June Monthly Meeting: Roundtable on Airbnb, Dockless Bike Shares, and New High Rises
The June Meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 12, 2018 at 7:30 pm at Education House, 5 Homeside Lane, White Plains, NY. The meeting will be a Roundtable on three topics of concern for our neighborhoods: Airbnb, White Plains' new Dockless Bike Sharing Program, and the spread of new high-rise construction outward from City Center to suburban neighborhoods.
Airbnb is an online broker for short-term lodging rentals and leases, for travel experiences such as tours, walks, concerts, workshops, etc., and for restaurant reservations. What is disruptive about its business model is that most of the lodging is leased or rented from unlicensed, private individuals offering a room or suite in their house or apartment or sometimes the use of their entire house. Hotels lose bookings, cities lose tax revenue, and neighbors get unexpected and sometimes unwanted transients. Have you used Airbnb? Should it be permitted in White Plains? Should it be regulated by the City?
DOCKLESS BIKE SHARING
Another segment of the sharing economy debuted in White Plains on Monday, June 4, when two app-driven dockless bike sharing companies -- LimeBike and ofo -- put 300 two-wheelers on City streets at $1 a ride. What's different about the new program is that at the end of the ride, bikes can be parked almost anywhere. The City sees Metro North commuters using dockless bikes and existing bike lanes to scoot to the station on time. Naysayers see vehicular traffic slowed by bikers, pedestrians tripping over hastily "dropped" bikes, and vandals sabotaging the program, as happened in Yonkers where bikes were tossed in the Saw Mill River. What do you think about the program? It costs taxpayers nothing or does it?
HIGH-RISE CONSTRUCTION AND URBAN SPRAWL
A number of new high-rise apartment complexes have been recently completed, are under construction, or are planned for the near future in White Plains. These include 52 Broadway, 65 Lake Street, Broadstone White Plains, 440 Hamilton Avenue, 1 Dekalb Avenue, 121 Westmoreland Avenue (Norden Lofts), 136 Westmoreland Avenue, 55 Bank Street (The Continuum), 60 South Broadway (The Pavilion), and 95 South Broadway and 4 Lyon Place (The Esplanade). The newer projects bring traffic, noise, and congestion to neighborhoods once dominated by single family homes and open land. For the City, urban sprawl promises relief from a disproportionate reliance on the City sales tax and nuisance revenues. For residents, the sprawl signifies an unwelcome change in the quality of life.
The meeting will be a Neighborhood Roundtable for WPCNA delegates, residents and the public. We hope to facilitate a healthy dialog to better understand the issues, opinions and ideas coming out of our neighborhoods. We all look forward to your input.
The meeting is open to the public -- bring your friends and neighbors -- and will start promptly at 7:30 pm. Light refreshments will be served.
This is sure to be a lively evening so please come early to allow time for audience participation and networking.
1. Annual WPCNA dues for 2018 are still only $25. Neighborhood association delegates should bring a check payable to WPCNA to the meeting or mail their check to WPCNA/Tom Osbeck PO Box 602 White Plains NY 10602. One check per association.
2. 2018 Meeting Schedule 1/9/2018, 2/13/2018, 3/13/2018, 4/10/2018, 5/8/2018, 6/12/2018, 9/11/2018, 10/9/2018, 11/13/2018, 12/11/2018. All meetings are second Tuesdays.
If you'd like to speak or have a suggestion for a future WPCNA meeting, please let us know.