Friday, July 02, 2010

Welcome to No Bikes On Trains Day

Something never change, such as NJ TRANSIT's arbitrary holiday bike on train rules:

Collapsible bicycles are accommodated on all NJ TRANSIT trains at all times. Standard-frame bicycles and Segways are permitted on the Atlantic City Rail Line at all times.

Standard-frame bicycles and Segways are permitted on other rail lines at all times, except:

  • On weekday inbound trains that end their trip in Hoboken, Newark or New York between 6-10 a.m.
  • On weekday outbound trains that originate in Hoboken, Newark or New York between 4-7 p.m.
  • On major holidays (New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day)
  • On Fridays prior to major holidays.
  • On Friday after Thanksgiving.
  • On the eves of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

Perhaps its time for NJ TRANSIT to take a new look at its rules, which seems to assume that cyclists are only boarding 2PM trains out of Penn Station.

Here is a suggested Change:

  • On Fridays Before Major Holidays and the Eve's of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur Bikes are not permitted to board trains leaving New York or Hoboken between the hours of 12 noon and 7:00 PM. Otherwise regular restrictions apply.
  • Bicycles are allowed on all trains on Major Holidays and the Friday After Thanksgiving, conductors reserve the right to restrict bike access due to crowding.

We would love to have a conversation with NJ TRANSIT to discuss creating more reasonable bike access rules.


Andy B from Jersey said...

Thanks for the reminder John.

I was just riding the (still) beautiful back roads to the east of the NE Corridor between New Brunswick and Princeton Jct on Sunday morning, July 4th. The roads were deserted of 4 wheel traffic as everyone is down the shore or someplace else for the holiday. As I was riding I was toying with the idea of going to Princeton Jct and taking the train back to New Brunswick but decided against it since there was so much good riding to do on the way back.

I never thought of the holiday restrictions on NJ TRANSIT on Independence Day. I'm quite sure the trains would have been as empty as the roads I was riding on (which included a deserted US 130). What a waste of an empty train.

I wonder if the restriction are in effect for tomorrow on July 5th since that is when most people have off for the holiday?

Anonymous said...

A good topic!
NJT conductors also should be allowed to use their discretion. I was on a train out of NYC just after 4 pm one Friday and a cyclist was trying to board. I bet he'd have been fine at the very front of the train, but he was being told to wait til 7 pm.
Also, NJT and the RiverLine should consider a weekend cycling advertising campaign -- take the train to go riding, or take the train one way. Did you see that Amtrak will be getting more cycle-friendly between Pittsburgh and DC? Sounds like they've realized that the C&O Canal and Great Allegheny Passage can be good for business. The East Coast Greenway and the state's High Point to Cape May route (at least to Princeton Junction) could be good for NJT.