Citibike beating Barclays Cycle Hire

NYC Citibike’s meteoric rise continues – for October, the New York City bikeshare beat London’s Barclays Cycle Hire on average journeys per day, for both weekdays and weekends. Even more impressive considering that it’s only just over half the size.

Thanks to this release published today at the London Data Store, and this daily updating data from New York, I’ve been able to plot month-by-month figures, for the last three years for the Barclays Cycle Hire, and the last few months for Citibike, on the same graph. I’ve split out weekdays and weekends. Grey/black is New York City’s Citibike, while the colours (red, orange, green, blue) are the Barclays Cycle Hire for 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 respectively.


Click for the large version.

What’s even more impressive is that Citibike is currently physically smaller than London’s Barclays Cycle Hire. It currently has 330 docking stations and 4500 bikes, while London has 558 docking stations and 7600 bikes. These numbers don’t match exactly with official numbers, as I combine a small number of adjacent docking stations, and don’t count bikes in repair or otherwise unavailable for use.

London’s more temperature climate (a “warm/cool” city) means it should have a lead on NYC (a “hot/cold” city) in the summer and winter, while NYC may well be strongest in the spring and autumn.

Apologies for the rather lame looking graph. Excel crashed as I was setting it up, I sneaked a screenshot as the crash reporter popped up, but had to add the NYC data in manually in GraphicConverter…

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6 thoughts on “Citibike beating Barclays Cycle Hire

  1. Suggest considering hours of daylight as a correlating factor. NYC has 54 minutes more daylight today, 7 November, than London.

    1. Fair point, although both London and NYC’s systems are commuter dominated, and I suspect commuters are generally less fazed than tourists about cycling in the dark. It’s one reason why I split out the weekday (many commuters) and weekend (few commuters) measures, to see if there were seasonal differences between them.

      1. Undoubtedly tourists are not likely to ride at night, as you suggest. I am in no way a bike-share expert, but I was thinking about the NY system safety numbers the other day and it seemed to me that the multi-modality of the system was a strong safety factor. When it’s rainy or dark or icy, bike share users can switch to subway, bus or taxi without having to lug their bicycle along with them.

  2. I wouldn’t be surprised if New York’s much easier navigation plays no small part in people having the confidence to head out by bike.

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