WT, Canyon Welcome Bird Scooters to Campus and Community

Chip Chandler Mar 01, 2022
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WT, Canyon Welcome Bird Scooters to Campus and Community

Copy by Chip Chandler, 806-651-2124,

City of Canyon contact: Megan Nelson, 806-655-5000 Ext 261,


CANYON, Texas — West Texas A&M University and the City of Canyon are partnering with a national leader in electric transportation to bring e-scooters to campus.

Bird’s eco-friendly transportation option can be activated through Bird’s free mobile phone app and used to conveniently commute across campus or replace car trips when going to the store, meeting up with friends, exploring the community and taking many other daily trips.

“We are thrilled to welcome Bird to WT and look forward to offering our students and Canyon residents a new, eco-friendly and fun way to get around,” said Mike Knox, vice president for student enrollment, engagement and success. “This also will help with parking congestion when we have major events on campus, like football games at Buffalo Stadium.”

The scooters will be welcomed in a launch event at 11:30 a.m. March 1 in front of the University Dining Hall on the Canyon campus.

Thirty scooters will be available for rent on the WT campus. An additional 40 will be located in the city of Canyon itself for community members to rent.

WT’s Student Government Association has led the effort to bring scooters to campus.

“WT administrators came to SGA with the need for some kind of ride-share program on campus,” said Bryan Garcia, SGA president. “We get a lot of parking complaints, especially on cold days, when people drive from their residence hall to their classroom building. We hope that by making these scooters available, students and everyone else on campus will have a quick, convenient way to get around on campus and clear up some parking congestion.”

Throughout the multi-year process, the SGA’s Student Affairs Committee researched different options, drafted an RFP and contracts, and worked with administrators and City of Canyon leaders.

“We’ve gotten to navigate a bunch of spaces that aren’t usually navigated by students,” Garcia said. “We met with 15 or more departments on campus to pitch the idea and get their support.”

“I’ve been quite impressed with the work these students have done,” said Randy Rikel, vice president for business and finance. “We gave them the opportunity to lead this effort, and they have surpassed our expectations.”

Scooters will be deployed in key locations around campus and will be picked up by a local logistics partner nightly.

For the safety of riders and pedestrians alike, scooters will be geofenced so that they are not operative around Buffalo Fountain on the Charles K. and Barbara Kerr Vaughn Pedestrian Mall; within the gates of Buffalo Stadium; and around the square in downtown Canyon.

Users can download the free Bird app, locate nearby scooters, then scan a QR code to unlock it and ride. Scooters will cost $1 to unlock, with a per-minute fee thereafter. A map showing the scooters’ coverage area also is available on the app.

Free helmets are available at the University Police Department, inside the Jack B. Kelley Student Center and elsewhere. Helmets also may be ordered through the Bird app for free with a shipping and handling charge.

Bird’s inclusive Community Pricing Program offers a 50 percent discount to low-income riders, Pell grant recipients, select local nonprofit and community organizations, veterans and senior citizens. Those who qualify can sign up by downloading the Bird app, creating an account and emailing proof of eligibility to

Anyone with a Bird account also may report or provide feedback on vehicle-related issues such as poorly parked or damaged vehicles in their area by tapping the yield sign on the bottom left of the in-app Bird map. When a report is submitted, someone is assigned to correct the issue.

Canyon city commissioners passed an ordinance in 2021 to allow such ride-share scooters to be used in town, said Jon Behrens, assistant city manager.

“Canyon is growing, and a big part of that is because of WT, so we’re happy to work together to provide a new, green mode of transportation around town,” Behrens said.

WT and the City required several safety measures be included in the contract with Bird, Behrens said, including proper lighting, a 15-mph maximum speed, regular maintenance reports and more. In specifically geofenced areas, the maximum speed limit is 10 mph.

The scooter program will complement the continuing free shuttle bus program, which provides free transportation to students, faculty, staff and campus visitors in partnership with Panhandle Community Services and Panhandle Transportation.

Encouraging student leadership and a risk-friendly environment are key aspects of the University’s long-range plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign.  


About Bird

Bird is an electric vehicle company dedicated to bringing affordable, environmentally friendly transportation solutions such as e-scooters and e-bikes to communities across the world. Founded in 2017 by transportation pioneer Travis VanderZanden, Bird is rapidly expanding. Today, it provides fleets of shared micro electric vehicles to riders in more than 350 cities globally and makes its products available for purchase at and via leading retailers and distribution partners. Bird partners closely with the cities in which it operates to provide a reliable and affordable transportation option for people who live and work there.


About West Texas A&M University

WT is located in Canyon, Texas, on a 342-acre residential campus. Established in 1910, the University has been part of The Texas A&M University System since 1990. WT, a Hispanic Serving Institution since 2016, boasts an enrollment of about 10,000 and offers 59 undergraduate degree programs, 39 master’s degrees and two doctoral degrees. The University is also home to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the largest history museum in the state and the home of one of the Southwest’s finest art collections. The Buffaloes are a member of the NCAA Division II Lone Star Conference and offers 14 men’s and women’s athletics programs.