NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New York City’s expansion of its Citi Bike program is expected to launch early next month.

Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg and Motivate CEO Jay Walder announced Friday the first wave of new stations will appear in Long Island City, Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Bedford-Stuyvesant.

The first phase is part of a two-year plan to grow the popular bike share network from 6,000 to 12,000 bikes across New York City.

“This is the start of something big. Citi Bike is rolling into the outer boroughs like never before. That means hundreds of thousands more New Yorkers will have a fast, sustainable, low-cost transportation option,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement. “We are thrilled to work with Motivate on the next phase of this great success story.”

Ninty-one new stations will be installed in early August, followed by an additional 48 stations on the Upper East and Upper West Sides between 59th and 86th streets this fall.

“With over 19 million trips, it is clear that New Yorkers love Citi Bike and we are excited to see the network double in size, expanding to Queens, more of Brooklyn, and upper Manhattan,” said Trottenberg.

“It’s a good idea, for I’d use it myself if I have access to a bike,” Simon Blatchly in Long Island City told WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell.

Blatchly said he’d probably only ride the bikes on weekends and stay on the east side of the river.

“You could feel slightly exposed when you’re riding a bike through Manhattan, I find.” he said.

Kimberly Fadul suspects she’d use it, too.

“It’s a better way of getting around than just walking.”

Ahead of the expansion, existing Citi Bikes and docking stations were upgraded with software and hardware improvements. The city also added 1,000 new and upgraded bikes to its fleet and plans to bring 1,400 more into rotation over the course of the summer.

The new bikes feature higher-quality parts and upgraded seats to prevent water from pooling when it rains, according to Motivate.

The expansion is supported by an increased sponsorship commitment from Citi of up to $70.5 million extended through 2024.


Leave a Reply