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Transportation Nation

BREAKING: Citibank Is Sponsor of NYC Bike Share, "Citibike." [UPDATED w/Pics and Details]

Monday, May 07, 2012

(Photo by Andrea Bernstein)

New York City has found two sponsors to pay for its bike share program, the only large bike share network  in the country to operate entirely without government subsidies.  When fully implemented in the spring of 2013, New York will have 10,000 bikes and 600 stations, the largest bike share system in North America and one of the largest in the world.

Citibank will be the primary sponsor of the "citibike" bike share program, with a $41 million, 5-year contract.  Mastercard will also kick in $6.5 million, and will operate the payment system for the bikes.

"We're getting an entirely new 24/7 transportation network ," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, "We are getting an entirely new transportation network without spending any taxpayer money,"  Bloomberg repeated.  "Who thought that that could be done?"

Bloomberg  himself presided over a bike share announcement for the first time today at a City Hall plaza news conference adorned by sample blue citibikes and a sample docking station.

But today's celebratory announcement was tempered by an acknowledgment that several neighborhoods in the city won't see bike share until 2013.

"It's going to be a phased deployment," Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said at the announcement.   "I mean we can't just airdrop 10,000 bikes in.  So it will be between August and the Spring of 2013 that we will have the full system."

The city's DOT website says  "In 2012, the operating area will include Manhattan south of 59th Street, along with most of Brooklyn north of Bergen Street, and Long Island City in Queens. In the spring of 2013, the system will expand to include parts of the Upper West and East Sides, Cobble Hill, Park Slope, Prospect Heights and Crown Heights."

Sadik-Khan wouldn't say when the decision was made to to delay deployment in most of Brooklyn.

New York City's bike share program will be called citibike (with a new website)
They are the same model as those in other cities with programs also run by the Alta bicycle share company: baskets in the front, built-in lights in front and back with a thick single bar for the frame. Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said the docking stations will be solar powered and wireless, and the program will launch "end of July."

It will cost $95 a year to join the bike share program, $25 for a weekly membership or $9.95 for a 24 membership.  Annual members will get to use the bikes for up to 45 minutes at no charge, which daily members will get to use them for up to 30 minutes for free.

After the that the price scale will escalate sharply upwards, with the bikes becoming increasingly expensive the longer they're used. (For example, if you keep the bike 24 hours, it will cost $150)   Pricing, meant to encourage short-term, one-way hops that keep the bikes in circulation, is consistent with other cities.

The bank sponsorship makes NYC's bike share stock look a lot like London's where a two tone blue coat marks the Barclay's Bike program. NYC's program will be the biggest in the U.S.

(Photo by Andrea Bernstein)

 

Sample docking station for NYC's Citibike bike share program. (Photo by Andrea Bernstein)

Sample NYC pay station with newly announced sponsorship branding. (Photo by Andrea Bernstein)

 

 

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Transportation Nation

MAP: Where To Find Bike Share in Lower Manhattan

Friday, May 04, 2012

As we've been reporting, New York City DOT is quietly presenting almost final maps of bike share stations.  (We've made an interactive map, showing how many bikes will be at each station, below.)

The City DOT isn't making it easy  -- to see their almost final maps of bike share stations, you have to physically attend a community board meeting.  Jim O'Grady did that -- took a bunch of cell phone photos of slides presented by the DOT -- and we've converted them into a map.

(We're missing a segment, one slide -- so sorry, the area just east of City Hall down to the river. We'll update as soon as we can.)

Some notable highlights:

* You can get pretty close to the World Trade Center -- about a block away -- but not in the security zone.

*There's one near Stuyvesant High School.

*There's one at the Wall Street Ferry dock, and a whole bunch by the Staten Island Ferry.

*There's one next to the Stock Exchange -- but it hasn't yet been approved by the Department of Homeland Security, which controls the area.

 

We'll be attending as many of these future meetings as we can -- if you go, send us photos! -- and continuing to map them, until the city DOT puts out its own maps.  These maps have yet to get final community board and city sign-off, though we've heard a generally positive reaction from community boards.

The New York Times has this map of midtown bike stations.

Here are the upcoming community board meeting:

  • Manhattan Community Board 1: May 3
  • Manhattan Community Board 2: Transportation Committee, May 8, Full Board, May 24 (DOT presentation not yet scheduled)
  • Manhattan Community Board 4: May 2 (vote on resolution on tentative map)
  • Manhattan Community Board 5: May 31
  • Manhattan Community Board 6: May 17
  • Manhattan Community Board 7: not yet scheduled
  • Brooklyn Community Board 2: information not yet available
  • Brooklyn Community Board 3: Full Board, May 7, Transportation Committee  May 8
  • Brooklyn Community Board 6: May 17 (tentative)

The program is slated to start in July -- with an annual pass costing $95, a weekly pass $25,  and a day pass for $10.  That gets you 45 minutes per ride, with an escalating scale upwards after that.

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Transportation Nation

42 Bike Share Docks for Lower Manhattan Revealed in Semi-Public Rollout

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Slide showing the location of several planned bike share docks in Lower Manhattan. (Photo by Jim O'Grady)

(New York, NY - WNYC) The New York City Department of Transportation continues to show community boards in Brooklyn and Manhattan where it's planning to install Bike Share stations in those boroughs.

NOTE: WE'VE TURNED THIS INTO AN INTERACTIVE MAP, VIEW IT HERE.

NYC DOT has promised to post a map of the entire system online once it's done. But the department is sticking by its refusal to release the draft maps, though it's supposed to have the actual program up in running by mid-July, a mere 10 weeks from now.

There is a way to glimpse what the city has in mind, and that's to go to a community board meeting and sit through the department's presentation of bike share locations. Hence our presence, with cell phone camera, at Thursday night's meeting of Community Board 1's Planning and Infrastructure Committee.

We photographed five slides, like the one above, that show where the bike share docks would go around Lower Manhattan. By our count, CB 1 will hold 42 of them.

The locations were whittled down through a series of meetings with department staff and community board members. Kate Fillin-Yeh, director of New York City Bikeshare, said any proposed location that had been red-flagged in a previous meeting did not make the cut.

Of the 42 that remain, twelve would require the removal of parking spaces--"three or four" per location, according to Fillin-Yeh. The stations would also be installed on street sites not used for parking, sidewalks, parks and plazas, and private property.

She said the department tried to spread the the bike docks evenly throughout Lower Manhattan, and place them near subway stations, large institutions like New York Law School, and tourist sites like south Street Seaport and the boat to the Statue of Liberty.

Board members reacted positively to the plan, with some praising the DOT for the way it has run its consultation with the community. The plan will be presented to the full board in the coming weeks.

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