Keeping the Subways Running Smoothly
February 5th, 2007
Albany is letting NYC’s subways go to seed while it pays a disproportionate amount to keep commuter train lines in top shape, a report from city Comptroller William Thompson released last Thursday claimed. At the same time, the MTA is increasingly stricken with debt, and its capital plan is far over budget.
“News of this kind feels like one shoe dropping,” writes the Times in an editorial today, “in this case leaving open the possibility of a fare hike, service cuts, or both.”
For this part, the comptroller wants to see more money — some $673 million — from Albany to pay for the needed maintenance and upgrades to fans that get smoke out of the tunnels, and lighting and communication systems.
The Times agrees that the system is being underfunded, and says that “a realistic contribution from Albany” is needed. If it comes down to it, the paper argues, maintenance must take priority over development projects like the 2nd Avenue Subway.
The Post also weighs in. It agrees with Thompson’s diagnosis, but says he is making the wrong prescription.
“If there’s not enough money to keep the system’s infrastructure up to speed, perhaps the fare should go up.”By Joshua Brustein on February 5, 2007, 12:25 pm
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