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Old 05-28-14, 06:37 PM   #26
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I wish there were a federal grant system for bike shares.

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Old 05-28-14, 06:47 PM   #27
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Agreed.

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Old 05-28-14, 06:53 PM   #28
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It could be target based, as in, the better you do, the more help you get up to a point. Maybe if you reach targets early your city gets looked at to get more grants for bike lanes and complete streets. Just some ideas.

I think there should be incentive to take pressure off our roads and our energy (oil) demand.

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Old 05-28-14, 07:00 PM   #29
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I wish there were a federal grant system for bike shares.

- Andy
We've become addicted to the baby bottle of Federal grants and subsidies. This is the most expensive way to do anything.

How about we let local entities and private enterprise do something once in while.
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Old 05-28-14, 07:22 PM   #30
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The energy industry, airlines, and trucking companies have become addicted to the baby bottle of Federal grants and subsidies. This is the most expensive way to do anything.

How about we let local entities and private enterprise do something once in while.
Fixed it for you.

If our economy was not based on investment banking and service industry, id say it was a good idea. Till we have more than just car companies that make actual things that people actually need, i'm afraid the corporations we have just have no vested interest in putting money into a community that at the end of the day, they really are not a part of as the manufacturing companies used to be.

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Old 05-28-14, 07:30 PM   #31
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Fixed it for you.
Thanks but it didn't need fixing. Regardless of opinions on whether subsidies make sense in airlines or the other examplesyou mentioned they are at least interstate, regional or national issues.

Bike share programs are local intra-city issues, that don't even cross state lines. In any case Bike share programs are being implemented and succeeding all over the country, and it'll happen faster and better if the Federal government stays out of the way.

BTW- the Federal budget has a deficit of over 20% of the total budget. By comparison, New York State has a surplus.
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Old 05-28-14, 08:14 PM   #32
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Faster and better? Define with examples please.

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Old 05-28-14, 08:18 PM   #33
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Faster and better? Define with examples please.

- Andy
As regards Bike Share programs, it's easy.

Count how many programs are up and running without Federal help.
Count how many are up and running with Federal grants.

The No Grant's have it.
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Old 05-29-14, 12:34 AM   #34
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As regards Bike Share programs, it's easy.

Count how many programs are up and running without Federal help.
Count how many are up and running with Federal grants.

The No Grant's have it.
How many have requested or inquired about federal money vs total number?

My point is, that a grant could be the difference between the thing happening or not. Start up costs can be very high, with maintenance costs being significantly lower. I could see a smaller company being ok doing the maintenance costs, but struggling to grapple the startup costs.

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Old 05-29-14, 01:34 AM   #35
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You are aware that your state has publicly subsidized bike share, correct? Is less vehicle traffic, a less congested subway system, or a healthier public (and therefore lower health care costs borne by guess who) not something you think a modern society should be striving to achieve? Who exactly are the private entities who would fund any of these goals?
Why do you think that I have always hated the constant "tax and spend" political climate in my state? If it wasn't for the BWCA/Voyagers I would have moved a LONG time ago. I've had enough of the State and Fed sticking their nose where it does NOT belong. Quit spending my money on FORCED social control. Jmo.
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Old 05-29-14, 12:15 PM   #36
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I'm unaware of any subsidies for Taxis, or for private vehicles of all kinds. In fact cars are heavily taxed via parking lot taxes.
Not exactly. SF just released a parking census, and boy was it enlightening. Only 10% of the curbside street parking spaces have meters and the rest were free! 55% of the spaces were on the street and not in garages, so those parking lot taxes do not apply.
SF completes its first parking spot census | Transportation | San Francisco | San Francisco Examiner

Obviously these aren't NYC stats, but I imagine it isn't hugely different. There is a significant "subsidy" if the on-street parking is free, I did see meter free spaces in NYC when I was there, but I didn't

Quote:
Likewise, no shoe leather subsidy so walkers are on their own.

The economics of bike shares are very favorable, and they do get a significant subsidy in the form of free storage/docking space, so there's absolutely no reason this can't be priced correctly and paid for by user members, with some help from paid advertising. Given the comparative cost per trip, the operators should be able to charge enough to recover capital and operating costs and make a profit.
The pricing structure might need to be a little different, to have the monthly fees pay a larger portion of the overall revenues. The question is do we need to consider it a transit service or something else. Most transportation is "subsidized" in one way or another.
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Old 05-29-14, 12:28 PM   #37
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If they just charged an annual fee that was a little higher than one month of cable television they would probably have a viable business. They could probably get away with charging their annual fee amount on a monthly basis without losing many customers. It's NY for cryin' out loud. Doesn't it cost $100 to sneeze there?
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Old 05-29-14, 03:01 PM   #38
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I think the annual sub should be 120-135 with maybe discounts for families or something.

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Old 05-29-14, 05:49 PM   #39
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Transportation is good for the economy, no matter how you slice it. I don't see the point of the federal government helping local bike shares for the reasons FBinNY cites, but I do think local subsidies make sense. Subsidies are "expensive" as he says, but expensive doesn't necessarily equal bad. NYC's many modes of transit are a key reason the economy thrives as well as it does. The users of the subway would not pay full cost, but it's a good thing we ride it anyway. So it is with the bike share.

If we could implement congestion pricing for private cars, I would favor it, but I don't know how to do it. Private cars for personal transport are very inefficient and are costing all of the non-users in many ways. We need to discourage it.
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Old 05-29-14, 06:03 PM   #40
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Curious why would someone pay an amount for a year to use a bike that may or may not be available when and where they need it for the same price they could buy an el cheapo bike that they actually own?

The only people I see interested in something like this are people that are already into biking and it would only because either they want a bike available to them at all times or they want to social engineer other people.
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Old 05-29-14, 06:21 PM   #41
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A Sales tax on stock trading ? Or International Banking Currency exchanges ?Tobin tax - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 05-29-14, 06:32 PM   #42
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Curious why would someone pay an amount for a year to use a bike that may or may not be available when and where they need it for the same price they could buy an el cheapo bike that they actually own?

The only people I see interested in something like this are people that are already into biking and it would only because either they want a bike available to them at all times or they want to social engineer other people.
It isn't about why, it's that they do. The high subscription and usage rates of bike share programs all over the USA and world prove the concept.

However, as someone who lived in downtown NYC for many years, I can tell you that a bike share bike is often more convenient than your own. For example one might wat to ride to the department store, buy a load of stuff and cab home. Or hop from place to place on errands, without worrying about bike theft while inside.

I see bike share as a gap filler in the transportation options for trips too long to walk, and too short to cab or subway. Serious rider have their own bikes and will use them on longer trips, but trade down to bikeshare for shorter errands, or trips where their own bikes aren't practical.

BTW- bike share works, there's little debate about that, the problem is dialing in the pricing, and some of the technical issues. NYC's program is suffering from both those problems. But at some point the various players will stop playing blink, and work out the issues and do what's needed to keep it alive.
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Old 05-29-14, 06:47 PM   #43
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It isn't about why, it's that they do. The high subscription and usage rates of bike share programs all over the USA and world prove the concept.

However, as someone who lived in downtown NYC for many years, I can tell you that a bike share bike is often more convenient than your own. For example one might wat to ride to the department store, buy a load of stuff and cab home. Or hop from place to place on errands, without worrying about bike theft while inside.

I see bike share as a gap filler in the transportation options for trips too long to walk, and too short to cab or subway. Serious rider have their own bikes and will use them on longer trips, but trade down to bikeshare for shorter errands, or trips where their own bikes aren't practical.

BTW- bike share works, there's little debate about that, the problem is dialing in the pricing, and some of the technical issues. NYC's program is suffering from both those problems. But at some point the various players will stop playing blink, and work out the issues and do what's needed to keep it alive.
Maybe I just don't get it because I never lived in a big city, but do people that normally wouldn't ride a bike use them? If not isn't it just a program to make things more convenient for bikers then? Are these bikes in some locking rack like the luggage carts at airports? What if you get some place, do your thing go to get a bike to go home and there isn't any?

What about tourists, I could see wanting to rent one for the day or something.

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Old 05-29-14, 06:57 PM   #44
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Maybe I just don't get it because I never lived in a big city, but do people that normally wouldn't ride a bike use them? If not isn't it just a program to make things more convenient for bikers then? Are these bikes in some locking rack like the luggage carts at airports? What if you get some place, do your thing go to get a bike to go home and there isn't any?

What about tourists, I could see wanting to rent one for the day or something.
Yes people who don't normally use bikes use these for short hops. Remember NY-kers don't have houses with garages. Space is a premium, and a decent percentage of residents live in walkup apartments. So there are real barriers to bicycle ownership, of if they own, many trips don't warrant pulling the bike down.

Then there's a large number of commuters, for whom bringing their own bike into town isn't practical (or possible). Case in point -- ME. I commute by bike, but don't live or work in the city. I go in from time to time, and used to ride off peak so I could bring my bike. That meant I couldn't go home between 4PM and 7PM. So now, I take any train in, use bike share for a bunch of errands and trips, then back to the train for the ride home.

The average person in New York does tones of short trips a week, maybe to a restaurant, a meeting, shopping, etc. Bikeshare allows a convenient way to fir these into the work day, or the end of the workday, without committing to a bike for the whole day.
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Old 05-29-14, 07:14 PM   #45
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I went to the citibike website, that is pretty cool. I managed to find a station on street view, most of the slots were empty so I guess that means that stations bikes were almost all checked out, but assume there are more slots than bikes at all the stations.
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Old 05-29-14, 08:36 PM   #46
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I went to the citibike website, that is pretty cool. I managed to find a station on street view, most of the slots were empty so I guess that means that stations bikes were almost all checked out, but assume there are more slots than bikes at all the stations.
Yes, though I don't know the specifics, there are more slots than bikes. There would have to be or there'd be a city wide game of musical chairs every night as the last few people with bikes had to find them a home. Even with the excess capacity, the bikes tend to clump up in various places and Citibike had crews doing nothing but redistributing the rolling stock.

But the system works, and is viable. All we need is to get past some of the political hurdles so it can move on.

BTW- the technology continues to evolve. Other cities are adopting "dockless" systems where the bikes self lock, and can be left anywhere. They announce their availability using GPS and a cell phone app.
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Old 05-29-14, 09:52 PM   #47
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When you're talking about spending public money on bicycling, it's an issue greater than Citibike. I'd rather see more public monies spent on bicycling going to more bicycling infrastructure like dedicated bike lanes and bike racks in shopping districts, especially in areas beyond the Manhattan and Brooklyn central business districts and their periphery. This concentrated focus on these areas neglects most of the outer boroughs and upper Manhattan. Many of these areas don't have subways or yellow cabs and suffer spotty bus service, so cars become a necessity.
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Old 05-29-14, 10:07 PM   #48
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When you're talking about spending public money on bicycling, it's an issue greater than Citibike. I'd rather see more public monies spent on bicycling going to more bicycling infrastructure like dedicated bike lanes and bike racks in shopping districts, especially in areas beyond the Manhattan and Brooklyn central business districts and their periphery. This concentrated focus on these areas neglects most of the outer boroughs and upper Manhattan. Many of these areas don't have subways or yellow cabs and suffer spotty bus service, so cars become a necessity.
I agree that NYC neglects the 3 "other" boroughs in h=just about every respect. I don't know about bike lanes because the level of =congestion there tends to be much lower (I know the Bronx well), and there are plenty of wide arterials with generous room for everybody.

Queens could probably use some help near the primary Queens blvd shopping district, but I don't know about elsewhere.

As for racks NYC has (had?) a great program whereby any retail business could have racks installed on the sidewalk 100% free upon request. The thinking was that those directly involved knew better than anyone else where racks made sense. I don't know if the program is still in place, but can say that it was amazingly underutilized for years. Apparently bicycle racks were such a wonderful thing that the city couldn't give them away.
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Old 05-29-14, 10:27 PM   #49
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As regards Bike Share programs, it's easy.

Count how many programs are up and running without Federal help.
Count how many are up and running with Federal grants.

The No Grant's have it.
A quick Google turned up the following:

Bike sharing in Boston gets $3m federal grant - The Boston Globe
Federally Funded Bike Sharing Programs Expand
City, Alta Bicycle Share secure funding for Portland Bike Share system - BikePortland.org
About | Divvy Bikes
Eyes on Milwaukee: Bike Share Launching in 2014 - Urban Milwaukee

And there are more. All of these mention Federal grants, including the biggest bike share systems other than New York, DC, Chicago, and Boston. I dare say most bike share systems, existing and planned, are funded in part by the Federal government; New York is the exception, not the rule. Few cities other than New York have the kind of advertising market in which they could even pretend to attract enough sponsorship to fund the entire program with private money. And even in New York, that goal is proving to be elusive. Yes, there is a role for the Federal government in building and expanding bike share, and yes, bike share is a public good that deserves government support.

And by the way, how many billions does the Federal government spend on just one highway project, which subsidizes the automobile industry, among many others? Where exactly would the auto industry, trucking, etc. etc. be if they had to build, or wait for private entities to build and then charge them to use the roads on which their vehicles could be driven? The auto industry as we know it is a product of government funding and government policy. Yet bike infrastructure is somehow supposed to pay for itself. The few million they spend here and there for bike share, or bike lanes, is a rounding error in Federal transportation spending.

The grants have it.

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Old 05-29-14, 10:39 PM   #50
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A quick Google turned up the following:

Bike sharing in Boston gets $3m federal grant - The Boston Globe
Federally Funded Bike Sharing Programs Expand
City, Alta Bicycle Share secure funding for Portland Bike Share system - BikePortland.org
About | Divvy Bikes
Eyes on Milwaukee: Bike Share Launching in 2014 - Urban Milwaukee

And there are more. All of these mention Federal grants as part of their funding, including the biggest bike share systems other than New York, DC, Chicago, and Boston. I dare say most bike share systems, existing and planned, have some kind of Federal funding in the mix; New York is the exception, not the rule.
Thank you.

NYC is a difficlt nut to crack but i think a simple higher annual sub cost would go a long way to help the cause.

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