Cyclists Win Some and Lose Some; Public Not Consulted
New Jersey Transit implemented new policies regarding bringing bicycles onto trains on July 1st. The victory for bike riders was that bikes can now be brought onto trains at all stations, not only stations with high-level platforms.
The loss for bike riders is that cyclists from New Jersey have few options if they wish to take their bikes into or toward New York City on a weekend day. Cyclists from the Garden State cannot bring their bikes onto trains scheduled to arrive in New York, Newark, or Hoboken between 9 a.m. and 12 noon, or leaving those places between 5 and 8 p.m. Cyclists on the Morris & Essex Line cannot take a train to New York later than #6912, which leaves Dover at 7:05 a.m. Returning, they must be on the 4:11 p.m. train from Penn Station, or they cannot leave the City until 8:11. There are no comparable restrictions on cyclists bringing their bikes from New York on trains that allow them to ride in New Jersey for the day.
The new policies were implemented by the NJT Board on recommendation of the North and South Jersey Transportation Advisory Committees, which do not allow members of the public to attend their meetings. There were also no hearings conducted concerning the new weekend restrictions.
The Coalition has objected to the new weekend restrictions on grounds of their severity and the lack of public input before they were approved and implemented. Coalition Secretary Gary Kazin, an avid cyclist, characterized the weekend policy as “insane”.