NYC Must Commit Public Funding to Expand Citi Bike

‘In New York, bike share is our only mass transit network that does not receive public financial support. This limits where the system can expand, on what timeline, and how it is priced.

Adi Talwar

A Citi Bike station in Harlem.

Amid challenges and changes to New York City’s landscape since COVID-19, one constant remains: New Yorkers are flocking to bicycles. From health care workers headed to hospitals to delivery workers keeping the city fed, New Yorkers are leaning on two-wheeled transportation. Even our city’s new mayor is a regular bike commuter. Now is the time to double-down on investing in transportation resiliency and New York City’s bike infrastructure.

Key to fueling our bike boom is expanding Citi Bike, whose ridership now exceeds pre-pandemic levels — even during the winter and as tourism has not fully bounced back. While subway and bus ridership has been slow to recover, still hovering around half of pre-COVID levels on weekdays and slightly higher on weekends, bike share is the only transportation system that has seen higher usage since the pandemic began. If Citi Bike were its own transit agency, its ridership levels would make it the 25th most-ridden transit service in the country last year, larger than BART in the San Francisco Bay Area and almost as well-used as the PATH train.

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