Monday, July 8, 2024

Astor Place gets the neighborhood's first electric charging docks for e-bikes

Last week, an electric charging dock for Citi Bike's e-bike fleet arrived outside Wegman's on Astor Place, the location of a previous docking station. (Thanks to Jacob Ford for the photo and tip!

This marks the first docking station in the neighborhood specifically for charging e-bikes. (These docks also accept the first-gen bicycles.) The DOT and Lyft unveiled the first two in May, with Hell's Kitchen and Greenpoint locations. 

Notably, the Astor Place station is electrified on the street, a unique feature compared to the first two stations, which were on the sidewalk. (Streetsblog has a comprehensive background on this here.)

According to DOT and Lyft officials, electrified charging stations will allow Citi Bike e-bike batteries to be charged while parked in stations instead of manually swapped out, making e-bikes more available to riders and reducing vehicle miles traveled by operations vans. 

Most e-bike batteries are charged in a warehouse and shuttled back and forth for manual swapping at the station in an often cumbersome manner... According to May figures, Citi Bike has about 15,000 e-bikes in its fleet. In the first five months of the year, Citi Bike riders have taken more than 7 million trips on e-bikes.

Lyft recently announced that starting on Wednesday, Citi Bike e-bike rides will become more expensive for the $219.99-per-year annual members, rising to 24 cents per minute from 20 cents per minute. Back in January, the price went from 17 cents to 20 cents per minute.


Julius G. Klein said...

Why E-bikes at all ???

Jess said...

It's insane that they allowed them to put E-Bikes there. The inexperienced riders on their phone flying down the street, with the E-Bike capability is wild. They should not allow Citibikes to be E-Bikes. The riders are generally a menace to vehicles and pedestrians and other bike riders that learn the ropes of how to ride in NYC.

crazed gardener said...

I sometimes ride CitiBike ebikes and think they are mostly a danger to their own riders without helmets -- the ebikes that frighten me as a biker and pedestrian are the ones that are fully electric (no pedaling required) and generally go at high speed. There are certainly bad bikers on all sorts of bikes but the dangerous ones are the ones that go too fast to respond to (or for the riders to respond to other people). Another case where the City refusal to enforce rules makes everyone else's quality of life lower.

FocusPulling (.com) said...

Couldn't be clearer: Citi Bike is jacking up its e-bike rates this week, complaining mainly that it's gotten too expensive to shuttle and recharge these batteries -- just in time to increase their profit margins permanently, just as this expense drops dramatically.

Exterminator said...

If the authorities would enforce the
laws with bike riders the city would be
flush with cash. We wouldn’t need
congestion pricing. And for us that like
to walk we could do so more relaxed
without having to look in every direction
for all the reckless bike riders. A nice
hit in the wallet might cool their buns.

Xeo said...

Wow, you guys are incredibly against ebikes. I consider citbike ebikes the cheatcode for getting around the city. It's literally faster to get to anywhere within, let's say 60 blocks vs the subway. Also It's 40 min from Astoria to the East Village. It's hard to beat it.

Are there bad actors? Hell yeah there are. But try using the ebikes to get around and I promise you'll start to include them in your plans if you are at ALL comfortable on a bike.

Imo ALL citibikes could be ebikes and they still wouldn't meat demand.