A look at the success of bike sharing

Is a bike sharing program successful for reducing pollution, increasing efficiency of transport or revenue generating for a city? New York Times reporter, David Jolly, while researching Paris’s bike sharing, Velib program says it depends who you ask. One success may not show up on the balance sheet, but is more of a long term goal, preparing people mentally for much needed ecco-friendly transport and accepting the bicycle.

From the NY Times Green Blog:
Are Bike Rentals a Success? Depends Who You Ask
by: David Jolly
published: October 10th, 2011
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20111011-101417.jpg(photo by Ed Alcock)

As I reported last week, Paris has begun rolling out new electric vehicles in a car-sharing program called Autolib.
The city says the goal is to reduce car ownership, traffic and tailpipe emissions, improving residents quality of life. Bollor, the company funding the project, wants to showcase its electric vehicles and its lithium-metal-polymer battery technology.

Read more here.

NACCC 2011-Austin TX-October 7th-9th

This year the nations couriers head down south to Texas for the North American Cycle Courier Championships.

Here is a blurb from their site:

The 2011 North American Cycle Courier Championships, presented by Chrome, are going down October 7th-9th in Austin, Texas. The crew invite the messengers of the world to their town on the Colorado River for a weekend of slowly smoked, highly carbonated bicycle racing action. Expect a main race, side events, alleycat, and three nights of parties in the warm hills of central Texas.

NACCC participants have the option of shipping their bikes to sponsor Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop in downtown Austin. Adding NACCC to the address label and notifying the organziers via will help us keep track of your bike. Help us help Mellow Johnny’s help you fight airline luggage fee price gouging!

Previous locations have been:

Boston -2009



NACCC 2007 from Chrome Bags on Vimeo.

Come on down to Austin…There will be great bike events all weekend like a road ride:

and a Friday night alley cat sponsored by: Fast Folks.

You know Mr. Prolly ( Now stationed down there, will be covering all the action.

Also check out this cool blog: Austin Texas Bike Stuff.

Tweed Run, 10/15

James Fry contacted me and want to pass on an upcoming event for October 15th. In the vein of previous tweed rides comes:

The Tweed Run
A metropolitan bicycle ride with a bit of style.
From a press release:

After seeing great success in London over the last three years and a jaunt around beautiful Florence, Italy in June, the charity bicycle event with a very British sensibility is coming to New York on 15th October. The Tweed Run is an event that sees cyclists of all ages dressed in timeless period attire and pedalling their way through a modern metropolis to raise money for a good cause. The route includes our famous Tea Break, a halfway stop where participants are served pots of tea and cucumber sandwiches. Sponsors of the event include Rugby Ralph Lauren, bicycle manufacturers and outfitters Pashley Cycles and Brooks England, traditional barbershop chain Murdock and Jeeves and Jericho: The Jolly Good Tea Company. Proper attire will of course be expected, so dapper gents and elegant ladies should prepare their best outfits. Suggested attire includes: woollen plus fours, Harris Tweed jackets, flat caps, Fair Isle jumpers, alpaca coats, merino wool team jerseys, cycling skirts and perhaps a jaunty cape for the ladies, cravats or ties for gentlemen.

Find out more at

Bike sharing sneak peak-Demo on Atlantic.

Headed down to the 37th annual Atlantic Antic street festival with the family.
(that’s my boy Max on the right)
Besides the usual fried food and bouncy castles, there was some nice buzz for bikes. The D.O.T. was on hand not only handing out free helmets but also sizing them for people.

Big line of people wanting bike helmets…almost as many as those wanting the pulled pork sandwiches from building on bond, coffee house.

Then there we discovered a demo for NYC’s new bike sharing program which was getting a lot of attention.

The D.O.T. has chosen Alta bicycle share, : who will be bringing 10,000 bikes in 600 stations throughout NYC, by the summer of 2012. Alta’s Jocelyn was on hand answering questions and the whole operation seems fairly well thought out and user friendly. The bikes are sturdy with proprietary parts to minimize theft. All bikes are secured in each docking bay with a titanium pin, which seems rather impenetrable. Of course all my questions, weren’t about vandalism.

Jocelyn went onto explain that the bikes are intended for station to station use, not long recreation rides. Members can pay a yearly fee which is less than $100.00 and sizable less then the amount spent on the MTA. Also bikes can be rented on a daily or weekly basis. Each station is a lot like the new muni-parking meters and is easy to operate.

The bikes have been available for demo as seen here by: planetgordon.

I have to admit, I like what I see.

An article on the bike sharing demo from

#bikenyc tech meetup-October 4th and giveaway

There will be another installment of the nerd biker tech meetup on October 4th. This is a friendly social event for people who love bikes and want to share tech information such as creating apps, using social networking, data mapping or whatever your into.

Here is some info from Anita at Brooklynbybike.

Bike friends, it’s been far to long since we’ve had our last #bikenyc meetup! Join us Oct 4th from 7-9pm @ Red Lantern Bicycles, 345 Myrtle Ave for a free happy hour and of course the opportunity to reconnect with all of your cycling friends. This October also marks Brooklyn by Bike’s 3rd birthday and my actual birthday so come out and let’s have a toast!

Find out more details and info on a $50.00 card giveaway from Red Lantern cafe and bike shop, (345 Myrtle Ave.-Brooklyn) the site of the Meetup– here.

Victorian BMX game

Adult Swim, makers of such great programing as: Children’s Hospital,and an old skool favorite, Robot Chicken.

They also have some pretty funny online games including Victorian BMX.

Play Death, getting some big airs and taking out high wheelers.

Check it out here.

Thanks to Danbury Dave, for the headsup.

Austin Horse, featured in NY Times

You know him, you love him. He’s highly competitive, fast as hell, and a super nice guy. (photo by: Julie Glassberg for The New York Times)

He was the riding double, sticking the fast paced fixed gear moves for actor, Jason Gordon-Levitt, in the upcoming thriller- Premium Rush.

When he’s not volunteering with Time’s Up, or a working NYC messenger, or traveling the world to compete in messenger championships… he recently organized a multi-city stage race, the East Coast Messenger Stage Race.

J. David Goodman, of the New York Times, sat down Austin and found out how he gets it all done. Oh, and thanks for the quote and link.

The Messenger Goes Hollywood

On a side street in Park Slope, Brooklyn, Austin Horse cobbled together an impromptu podium last weekend out of a plastic milk crate and a case of Red Bull.

The scene, more reminiscent of a garage-band festival than a bicycle event, captured the spirit of the East Coast Messenger Stage Race, Mr. Horse’s hastily arranged, informal competition for a small group of hardy riders, mostly bicycle messengers from across the country. The five-day race, through a tangled network of roads from Boston to Washington, was the latest project for Mr. Horse, a competitive cyclist and bike advocate who has emerged in recent years as one of the best-known figures in the city’s brigade of professional messengers.

Mr. Horse, 29, has raced against a sport utility vehicle from Harlem to Brooklyn in a Web advertisement for Mercedes-Benz, worked as a producer and cameraman on a reality series about bicycle messengers for the Travel Channel and performed stunts for more than two months for “Premium Rush,” a bike-centered action movie to be released next year. He has won national and international messenger competitions, as well as sponsorship deals with Red Bull, Oakley sunglasses and the urban bike-wear company Outlier.

Read the full story, here.

More NYPD harassment

While a major bike sharing program is coming and the D.O.T. continues to make changes to make the city better for cyclists of all levels, the NYPD are up to there usual tricks of harassment.

Gothamist recently posted an article on cops handing out tickets on the Williamsburg bridge.

Once again the NYPD chooses a punitive approach instead of directing people to use of the right path, marked by bad signage.

Cops Ticketing Dozens Of Cyclists Near Williamsburg Bridge Entrance In Brooklyn


While the DOT is hard at work installing barriers at the bottom of the Williamsburg Bridge bike/pedestrian path in Manhattan, the NYPD is hard at work on the other side of the bridge writing tickets to cyclists. During yesterday’s p.m. rush hour, a tipster sent us these photos of the NYPD issuing a slew of summonses. The offense? Riding the wrong way down a wide, sleepy half-block to get to the cyclist entrance to the bridge. The witness estimates that he saw “16-20 people” ticketed in twenty minutes, which seems hard to believe, but he tells us the offending cyclists were ordered to stand on line and wait their turn as the cops took care of business (literally).

Read more here.

Time’s Up events

Time’s up actions and ways to plug in:

Time’s Up will be tabling AT LIVING AS FORM EXHIBITION

Thursday 9/29 and Friday 9/30 12pm-8pm

Essex Street Market building (the one at Essex and Delancey)


1. Decompression Dance Ride for the Occupiers! Tonight! Thursday September 29th, 10pm ABC No Rio

2. Heelz on Wheelz at BMW Labs! Tonight! Thursday September 29th, 8pm, 1st St between

3. Rally at Police Plaza to Critical Mass! Friday Night, 5:30 1 Police Plaza, 7:30pm Union Square North

1. Decompression Dance Ride for the Occupiers! Tonight! Thursday September 29th, 10pm ABC No Rio
Tonight! We will be meeting at ABC No Rio around 10pm and pulling the sound bike to Liberty Plaza. We will circle the block and lead occupiers to the nearest police-free zone for a decompression bike ride. Come ride bikes with us and dance with the liberators of Liberty Plaza!

2. Heelz on Wheelz at BMW Labs! Tonight! Thursday September 29th, 8pm, 1st St between
From the ladies themselves: “The bike dance ladies of HEELZ ON WHEELZ are getting SERIOUS! WE’RE TAKING OVER THE BLOCK for four minutes (1st street between 1st and 2nd aves) at the GUGGENHEIM LABS , following a panel discussion Your Brain on Commuting (6-8pm) WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT! come to the lecture (6pm), come after the lecture (7:45PM) – HELP US BLOCK THE STREET! let us know if you can make it – we may want you to pick up some cones on the way. forward to bike friendly folks!”

3. Rally at Police Plaza to Critical Mass! Friday Night, 5:30 1 Police Plaza, 7:00pm Union Square North
We are bringing Critical Mass back to its glory days, and bringing it to Liberty Plaza, where the police have been surprisingly bike friendly! Join us for a rally against police brutality at 1 Police Plaza first, at 5:30pm, then ride with us to Union Square, where we will once again have the sound bike and we will be joining forces with the radical activists of Liberty Plaza. They have liberated a public place, much like Critical Mass did with the streets of New York, and we will revel in this space and this freedom with them.

Occupy wall street-call to action

I first meet Andrew Lynn when I participated in a fun action where we walked around Kmart in the East Village and didn’t buy anything. This was part of an anti-consumer form of street theatre called Whirlmart. Since then Andrew has been super active in bicycle issues, working upstate with Troy bike rescue and one of the film makers behind “Still We Ride,” which diligently exposed the hardcore repression of the NYPD against the peaceful critical mass bike ride since 2004.

Andrew has been taking time to participate in the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations where people have been camped out for almost two weeks, blocks from the financial epicenter.

Normally I wouldn’t necessarily use this blog as a platform to blatantly champion an action, but I was recently moved by a mass email Andrew sent out about his thoughts and experiences participating in this growing movement.

I felt so strong about his conviction and belief in what’s going on across the country, it just seems like the right thing to post this and be another place people can read it.

Andrew’s experience with Occupy Wall Street and a call to action.

Dear Friends

This is a communique intended for you individually. I have been extremely busy, and have had only time to post to Facebook regularly, but not to further networks. I hope that this note can be shared more widely. (so please do your part)

first off… if you are in the dark, I highly recommend checking out some videos on these links

and then google or youtube search “occupywallstreet” or twitter users search: #occupywallstreet

Where I am…

As many of you know, I have been part of the group of people occupying a park in the vicinity of wall street. The Occupation is 13 days in and shows no signs of slowing up, but rather signs of growth. I meet people from all over the place who are new here everyday both from within NYC, but also as far as Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan, Philadelphia and more. Moreover, this model of occupation is being replicated in cities all over the country as citizen activists begin occupations in places such as Boston, Sacramento, Chicago, San Diego, Phoenix, Portland, OR, SF, St. Louis, Detroit, LA…. and that is just off the top of the heads of people sitting around me right now.

what is happening

In short ‘future kulture’ is happening. We have organized a micro city on purely democratic principles in which anyones voice can be heard. There are two General Assemblies per day and many meetings of separate working groups, some discussing solutions, demands, and tactics on a global and local scale, and others managing operations of our camp. Working groups include but are not limited to Food, Comfort, Sanitation, Medical, Library, Media Production, Streaming Media, Media Relations, Finance, Direct Action, Security, and many more. I hesitate to call this a protest. It is an Assembly and a Call to Action. Three days ago, I would not have necessarily believed that I would be writing this, feeling the way I do about all of this, or even still here. This is real. It is growing, and it IS the beginnings of a new, young, social movement that has real potential (and those of you who know my typical cynicism will be surprised by this) to steer our country towards the necessary General Strike of working people, unemployed people, owning class people, students, and everyone else.

a call to action

I want to personally urge people to come here. On first reading that, the impression might be that we need more people on the ground here. That is only partly true. The camp grows to multiple thousands of people everyday, and more every day. However, that is a small part of why your presence (even for a day) is useful and necessary. Really, what is going on here is political education of a profound and new kind. Activists and concerned citizens need to witness the model that is happening here in order to replicate and allow the Occupation of the US to virally grow as quickly as possible. The virus will mutate. Occupations will look different as they spread, but to those of you within traveling distance of NYC, please hear me that this is something like I have never experienced and it has changed my life, and I would like to share that experience in a deeper way than posting to Facebook and telling people about it.

who is here

all kinds of people are here, and as I said more and different people every day. the overwhelming majority at this moment are young people who have never been part of past actions or movement. That alone is jawdropping to me. it is not the typical lefty crowds that are found at peace marches etc. it is those folks too, but it is more far-reaching, and i think that is highly significant.

what to expect

expect to be fed for free as much as you can eat. expect to witness true democratic decision making. expect to have genuine conversations about everything that matters to you about the future of our society and planet with fellow occupiers, passersby, and police. expect truly horizontal organizing and decision-making expect participate teach-ins. expect to lead teach-ins if you so desire. expect to work (join a working group and help with whatever your particular skillet provides). expect to be slightly overwhelmed at first. expect to be interviewed by television stations, radio reporters, and writers. expect to participate in different kinds of peaceful marches. expect to march in solidarity with unions (CWA, Airline Pilots, Postal workers, etc) expect to meet a LOT of people. expect the unexpected.

when to come

I have put my life on hold and taken considerable risk personally to come here. I intend to leave to rejoin my life of employment and local activist responsibility Saturday night. I urge people to come here on Friday night or Saturday. If you come Saturday, try to arrive early as marches generally leave at 9am, and activities build from there. The weekday climax of events tends to be in the after-work hours when thousands of people converge here for a daily General Assembly in which anyone can have the ‘peoples mic’ (a system of human amplification) that can be witnessed on various youtube videos out there. I don’t know what specifically will be happening on that day, so I can’t provide any more details… but I don’t think it necessarily matters. This is ongoing, daily, and is not stopping. It is building, and in a few months this will be bigger than you or I can imagine. it’s not a promise, but it is an honest prediction…. and I would not have predicted it 4 days ago.

I need to go. Thanks for reading. Please share this out….

Andrew Lynn