I have already spoken to Mr. Gormley at Community Board 2 (CB2) about the “Citibike Survey” that was sent to emails on the CB2 list. I am deeply concerned and angry about its content and assumptions. Here are the problems:
1. It assumes that expansion will occur. It provides no clear option for someone in the survey to vote clearly against expansion of the privatization of the streets for the Citibank advertising. I would ask: Where is the demand coming from (I mean real demand, not the bleatings of Transportation Alternatives). Have there been calls to the CB from our neighbors requesting more stations, has Corey Johnson been called frequently by constituents asking for more stations? Have members of the transportation committee at CB2 heard comments from friends, coworkers and neighbors asking for more bike stations? Have the Villager and WestView News been inundated with calls for expansion? I don’t think so. Has the DOT produced any valid studies which show the need for this? If so, why should a private entity (Lyft) be allowed to place a large number of additional stations in the already crowded streets of the Village. Should profit making businesses like this be given total access to our streets? I think a clear public referendum of residents would give you a resounding no.
2. Distribution of the survey was from the CB2 list. What protocols are in place to prevent someone like TA or other paid advocates from “stuffing the ballot box?” The integrity of the basic survey is already compromised by its failure to provide a clear YES or NO to expansion within the survey. What are the integrity controls on the survey?
3. The results should be made easily public and not just the select results the DOT would like to show. Transparency and public input are both despised by the DOT, but here we must insist on it. Will Mr. Gormley see to this?
We should ask why they are doing this by survey. Is there an implication that no review by the community board is needed or is it supposed to be ammunition for the DOT appearance before the CB? What is the real purpose of this and why is it being done now?
The deliberately created chaos of the L train “mitigation plan” is coming and no one really knows how bad it will be, nor is it clear at all that more bikes will be any assistance to the problems created. We can always do this later if there is some real need to expand. These stations are not temporary, but are intended to be permanent, regardless of what is promised.
We need to consider what the DOT is doing to us carefully. This is really a landmark decision that is not needed or wanted and that overrides the wishes of the residents of the area. I will be glad to discuss this anytime.