NYC: Citi Bike will generate $36M in economic activity

New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan on Tuesday announced Citi Bike is expected to create 170 jobs and generate $36 million in local economic activity annually. 

NYC Bike Share (NYCBS) has worked with a wide range of community and local employment organizations to recruit New Yorkers for positions from station assemblers to bicycle mechanics to customer call-center staff.

These new hires will support the operation of 6,000 Citi Bikes at 330 stations in the initial service area, which includes streets south of 59th Street in Manhattan and adjacent neighborhoods in Brooklyn. These 170 permanent positions will contribute an estimated $36 million to New York City’s economy each year as wages are spent and invested locally.

When the system expands to 10,000 bikes, Citi Bike is expected to fill dozens of more permanent positions, with all jobs paying competitive hourly wages.

The system is supported without taxpayer subsidy by $41 million in sponsorship from Citi, $6.5 million from MasterCard and financing from the Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group. NYCBS is using the Goldman Sachs financing to purchase the equipment, stations and other ongoing capital requirements.

“Even before New Yorkers kick the tires of the Citi Bike fleet, bike share is kick-starting employment with jobs for New Yorkers,” said Commissioner Sadik-Khan. “Citi Bike will help New Yorkers reach their destinations quickly and make more neighborhoods, businesses and jobs more accessible.”

 To support Citi Bike, NYCBS recently leased more than 39,000 square feet of space in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. The site will serve as the bike-share system’s main facility and headquarters, with dedicated space for repairing the bicycles and a call center for user support.

The company also currently rents a 77,000-square-foot warehouse with another 43,000 square feet of lots in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, where components are being assembled into stations ready for deployment on city streets. NYCBS already has hired 170 employees to assist with the system’s roll out and related operations. Areas of responsibility include community outreach, bicycle assembly and maintenance, station and IT technology, and administration, management and finance.

“Not only does Citi Bike offer New Yorkers a fun and healthy way to get around, it is also providing a boost to our local economy,” said City Councilman Stephen Levin, who represents Greenpoint. “I am excited about the launch of Citi Bike and equally excited that the working people and small businesses of New York City will benefit as well.”