Scooting around Salt Lake City, the debate over the Lime and Bird scooters

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Scooting around Salt Lake City, the debate over Lime and Bird scooters

By Kennedee Webb

SALT LAKE CITY — Have you seen riders zipping around corners of streets on Lime or Bird scooters around downtown Salt Lake City? It seems like everywhere you go in the city, you are bound to see  someone “scooting” and enjoying the cool breeze as they ride along the streets and sidewalks. These scooters were introduced to the city in early summer of 2018, and have quickly become a hit with people downtown and on local college campuses. While riders seem to love this new form of transportation, some are debating the safety of these scooters on our streets and sidewalks.

The rentable Bird and Lime scooters are very similar, both are dockless and powered electronically. The scooters can be accessed through each of the companies’ downloadable apps. The rider is able to locate a scooter near their current location, pay for the ride and activate the scooter, all through the app.

The starting amount for each scooter is $1.00 and then the app charges the rider 15 cents for each additional minute. The riders must 18 or over and have a valid driver’s license.  After riders reach their destinations they may set down the scooter in a safe location and leave. At the end of the night, scooters are located, recharged, then returned to their “nests.”

On the one hand, these scooters seem like a wonderful idea. Not only do they provide easy and fast transportation, they are fun, “cool,” and budget- and environmentally-friendly. They’re a great alternative for those in a rush, or for those who don’t like to walk. And the scooters go up to a 14 miles per hour.

“I really love having the scooters up here on campus,” says Shaylee Anderson, a 21-year-old student at the University of Utah. “They are so easy to access through the app and pretty cheap for students like me who are broke. The scooters provide me a quick way to get to class, if I’m running a little late. When riding, I do make sure to be very aware of my surroundings so I don’t have a chance of hitting other students.” However, for every positive of a new fad, there seems to be a negative as well.

Safety issues have been a concern for schools and the city ever since the scooters popped up in early summer. These concerns include riding along the sidewalks and the possibility of injuring pedestrians or other riders. Riders must ride in the street and in bicycle lanes or travel lanes, they are prohibited from riding on the sidewalk. Also parking scooters has been a safety issue.

[According to city regulations?] riders should park scooters safely between the sidewalk and curb, taking care that the scooter is not adjacent to a lamp post or other street pole, UTA bus stop sign, bike rack, or on the sidewalk where it will impede ADA access and the general flow of people. Also, a rider cannot park their scooter within 50 feet of a GREENbike station, at a UTA bus or TRAX station, or in parking spots dedicated to cars.

Jon Larsen, director of the Transportation Division Department of Communities? and Neighborhoods of the Salt Lake City Corporation talked about Salt Lake City’s view on the scooters and what they are planning for future improvements. “Generally, I would say that we are supportive of the scooters, because of the potential air quality and mobility benefits. We, of course, want everyone to be safe, and have worked with the vendors on outreach and education of users.

According to Larsen, permanent regulations for scooters are not yet in place. “We are also working on expanding our network of bike lanes throughout the city so that people have a safe place to ride. We created a temporary operating agreement that allows vendors to operate in the city and sets the ground rules for them to operate. We will likely adopt a permanent ordinance that governs the operation of shared scooters sometime in 2019.”

Many working professionals still have their doubts. Ian Welch, 43, works downtown at the Wells Fargo building. “I don’t know how I feel about these scooters,” he says. “I have almost been hit a couple times by riders who are unaware of their surroundings. I can see the benefits the scooters can have on downtown, however there really needs to be an outreach on the safety uses of these scooters so I don’t get stomped down to the ground.”

The scooters debate is bound to continue downtown Salt Lake City and on local campuses. Whether you’re pro scooters or ready to see them scoot away from the city, they have been a focal point of transportation over the past year. It seems like most people have accepted the scooters, and the city has adapted well; however, there will always be safety concerns. The city and riders are aware of these concerns and are taking actions to ensure that safety is the number one priority. For now, it looks like the scooters are here to stay.


Bird Scooter located in downtown Salt Lake City

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Laurie Glover riding a Bird scooter in downtown Salt Lake City


$1 to ride a Lime scooter

Eylül Yel

Version 2

Eylül Yel

Eylül Yel is a sophomore at the University of Utah. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Strategic Communication and minoring in International Studies. Eylül currently works at the University of Utah UKids East Village as a classroom assistant.


Eylül is the program director for one of the Bennion Center’s student directed programs, ESL Guadalupe, where she also volunteers as an English tutor for adults with immigrant English status. She volunteers for TEDx University of Utah as the event manager in an effort to help put together a TED Talk at the University of Utah in the upcoming semester.


Eylül can speak English and Turkish fluently and is currently learning Spanish. She has a strong grasp on Microsoft Office. Her interests include photography and cooking.


Eylül plans on graduating in 2020 and hopes to attend graduate school to further extend her knowledge within her field of studies. She is passionate about advertising and public relations and  would like to work in a related field in the future.

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Refection Blog – Tiffany Huyette

By Tiffany Huyette

In the beginning of pitching ideas for my enterprise story, I knew I wanted my story to be centered around athletics because that is where much of my knowledge and passion are found. I knew it would be easier to invest myself in a topic that I knew a lot about or had the motivation to learn more about, so I decided to write about UYSA. Growing up in Utah Youth Soccer was beneficial in teaching me life skills and in helping me learn to deal with adversity.

Upon gathering information for my story from previous coaches and the Utah Youth Soccer website, I was able to get in touch with individuals from the admin side of UYSA, and then eventually able to go to the new UYSA headquarters and interview a few different people. I reconnected with a previous soccer trainer who had coached girls and worked on the administrative side of UYSA.

I started my interviews asking each person their job title and how they had gotten to their current position. I asked about previous jobs and positions, and about their families. I went further into depth on the benefits of sports for adolescence. After the interviews, I reviewed my notes and was able to create a story. The best source for my story ended up being the man who had trained my team and other girls teams, and who also worked in administration for UYSA.

The struggles I faced were mostly in getting interviews and keeping my story to the word limit. How could I include the details I wanted and the details I needed, while also identifying the material I needed to take out? All while telling a story, intriguing readers, and fitting within the word limit.

I chose the focus of my story when I listened to my interviews and decided what would be interesting to readers of all types, and what wouldn’t be interesting. I also really wanted to tell a good story, so I had to find a point of view where I could story tell, while still being able to keep inline with my story topic. The writing process was lengthy, and the story ended up extensively exceeding the word limit. I then had to delete any parts that were not necessary, or that did not point back to the story pitch. It was a process of writing a story that would be both interesting and informative to readers, while at the same time telling a story well. I learned that I am much more of a story writer than a news writer but that it is beneficial to add brevity to whatever I’m writing.

Looking back, I am very surprised with where my story ended up going. It ended up being a feature story about a specific person and an organization. I learned much about UYSA through my interview with Bruce but also about Bruce as a person. I was able to attain life wisdom as well as coaching wisdom for young athletes and the parents of athletes.

For my story click here.


Zane Law


Originally from Newport Beach, CA, I decided to leave home and pursue a college degree. I am a third year student at the University of Utah, majoring in Strategic Communications. I currently maintain a GPA above 3.5 and plan to graduate in the Spring of 2019, heading into the field of marketing/advertising. This field has always held my interest because analyzing and appealing to the minds of consumers has felt like a game to me. I have enjoyed finding different ways to sell clothes online, pawn off my crappy lemonade as a kid, and make/sell stickers, so pursuing this on a more professional scale seemed like the right fit. Work should be something I enjoy, and I plan on doing just that!

While I do not mean to write for a career, I am still proud of the content I have produced thus far. Besides the Greek life piece, my portfolio contains a marketing campaign pitch that was accepted and used by All Seasons Resort Lodging, an article that analyses the top-grossing Korean film and its relationship to Japanese-South Korean tensions, and a story about college athletes’ battle for compensation.

In my free time I enjoy all things sports. I do not know whether I am proud of or disappointed in the fact that I have only missed the viewing of one NFL game this 2017 season. I was the running back at University High School in Irvine, CA, so football is a passion of mine. I also ran two years of track and was named MVP both years. I was extremely disappointed when I discovered that the U does not have a collegiate team. These two high school teams have shown me what teamwork and perseverance are, so using those in the workplace is something I look forward to.

Fraternities are a valuable resource for many college men

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Tiffany Huyette

Ice cream tiff

I am a Sophomore at the University of Utah. I am also a U employee, working for a family practice clinic full of nurse practitioners, physician’s assistants, physicians, and resident physicians. For a while I had my heart set on becoming a dietitian, that dream has since changed, and I am settled as an undeclared student for now.

I was born and raised in Utah. For the longest time, I wanted to get out of Utah, but as I’ve grown older, I’ve begun to appreciate the mountains that are our backyard and the fall leaves that turn burnt orange.

I attended Jordan High School and grew up playing soccer. After playing soccer for 13 years and following a semester of college soccer, I gave up the soccer dream, and now play for fun in coed leagues. I enjoy distance running and pushing my mental barriers. Most days you can find me in a coffee shop, coffee in hand, doing homework or chatting with a friend. Other times you may find me in a nook somewhere, reading a novel of some sort. Gilmore Girls is my favorite TV series, and brownies and ice-cream are my go to dessert.

If your interested in reading my story click here.

If your interested in reading the reflections on my story click here.

For my LinkedIn profile click here.

Zane Law- Reflection Blog

The development of my story came about in a wave of ideas. I was, at first, stuck with only statistics. The data was a large amount that was both for and against the Greek system on college campuses. The statistics outlined things such as graduation rates, GPA within the system and outside of the system, numbers on rape, alcoholism, and more. I had put all of the information into my first draft, but was told to hold back on the information that I did not enjoy reporting. I had previously thought this to be bias and was trying to remove all side-taking from my writing, but was made aware that as long as I was not blatantly trying to promote Greek life, I was fine to report upon the positives. Telling of the benefits and stories of Greek life and its members was acceptable if the information was all factual and written clearly. It was still difficult to report on the information without being biased, as I was a Greek member for two years, but I believe the way I positioned my interview quotes and statistical information was fair.

I then had to plan my attack on the interview process. My sources were among the University of Utah’s most involved Greek members, being able to show what the system is truly capable of. The IFC President, the YAF President, and a fraternity social chair were all very different positions, but all positions that they said would help them in the future. Whether it be on resumes or using the connections they made during their terms, they said their time spent was extremely valuable to them. That seemed like enough to warrant an interview. The YAF President stood out to me most, as he had just accomplished a feat that made Salt Lake City headlines. He was able to invite, with the help of alumni, Ben Shapiro to the U’s campus. This was a true testament to what fraternities and alumni support can accomplish.

During this process I truly learned to plan ahead before stepping into an interview. After my meetings with a few of the folks I was left wanting to ask o many more questions. If I had better prepared, then I could have gotten some additional information for my article. I also learned that having friends and family review your work is a priceless tool. They were able to make suggestions that I would not have thought to include. Never be afraid to ask others to read your things, kids!

Fraternities are a valuable resource for many college men

Zane Law- Bio