DOT Chops Up Citi Bike Station in Midtown
MIDTOWN — The city's Department of Transportation sliced up a Citi Bike stand on Broadway Friday morning, shifting portions of it several feet uptown from just north of 57th Street to just south of 58th Street.
The reason for the relocation, as one of the movers explained: "The sign says 58th Street."
The DOT did not return calls and emails for comment to explain the reasons for the move or why it didn't swap out the sign, rather than use six workers for the labor-intensive job of rearranging portions of the docking station.
Merchants on the block differed in their opinion of the move, which repositioned some of the individual bike docks while relocating the main kiosk closer to 58th Street.
At Oak & Steel Fine Wines and Spirits near 57th Street, workers welcomed the change, which cleared a direct path to the store's front door.
"Now I don't have to jump over all those things when I bring in boxes," said stock clerk Albert Mejia, 21, as he held the door open for a deliveryman who wheeled a handcart straight across the street. "It's a lot easier to get around."
Manager Kathy Thomas, 53, also applauded the change in aesthetic.
"It looked cluttered," she said.
Just a few storefronts north, however, workers were less enthusiastic.
"It is what it is," sighed the manager of the HSBC bank at 58th street, who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to the press. "This is New York, this sort of thing is going to happen."
But, he added, "We're not going to let it take away our customers."
Stores mid-block, meanwhile, saw no change. Regardless whether the stand sat closer to 57th or 58th, gray rows of bicycle ports still lined the street in front of their doors.
"It's an eyesore," one building employee said.
But, he allowed, "This bike thing, a lot of people do use it."