Today’s Headlines

  • Ray Kelly Denies Crackdown, Attributes Ticket Spike to “More People Riding Bikes” (News, NY1)
  • AP Reports Three Citi Bike Injuries in 500,000 Rides, Frets Over Helmets
  • Post: MTA Bridge and Tunnel Officers Ordered to Cut DWI Arrests to Reduce Overtime
  • NYPD Arrests Truck Driver for Hit-and-Run Killing of Cyclist Shui Jiang (Bklyn Paper, News)
  • Two Dead in Grand Central Parkway Crash; Driver Charged With Manslaughter (News, Post)
  • Gelinas: NYC’s Standing Among World Cities Threatened by Decrepit Rail Infrastructure (Post)
  • Bronx CB 1 Chair Adjourns Meeting to Prevent Members From Discussing FreshDirect (DNA)
  • Washington Heights and Inwood Streets Dirtiest in Boro After CB 12 Cuts Alt Side Days (DNA)
  • Central Park Bike Rental Businesses Complain That Tourists Are Choosing Citi Bike (DNA)
  • Upper Manhattan Commuters Hop On the Bike Train (DNA)
  • So Long, Love Affair With the Automobile (NYT); Hello, Romance With the Bicycle (CSM)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Anonymous

    What, no link to the NYT’s “invitation to dialogue”? It’s a letter by Gary Taustine (you may have read some of his many anti-bike posts in the comments section of most NYT articles related to urban cycling). This time, his worry is that parked bikes will turn NYC into a “junkyard”. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/01/opinion/invitation-to-a-dialogue-a-city-of-bike-clutter.html

    The editors are asking readers to respond by Tuesday, and will post a few of the responses next Sunday.

  • JL

    The second story about Citi Bike and helmets is actually a WSJ sensational piece. The only two comments slaps it down pretty hard.

  • Anonymous

    The link is to the WSJ, but it is AP’s story.

  • ADN

    Why does Ray Kelly bother lying about the clear and obvious fact that his department (or, at least, a bunch of precincts) is running a bike ticketing blitz? What’s the point of lying about that?

  • He’s not lying. He’s not in direct control over, or has direct information about, what certain captains do to organize their patrols.

    Granted, the examples of “bike stings” are really galling (trying to ticket behavior that is technically illegal due to particular road markings/signal placements, but done repeatedly by commuters because it’s safe and convenient) but if there was a department-wide sting you’d see a bike enforcement caravan every 15 blocks. Right now we’re seeing varying precincts pick a spot once a month or so, which is really light enforcement.

    I’d support more enforcement if the focus of the enforcement was different – i.e. finding the egregious violators on-the-move (salmoning, playing chicken with cars and pedestrians that have right-of-way) in different spots, not trying to catch people who are shuffling through red lights at empty intersections.

  • Anonymous

    ‘ “They’ve been getting away with murder, it’s about time somebody gave them a ticket,” said one New Yorker.’

    Wow, that is some useful commentary NY1.

  • ADN

    Of course. Bike enforcement would be a perfectly fine thing for NYPD to do if:

    a. They had any clue how to enforce against bike infractions that actually matter, in terms of making NYC streets safer for pedestrians, and,

    b. They enforced against the types of motor vehicle operator behavior that actually hurt and kill people on NYC streets, which has absolutely nothing to do with bicycles, for the most part.

    Unfortunately, NYPD traffic enforcement is nothing more than Kabuki Theater.

  • We have the power to change this. Bike enforcement, being a completely new thing to most of these captains, is something they’re doing only because the old cranks are complaining. “Squeaky wheel gets the grease”. As bicycle advocates, we’re in no position to push the department into ignoring bike behavior, but we can inform their decisions by pressuring them to police behavior that is actually dangerous and unacceptable, not to write what are the equivalent of jaywalking tickets. (Especially those nasty red light ones, which are way too expensive and unfair considering that red light cams generate tickets for drivers that are 1/4th the cost!)

  • Anonymous

    I’d argue that any kinda of traffic enforcement is a “completely new thing” to all these captains. I’m not honestly sure we can pressure the NYPD to do or not do a thing. They don’t seem to give a damn about public pressure.

  • Anonymous

    That article about bike rental shops suffering as tourists use Citibike is interesting. I’ve seen some tourists take Citibikes way south of the last docking stations in Brooklyn. Do they not understand that Citibike is not a traditional rental bike service? Or do they not know how long it takes to go get to and from the docking stations?

    [Start rant] By the way Ray Kelly continues to be an embarrassment to any New Yorker with an IQ of more than 4. “More people are riding bikes.” Really? How many reports and how much money did you waste in order to figure that one out? Bull shit that a 81% spike in ticketing of bikes in Brooklyn is “not a conscious effort by the NYPD!” The police precincts in Brooklyn, most likely, did not simply all wake up one day and decide to issue 81% more tickets to cyclists. Why not issue more tickets to cars that routinely kill and injure instead? Oh wait “no criminality suspected.” I’m also glad to see that neither the Daily News or NY1 called out Kelly out on this. Glad to see their commitment to hard hitting journalism continues.” [End rant]

  • Anonymous

    The good news is that R. Kelly feels the need to deny it.,

  • Eric McClure

    Why lie about it? Because Ray Kelly fears one thing, and one thing only: the wrath of the All-Powerful Bike Lobby, at whose pleasure he serves.

  • tyler

    “Central Park Bike Rental Businesses Complain That Tourists Are Choosing Citi Bike” — They could try making their sales pitch sound less scammy and pleasant. Why are tourist choosing the relatively expensive alternative? To avoid interacting with the 3-Card Monte guys that wants their credit card information! I’m thinking of the hustlers at Columbus Circle… they even make the legitimate transactions feel shady.

  • tyler

    It’s truly a powerful shadow government. Even the Wall Street Journal is concerned about how B.I.K.E. (Bicyclists In Klandestined Envelopment) are plotting to destroy the city… one bike rack at a time.

  • Bolwerk

    Gelinas: derailments = crime

    Stop ‘n frisk the usual suspects!

  • Guest

    The kicker on that piece is strange. I am not aware of plans to place Citi Bike stations *inside* the park. Yet the claim is left to hang there as it’s verifiable fact.

  • Anonymous

    Considering that the Central Park overlords refuse to put even conventional bike racks in the park, I have my doubts that they would allow Citi Bike stations.

  • Bolwerk

    Damage control. I suspect law enforcement generally knows when it’s doing something that is some combination of stupid, cruel, unlawful/unconstitutional, and authoritarian. However much the press gives them a free ride, they still reflexively prefer to avoid bad publicity.

    And when was the last time they actually got in trouble for lying? At least at the departmental level.

  • Anonymous

    I very nearly threw something at my TV when that interview first aired on Friday morning.

  • Anonymous

    I very nearly threw something at my TV when that interview first aired on Friday morning.

  • Anonymous

    I very nearly threw something at my TV when that interview first aired on Friday morning.

  • Anonymous

    I very nearly threw something at my TV when that interview first aired on Friday morning.

  • moocow

    “More people are riding bikes”
    But them bike lanes are empty with no one using them-except delivery people, who are nobodys.

  • kevd

    Seems to me that the “usual supects” she’s calling out are the city, state and federal governments for not contributing enough funding to the MTA. Pretty reasonable, I’d say.

  • Shemp

    Yeah, great that DNA info is getting behind the illegal bike rental biz in Columbus Circle – note that legit business Bike n Roll didn’t want to dish.

  • Stacy Walsh Rosenstock

    Maybe some of their “regular customers” prefer to spend $10 day to ride up to the Met or the Museum of Natural History, dock the bike there, and not have to worry about having a $20 rental bike stolen.

  • Anonymous

    There are no bikeshare stations near the museums yet, but I agree it will become a good option for museum visitors when the system gets expanded to its originally promised area.

  • Stacy Walsh Rosenstock

    Good point but maybe they don’t know there are no bike stations until they get there. I can’t help but wonder how many people who rent bikes around Central Park are really “regular customers.”

  • Ben Kintisch

    I sent in the following letter:

    Dear Editors,

    RE: Mr. Gary Taustine’s letter.
    My first question: has Mr. Taustine visited Amsterdam? Based on his comments, my guess is he hasn’t. I can write from first hand experience, having visited several times, Amsterdam is a world-class cities where cycling has been actively promoted as a safe, sensible and healthy part of the transportation mix. Sure, the popularity of bicycling is so great that sometimes bike parking is challenging. But the upside to a city with lots of bicycling is cleaner air, healthy and happy citizens, and a safer pedestrian environment.
    Here in NYC, our parking problem mostly involves cars: thousands of commuters and residents who cruise looking for under-priced street parking, creating noise, pollution and traffic. I’d say that the bike parking problem is a far better problem to have.
    To address the growing demand for bike parking, our city’s Department of Transportation has been working hard. NYC DOT has introduced an expanded StreetRacks program, installing free bike parking stands on sidewalks outside of businesses and residences. Demand for this essential new ingredient to the urban environment is so high that some folks need to wait months for their request to be fulfilled. Also, in many neighborhoods where the old coin-operated parking meters have been removed, the old poles have been retro-fitted with the wheel-shaped biking parking hoop.
    Another exciting new development is the Bike Corral program, in which one on-street parking space for a private car is replaced with bike parking for 8 bikes.
    With limited space in a crowded city, more people can move freely with bikes, and more bikes can fit than the far less space-efficient private car.

    Sincerely,
    Ben Kintisch
    Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn

  • Guest

    Force of habit?

  • Guest

    This is one of the most productive things I’ve read in a comments section in a long time!

  • Anonymous

    Citibike should “open a channel” to the legal rental shops and offer to give free advertising those legal shops who ask: Citibike could state, on its kiosks, kiosk maps, site, app, and elsewhere, things like “Leisure riders and tourists may get a better deal from a traditional rental shops. Some traditional rental shops near this Citibike station are 1. ______, 2. _____, 3. ______ (etc.) and are indicated on this kiosk’s map.”

  • Anonymous

    could be a good PR opportunity for Citibike, and could help the chances of survival of BOTH segments of the industry in NYC.

  • kevd

    I’m sure their reduced profits this year has nothing to do with the never ending rain that we’re experiencing.
    Did we all move to the tropics? Well, if we had it would at least be a bit warmer!

  • Bolwerk

    And why shouldn’t they be stopped ‘n frisked? These are some of the most dangerous, vicious people in society.

  • kevd

    Ah, I guess I missed the point you were making.
    Because yeah, they are.