The City of Gulf Shores blinked first. After a standoff of more than a year between popular ride-share company Uber and the city, al.com reports that Gulf Shores is poised to approve an ordinance that will make it easier for Uber to serve the beach community:
"Of all the emails I get from our visitors to town complaining about something we don't have, this is No. 1," said Mayor Robert Craft, during a City Council meeting on Monday in which the ordinance was discussed. "We have to listen to the visitors coming here. We don't want them going somewhere else because we don't have something."
This is a far cry from a frantic Gulf Shores Police Department Facebook post back in 2015, which stated "UBER is NOT licensed to operate in Gulf Shores. #GSPD will take appropriate police action towards anyone found in violation! UBER will be treated as an unlicensed taxi service. This type of 'service' is highly dangerous and getting into a vehicle with someone you do not know can result in a serious crime against you!"
Uber is no more dangerous than any taxicab; and in fact, one study found that cities with Uber have a significantly lower incidence of drunk driving -- 15% to 62% lower. So this nod to common sense is long overdue and expected next week in a vote of the Gulf Shores City Council. If you are a visitor or a resident, time to let your voice be heard.
[Photo Credit: Getty Images]