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Bicycle Safety

Citi Bike Hits New Record With More Than 90,000 Rides in a Single Day 

Mayor de Blasio (center with Borough President Eric Adams and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg) was last seen riding a bike in August, 2018. Photo: Natalie Grybauskas

Citi Bike smashed its own ridership record on Thursday, when New Yorkers completed more than 90,000 rides in a day — gleefully pushing the pedals in spite of discouraging talk by Mayor de Blasio that he is mulling helmet requirements for users.

The bike rides have surged as New Yorkers have discovered that the bikes are one of the fastest ways to get around the city — even faster than taxis or the subway, said Caroline Samponaro, spokesperson for Lyft, Citi Bike's operator.

“This has been a summer for the record books, and we’re so excited that Citi Bike riders have achieved yet another massive milestone,” said Samponaro, who added that milestone represented the highest daily total for any American bike-share network. “We look forward to providing even more New Yorkers with convenient access to one of the most fun, healthy, and environmentally-friendly mobility options there is — Citi Bike,” she said.

Citi Bike previously hit a record of 89,466 rides on Aug. 1, for a total of more than 2.3 million trips that month. Riders made 91,529 trips on Thursday; now, they're poised to top 100,000 rides, said Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. 

“I congratulate everyone at Lyft for this milestone – on to 100,000!," she said in a statement. 

But if the mayor wants to create another obstacle to cycling by requiring riders to wear a helmet, Citi Bike's record number may shoot back down.

“Citi Bike continues to be one of New York City’s most useful and reliable modes of transportation, thanks in no small part to the fact that there are so few barriers to getting on a Citi Bike,” said Transportation Alternatives spokesperson Joe Cutrufo. “If Mayor de Blasio were to force users to wear helmets, we’d be looking at much different ridership numbers, and probably the eventual demise of the system.”

Hizzoner also said that his administration may require cyclists to become licensed and get insurance. 

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