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  1. #51
    vol
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyl View Post
    Interesting to read the overview part.

    'The ultimate goal of bicycle-sharing is to expand and integrate cycling into transportation systems, so that it can more readily become a daily transportation mode.... In general, the rationale for introducing bicycle-sharing is to promote cycling, increase mobility choices, improve air quality and reduce congestion. It is also seen as a means to promote the viability of public transport by providing an “extension service” for the “first/last mile” - the distance which many consider to be too far to walk between home and public transport and/or public transport and the workplace.'

    That's why the bike is not equipped with a rack: it's not meant for grocery shopping or other utility use.

  2. #52
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    I think mis-use is also a concern.
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  3. #53
    vol
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    NY Daily News: Citi Bike bicycle share program in NYC, the nation’s largest, a success 3 weeks in

    I had no idea that cloudy weather could affect the solar batteries causing docking and undocking problems. With all its skyscrapers in Manhattan, can the problem be ever solved? This is still summer, what will happen in the winter?

    One small disappointment, according to the wikipedia, it will only expand to south of 79th street.

    Hasidim for Bikes
    Last edited by vol; 06-18-13 at 05:46 AM.

  4. #54
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    I figured an update was appropriate at this time. I had experienced some issues with inoperative or malfunctioning bike docks either upon check out or return. They seem to have figured out their problems and the experience has been relatively trouble free this week.

    There was a news story about how lack of light to recharge the batteries was causing issues for certain docking stations due to location or weather and how they were addressing the problem in the short term by swapping out the batteries with fully charged ones.

    Hopefully that was all there was to the issues and going forward they will either upgrade the solar collector and/or battery for the docking stations that were experiencing these issues.

    I'm very happy with the program so far - trading a subway ride for a bike ride has done wonders for my energy levels at work.

  5. #55
    vol
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    I rented 24-hour Citi bike more than 10 days ago. My credit card still hasn't shown any charge for that, although the $101 hold is still there. They need to check their software system to fix any possible bug that may have resulted in free rental to many users.

  6. #56
    vol
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    1 million miles logged by NYC bike share users

    Wonder if they have all been actually charged on the credit cards? (cf. my post above. Two weeks now, and I haven't been charged for the 24 hour rental)

    "City officials said this weekend that the miles are being racked up mostly by more than 100,000 people who have signed up for daily, weekly or annual rides." Mostly? Who else could have used them?

  7. #57
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    I signed up for the annual pass, and am waiting for my plastic key thingy to arrive. Hope it shows up before my next biz trip to NYC.
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  8. #58
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    I got my key today, I signed up on the 13th. I'll give it a try tomorrow unless I decide to take my own bike.

  9. #59
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    It took a week but finally had a chance to take one for a spin last night, and then rode in to work this morning on one.

    My impressions:
    A little unstable with weight on the bars
    The bar basket is too small even for my modest messenger bag with a Macbook Air inside
    The gearing is too low. I used the lowest gear going up the Manhattan bridge, but I was trying not to get sweaty on a humid day. (it didn't work!)
    They otherwise ride pretty nicely.

    Since I already paid I guess I'll use it fairly frequently, but it won't replace my regular bikes (3 road, 2mtbs).

  10. #60
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    Gears too low? That's an unusual criticism. Maybe you're a masher? I find most bikes geared too high, and I consider myself more masher than spinner.

    Anyway, you know the design constraints the bikes had. I think they did a great job, though I should say I haven't ridden one yet. I'm very glad to see them used so much, though. I'm moving to NYC in about August, so I'll buy a membership then.
    Please email me rather than sending me a private message. My address is noglider@pobox.com

    Tom Reingold
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  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by noglider View Post
    Gears too low? That's an unusual criticism. Maybe you're a masher? I find most bikes geared too high, and I consider myself more masher than spinner.

    Anyway, you know the design constraints the bikes had. I think they did a great job, though I should say I haven't ridden one yet. I'm very glad to see them used so much, though. I'm moving to NYC in about August, so I'll buy a membership then.
    Yes, too low! The first gear will spin you up a telephone pole, the second you might use to go up a hill, and the third you use for everything else. I find I can't use the second gear for plodding along on the mostly flat streets, I'm just spinning way too fast. I'll have to concede that they're made for short trips. I rode about 6 miles yesterday on one and it was a bit tiring even to a relatively fit rider.

    The sticky weather didn't help. I was dripping wet on both rides I took, and wearing jeans and a cotton shirt. When I try this again I'll wear a wicking shirt, and wait for a drier day.

  12. #62
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    An update of sorts. I haven't had any major issues removing or returning any bikes lately. Had some issues with the deraileur on one or two but generally a positive experience. I just checked my account and it appears as if they may be having software issues or at least database issues. My "trip library" has been wiped clean and it says "you have not taken any trips yet."

    Oh - I agree that 1st gear is all but useless - maybe in San Fran but I can't spin that fast without getting too sweaty. I mostly use 3rd gear except up the incline going over the Brooklyn Bridge when I use 2nd.

  13. #63
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Citibike is allegedly doing "maintenance" which prevents some (but not all) users from seeing their trips.

    They'll still charge you if you go over, though.

  14. #64
    vol
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
    They'll still charge you if you go over, though.
    More than a month has passed since I rented a 24 hour citibike, and I have yet to see any charge in my credit card. Have all of you above who said you used citibikes been charged?

  15. #65
    vol
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    The charge just showed up on my credit card, after 5+ weeks! Don't expect getting away from it.

  16. #66
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    I went to take one near my office today and the rack was empty! It has been full up until now.

  17. #67
    Senior Member NVanHiker's Avatar
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    As a Vancouver taxpayer, I'm just waiting until next year for our turn to get hosed by this money-losing feel-good scheme. I see Montreal had to pony up over ONE HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS to keep Bixi afloat. At least you have Citi bank as a sponsor.

  18. #68
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NVanHiker View Post
    As a Vancouver taxpayer, I'm just waiting until next year for our turn to get hosed by this money-losing feel-good scheme. I see Montreal had to pony up over ONE HUNDRED MILLION DOLLARS to keep Bixi afloat. At least you have Citi bank as a sponsor.
    I'm not aware of any mass transit option that doesn't lose money FWIW. If NYC charged full freight for subway rides it would be quite a bit more expensive than $2.50 per ride. Of course there would be also increased car traffic as a result and all that accompanies that in the city such as greater congestion, noise and air pollution, reduced parking, etc.

    Edit to add - farebox revenue is @ 38% of the cost to operate the mass transit system in the NYC metro area.

    http://www.tstc.org/101/mta.php
    Last edited by flattie; 07-19-13 at 08:00 PM.

  19. #69
    Senior Member NVanHiker's Avatar
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    Bike-share is 'mass transit'?

  20. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by NVanHiker View Post
    Bike-share is 'mass transit'?
    In NYC it is meant to provide the "last mile" transit as an alternative to taxis or inconvenient subway rides. That's basically how I use it. If I want to really ride a bike I'll take my own.

  21. #71
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zacster View Post
    In NYC it is meant to provide the "last mile" transit as an alternative to taxis or inconvenient subway rides. That's basically how I use it. If I want to really ride a bike I'll take my own.
    Encountered my first empty bike dock today. I needed to walk a few blocks to the next one where I was able to proceed as usual. I don't know if it's a sign that it's becoming more popular or if they are slacking off on their bike rebalancing efforts. Hopefully it's the former and they will be tweaking the rebalancing to address the issue.

  22. #72
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    The rebalancing proves to be an essential part of the service. I'm waiting to hear more stories about it. It's sort-of equivalent to how frequently the 1 train arrives at the platform at rush hour.
    Please email me rather than sending me a private message. My address is noglider@pobox.com

    Tom Reingold
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  23. #73
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noglider View Post
    The rebalancing proves to be an essential part of the service. I'm waiting to hear more stories about it. It's sort-of equivalent to how frequently the 1 train arrives at the platform at rush hour.
    The difference being:
    1- If I walk to the next subway station it's just as likely that I will have to wait for the subway there as well
    2 - If it's 100 degrees at street level - it's an easy 10 degrees hotter on the subway platform. To experience either the Wall St 2/3 platform or the Union Square station during the 5th day of a heatwave like NYC had last week is truly something to be avoided at all costs if possible.

  24. #74
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    There was a quick news item on WNYC this morning about the kiosks running out of bikes by 8am or so by Penn Station.

  25. #75
    Senior Member flattie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zacster View Post
    There was a quick news item on WNYC this morning about the kiosks running out of bikes by 8am or so by Penn Station.
    This was actually at the other LIRR station in Brooklyn near Atlantic Terminal. Funny. I emailed customer service to let them know about the lack of bikes (also around 8am) not expecting a response. Much to my surprise I got a response just now. Except it was to an email I sent them almost a month ago to let them know the number of a bike I had used that had mechanical issues (it was ghost shifting from 3rd to 1st).

    Oh well - only almost a 1 month lag on returning email.

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