Biking: A Less Crowded Place

1/13th  F/18  ISO-100

1/13th F/18 ISO-100

Hailing a cab is no easy task on rainy days in Manhattan. The MTA offers transportation by bus and subway, yet public transportation is still looked down by most commuters. Companies such as Uber and Lyft arrange for costly alternatives, along with cabs for private travel. Biking and walking provide a healthier and cheaper alternative. On a rainy day, it is much harder to find a cab. People no longer take the healthy option of biking or walking in the rain and unknowingly create what economists call the “Tragedy of the Commons.” Tragedy of the commons is when an individual acts independently at the cost of something from the whole group. Acting alone, we tend to forget about the effects when we are just one of a hundred thousand. Currently, there are taxicabs, and there is also a new market emerging. According to Schaller Consulting, in 2014 there was an average of 485,000 trips per day carrying about 600,000 passengers with a journey of about two and a half miles in New York City. That is twenty percent of all trips are under a mile (Taxicab Fact Book). With so many passengers avoiding public transportation, private transportation makes the streets much more clustered resulting in traffic and even adds pollution to our streets. Even at the margin, each and every single vehicle adds to the total amount of pollution. Is it necessary to add these extra vehicles?

There are alternatives for people to use! In the photograph above, it shows two alternatives to these forms of transportation. More people should be using public transportation offered by the MTA or even bicycles. In 2013, on average 340,000 people commuted by bus; a little over half as many people who were taking private cabs. The 600,000 does not take into account the amount of people using services like Uber and Lyft. More people taking public transportation would clear up our streets and reduce traffic time for the average commuter. One can also ride a bicycle. Citi Bike is not only a healthy alternative, but it limits pollution, still lets one commute alone, and is even a cheap alternative! Citi Bike costs $149 plus tax for a year! That is under fifty cents a day. A monthly metro card costs $116.50 a month averaging about $3.90 cents a day. In contrast, taxicabs start at $2.50 just for getting in the cab.

This picture was taken at the street corner of Broadway and Fulton Street in the Financial District. Although it was very cold, and snowing at times throughout the day, this biker and many others were still on using bikes as a way to commute. The sun was also shining creating a strong natural light source suited for taking photographs. The photograph shows two separate ideas. There is a bicyclist biking with no traffic in the foreground, showing how open the road is for himself to go ahead. By biking, he continues to travel alone while not effecting the environment or traffic flow. In the background, even though it is blurred out, you can see a public transportation vehicle in the form of an MTA.The settings are a little bit unusual. The ISO was also set at 100, but the exposure time was a lot slower as it was only 1/13. My biggest change was the F-stop where I shot at f/18. Lastly, it was not all just shot while holding the camera still. Because of the slower shutter and the high F-stop, I had to physically move the camera with the biker to keep the biker in focus; this created an extremely blurred background but a focus on a moving object.

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