Friday, May 10, 2013

Bike share launches May 27; CB3 asks residents to take wait-and-see approach



City officials announced yesterday that the Citi Bikes program will officially launch on May 27. However, the first week of service is only for the 8,000 or so people who bought the annual membership. For all you car-loving, tourist-hating residents everyone else, weekly and daily passes go on sale June 2.

Here's part of the official message:

New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan and NYC Bike Share today announced that Citi Bike will launch for annual members on Monday, May 27, as the 6,000-bike, 330-station system brings New York’s newest and most affordable transportation option to parts of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Annual members who sign up by May 17 will receive their Citi Bike electronic keys in time to enjoy exclusive use of the system starting Memorial Day before the system opens to daily and weekly members on June 2. The initial service area includes Manhattan below 59th Street and the neighborhoods of Brooklyn Heights, DUMBO, Fort Greene, Clinton Hill and parts of Bedford Stuyvesant in Brooklyn. Citi Bike operates without City subsidy and the $95 annual membership equals about 25 cents a day for the kind of unlimited short trips that bike share is designed for.

“Now’s the time for New Yorkers to sign up for their own keys to the city,” said Commissioner Sadik-Khan. “More than eight thousand annual members have already signed up to get a head start on the newest way to get around, and the excitement continues to build as we count down the days to launch.”

Annual memberships providing unlimited rides of 45 minutes or less are available at citibikenyc.com. Bike share will extend the reach of the city’s transportation network, providing easier, faster access to destinations farther from transit stops. Starting June 2, daily memberships will be available for $9.95 a day or $25 a week, granting those members unlimited rides of 30 minutes or less at no additional cost for the duration of their membership period.

Meanwhile, yesterday, in anticipation of all this... we received the following message from the folks at Community Board 3:

Bike Share will launch May 27. Issues that must be dealt with immediately, such as a blocked driveway or loading zone, should be emailed to the community board office (info@cb3manhattan.org) and we will work with DOT to have these sites inspected immediately.

There are other concerns regarding placement of installations or size of installations, or the number of installations in close proximity to each other. We are asking people to wait until bike share is in operation for a month to see what works and what doesn’t. What installations are not being used to capacity? What installations do not accommodate the number of bikes needed?

The Community Board 3 Transportation Committee will meet on Tuesday, July 16 to hear concerns. DOT will attend the meeting to note these concerns and address or inspect and follow up. Please check the CB 3 website for the meeting location or sign up to receive monthly agendas (join cb 3’s mail list on website).

And as a refresher. Here is the official information on pricing ... and here are FAQs.

37 comments:

Brian Van said...

Hey, don't tell the haters to wait a whole month! Just let them send in their immediate complaints, take down their names, and put all of their stacks of future complaints into the circular file. Then read the rest of the complaints to see the people who have realistic concerns...

Ken from Ken's Kitchen said...

There are a number of people, including a bunch running for mayor, who apparently already know what will work and what won’t. What is it about bikes that make people so stridently nuts?

Anonymous said...

This is suppossed to be a viable mode if transportation? Ok so I'm going on a job interview, I'm riding my 45 pound CitiBike through the city, sweating to death on a hot summer day. Uh oh! There's no CitiBike rack anywhere near my destination. Now what do I do with this bike?

CitiTrolls... Go!

Anonymous said...

How much liability insurance is included with the rental of these bikes, and will traffic laws finally be enforced on bicyclists now that these bikes will be traceable?

Anonymous said...

"Issues that must be dealt with immediately, such as a blocked driveway or loading zone, should be emailed to the community board office (info@cb3manhattan.org) and we will work with DOT to have these sites inspected immediately. "

So if I'm reading this correctly, the people who decided where to plop these bike stations down didn't even take these things into consideration, and those affected were never consulted and now have to take it up with CB3 after the fact?

We live in Bloomberg's own personal Sim City.

Anonymous said...

This bike share program makes no sense. You have only 30 minutes to get to your destination and find an empty rack. This is not helpful for practical transportation or for a leisurely ride. Maybe if they put them near parks and let people ride for an hour, it would be worthwhile. As it is, I think it's a waste of space and I predict it will be a PR nightmare for CitiBank.

OWR said...

Lets talk about the inconsideration and hostility of the Bikers. Wiil they wait at the light for pedestrians to cross as the cars are now LEGALLY Forced to? Will they show the decency to allow Pedestrians to walk on a sidewalk withoug flying on it?
This low-lfe mayor and Khan have now made this city Pedestrian UNFRIENDLY.
Note to Brian V makee sure you never run into me illegally.

Big Brother said...

Ken, I thought G Whiz summed it up rather well the other day:

g whiz said...
As a biker and driver i think the divisiveness comes from the heavy handed ill conceived execution of adding more biking to the city. The bike lanes were not planned out well, they took away parking and forced bikers and pedestrians into the same areas. The bike share takes away parking and pedestrian space. The city thinks anything worth doing is worth overdoing couple that with neighborhood nimbyism and you get the perfect storm of nyc bitchiness.

MAY 5, 2013 AT 3:09 PM

Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 10:02,

Anon ~10:40 here to help you out with your interview predicament and to alleviate concerns of a sweaty interview.

The night prior to your big day...

-Check the weather forecast.
If it's going to be a hot day, plan your outfit accordingly. If it's going to be raining, make sure to put your umbrella by the front door, so you don't forget it!

-Decide on a method of transportation
Depending on the weather, different transportation options may work better than others for getting you to your destination. Luckily, New York has more options than almost any other city!

If it looks like it's going to be really hot, check the bus map to find out the best way for you to get to your interview, but make sure to leave extra time in case you hit traffic or have to transfer. Hopefully the bus will have the A/C turned on high! Chances are, subways and bikes are going to be a bad option, since the subway platform will be a sweatbox and the energy required to ride a bike to your destination may cause you to sweat. If the weather is going to be cool, then you can consider a bike ride, but don't forget to check the Citi Bike dock map to make sure there's a dock near your destination! Most often, a bike will be your worst option for travel to an interview. If the weather calls for rain, make sure you've got the quickest route on the subway planned to make sure you're not late to your interview. If all else fails, forego your lunch money and try to hail a cab. This may be a difficult task on rainy days, but it's better to spend the extra money to make sure you're on time to a potential paying job than to lose that job opportunity all together. For hot days, try hitting the green A/C switch. It probably won't work.

Hope this helps! Good luck on the job hunt!

Anonymous said...

@anon 10:41

Such an excellent comment. Thanks for bringing some common sense into this otherwise extremely polarizing topic.

Anonymous said...

Of course this would have the seal and blessed approval of the patron saint of SantaCon. Wooooooooooooooo!

Anonymous said...

gee your hair don't smell terrific after riding that Citi Bike. John M summed it up perfectly:

Because they will be a bastion of corporate logo pushing

Because they are yet another intrusive symbol of Bloomberg's 'tourists over residents' philosophy

Because they are yet another intrusive symbol of Bloomberg's and his administration's (YOUR MOST HATED POLICY HERE)

Anonymous said...

I knew that those "Street Safety Manager" morons in day-glo would be the precursor of another ticketing blitz. I got a summons today on 1st between 11th and 12th for not riding in the segregated bike lane (I was on the right, in the bus lane). The cop told me that he was doing it for my safety. Ha!

I just want to ride my bike in peace, and don't give a damn about Citi Bike or bike lanes. I can't wait till JSK and her Sadik-Commies at DoTA (Department of Transportation Alternatives) are history.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the sarcastic comment! But if there is no place to dock the CitiBike, what are people going to do with this viable mode of transportation?

Anonymous said...

10:41 and 10:55 sure, but the way they are pushing and advertizing this, Citi and the city want you to be your primary and only mode of transportation, where in reality it's for the tourists and NYU students to get around from their 'campus' to 'campus' to their residential halls, and those are the EV, LES, Alphabet City, and Brooklyn. Good luck with your trust funds.

Anonymous said...

10:41 and 10:55 is the same person. The CitiTrolls are doing a fantastic job ensuring they are just as irrational and hateful as the people they accuse of being irrational and hateful.

Anonymous said...

An aside, and a serious question, no snark....do so many of you truly believe that the younger population of the EV is chock full of people with trust funds? I ask as a 24 year old in the neighborhood who does not count a single trust fund among dozens of friends and acquaintances in the neighborhood and the rest of the city. I really don't think my peers are as rich or supported by family as you would like to believe.

Big Brother said...

I'd rather walk to work in a Blimpie sub costume than ride to work, or anywhere for that matter, on one of these things.

OWR said...

11:03...Bout time there is some enforcement. Glad to see this. Even better have the low-life bikers wear licenses. That will teach embed some responsibility into you and your ilk.

Anonymous said...

Oh ferchrissake puh-LEEZE don't ask me to sob big wet tears for the loss of free parking spaces for motorists whose cars chew up the streets at the expense of taxpayers, including those of us who don't drive, and then whine about a transportation option that won't cost you a goddamn thing. This is happening, haters. If you don't like it, tough shit. It won't impact you much. Unless you're one of those poor put-upon motorists who feel themselves entitled to unlimited free parking and asphalt and having the entire road to themselves because this is Murka, or New York City, or whatever, and driving a big stinking air-polluting two-ton menace of a motor vehicle around at terrifying speeds is everybody's birthright or something...

Andrew said...

What an amazingly negative group of people. Obviously concerns like blocked driveways should be addressed, but for so many people to be so down on a service that - let's be honest with ourselves - will reduce traffic congestion and pollution at almost no cost to those who don't utilize it is ridiculous. It's one thing to complain about constant approvals of noisy new bars in the East Village (probably the most popular topic on this blog) which are completely reasonable complaints. But the city adding a bike share system that's not paid for by tax dollars just isn't that big a deal. Find something more important to whine about.

Anonymous said...

OWR: What responsibility? Whom am I harming by riding in the bus lane, as long as I stop for lights? And I'm not part of any "ilk."

I refuse to be corraled into Sadiktator-Khan's segregated bike lanes just because she wants this city to be Copenhagen (while at the same time, Bloomblight wants it to be Hong Kong).

nygrump said...

11:46 - hate to tell you but those motorists ARE tax payers - from their excise fees and gas tax, they play plenty.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:46 call this "a transportation option that won't cost you a goddamn thing." Wait, but the DOT claims to have held 400 meetings about bike share! We taxpayers are paying the salaries of all the city employees assigned to the Citi Bike project.

Also, mark my words: the city will have to bail out Citi Bike when it defaults on its $41 loan to Goldman Sachs.

Anonymous said...

11:46, I love you, I love you, I love you. F any driver who bitches about this program. I don't care for the program for my own reasons but I for one will not be crying a friggin river for "displaced" parking spots.

Drivers in this city can be so mind-boggingly aggressive and nearly homicidal!

I watched yesterday as a pedestrian crossed the street and successfully stepped up onto the curb. The driver turning onto his street couldn't wait half a F*CKING second for him to cross and nearly clipped the man!

I wanted to strangle the driver because I'm sure he drove like that ALL DAY. Sure it was a MISS and he didn't hit the man but my god, the assholery MOST drivers possess when driving as if it's THEIR street is downright maddening!

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the blog, Andrew! Sometimes it's better to avoid the comments.

Anonymous said...

Hahahaha! CitiBike racks up more negative comments here than all the bars combined! And the Citi Shills and their infantile thoughts and reasoning only make it worse! Good job at keeping CitiBike a hot (negative) topic shills! Cool off with a fro-you from 16 Handles, conveniently located every 6 feet!

Anonymous said...

What is there to wait for. I hate the bikers as they don't follow any rules. They are vehicles that are as fast as cars! Thank you Bloomberg. More to worry about as you didn't manage the bikers that run lights, etc...

Anonymous said...

At this point, I think people are yelling about this because people are yelling about this. Come on in, commenters--join the crowd!

Duke said...

Earlier this morning I observed a semi truck making a left onto E. 3rd street & 1st Ave. and the trailer was EASILY cutting into the sh*ttiBike station zone. We can rest easy--these things will be mauled. I also suspect the same issue happening at East 3rd and La Guardia. That corner has a station on the side curb which makes for a very tight turn onto La Guardia. The semis will win.

Anonymous said...

feel sorry for the residents who have to commute with cars and now have to spend even more time trying to find a spot - but at least they have the option to rent a bike from one of those huge vending machines and ride home after they parked a mile away.

creature said...

You all inspired me. I just signed up. I look forward to a hot, smelly, dangerous, perhaps slightly embarrassing ride to work from the EV to midtown.

glamma said...

Sorry but how the HELL will these "reduce traffic congestion and pollution?" i would wager to bet that the # of people who will trade their car for a Sh*tibike is a big fat ZERO.
and if your Sh*tibike gets stolen, you have to pay big money to your ruler and overlord, whereas if your own bike gets stolen then you are beholden only to yourself.
where is the advantage?
Besides in citi's pocket, and all the lawmakers they bribe to jam their profit/marketing schemes which are poorly veiled as "public works" down our f*cking throats.
above ALL else, it's just so insulting to the intelligence.
dont drink that blue kool aid folks,
please.

Anonymous said...

Wow I am the only person here who has mixed feelings about bikeshare. The rest of your have been completely polarized. Suits me better, I never really fit in anywhere anyways.

Anonymous said...

C'mon, what should we expect from Bloomberg's hand-picked DOT commissioner, whose last job was lawyering for a bicycle lobby?

Pamie said...

I wouldn't pay 95 CENTS a year, let alone 95 bucks a year, to ride one of these craptastic conveyances. I'd rather crawl over two miles of NYC streets lined with broken glass. Or, take the bus.

Giovanni said...

I think most people here who are raising concerns about CitiBike sharing are actually cyclists themselves or think that increasing cycling is a good idea, but it is the way that Bloomberg, DOTs Sadik (The Wrath of) Khan and their rubber stamp City Council implement these changes with no regard for public safety or the impact on small businesses that is very troubling. Cases in point:

1) The Death Traps: 14th St. and Broadway at Union Square is one of the deadliest intersections in NYC, recall the young woman who was recently killed here by a City dump truck. There are now 50 docking stations on the East side of B'way between 13th and 14th St. That would be the BLIND side of the avenue for drivers coming down Park Avenue and around the bend onto Broadway.

Unless this placement is fixed, this is a death trap. How come no one in the city thought about that when there is tons of space on Union Square itself far away from traffic? But those locations would have required more cooperation with other city agencies and public input, and that just won't do.

2) UnOccupied Wall Street: The food vendors (including a few Farmers market vendors) on Zuccotti Park are being pushed out by the new docking stations. These are the same food vendors that the local residents complained they could access during Occupy Wall Streets encampment.

Now the food vendors who have been there for years are gone. They were a mainstay of the area and a reason to go sit and eat in the park. Downtown residents just loved Bloomberg when he bashed heads evicting OWS in the middle of the night. HI wonder how much do they like him now?

3) CitiBanks Location Hypocrisy: have you noticed how many docking stations are located in front of an actual CitiBank branch? So far I have noticed only one. If this is no inconvenience to businesses, why didn't CitiBank volunteer more of their own curbside spots at the hundreds of locations they operate in Manhattan?

In fact had they done this and started with a small test period for the rollout, I think there would be much more support for the program. But we cyclists all remember the heavy handed rollout of the bike lanes, the confusion of drivers and pedestrians due to the lack of signage and public awareness programs. Whats wrong with getting the public warmed up to the idea first?

I guess expecting a Billionaire Mayor to understand the concept of foreplay is just too much to expect.

All we are asking for is a smarter and more community-aware approach from a City government that somehow even makes the good things they do seem like they are ignoring the communities they are supposed to serve.

So to all the mindlessly pro-government/pro-Bloomberg people here who just whine about the people who they say are whining, please don't complain when Bloomberg's Mother Ship comes down in the middle of the night to abduct you and your family. Don't worry, he knows whats best for you.