other than a
(2) An electric personal assistive mobility device.
(b) "Pedestrian" includes a person who is operating a
self-propelled wheelchair, motorized tricycle, or motorized
quadricycle and, by reason of physical disability, is otherwise
unable to move about as a pedestrian, as specified in subdivision

What is the difference between a person using a motorized wheel chair and this device? I saw a disabled person at Moffet Field recently that had a wheel chair that raised her up to eye level at 6 feet tall. The device could also move in this upright position. Should it be banned as well?

It appears to me that a Segway would qualify as an "electric personal assistive mobility device."

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