Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced that this weekend, Citi Bike will celebrate its fifth anniversary as the nation’s largest bike-share system. Motivate, Citi Bike’s operator, will celebrate this milestone in Prospect Park on Sunday, May 27.
“What better way to kick off summer than to celebrate how far Citi Bike and bike share have come in just five years,” said Mayor de Blasio. “Since 2014, we have doubled the reach of Citi Bike to more than 12,000 bicycles and 750 stations, making it the country’s biggest and best bike share program. Bike share is now an essential part of our transportation system, and another way we’re making sure New Yorkers have many ways to get around town.”
“Five years ago, it would have been hard to imagine how central Citi Bike would become to the life of our City,” said Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. “Citi Bike has helped fuel a boom in cycling, and has also been a key to helping us reach our Vision Zero goals – as we have actually seen the positive effects of ‘safety in numbers.’ As a regular Citi Bike rider myself, I want to wish a happy anniversary to the entire Motivate team, and we look forward to many more.”
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“On Citi Bike’s fifth birthday, we celebrate one of the most successful public-private partnerships in our city’s history. The Citi Bike program has helped New Yorkers and visitors reenvision how they experience the city — in a way that’s flexible, sustainable, and fun,” said Jay Walder, President and CEO of Motivate.
In 2015, the program expanded into Queens for the first time and in recent years has brought a reliable transportation option to areas such as Harlem, Red Hook, Astoria and Bedford Stuyvesant.
Founded in 2013, the growth of Citi Bike was engineered during the de Blasio Administration, which reinvigorated a struggling system and brought on a new operator, Motivate, in 2014. Under this new stewardship the system doubled in size to 12,000 bikes with the amount of stations more than doubling to 750. In 2015, the program expanded into Queens for the first time and in recent years has brought a reliable transportation option to areas such as Harlem, Red Hook, Astoria and Bedford Stuyvesant. The program is now approaching 60 million total rides following a 400 percent growth in ridership. The system routinely reaches an upwards of 70,000 daily rides during peak seasons and broke its single-day ridership record on May 9, 2018 with 78,421 rides.
Yesterday, New York City announced plans to launch dockless bike share pilots in communities in four boroughs over the summer. The dockless bikeshare pilot will operate this summer in the Rockaways, Coney Island, the Fordham area of the Bronx and on the North Shore of Staten Island. Citi Bike holds exclusive rights to its own three-borough service areas, in which the dockless companies will not offer competing service.
Other events to mark the anniversary include a series of group bike rides in June in various neighborhoods throughout New York City, including Astoria, Bedford-Stuyvesant, East Harlem, and Williamsburg. Sunday’s festivities will kick off with a community ride and awards ceremony for the system’s top riders, such as most rides taken overall; most rides taken by a teen; most time spent on a Citi Bike overall; and the Citi Bike champion awards for Brooklyn. The day will continue next to the entrance to Smorgasburg in Prospect Park, with activities including a photo booth, pop-up Citi Bike museum, giveaways and discounts to Smorgasburg, and birthday cake. On May 27, new users will be able to enjoy their first ride free through the Citi Bike app.
Bike share in New York City continues to further the goals of the Administration’s OneNYC goals of becoming the world’s most resilient, equitable and sustainable city, and to expand the use of green and equitable transportation modes In April 2018, Citi Bike riders traveled 2.25 million miles — the same distance as circling the equator more than 90 times. By Citi Bikes, riders also saved 1,800,859 pounds of carbon from going into the atmosphere during last month, equal to the emissions of 641 private cars driven over a full year.
Citi Bike’s overall ridership continues to grow as the system maintains a streak of breaking its own annual ridership records each year; 8 million trips in 2014; 10 million in 2015; 14 million in 2016 and 17 million in 2017. Riders are set to break the record again in 2018, with a 13 percent increase in ridership so far this year. This correlates with New York City’s monumental growth in ridership coupled with bike lane network expansion. The City now sees 460,000 daily cycling trips, a 156% growth over ten years. NYC DOT added 25 lane miles of protected bike lanes and 77 total lane miles last year alone.
Citi Bike is committed to making bike share accessible and equitable through a variety of community initiatives. NYCHA residents and members of select credit unions are eligible for $5 monthly memberships by signing up here. Citi Bike is also a part of the NYC Better Bike Share Partnership, led by Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation, to encourage diverse ridership. The Partnership developed inclusive programs such as Prescribe a Bike and Citi Bike for Youth, organized community bike rides and events, and advocated for policy changes to increase the diversity of bike share riders to improve health and financial outcomes of NYC neighborhoods.
Since the start of this initiative, the number of Citi Bike members in Bedford Stuyvesant has doubled, providing a model for successful community engagement citywide.
“Parks is happy to celebrate Citi Bike’s fifth anniversary,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP. “Through their efforts to expand cycling citywide, New Yorkers and visitors alike have had more opportunities to explore our beautiful parks as they pedal towards having fun and being happy and healthy.”
“People who are physically active live longer, healthier and happier lives,” said NYC Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett. “Last summer, close to 60,000 New Yorkers got an average of 30 minutes of physical activity each week riding Citi Bike. Citi Bike is not just about transportation; it is also about promoting healthy behavior for all New Yorkers.”
“The Citi Bike partnership has been an innovative path to better connecting public housing residents to their communities, while providing healthier, more affordable transportation choices,” said NYCHA Executive Vice President for Community Engagement and Partnerships Sideya Sherman. “Since the launch of Citi Bike’s NYCHA discounted membership, public housing residents have ridden 1.4 million miles already, and we are grateful to our partners and look forward to continuing together as we support our NextGen NYCHA goal to empower public housing residents.”
“It’s been five years and I already can’t imagine the city without Citi Bike. Bike share is an essential part of making New York an accessible city, a place where people can use a variety of mass transit options to get around,” said Council Speaker Corey Johnson. “I congratulate Citi Bike on its amazing success so far not just as the City Council Speaker but also as a bike rider.”
“Thanks to Citi Bike, bike share is moving Brooklyn forward in ways we could not have imagined five years ago,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams. “From Bed-Stuy to Boerum Hill, Brooklynites are using pedal power to commute, exercise, and explore our beautiful borough. As bike share turns the corner to its next five years, I am committed to see the network expand east and south to reach more of our communities, as well as prioritizing safety on our streets for cyclists and everyone else who uses them,”.
“Citi Bike has been a game-changer, opening up the fun and convenience of biking to New Yorkers and tourists without the hassle of bike ownership or storage,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Five years in, we know it works, and I’m looking forward to seeing it expand to so every single neighborhood in Manhattan has access to this fun, healthy, and green transportation alternative.”
“I couldn’t tell you the number of calls and requests for stations that came in when Citibike was announced in Brooklyn five years ago,” said Senator Martin Malavé Dilan. “It was an immediate success. However, like any good plan, it has to be implemented the right way. This was a good idea likely to see success in New York City, but the credit for becoming the nation’s largest bikeshare system goes to the city and partners Motivate. There was a need, and it was met beyond expectation.”
“Bicycles have become one of our city’s best transportation modes. I welcome more cyclists to ride our streets and ask that everyone- cyclists, pedestrians and auto drivers observe vehicle safety laws at all times. With more people on bikes, we need to insure that the roads are properly shared. Citi Bike has helped reshape our ability to move around town. Let’s make this a success for everyone,” said Assistant Speaker Felix W. Ortiz.
“As an avid Citi Bike rider, I applaud the Mayor’s initiative and expansion of the program,” said Assembly Member Harvey Epstein. “I look forward to expansion all over the five boroughs so that all New Yorkers have access to Citi Bikes.”
“When Citi Bike was introduced five years ago, it would have been difficult to predict just how popular the program would become, said Assembly Member Deborah J. Glick. “As the country’s biggest bike share program, it’s hard to underestimate the impact that Citi Bike has had on our City, and I’m pleased that its fifth anniversary is marked by a continued push for the program to become more available and accessible.”
“Now more than ever, it is important to encourage sustainable and alternative transportation options, which is why I’m so pleased that Citi Bike has helped reduce carbon emissions and lead New Yorkers to a more active lifestyle,” said Assembly Member Jo Anne Simon. “I’m excited to celebrate five years of Citi Bike, and I look forward to seeing what the next five years bring as bike sharing continues to expand across New York.”
“Citi Bike has been an excellent partner in changing how we commute in the city. They have been able to connect tens of thousands of New Yorkers to a healthier way to move around,”
“Citi Bike has been an excellent partner in changing how we commute in the city. They have been able to connect tens of thousands of New Yorkers to a healthier way to move around,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, Chair of the Council Committee on Transportation. “I look forward to continue working with Citi Bike on Car Free Day and other projects to encourage New Yorkers to use safe, environmentally sustainable transportation alternatives. They have provided a great model for bike share that should be followed as bike share comes to more neighborhoods. Congrats to Jay and his team on this anniversary and the amazing events planned for today.”
“In five years, the Citi Bike share program has fundamentally transformed the way New Yorkers get around, and will continue to increase connectivity and access as it expands to every borough in the summer,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin. “This program’s growing success marks an exciting moment in the efforts to build a sustainable City as more New Yorkers opt for biking as a green and reliable mode of transportation. I am proud to join New York City residents to celebrate Citi Bike’s fifth year anniversary, and I thank Mayor De Blasio and Commissioner Trottenberg for driving this important public-private partnership forward.”
“Citi Bike has been a boon to this city. It has managed to connect people, both residents and visitors alike, to other people, businesses, destinations, attractions, and much more across the many unique neighborhoods that make New York City so great,” said Council Member Robert E. Cornegy, Jr. “It has accomplished all of this while working to provide a healthy and sustainable mode of transportation for as many riders as possible. We are fortunate to have such a great promoter of community and I look forward to the many years of Citi Bike service to come.”
“As an avid cyclist (especially along the Hudson River), I am delighted to see New York City’s tremendous progress in becoming more bike friendly,” said Council Member Helen Rosenthal. “Bike share services like CitiBike have been an important part of this culture change, as has the Department of Transportation’s efforts to install infrastructure for cycling across the five boroughs. Step by step, we’re bringing control of our streets back to people. We still have a long way to go – especially in terms of pedestrian safety — but we’re on our way.”
“In just five short years Citi Bike has fundamentally transformed how New Yorkers get around this great City,” said Council Member Ben Kallos.” As a founding member, I can say that 60 million rides is an unbelievable number that few people thought would we would reach this quickly. Congratulations to Citi Bike on this significant milestone and to all the New York Yorkers who have ridden a Citi Bike over the past five years. Thank you to Mayor Bill de Blasio for being very supportive of the bike share phenomenon and pushing it to succeed.”
“It is fitting that we celebrate Citi Bike’s fifth anniversary in New York City on the heels of Bike to Work Day,” said Council Member Brad Lander. “Biking has become more popular than ever, and it’s easy to see why. Biking is good for your health, environmentally sustainable, and fun, and Citi Bike makes it easy for millions in New York City to get around, including me. We’ve enjoyed Citi Bike so much in Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens and Park Slope, and I look forward to working with Citi Bike to expand to Windsor Terrace and Kensington soon to improve accessibility in my district and across the entire City!”
“Citi Bike’s fifth anniversary comes at a moment when New York City cycling is at an all-time high and our streets are the safest they’ve been in generations,” said Council Member Carlos Menchaca. “Each year of Citi Bike’s dramatic growth shows New Yorkers have accepted bike sharing as an integral part of our transportation system. Now is the time to expand bike sharing throughout the City, especially in areas like Sunset Park, Brooklyn where new street designs are moving us closer to achieving Vison Zero’s goals.”
“Citi Bike offers New Yorkers and our visitors the chance to ride through Central Park or right to work with the convenience of shared stations in neighborhoods across the city,” said Council Member Keith Powers. “I commend the Mayor and Department of Transportation for stewarding a successful bike program over the past 5 years.”
“We are extremely proud that Citi Bike has exceeded all expectations to become the largest, most popular bike-share program in America and an iconic part of New York City,” said Citi Head of Public Affairs Ed Skyler. “We’d like to thank the tens of thousands of New Yorkers and visitors every day who make the City’s first new transportation network in a hundred years a success.”
“Since the very beginning, Restoration has championed the expansion of bike share in Bed-Stuy and other neighborhoods throughout NYC because we were confident of Citi Bike’s potential to improve neighborhood physical, mental, and financial health and connect residents to community, services, and economic opportunities,” said Tracey Capers Executive Vice President, Programs/Organizational Development at the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. “We were committed to bringing those benefits to everyone regardless of race or ZIP code or socioeconomic status. Today, as we celebrate five years of bike share’s expansion to Central Brooklyn, this program has become a prime example of how people can incorporate active transportation into their daily lives to boost their activity levels, lead healthier lives, and contribute to healthier communities.”
“In just five years, riding Citi Bike has become as New York as hailing a cab, swiping a MetroCard, or boarding the Staten Island Ferry,” said Paul Steely White, executive director of Transportation Alternatives. “But more than just another iconic mode of transportation for the Big Apple, Citi Bike has also played a huge part in the transformation of New York City’s streets, sparking demand for hundreds of miles of new bike lanes and inspiring countless New Yorkers to try bicycling. The Citi Bike effect has been so transformative that across the city, residents and elected officials clamor for bike share service to extend into their neighborhoods. On this five-year anniversary, it’s time for the City of New York to heed that clamor and give Citi Bike the public funding it needs to expand into all five boroughs.”
“Citi Bike has transformed how New Yorkers get around in just five years,” said Sarah M. Kaufman, Assistant Director, NYU Rudin Center for Transportation. “It has popularized a mode of transportation that burns calories, doesn’t clog our streets, and helps people enjoy parts of the city they previously couldn’t reach. Citi Bike has had a positive impact on New Yorkers’ quality of life and mobility.”
“We are pleased to host Citi Bike in Prospect Park, Brooklyn’s Backyard, to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the city’s official bike sharing program,” said Sue Donoghue, Prospect Park Alliance President + Prospect Park Administrator. “Prospect Park welcomes millions of visitors each year for relaxation and recreation, and having Citi Bike stations in and near the Park is an important enhancement for our visitors.
For more information about the de Blasio Administration’s bike share efforts, please see www.nyc.gov/bikeshare