Tag Archives: Citi Bike

Citi Bike finally coming to Queens


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Cristabelle Tumola

The city’s first bike share program will soon become a reality in Queens.

Long Island City and Astoria are part of a list of neighborhoods in the city that will receive Citi Bike docking stations in upcoming years, officials announced on Tuesday.

The news came as former MTA chairman and CEO Jay Walder was named the incoming CEO of Alta Bicycle Share, the operator of Citi Bike. Alta was recently bought by investment firm REQX Ventures, according to published reports.

“Even as we are enhancing and improving our system we will expand it as well, we will double the number of bikes and we will bring them to new neighborhoods in Upper Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens,” Walder said.

As part of the announcement, the Department of Transportation (DOT), Alta and Citi said the bike share system would expand from 330 stations and 6,000 bicycles to more than 700 stations and 12,000 bikes by the end of 2017.

Along with expanding the bike share program, Citi Bike will also overhaul every bicycle in the system, fix every existing docking station and enhance the technology used in the program.

“Anyone who uses Citi Bike regularly knows that it should be more reliable, it should be easier to use and it should be accessible to more of the city,” Walder said. “In short, Citi Bike has the potential to be so much more and today we are committing to make that potential a reality.”

While being committed to improving the service, the price rates for annual membership will jump from $95 to $149.

Although the locations of stations in western Queens have yet to be announced, local elected officials are excited that Queens will finally become a part of the Citi Bike Share program.

“Once and for all the blue bikes are in Queens,” said Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer. “There is no such thing as a citywide program that does not include the great borough of Queens.”

State Sen. Michael Gianaris worked with DOT last year to include Astoria in the Citi Bike plans. There are also plans to include other parts of Queens in the future, according to officials.

Last November the DOT started the process of bringing the bike share program to the western Queens neighborhoods by getting community input from Community Boards 1 and 2.

Now the agency will go back to working with the community to reassess the recommended sites for stations and see if any have changed.

“We want these blue bikes here as soon as possible because people are going to be able to experience Queens in a way that they haven’t, see our cultural institutions, shop at our restaurants, explore the wonders of the waterfront and folks from here are going to be able to have another opportunity to get around,” Van Bramer said.

Long Island City was supposed to be part of the Citi Bike’s initial phase, which debuted last May, but was pushed back after equipment damages from Superstorm Sandy caused a delay.

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NYC bike share program delayed…again


| brennison@queenscourier.com

File photo

A month after the mayor announced a delay in the city’s new bike share program, another postponement will push the roll out back to next spring.

Originally planned for a late July, early August launch, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said today on his weekly radio show with John Gambling the target date for the Citi Bike program is now March.

“Unfortunately there are software issues,” Bloomberg said. “Until it works we’re not going to put it out.”

Software problems were also responsible for the original delay.

“While we are eager for Citi Bike to begin, it’s more crucial that this ground-breaking transit system be launched correctly, not quickly,” said Paul Steely White, executive director of Transportation Alternatives.

Manufacturing and testing continue on the necessary software to operate the system, the DOT said.

Seven thousand bikes are planned at 420 stations throughout the five boroughs when the program finally commences. Riders will be able to rent bikes short term for a small fee or with a $95 annual membership. In Queens, there will be 10 stations in Long Island City with the other stations scattered throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn.

“While the delay may have been caused by poor planning and software problems, the city should take this opportunity to address the remaining safety issues associated with the plan in order to lower the number of accidents and fatalities that may result from the Bike Share program,”said a spokesperson for Comptroller John Liu.

In June, the comptroller released a report endorsing safety-enhancing efforts to avoid accidents and lawsuits.

Citi’s $41 million sponsorship of the program will not be affected by the delay, the mayor said.

In a recent Quinnipiac poll 74 percent of voters thought the bike share program was a good idea.

NYC bike share program delayed until August


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

Citi Bike, a bike rental program that will have 600  stations around New York City, has been delayed until next month. It was supposed to kick off this month, according to Citi Bike’s website, but its homepage was changed and now says that it is  “scheduled to launch summer 2012.”  Though the delay was just confirmed, in early July, Citi Bike tweeted that it would launch in late July or early August.

When it begins, the program will have 10,00 bikes that riders can rent short term for a small fee or with a $95 annual membership. In Queens, there will be 10 stations in Long Island City. The other stations will be throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn.

 

Bike Share Comes to L.I.C.


| mpantelidis@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of Mayor Michael Bloomberg

The city recently opted to “share” its bikes with the borough.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer announced on May 11 that “Citi Bike,” New York’s bicycle share program, will add 10 stations in Long Island City – building upon the locations currently planned in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

“Citi Bike,” which is the nation’s largest public bike share system with 600 docking stations and 10,000 bikes, will provide a new, eco-friendly mode of transportation for residents. The program – sponsored by Citi – will launch in July of 2012 and will be operated by Alta Bicycle Share, which will split any profits with the city.

“[This] is a big victory – one that will improve life in L.I.C. in a number of ways,” Van Bramer said. “Cycling is healthy, it’s great exercise and it brings people together in a number of ways. It allows families to explore the neighborhood in ways that maybe they hadn’t before. It’s going to bring a lot of people to the neighborhood. It’s going to bring people to our cultural institutions. It’s going to bring people to our restaurants and small businesses. People will be able to come from all over the city with their bikes and park them in these docking stations and explore what we have to offer, which is a great deal.”

According to Van Bramer, the 10 docking stations have been strategically placed to provide riders access to premier locations in L.I.C., including waterfront parks, the business district and LaGuardia Community College. The councilmember also expressed hope that the bike share program will expand to other parts of Queens in Phase 2 of its launch.

“I expect it to be successful and hope it will be well utilized and future expansions will take it to more and more neighborhoods in Queens, bringing all of the benefits beyond L.I.C.,” he said.

Every bike in the network will be equipped with a bell and both front and rear lights, as well as an inscribed safety message encouraging helmet use and cautioning riders to yield to pedestrians, avoid riding on sidewalks, ride with traffic and obey all traffic lights and signs.

The docking stations are solar-powered and wireless and can accommodate between 15 and 60 bikes. They will be located on sidewalks, curbside road space, plazas and other locations suggested through a community process. A community forum on the bike share will be hosted by Van Bramer, Community Board 2 and the DOT on May 21, allowing residents to learn more about the program.

“I’m extremely proud to release this plan for the Citi Bike network,” said DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan. “New Yorkers created this plan during the past six months, contributing time and expertise in workshops, on-line and in dozens of meetings to discuss and plan the city’s newest transportation system.”