Wednesday, March 25, 2009

$2.50 For A Single Ride, and Be Prepared to Wait: The MTA Price Hikes

For those of us who wince at spending $4 to take a trip uptown, I've got some bad news: the oft whispered, dreaded fare hikes are officially coming to a public transport near you.

According to an article in today's New York Times, public transport on buses and subways will increase to $2.50 a ride, up from $2, beginning May 31st.  The hikes will also affect tolls.   

But that's not all, unfortunately.  In addition to the hikes, 35 bus routes will be eliminated, as well as the Z and W trains, which may cause overcrowding in the already often packed trains. Service will also be significantly cut on off-peak and weekend hours, while buses and commuter rail will also see a marked decrease.

And if you're thinking of saving by getting a monthly pass, think again: monthly passes will go to a staggering $103 per month, up from $81.

The changes were voted in this morning, with 12 in favor and one opposed.  The Times reports, 
"Before the vote, the board heard from a parade of M.T.A. employees, transit advocates and city officials who criticized the fare hikes and service cutbacks that would affect a system that covers two-thirds of all mass transit riders in the United States. A number complained about how the cuts would disproportionately affect the middle class, who were already struggling in the city’s economic downtown." 

But the board members were unmoved- all except sole dissenter Norman I. Seabrook.

One reader, identified only as Alex, commented, "'Let's decrease service and make it more expensive for the handful of people who still have jobs to get to work. Brilliant!'"

I couldn't have said it better myself, Alex. 


  1. i almost cried when i read this. I did the math and with the way i ride it now (approximate), comparing what i'd save with what i'd save after May 31st, I would be paying $22 more to save $7. yea. and that's only if i take that stupid train like 14 times a week.

  2. Absurd taxes in NYC? No...

    But seriously, this fare hike is going to be net bad for the city in the long run I would guess. Less traffic is less money spent on the rails and in the stores.