After Sandy damage, officials promise bike share in May
The bikes are coming.
After putting the brakes on a planned rollout this summer, the bike share will start in May, the city announced today.
Officials blamed Hurricane Sandy for wrecking electrical equipment and some bikes.
A storm surge at a Brooklyn Navy Yard storage facility damaged equipment, but some bikes were undamaged or at least fixable, officials said.
Overflowing East River waters rushed into the Brooklyn building, where about two-thirds of the equipment was stored, according to the Department of Transportation.
The system will launch with 5,500 bikes at 293 stations in Manhattan south of 59th Street and in Brooklyn.
Officials still plan to eventually have 7,000 bikes, including in Queens neighborhoods like Long Island City, by the end of next year.
In total, 10,000 bikes are promised when the system fully opens.
“DOT has worked around the clock to restore vital transportation links following the storm, and that includes putting Citi Bike on the road to recovery,” DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan said today.
Transportation Alternatives director Paul Steely White said he was “grateful” to see the program still in the works.
“New Yorkers are eager for this new transportation choice, but we all know the damage Hurricane Sandy wrought on our city,” he said. “Every day, a new cost is added to the toll of destruction, and the damage to the bike share equipment is merely the latest. “