New East Lansing moped ordinance prohibits parking on sidewalks or at bike racks

Posted at 6:29 PM, Jan 18, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-18 18:34:19-05

EAST LANSING, Mich. — A moped ordinance that prohibits lightweight motorbikes from being parked on sidewalks or at bicycle racks goes into effect Wednesday.

“The new moped ordinance that goes into effect, basically states that mopeds are now to park in designated moped areas,” said East Lansing police Lt. Chad Pride.

Pride said putting the rule is a safety precaution.

“The safety of the community the safety of not only pedestrians and people walking on the sidewalk, but also the moped riders riding their mopeds throughout the city," Pride said. "We don't want to see people get into crashes by the mopeds riding on the sidewalk and hitting a pedestrian.”

East Lansing Parking Administrator Caleb Sharrow said at the Jan. 11 City Council meeting that people have complained about mopeds driving on sidewalks.

“I think it was kind of an unspoken thing in the past that mopeds were basically like a bicycle just with a motor, but now that we have received complaints over the years from business owners and pedestrians that there ripping down the sidewalk to get to a bike loop or parking on the sidewalk, we should make sure that they’re not allowed to park at a bike loop,” Sharrow said.

Pride said anyone who violates the parking regulation will receive a $35 fine.

“If you do not park in the moped zones, you could, however, park on the roadway and park in a designated parking spot and as long as you pay for the fees that it cost to park in those parking spots," Pride said. "You don't get ticketed, and there will be no fine.”

A moped parking permit is $60 for six months and a permit to park in a regular parking space is $125 per month.

"This is just taking into effect that they’re smaller vehicles but they still have an impact on parking facilities,” Sharrow said.

The Albert Avenue, Division Street, and Grove Street parking garages all have designated parking for mopeds.

Pride said the ordinance strictly applies to mopeds and not e-scooters, but the city prefers that scooters be driven on the road instead of on sidewalks.

“The mopeds obviously, we want those on the road and not on the sidewalk where somebody could get hurt by being hit by a moped or the moped rider gets hurt if there's a crash that occurs,” Pride said.

Michigan State University has had a similar ordinance in effect since 2018.

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