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When pedal buses such as Birmingham Pedal Tours first hit the streets, the City Council flat out refused to let them drink while riding. The concerns the Council brought up were that the buses would slow traffic to a crawl even without drunk peddlers. This week, City Council members Mike Fliegel and Julie Barnard proposed scrapping that restriction. What does that mean for Birmingham beer enthusiasts?
Other cities have allowed pedal buses to serve alcohol for some time now. Whether you travel to Rochester or Nashville, you’ll find a pedal tour offering pub crawls and beer. But Birmingham Pedal Tours http://www.birminghampedaltours.com/, at least for now, are dry, even if the pubs they stop at aren’t. As Birmingham tourists and bar crawlers alike prove themselves capable of not blocking the street, the City Council plans to reconsider its ban.
“The Law Department feels like the pedal buses are ready to take the next step and allow the pedal buses peddlers (not the driver) to enjoy beer and wine on their jaunts through town.” – The Birmingham City Council
While a guided pub crawl sounds good, Birmingham council members and business owners think that a pub crawl with drinks in hand sounds better!
Jason Kobza, owner of Birmingham Pedal Tours, told me that much like in other cities, this ordinance change would still forbid glass containers. He’s confident that Birmingham will join other cities – so confident that the company has already purchased 2 additional buses! The purchase “[cements] our belief that Birmingham’s progression will continue to drive tourism and entertainment.” Currently, Birmingham Pedal Tours that visit bars and breweries have a very strange restriction: they are only allowed to carry open containers while in Uptown!
What’s your favorite way to bar crawl – and favorite bars to crawl? Have you taken a pedal tour?
Update: alcohol consumption on pedal buses is legal as of January 3rd!
The Birmingham City Council livestreamed their decision today.