What Are The Chances of Getting the Citi Bike System to Staten Island and The Bronx?

Posted by on Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017 at 10:36am.

Citi Bike stations are fairly common throughout most the New York City, yet, only found in three of the five boroughs. The bike stations are conspicuously absent in the Bronx and Staten Island.

A bike advocacy group, Transportation Alternatives, has begun a petition demanding that this situation is immediately rectified and for public funding to be used to expand the bike system into all five boroughs.

The petition currently has (almost) 150 signatures, but the goal is to gather 5,000. Once that is complete, then they will send them to local elected officials including Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Staten Island Borough President James Oddo, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, City Comptroller Scott Stringer, Public Advocate Letitia James and City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez.

Bronx Borough President already supports the petition. Diaz has advocated bringing Citi Bike into the Bronx since 2015, criticizing a decision to expand it into New Jersey before bringing it to all of New York City, including his borough.

Letitia James has also previously demanded that Citi Bike should be expanded into Staten Island. She feels that this is necessary to ensure that transit-starved communities have access to alternative transit systems.

There is legitimacy to the petition inasmuch as the Citi Bike program has not only been initiated in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens, but it is being actively extended to other states, while there being no plans to bring it to the Bronx or Staten Island.

Erwin Figueroa, the Bronx organizer at Transportation Alternatives, said the petition highlights the inequality that exists in bringing transportation initiative to the five boroughs. He alleges that this is a symptom of more general unequal treatment of the boroughs. However, DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg stated that expanding Citi Bike into Staten Island would be difficult because the stations would be less accessible to workers who distribute and maintain bikes.

The petition is meant to send a message to the city that residents of the Bronx and Staten Island are eager for the bike sharing system to begin, but with the petition running about a month and there being under 200 signatures, are the residents of these two boroughs really that eager? Combining the two boroughs, the population of them equals about a total of 1.6 million residents. We also ran a poll in December 2016, asking Staten Island residents what their views are on the Staten Island bike plan and getting Citi Bike in our borough; 80% voted for "Why Does Staten Island Need Bikes?" 

Nonetheless, DOT will soon be talking with Motivate, the privately funded company who runs Citi Bike, about ways to expand the bike-sharing system into the Bronx and Staten Island.


Leave a Comment

Format example: you@domain.com
Format example: yourwebsitename.com