The head of Charleston’s skateboarding study committee has suggested board travel through downtown be limited to legally defined road “corridors” that would run east-west and north-south.
City Councilman Mike Seekings said creating a map with easily recognized routes — two in each direction — would be the best way to affirm skateboards as a recognized mode of transportation.
Seekings has not determined which streets would be the best routes but did say he would rule out the city’s major arteries, which are traveled predominately by motor vehicles.
It would also mean that an outright ban on skateboards in most of the downtown area would not be necessary, he said.
The “corridors” idea surfaced Monday during the first of at least three planned meetings of City Council’s ad hoc skateboard advisory committee.
The group — made up of council members, skateboarders, students, police and residents — hopes to come up with a complete skateboard ordinance by August.
Monday’s meeting was more of a free flow of ideas. Suggestions included a requirement to protect feet, mandates to stop at stop signs and to not go against one-way travel.
Nothing is going to work “if that person is weaving in and out” of traffic, Councilwoman Kathleen Wilson said of any reform package.
Another idea included the possibility that boarders be required to use some sort of lamp or lighting if they are traveling after dark.
Earlier this year, citing safety and civility concerns, Seekings backed a new “Skateboard Restricted Zone,” which would have outlawed boarding in most downtown parts of the city, including around the College of Charleston. The ad hoc committee was created to work out a compromise where more parties would be invited to give their ideas on fair regulation.
The group will meet again in two weeks. In the interim, members plan to explore how other cities regulate skateboarding.
Reach Schuyler Kropf at 937-5551 or follow on Twitter at skropf47.