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Citi Bike and the City « Back to Story
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Thank you, ride safely! Also, let's hope that someone develops a collapsible helmet that is easy to carry around. I know it is dumb to ride without a helmet, but I just don't want to carry my regular one around all the time. I see many others taking this risk as well.
Remember that Anthony Weiner, when he first announced he was running, said the first thing he'd do when he took office was get rid of the bike lanes. That was a deal-breaker for me long before all the other things about him were also deal-breakers.
I also want to comment that it is absolutely crazy that there is no bike dock (or whatever you call 'em) in or near Grand Army Plaza, Bklyn. That has GOT to be the very next place they're added - we had to walk 12 long blocks to the Bklyn Museum when we took a Citibike there recently. Crazy. PLEASE, PLEASE, Citibike, fix that fast; there should be at least 5 there: at GAP subway entrances, at library, close to Greenmarket, at Botanical Garden, and at Bklyn Museum - lots bc Slopers will scarf up all the bikes all day long.
I'll be interested in seeing the annual "cost per ride" figures for this program. If it generates revenue, then I'm all for it. I doubt that will be the case.
Great so now you can bike to Zabars or ride over to your favorite gellato place. Meanwhile the city's 300,000 municipal workers can't get raises but some idiot can crash into me on my lunch hour downtown.
CitiBike, or the bikeshare concept, may be "a phenomenal success" in Manhattan, but according to a recent NYCDOT report not outside Manhattan. The Brooklyn trip figures are 'underwhelming' with only one station registering a daily total of even 20-30 trips.
Citibike will have to re-figure its business plan and its marketing before expanding further into the outer boroughs. Again, the Manhattan CBD just might be over-saturated and lacking in parking space.
Nicole, you haven't been riding long enough or in the outer boroughs. Drivers antagonize cyclists in Brooklyn on a daily basis. I'd love for you to address reckless driving at some point, or how to reduce it. It's killing too many people in NYC.
Was very interested in the first hand experience of one of New York's opinion maker on an issue that many people who care about mass transportation are trying to get their arms around. I felt like I was on the back if the bike as Nicole discussed her personal interactions with the technological and logistical challenges of this program. The idea of cycling in manhattan is a little less frightening when described by an "everywoman"giving a play by play!
Nicely said, Ms. Gelinas! I think biking in NYC will have a civilizing effect on the great city and that, in turn, has major societal implications.
A similar program called "Divvy" was kicked off here in Chicago recently. It seems to be fairly popular, especially with tourists and other visitors. Of course there are few problems. A condo owner (in bustling Wrigleyville, of all places!) tried to stop a small docking station from being installed in the street in front of their building. They were quickly overruled. And just yesterday I saw a Divvy-branded van being used to move the bikes from place to place. . . .
Nicole, please get yourself a safety vest !! Amazon offers dozens of alternatives.
The type with small LED blinkers (front and back) make you more visible to automobile drivers who may or may not be paying attention to their driver side mirrors as they open their doors or start to pull out from curbside parking.
And yes, you've proved again that experience can be the best teacher. Lovely little piece!
A wonderful post. Graceful, smart, well-informed, positive without being polyannish, and completely credible. I wish every New Yorker would read it. (Speaking of which, it sings more beautifully than any "Talk of the Town" dispatch I've read in ages.)
Great to read this report, very different from the first Nicole G piece about the tragedy of biking the Big Cities. It would have been honest of the author to recognize her initial stupidity, but that would have bEen too daring I assume.