Transit Sam, Week of June 19, 2014

Downtown Express file photo by Jefferson Siegel.

Downtown Express file photo by Jefferson Siegel.

Thurs., June 19 – Wed., June 25

It’s been one year since I last reviewed bike share. Now, after nearly 100 rides here’s my updated review:

1. The bikes are holding up reasonably well. The seats are cracking and look like they won’t make it another season. The brakes and tires seem fine. The gears occasionally slip. I give the bikes themselves an A-.

2. I’m not much of an app user but a common complaint is the CitiBike app is often inaccurate as to the number of bikes available or docks open. A lot of the time, broken docks are still reported as available. Apps: C.

3. Most of the time I have a hiccup on either taking a bike out or returning a bike. Neighbors complain about the noise of riders having to shove their bikes in hard and multiple times till (if) it catches making noise around the clock. Docks are often broken. Docks: D+.

4. Tourists seem to be having a really tough time using CitiBike. I often see them on the phone with the “help” desk. Tourists: D.

5. Notifications from CitiBike are inconsistent. I only learned my subscription was up when I went to a few stations and couldn’t get a bike released. I saw an email in my spam folder that arrived the same day! However, other users report better luck and have received timely renewal emails. Notifications: C.

All in all I remain a loyal user and have renewed for another year. I certainly hope the city finds a way to make this financially viable for an operator. I just think the current operator could do a much better job. Overall grade: C.

At the Lincoln Tunnel, the Manhattan-bound south tube will close 11 p.m. Thursday to 5 a.m. Friday. During the same hours, one New York-bound lane will close in the Holland Tunnel. The first closure will send cars down to the Holland, which will be slower than usual because of the second closure. Try to make it back into the city before 11 p.m. Thursday!

No full weekend closure at the Brooklyn Bridge – phew – but overnight closures continue: all Manhattan-bound lanes will close 11 p.m. Thursday to 6 a.m. Friday, midnight Friday to 7 a.m. Saturday, midnight Saturday to 9 a.m. Sunday, and 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday through Wednesday nights. Inbound traffic will head for the Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges and the Battery Tunnel instead. That’ll make for an uptick in traffic on Canal, Delancey, and West Sts., respectively.

The Romanian Day Festival will close Broadway between Rector St. and Battery Pl. as well as Whitehall St. between Stone and Morris Sts. 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday.

The Downtown Alliance Greenmarket Event will close Coenties Slip between Water and Pearl Sts. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday. 

On West St./Route 9A, one lane will close in each direction between West Thames and Vesey Sts. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday and Friday. 

Chambers St. will close between Broadway and Church St. 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday.

The Little Italy Pedestrian Mall will close Mulberry St. between Canal and Broome Sts. and Hester St. between Mott and Baxter Sts. 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. daily.

The city Dept. of Transportation’s Positively 8th Street festival will close W 8th St. between Fifth and Sixth Aves. noon to 5 p.m. Saturday. 

A few weekend service changes will hit Lower Manhattan subway service: at Fulton St., there will be no Uptown 4 or 5 trains on Saturday or Sunday. Take a Brooklyn-bound 4 or Bowling Green-bound 5 to Wall St. and transfer to an uptown train. 

M service now runs between Metropolitan Ave. in Queens and Delancey St/Essex St in Manhattan. M service previously terminated at Myrtle Ave. That means Lower Manhattanites can access the M on the weekend, and transfer between the F and the M at Delancey St.   

From the mailbag:

After I gave my review of CitiBike online, I received the poem below about the Petrosino station.  I don’t know the latest regarding Petrosino Park but I would have no objections to moving the station.

 To Transit Sam

Rolling your bike

Down the ramp at

Petrosino Square,

Are you a triumphant General

Rolling along the Champs-Elysee?

The plundered Art

Do you already regret it?

 As for the future: might the

Elderly problem be solved

By cyclists running them down

And rolling over them

For two extra points on their citi cards?   

 —  Minerva, Soho

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