Jersey City and Lyft have teamed up to expand their Citi Bike program, bringing their total up to 650 with plans to add another 300 in Hoboken pending approval from their city council.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
In Jersey City, this will mean an increase of 150 bikes and 15 new stations, with the first two new stations to be installed in Greenville.
The Jersey City Council approved the measure, which outlines 82 docking stations, including the 51 existing Citi Bike stations in Jersey City, two additional stations in Greenville, and all new stations in Hoboken, at last night’s meeting.
“We have had great success in our valued partnership with Lyft, and this agreement is the latest step in our commitment to establish a comprehensive transportation network that includes mass transit, the Via system we implemented, and the growing bike share program, to better connect our residents to jobs, schools, and other important opportunities,” Mayor Steven Fulop said in a statement.
“In addition to having integration with Hoboken for the first time, as part of this agreement, Jersey City will immediately add two stations in Greenville based on community feedback. From there, the contract states we will add 15 stations with priority in Greenville, West Side, and The Heights.”
Additionally, the unified system will include 650 bikes in Jersey City and 300 bikes in Hoboken, for a total of 950 bikes, under a five-year agreement.
For the first time, the fleet will be comprised of both pedal bikes and pedal-assist e-bikes – providing more options to allow riders of varying physical abilities to take longer rides, easily climb hills, and arrive at their destination more quickly.
Over the duration of the contract, Citi Bike, who is owned by Lyft will expand in Jersey City to 66 stations, 40 percent of which will be pedal-assist e-bikes.
“This is a big step toward continuing to grow Citi Bike’s role as a truly regional bike share program that meets the first- and last-mile commute needs of New Jersey residents, who often have bike share transportation needs on both sides of the Hudson,” added Laura Fox, the general manager for Citi Bike at Lyft.
“With the addition of pedal-assist e-bikes and transit planning in both the Lyft and Citi Bike apps, Citi Bike riders in New Jersey will have more ways to get around that are fast, affordable, and convenient.”
Docking stations near regional transit hubs such as Grove Street PATH Station and Journal Square help create convenient connections to trains, buses, and ferries.
Lyft has also added real-time transit arrivals in both the Lyft and Citi Bike mobile apps to help riders plan rides that include both bike share and regional transit systems such as PATH, HBLR, New Jersey Transit, and New York Waterway.
“After launching Citi Bike in 2015, Jersey City has prioritized the implementation of Vision Zero initiatives, including a protected bike lane network that now spans over 10 miles citywide. As a result, we have witnessed a significant increase in biking and walking, which are essential modes of travel, especially during the pandemic,” noted Jersey City Director of Transportation Planning Barkha Patel.
“This partnership with the City of Hoboken and Lyft reflects the community’s longstanding desire for an interoperable system that makes cycling between our two cities easy and convenient. We expect to see more and more people using bikes to get around as we continue to expand our transportation infrastructure and connect all of our neighborhoods with affordable, healthy, and efficient transportation options.”
For $179 per year, annual members can take as many 45-minute rides as they like on a classic bike or upgrade to an e-bike for an additional $0.10/min. Currently, 70 percent of annual Citi Bike members in Jersey City also use Citi Bike in New York.
A single ride on a classic pedal bike costs $3 for up to 30 minutes. For an additional $0.15 per minute, riders can upgrade to an e-bike.
Lyft also offers a reduced Citi Bike fare membership that costs only $5 per month for Jersey City Housing Authority, Hoboken Housing Authority, and SNAP recipients, which includes unlimited free rides on classic pedal bikes for up to 45 minutes.
Per minute pricing on e-bikes is reduced to $0.05/minute for these riders.
Furthermore, Lyft will continue their Bikes Angels program, where users are rewarded with ride passes, membership extensions, and gift cards depending on how many points they earn through the program.