ciitbike planning

The city started a process on Thursday night that could bring dozens of CitiBike stations to the Upper West Side as soon as late summer, extending the bike-sharing program as far North as 130th street. Now, the program only runs as high as West 61st street.

At a meeting at Redeemer Presbyterian Church on Thursday night, more than 100 local residents gathered to hear about the program from CitiBike reps and Department of Transportation officials. After an explanation of how it works, they presented maps of potential spots and asked for comments about the sites. People worked in groups of 6 to mark locations they thought were appropriate or inappropriate for CitiBike stations.

The city has mapped about 150 spots in the neighborhood where a site could be supported, but in the end there will likely be fewer than 50 stations, a CitiBike rep said. Under the scenario being discussed, people wouldn’t have to walk more than about 5 blocks to find a station near them.

One resident at our table asked whether the program’s expansion could be halted if the community board opposes it, but a CitiBike rep said that the program will not be derailed at this point.

“Bikeshare is coming to this neighborhood. It’s happening.”

The docking stations can be as long as 90 feet and can be placed on sidewalks, streets, or in other areas like pedestrian plazas. The sites on the DOT’s map are scattered throughout the neighborhood, from 59th to 110th streets. If placed in the street, a 90-foot spot would take four to five parking spots.

When the program was first rolled out, the placement of the sites was initially quite controversial. Some people don’t want them in front of their buildings, or think that they sully historic spots. On the Upper West Side, this is almost guaranteed to become an issue, given how many landmark buildings there are and the community’s uneasy relationship with bicycles.

On Thursday, DOT and CitiBike reps asked for suggestions so that the community can help guide the process.

A few observations:

The next step in this process is for CitiBike and DOT to review the public comments and present a plan to the community board. There will likely be several community board meetings, during which residents can presumably participate and comment. (Note: our CitiBike rep said they wanted the stations to be up by late summer/early fall or next spring at the latest, but apparently reps at other tables gave different timelines, as evidenced by comments below.)

If you would like to suggest locations, you can do so at this website.

Click the map below to enlarge (The red and green stickers are community suggestions, while the city’s potential locations are smaller and in gray. There were a dozen maps in the room, so people put red and green stickers in different places on the different maps. It’s pretty hard to see the locations on the map and they didn’t have a digital version available).

ciitbike map

NEWS | 48 comments | permalink
    1. Sam says:

      In related news all Citi Bikes kept in the W90s will be stolen or damaged within 2 months.

      • Paul RL says:

        Too soon! TOO SOON!

      • Benny says:

        The good news for you Sam is I’m sure all those hooligans you are so afraid of are not at all interested in your motorized skateboard or scooter. Meanwhile everyone else in the 90s will be riding a CitiBike.

        • Sam says:

          Benny I’m not afraid of the morons walking around the neighborhood. Getting mugged by random low lives on the street was something I grew up with, this is not new nor foreign to me. It is however not what I expected in this neighborhood, which is no one’s fault but my own.

    2. Maria says:

      If I see a Citibike station on my landmark block of West 105 St., I will go bananas. This commodification of residential neighborhoods is disgusting. Because, let’s be honest — that’s what it is. People own bikes up here; we do not need to assist in Citibank’s advertising campaign.

      • nick10025 says:

        I am pretty sure they let cars park on the block w/o issue so bikes would be allowed as well. However, I doubt the stations would drift too far off Broadway.

      • Nathan says:

        Your building isn’t special and the stations are like any other street furniture. Do you also oppose bus stations, fire hydrants, and manhole covers?

        I guess if you travel exclusively by taxi you might not want these sullying your precious block. But for the rest of us this is a useful program. And I’ve love to see less real estate devoted to cars and more to bikes.

        • Mark says:

          Working class people hate the bikes too, west 105th street isn’t one of the tonier blocks in the area. Most people above 96th street ride the subway.

          • M.E. says:

            Speaking as a working person, I don’t get why working people would hate it. It’s a pretty affordable alternative to the subway, and a lot more pleasant and healthy. I plan to use it a lot as transportation in decent weather, and I’m betting the money I save on subway fares will more than offset the cost (especially with subway fares going up AGAIN). People who mostly take the subways will now have a choice. It’s a great thing.

            • west sider J says:

              You won’t use these bikes as often as you think and heres why: you’ll find it takes you longer to get to work, this city has more days of rain than most you’ll be exposing yourself to a slippery ride and will arrive at work soaked and wet, also you’ll have to dock the bike – more time wasted and after a winter or two the bikes will unreliable.

          • Tom D says:

            Nathan, Speaking as someone who had lived in that neighborhood for 15 years, I’d like to express my sincere lack of appreciation for your gratuitous insults.

        • Maria says:

          Nathan, you make silly assumptions. I take the subway to work and walk as much as I can. I personally do not want my neighborhood of the last 20+ years to be over-run by tourists like the rest of the city while a bank gets free advertising. And the stations are an eyesore.

          • Marie says:

            I’m guessing you have no legal claim to sidewalk space and 20+ years of occupying an apartment doesn’t give you the right to deny other citizens/tourists an alternative to cabs/subway/walking. You are clearly a NIMBY about tourists – are you aware of how snobby it makes you sound? Further, Ford, Nissan, BMW cars are all allowed to park on landmarked blocks…is that free advertising for the awful car corporations and a hogging of public space? The bike stations are no more a sidewalk eyesore than are the poorly dressed residents walking around or poop from dogs or the trash that sits on the curb multiple nights a week waiting for pickup. I love history and the historical aspects of the city (and I also live on a beautiful block) but we do not live in a museum. (p.s. I dislike bikers in general so am by no means a pro-bike agenda pusher)

            • west side j says:

              Reply to your 1/102015
              Bull crap – they are an eye soar and on the sidewalk on the side streets they are 6 feet deep and take up too much room. And id they are placed in the roadway parking is lost – do you want cars circling and circling endlessly to find parking and adding to pollution – OR maybe you’d rather have your neighbors who need cars for work to put them in a gagage at $600 – $700 a month. If you have your own bike, be happy and cycle all you want – DON’T support a plan thaty will greatly inconvience others because your acting selfishly and can’t see the big picture. Citi Bike is a money making deal, we have a grat network of public transportation on th UWS – if you need more exercse walk.

          • Paul RL says:

            Tourists are great! I wish we had more of them up here. They add culture to our streets and inject money into our neighborhood economy by supporting our local businesses. Bring on Citi Bike and bring on more tourists!

            • west side j says:

              Who needs oir really wants tourists where they live, tourists belong in commerical areas. You must own a business in the neighborhood, because all tourists do for a residential area is make prices GO UP for all of us. Or maybe its walking on more crowded streets that you favor – OK for real business districts – not where my home is thank you very much.

        • Paul RL says:

          Agreed 100%

    3. David Miller says:

      I attended this meeting and was told in no uncertain terms that the UWS was NOT going to get Citibike until early 2017 not 2015 as you have published. I certainly would like it this year – who was correct?

      • West Sider says:

        The CitiBike rep at our table said late summer/early fall, or next spring at the latest. Perhaps different reps gave out different info, which would be unfortunate. Avi

        • Nathan says:

          The DOT rep at my table said it wouldn’t be until 2016. Some areas in Brooklyn are ahead of us as they were planned for the initial launch, but Sandy destroyed a lot of the equipment. (Not really sure how water would destroy a bike, but whatever.)

          He also said they’d likely expand from the existing edges, so starting in the south and working their way up both the east and west sides.

    4. Nathan says:

      Another reason given for not putting many stations in the parks is that Citibike is *primarily* a transportation program, not recreation. Of course you can take a Citibike out for whatever reason you want. There are also plenty of proposed stations outside Central and Riverside Parks. I upvoted some near good biking entrances (as opposed to pedestrian entrances).

      • RK says:

        You can only keep the bike out for 30 minutes otherwise you get hit with a hefty surcharge. This is specifically to force people to use the bikes for commuting not recreation. Good luck doing a loop in the park on a Citibike in under 30 mins!
        I see Citibikes on the park drive every once in awhile, and wonder if the people realize they’re probably going to get hit with a surcharge.

    5. Joel says:

      I think it is about time that we get City Bikes on the UWS it is a wonderful program and a great alternative to public transport and cabs , I cannot wait until they start .

    6. Wendy says:

      I am totally for these bike stations, and I also own my own bike. I would use both. I couldn’t get to the meeting but would love to see a digital rendering of the map. It would make sense for the bike stations to be built 1) on areas where the sidewalks are wider than usual, i.e W. 79th Street, near Columbus (at the museum) W. 86th Street near Broadway, 72nd Street triangle, W. 78th Street which has wider than normal sidewalks, places near the entrance to Central Park, and Lincoln Center, the museums, etc. and 2) near where bike lanes are. Is that Amsterdam Ave bike lane happening? imho they should not take away parking spaces unless they’re spaces that are not allowed for parking anymore. Most people I know who use Citibike love it — and they also have their own bikes, but use citibike for short commutes or going somewhere after work (which they don’t bike to). I don’t understand the opposition. It’s a healthy alternative for people get around (as long as they ride safely). Who cares if Citibank’s name is on it? A non-issue, and their name will disappear soon as another sponsor takes it over.

      • wesrt sider J says:

        Wendy eveyone has their right to air a view, some people are for bikes others see them as more cogestion with Citi Bike Share. I am against them they will be eye sores on our streets AND how about the people that use them be required to carry insurance like motorists, because I’m afraid if this dumb idea proliferates our community there will be more accidents. All the bike lane foolishness and pedestrains malls has NOT reduced the number of cars. Think about, tell your friends.

    7. NIMBY-LEFTY says:

      citibike stations = homeless shelters. These things are great, and we progressive UWSers are so morally superior to those dummy red state people that we and we alone appreciate their existence. However, it will be over my DEAD BODY if you put one of these things on my block! #NIMBY-LEFTY

    8. RK says:

      YES! YES!! YES!!!

      Bring it on!

      Put a citibike station on my block! In front of my building! IN MY APARTMENT!
      Having Citibike at your disposal is A REVELATION! Places you walk to you can ride to. Places you would take a cab or bus to, you can ride to, and get exercise in the process.
      I have a yearly key even though I live on the UWS – I use it whenever I can in Midtown/Downtown. Bike to Chinatown for lunch? Totally doable. Run an errand during lunchtime? Back in a flash.

      I use my own bike for commuting around the UWS (yes that was me goosing you pedestrians crossing against the light obliviously engrossed in your cellphone, you’re welcome), but Citibike will be SO MUCH MORE CONVENIENT.

      For all of you whiners: People much richer and more well connected than you have tried to remove citibike stations from their blocks and have failed. Do a google search. Enjoy your new blue overlords!

      • Jeremy says:

        I’ve never really understood the whole “bike as religion” thing that some people get so into.

        Can you imagine if pedestrians did that? “Look at my legs! Woot! I’m gonna walk *all* over your block! It’s healthier than standing! Proud walker walkin’ here!”

        • RK says:

          First, replace “walker” with “runner” or “skier” or “blader” or even “driver” and the sentence resonates. Well, not skiing around the neighborhood, but take my point. These are all things that give us an amazing feeling of motion and unusual perspective, much different than walking. And the people form a tight bond both with the experience and the equipment which enables it.

          I’m almost 50 yo and just bought my first bike 2 years ago. Give it a shot.

      • west sider j says:

        It front of your apartment – better in your hallway definitely NOT in front of my property, you must be a renter – walk more, hop on the bus or move to the country if biking is your thing, better yet if your so into exercise use a skate board, you can pick it up put it under your arm and take it up to your apartment and NOT make our streets look like they suddenly have additional rows of odd shaped gabage cans on them.

    9. Ken says:

      Central and Riverside Parks are off-limits for stations because they both close at 1 am and Citi Bike requires 24-hour access. At my table we were given the timeline of anywhere between 2015 and 2017 for UWS rollout.

      From a purely aesthetic standpoint, I’d much rather have a Bike Share station in front of my building than a motley collection of cars and SUVs. We take that assault on the eyes for granted.

    10. Dan Schwaz says:

      None on West End Avenue below 76th St? But that’s where they are needed! Let’s have one at Lincoln Towers, perhaps one near Amsterdam Towers as well.

    11. Upper West Side Wally says:

      As a born and bred Amsterdammer (no, not the avenue) I can pride myself on many, many years of experience and perhaps a wee bit of expertise in the field of bicycling. That being said, I will not ride a bicycle anywhere in New York. Not on a CitiBike, not on of of those $5000 titanium jobbies. I value my health and life too much.

    12. Anni says:

      Plenty of room for docking along the back side of Columbia U – on Amsterdam, between 115th-120th. Ideal!!

    13. Steve Dorff says:

      Citibike program has already failed and been bailed out by big money who want to force what they want on the rest of us. Regardless of whether the program would support itself. In other words people don’t want it when they vote with their pocketbook.
      Program also failed because the % of bikes broken and not serviced properly grew. Also the costs and rules are negative incentive for citizens to use. Very impractical.

      And if they want to ruin the appearance of my Landmark block with these blue testimonies to the autocratic attitude of Citibank, then be consistent and remove my Landmark status so I can do what I want with my building without 18 layers of bureaucracy to choose the color of my bricks!
      Don’t tell me my building is beautiful and must be regulated, costing me hundreds of thousands of dollars to keep it pristine, and then say bolting down a 90 foot monstrosity doesn’t affect the appearance. Unless politics were involved, Landmarks would never approve these!

      • M.E. says:

        I really don’t understand the inconsistency. The purpose of landmark status is to keep people from defacing historical ARCHITECTURE in grossly inappropriate ways, which is clearly what happened when the rules didn’t exist. It certainly is not meant for preservation of the entirety of the streetscape as it appeared historically. That would be ridiculous. As far as I can tell, they don’t even have much to say about the trash receptacles in front of landmarked buildings. You can see beautifully preserved brownstones with some pretty unsightly trash disposal areas, I think. I can’t imagine why Landmarks would have anything to say about these bike docking stations.

        • Kenneth says:

          The Landmarks Preservation Commission even regulates the color and shade of replacement sidewalk cement in front of a landmarked building and within landmarked districts.

    14. Stu says:

      If Paris and London can successfully incorporate bike share with their historic and landmarked neighborhoods, I am sure we can do it too. Bike share is made for the UWS, and will provide much needed crosstown options.

      • west side J says:

        NOT a good idea Stu – bikes on the main crosstown strrets that cut thru the park will slow everything down – simple arithmatic applies my friend. All the bus brivers below fifty ninthy street HATE the bike lans, bikes and Bloombergs rediculus pedestrain mall – they say a 12 minute trip to Times Square takes over 40 minutes. Bikes added to our streets will never get us going green – it’s all about someone making money.

    15. BMAC says:

      Addressing a couple of misconceptions above: the bikes are three-speeds, not fixies. And if you’re in reasonable shape, you can get up a decent head of steam (but of course the point of the bikes are for transport, not exercise, and that is how they are designed). I do not understand the attitude that the docking stations are ugly (no uglier than most street furniture) or constitute “free advertising” for Citibank (which has paid quite handsomely for the privilege).

      Also, if you’re a member, you can keep the bikes out for 45 minutes at a time.

      I’ve been a member for a little over a year now, and although the program has been plagued with its problems (and there have been many!), I would call myself 85% satisfied with my membership. That number will climb drastically higher when docks start appearing in my West 90s neighborhood and make it possible for me to bike home after work from midtown, or run down (or up!) to Fairway for my groceries without too much trouble. Bring it on up to the UWS!

      • Wilhelm says:

        not to be a debbie downer, but when I was a CB member and lived in a very resident-dense neighborhood (alphabet city) and worked in a very office-dense neighborhood (midtown) I found that it was always hard to find a bike or find a place to dock it, as a lot of other people had the same schedule. I could see this being a huge issue on UWS, as its mostly residential and people work in similar areas. then you end up scrambling around trying to find a place to dock it hoping you find something before the fees kick in…not that fun.

    16. Lisa Liman says:

      There should be Citibike stations at each cross-town street (65th, 72nd, 79th, 86th, 96th, 106, 110, 116, 125, etc) along CPW, Broadway and West End Ave/Riverside. It makes sense to have them far to the west for access to the bike lane along the Hudson River, along Broadway for central two-direction north and south travel, and on CPW for easy access to the Park Drive.

    17. John says:

      Citi Bike Share does not blong in residential areas. They will clutter any spots the docks are put on, streets or roadways and will only increase congestion. Remember we had 1/3 rd of our year in winter when they’ll be useless, probably become damaged and if used will create a dangerous situation for the user, cars in the road and pedestrians; especially the elderly.

    18. West Sider J says:

      According to Citi Bike’s own statistis the age goup using the bikes are between 28 – 38. The question is what part of our community is being truly represented?? No where near the magority!! There are tons of people who DO NOT WANT THIS. On a limited (very limited basis it may be good for getting from bus to train and visa versa, but thats it, NO MORE,

      Citi Bike is planning docking stations every three to four blocks going North and across West to East. Each dock contains 30 bikes and is 6 feet deep and spans a length of 75 feet. Some will be on sidewalks if the sidewalks are 16 feet across (looks like this wouldn’t work for side streets) and others will be in the roadway (which would take up 5 to 6 parking spaces with each dock placed as well as interfere with traffic and delivery services, I think they’ll be more of the roadway placements). They’re looking at the broader main streets for the sidewalk docks, which in my opinion will resemble an unsightly row of tin cans. There was talk about putting bike lanes in CPW and Amsterdam Avenue, which will further constrict vehicles and add to poor air quality, as well as, loss more parking, and still not reduction in automobile use!

      All those bikes will definitely slow traffic and I’ll bet most of those cyclists will disregard the rules of the road as well as impede those walking and crossing streets, especially the older residents (who I may add were no represented at this ‘seminar’). I asked what the age range of those who subscribe to Citi Bike Share, I was not surprised to hear 28 – 38 and 16-18 with parental permission.

    19. west sider J says:

      Discussions for the Citi Bike Share will most likely be at the March Transportation Committee meeting. I think the date is the second Tuesday in March (the 10th), BUT check this on CB7 web site. It will be at 250 W. 87th Street, 7PM. The city is imposing this on neighborhood – voice your objections, lets at least protest to limit this invasion.