In case you were wondering where all those people zipping around on Bird e-scooters are going (but were you?), the company has answers for you. It recently released a list of the top 10 Bird scooter destinations?
So where are Austinites, ever high-minded, traveling those “last miles”? Are we, like the scooting denizens of Washington, D.C., seeking out libraries, museums, perhaps even a grocery store?
Well, of course not. As one might expect from such an entertainment- and tourism-oriented city, the top 10 destinations for riders of Bird scooters—the company that leads the local pack in terms of sheer numbers deployed on Austin streets—are primarily food and drink establishments.
- Revue restaurant at the Fairmont hotel
- Iron Works BBQ (next to the Austin Convention Center)
- Alfred Coffee Austin at the Line Austin hotel
- P. Terry’s Burger Stand (location not given, but probably the one on Sixth and Congress)
- 1886 Cafe and Bakery at the Driskill hotel
- Voodoo Doughnut on Dirty Sixth
- Jo’s Coffee (location not given, but probably the downtown one)
- Amy’s Ice Cream (location not given, but probably the one on West Sixth off Lamar)
While the list is undeniably concentrated in a small downtown area near hotels and the convention center, there are a few things to keep in mind when perusing the list. One is the city’s “downtown project coordination zone,” where e-scooters tend to be concentrated, is small (although it does include South Austin, which is not represented in the Top 10 above).
Another is that, while it has the most scooters on the streets in Austin, Bird is only one of eight micromobility companies (right now that means e-scooters and e-bikes) licensed to operate in that downtown zone. Finally, to counter the “all tourists all the time” narrative that might be crafted out of the list, consider that half of the sites on it—Amy’s, Jo’s, Iron Works, and 1886 Cafe and Bakery—are established, homegrown places that plenty of locals enjoy as well—and some, no doubt, get there by scooter. Either way, it means fewer cars on the street, and therefore, we’d say, a net good. Maybe.