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Sunday, September 25, 2022

Plans approved for first pedicycle company in Madison

A company wanting to provide pedicycles in Madison moved smoothly through the first step in the city process when the Transit and Parking Commission unanimously approved of the plans to issue the company an operating license Tuesday.

Capitol Pedaler would provide pedicycles in the city of Madison if given an operating license.

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The pedicycle is five feet wide by 17 and a half feet long by nine and a half feet high. The pedicycle used is a bicycle powered by 16 people. Pedicycles will be used for reserved group outings where the users are traveling a designated route for a specific timeframe.

Pedicycles can go five miles per hour, Linda Besser, owner of Capitol Pedaler, said. According to her, the pedicyle would follow the rules of the road.

The pedicycle can hold up to 15 passengers and the minimum number necessary to move the vehicle is six to eight people.

Passengers would have the option to wear a helmet, Capitol Pedicycle's Lourdes Fernandez said.

City transportation operations analyst Keith Pollock said there was a thorough review of the application and it has been through the many city departments, including the mayor's office.

The pedicycle might cause a minor nuisance to buses, but nothing more than what Madison Metro has already encountered, Pollock said.

Madison's traffic engineering division recommends the operating licenses for Capitol Pedalers be issued and the resolution approved, Pollock said.

Besser said the company wants to provide group-friendly entertainment in Madison. Passengers or drivers would not be allowed to consume alcohol while in the pedicycle.

""We want to be fun and enjoyable without the boisterous drunken kind of behavior that tends to accompany people on State Street,"" Besser said.

Committee member Jay Ferm said he was worried about whether the vehicles would be difficult to maneuver with the sometimes dense Madison traffic.

Besser said when the pedicycles have been taken out onto the streets of Madison, they would slow down, pull over and let traffic go around.

""We're looking forward to bringing it to Madison,"" Fernandez said.

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