Kicking the Tires of New York's Bike-Share Program

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Taxpayers won't foot the bill for the launch of the nation's largest bike-share program - in New York City - because Citigroup and MasterCard announced that they will pick up the $47.5 million tab.

Bike-sharing has become a global success with programs already flourishing in Paris, Barcelona, London, Montreal and Washington, D.C. Boise is in the early stages of developing a bike-share program of its own.

New York's bike-share will offer 10,000 bikes to riders at 600 docking stations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and on Long Island. That's relatively small compared to Paris (20,600 bikes) and Hangzhou, China (60,600 bikes), but the Big Apple will still be able to boast the largest bike-share program in the U.S.

The New York program will be relatively expensive. Riders will pay $10 per day, $25 per week or $95 per year to rent a bike. But that's just the beginning. The first half-hour is free; however, after that, you begin paying on a per-ride basis. A one-time, one-hour ride will cost New Yorkers $14 while a one-time, one-hour ride costs approximately $3.24 for bike-sharers in London. A six-hour bike rental that costs $58 in London and $85 in Washington, D.C. will cost $131 in New York.

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