Citi Bike Launch Pushed Back From July to August

New Yorkers will have to wait a bit longer than anticipated to start riding Citi Bikes. Photo: Noah Kazis

The city’s bike-share system will launch in August, not the previously announced start date of July, according to the Citi Bike Twitter feed.

Two months ago, city officials announced that New Yorkers would be able to start taking trips on the new public bike system by late July. Now bike-share operator Alta is telling prospective bike-share customers that the launch date will come in August.

Confirmation of the delay came over Twitter, where Alta responded to a number of city residents eager to start riding. “Hi David, thanks for your continued support and interest in Citi Bike! Look for the launch in August,” said one tweet last week. “You’ll be able to sign up for memberships next month,” said another. In another sign that the wait for the launch will extend past July, the Citi Bike team has added a set of public demos to its events calendar, with dates through August 1.

New Yorkers will get some advance notice about the impending system launch when Citi Bike stations start to pop up on the streets. Rolling out the system should happen fairly rapidly, since the stations can be quickly installed or uninstalled. The solar-powered, wireless stations don’t need to be connected to the electrical grid, just craned into place, a process that takes about an hour per station. Still, it takes time to install as many stations as Alta will be bringing to NYC. In Boston, Alta took three weeks to reinstall the 600-bike system after it was put away for the winter.

Streetsblog has asked Alta and the Department of Transportation what caused the delay, when bike-share will launch, and how many bikes will be available at the outset.

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