New York’s bike-share program, the largest in the country, will be adding 2,400 freshly redesigned bikes to its racks beginning this month, CitiBike announced Monday on its blog.
The redesign is part of a collaboration with prolific American cycle designer Ben Serotta, who has been designing racing bikes for over 40 years.
“I used to spend months building one perfect custom bike at a time,” said Ben Serotta. “Now, we’ve created a new type of bike share bike, which can be literally customised to fit everyone.”
The initial CitiBike fleet was made up of 6,000 bikes when it launched in May 2013. Citibike says the new bikes will require less time in routine servicing, freeing up more bikes for commuters. Additionally, version 2.0 includes improved gear shifts, a sturdier kick stand, and a seat that drains water, for those soggy bike rides home.
The rollout of the more durable and user-friendly bikes will be accompanied by the program’s first expansion to new neighbourhoods. Queens will receive its first CitiBike rack, in Long Island City, and the program will push even farther in to Brooklyn, with racks in Bed-Stuy, Williamsburg and Greenpoint.
“We have now replaced the software and hardware at all 330 stations and 12,000 docking points, and have overhauled more than 90 per cent of our 6,000 bikes,” said Jay Walder, President and CEO of CitiBike’s parent company, Motivate. “Today we are extremely proud to roll out new and improved bikes as we continue to meet growing demand and prepare for expansion that will begin this summer.”
Despite ownership changes and funding issues, more and more New Yorkers are choosing CitiBike. The company’s release boasts a 10% increase in ridership for May 2015, compared with the year prior.
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