COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services department announced Monday the postponement of its electrical assisted bicycle (e-bike) pilot program until further notice. The one-year pilot program, which proposes to expand Class 1 e-bike access to all City-owned trails and allow Class 2 e-bikes on City-owned urban trails for the first time, was set to begin May 31. The delayed start will allow the department to continue its due diligence in seeking further clarification on the definition of e-bikes and its alignment with the Code of the City of Colorado Springs.
E-bike usage has significantly increased in recent years, prompting communities nationwide to look at and update trail policies. The pilot program, a result of listening to the local community and research of e-bike allowances in other communities, was created to evaluate e-bike usage and how it impacts the trail system and overall user experience in Colorado Springs. One of the strongest arguments heard in favor of allowing e-bikes to use the same trails as bicycles is inclusion and connecting people who represent all ages and abilities to recreation and commuting opportunities.
Colorado Springs has allowed since February 2018 Class 1 e-bikes on urban trails only. Urban trails, like Cottonwood Creek, Foothills, Pikes Peak Greenway and the Sand Creek trails, are typically described as local commuting and recreational trails that traverse neighborhoods and connect to the city’s core urban areas. E-bikes are also allowed on trails if the rider has obtained an other power-driven mobility device (OPDMD) permit through the Office of Accessibility. This permits the use of OPDMD’s by individuals with mobility disabilities in areas open to pedestrian use, including trails. These uses will continue to be allowed.
For more information on e-bike usage in Colorado Springs, visit ColoradoSprings.gov/ebike.