Hayward briefs | City makes moves on micromobility, sidewalk vending and bus stop benches

silhouette of person riding on commuter bike

Hayward is promoting micromobility

HAYWARD, Calif. — The city of Hayward wants its residents to use bikes and scooters to get around and is trying to make it easier to start doing so.

On Tuesday, Oct. 17, the Hayward City Council unanimously decided to promote the use of bikes, e-bikes, scooters and e-scooters by, in the short term, creating a centralized location to find rebate programs and other incentives and, in the long term, coordinating with neighboring cities and agencies on a shared micromobility program, which will allow people to rent out bikes and scooters, both electric and human-powered. Councilmembers Mark Salinas and Dan Goldstein were absent.

The recommendations were based on a study conducted by the city on the feasibility of developing a local micromobility program. The global e-bike market was valued at $40 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow to $118 billion by 2030, driven in part by their affordability and ability to fight traffic congestion in an eco-friendly way, according to market research firm Allied Market Research.

City Council greenlights new regulations for sidewalk vendors

HAYWARD, Calif. — It is now legal to sell food and other goods on the sidewalks of Hayward as long as you have a permit.

On Tuesday, Oct. 17, the Hayward City Council unanimously approved a new sidewalk vending ordinance that lays out clear guidelines for anyone who wants to be a sidewalk vendor in the city, such as the types of signs vendors are allowed to use and hours of operation they are allowed to keep in residential and nonresidential neighborhoods. Councilmembers Mark Salinas and Dan Goldstein were absent.

According to the new ordinance, a sidewalk vending permit from the city is required and must be renewed annually. Anyone found breaking the regulations or vending without a permit will receive a verbal warning and a written warning before receiving fines that gradually increase in amount.

Sidewalk vending used to be illegal in cities across the state, including Hayward, until 2018 when Senate Bill 946 became law, limiting cities’ ability to prevent sidewalk vending.

Zermeño, Syrop propose ‘a bench for every bus stop’

HAYWARD, Calif. — There are 363 bus stops in Hayward, but only 63 of them have bus shelters or benches. Two members of the Hayward City Council, Francisco Zermeño and George Syrop, want to change that.

“The ultimate goal is to have sheltered bus stops,” Zermeño said, “but let’s start with a bench.”

At a meeting earlier this month, the city council unanimously approved a pilot program to work with the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District to install 10 Simme Seats, small one-to-two-seat benches, across the city at a cost of $2,000 per unit. The results are expected to come before the council before the end of 2024 and installing the seats at all 300 unsheltered bus stops would cost the city about $600,000, according to the staff report.

A similar pilot program was implemented by the city of Emeryville, which Syrop said illustrated that public transit can be improved if there’s the political will to make it happen. Initially, the pilot aimed to install five seats, but Syrop said 10 would give a city the size of Hayward more information by allowing them to be placed at a variety of different locations.

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