For months we heard about it. For months we knew it was coming yet assumed that eventually it would spread beyond lower Manhattan and the general downtown Brooklyn area but right before it launched, we were told that Bronxites shouldn’t even bother waiting for the program to come up here Citibike, the wildly popular and successful bike share program.
Already the 2nd expansion phase is being planned but not for the Bronx. Queens of all places, with only ONE bridge connecting it to Manhattan is getting Citibike before the Bronx. You would think that the Bronx, having the most bridges to Manhattan (about 8 pedestrian friendly bridges followed by Brooklyn with only 3 bridges) would be included in the 2nd phase.
The current stations as well as future expansion areas are located in predominantly white neighborhoods yet the current make up of the city is far from that. At $99 a year, Citibike is a great savings to those who pay over $100 a month on metro cards to get to and from work. This would be a boon to folks in poorer neighborhoods who do ride bikes and would like to save major money.
Let’s also not forget that we have some of the highest rates of obesity, diabetes and heart disease as a result of lack of exercise and poor diet. The city and and Citibike have a moral obligation to these folks and not leave them in the dust. Imagine having Citibike kiosks at 161st and Grand Concourse with access to Yankee Stadium and most courts and government offices? How about at Boricua Village and Northrose so residents no longer have to wait for buses to the subway that are infrequent and are crowded to inhumane extremes?
Locations to all our great destinations like Fordham Road, The HUB, Bronx Zoo and the New York Botanical Garden. Orchard Beach, City Island, Throggs Neck, Port Morris, Mott Haven, Arthur Avenue, I mean the list goes on and on. It would provide an excellent alternative to our current miserable intraborough transportation system which, like for every other borough, designed to be Manhattan-centric.
We’re also a borough of colleges and universities with that base alone you would open the borough to these students as well!
So as awesome as the Citibike concept is, I have no choice but to give it an epic fail along with a Bronx Cheer for the sheer systemic racism of the design this model continues to perpetuate when it comes to the Bronx, the outer boroughs and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods.
This also goes to our politicians who let this happen. They had the option of insisting this would be equal opportunity and access but instead, as usual, sold us to the highest bidder. Get your act together!
Let us know below how you feel about this program! Likes, dislikes, don’t care? We always want to know!