Thursday, June 25, 2020

Roosevelt Island Citibike Docking Stations Installed Yesterday, NYC Council Member Ben Kallos Announces Start Of Service and Takes First RI Citibike Ride - RIOC PSD Officers Handing Out Safe Biking Rules To Riders On Main Street Last Night

Yesterday, the NYC Citibike sharing program finally arrived on Roosevelt Island.

NYC Council Member Ben Kallos and Roosevelt Island residents

cut the welcoming ribbon for Citibike as the docking stations were being installed at the Roosevelt Island Tram Station, Motogate Plaza next to the Roosevelt Island Bridge/Foodtown Supermarket and Southpoint Park. A fourth docking station will be installed near the Octagon Building.

According to press release excerpt from Council Member Kallos:
Citi Bike is coming to Roosevelt Island with brand new stations. The first stations are being installed today and throughout the week and will be home to 74 bikes as the bike share program expands to Roosevelt Island to serve its residents for the first time. In 2014 there were more requests for CitiBike in Roosevelt Island’s zip code than anywhere else in New York City, with a bikeshare pilot dating back to 2010. This was a campaign promise of Council Member Ben Kallos who has spent years working with Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation and Citi Bike now operated by Lyft to finally get wheels down.

Citi Bike for Roosevelt Island was one of my first campaign promises,” said Council Member Ben Kallos, whose Fifth District includes Roosevelt Island. “Now, the years of work to make this happen are paying off. I am looking forward to riding a Citi Bike on Roosevelt Island after years of working with RIOC, RIRA, and residents, through multiple owners of Citi Bike, in pursuit of this expansion. None of this would have been possible without the power of the press and a commitment to covering this and every issue by the Roosevelt Islander. From Four Freedoms to Lighthouse Park and destinations in between, Citi Bike is going to make getting around Roosevelt Island more convenient and more fun.”...

... RIOC is proud to support this pilot program that gives our residents and visitors a convenient, environmentally responsible way to experience Roosevelt Island,” said Shelton J. Haynes, RIOC’s Acting President and CEO....

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) has emphasized that the Citibike program on Roosevelt Island is as a pilot project subject to change and adjustment as becomes necessary.

As previously reported, there has been opposition by some residents to Citibike on Roosevelt Island due to bike safety concerns:
  • The quantity of bikes on the island is getting out of hand and dangerous.
  • I was walking tonight and was kind of being harassed by four city bike riders. They ride and get really close to you as they pass throwing one off balance!
  • Damn there’s already tons of these guys over here. Is there anyway we can stop this?
and calls for a Roosevelt Island bike safety plan.

The beginning of a Roosevelt Island bike safety plan was seen last evening as Public Safety Officers were stopping bike riders on Main Street and advising them of safe riding practices.

Council Member Kallos inaugurated the Roosevelt Island Citibike era

and residents took a spin too.

Here's how Citibike works and pricing plans.

Here's the full press release on Citibike stations arriving on Roosevelt Island from NYC Council Member Ben Kallos.

Let's see how this works.

UPDATE 5 PM - Roosevelt Island resident Andrew Giacolone shares this message he sent to RIOC yesterday about the new Citibke service.
I would like to express my concern regarding the arrival of CitiBike stations on the island and what we can expect will be a sharp uptick in the number of cyclists along Roosevelt Island’s few and already overcrowded pathways.

Frankly, I hope RIOC will be instituting strict protocols as to where bikes can go, ideally limiting them to the East Channel boardwalk and Main Street and restricting access to the West Channel boardwalk where most residents stroll and many children play.

Just this evening I was almost hit by a CitiBike while two days ago a CitiBiker hit a child by the meditation steps.