Queens Public Library, along with the Brooklyn and New York public library systems, are teaming with Citi Bike to provide low-income New Yorkers to provide a free month of the bike share service.
Residents of NYCHA developments in western Queens or those that receive SNAP benefits need only visit the circulation desk of any library branch within a Citi Bike service area to pick up a gift certificate that will give them access to their first month for free.
“Citi Bike’s reduced fare gift certificates will offer many people who visit our libraries in western Queens and our tech lab at the Queensbridge Houses equitable access to a healthy transportation option that respects the environment,” Queens Public Library President and CEO Dennis M. Walcott said. “We are delighted to work with Citi Bike, Lyft, Healthfirst, the New York City Department of Transportation and the Brooklyn and New York public library systems to help set in motion another opportunity for discovery, learning and growth for New Yorkers.”
Those who qualify for the Reduced Fare Bike Share program presented by Healthfirst will be provided with unlimited 45-minute rides during an initial 30-day period. Once the first month is complete, riders can choose to continue their membership, paying just $5 a month — less than the cost of two swipes of a Metrocard. For added flexibility, there is no annual commitment or auto-renew.
Members can re-enroll at any time by simply taking a Citi Bike trip once their initial month is over, and their membership will be activated for another 30-day period.
“New York’s libraries serve as an indispensable role in providing opportunity to diverse communities, making the partnership between Citi Bike and the city’s library systems so exciting,” DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg said. “Because it provides such tremendous benefits, cycling in New York City has been growing faster than any other mode of travel. Getting library users access to Citi Bike will be another way to further grow the nation’s largest bike share program.”
The partnership marks the first anniversary of the Reduced Fare Bike Share program which has seen more than 7,500 riders take part for at least one month in the past year. More than 3,500 are currently enrolled in the program riding about twice as frequently as those with annual memberships.
“As key resources for New Yorkers, Citi Bike and our public libraries are natural partners,” said Caroline Samponaro, Head of Micromobility Policy at Lyft, the operator of Citi Bike. “As Citi Bike expands in the coming years, so too will our efforts to ensure that the system is accessible and equitable for everyone. We’re thrilled to begin this innovative partnership to bring affordable bikeshare to more low-income residents across New York this summer.”