Keeping NY on Track
Keeping New York on Track, a report released by ULI New York and the Permanent Citizen’s Advisory Committee to the MTA, brings awareness to the importance of the MTA Capital Program in maintaining the broad range of benefits that the MTA transit network brings to our region.
Facts At A Glance
- 90% of workers in the New York metro area live in neighborhoods served by public transit.
- Since 1982, annual ridership up 72 percent on New York City subways, 32% on NYC buses, 73% on Metro-North, and 19% on the Long Island Rail Road.
- Since 1982, on-time performance improved by 14% on NYC subways, 6% on NYC buses (since 1989), 17% on Metro-North, and 6% on the Long Island Rail Road.
- Since 1982, mean distance between mechanical failures declined by 2,034% on NYC subways, 425% on NYC buses, 746% on Metro-North, and 1,173% on the Long Island Rail Road.
- Every weekday, the 4/5/6 carries more commuters than the total ridership of San Francisco, Chicago, and Boston combined.
- MTA’s proposed 2015-2019 Capital Program is $32 billion, with $22.2 billion going to renewal, $4.3 billion to enhancements, and $5.5 billion going to network expansion, including the Second Avenue Subway and East Side Access.
- Initial examination of capital reinvestment levels suggests that MTA’s rate of investment (1.1%) is significantly lower than those of comparable private firms, which range from 6% to 12%.
- Regional commuters from Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, and Rockland Counties bring home $36 billion of city-earned income each year: Nassau ($15.4 billion), Suffolk ($7.1 billion), Westchester ($11.4 billion), Rockland ($1.8 billion).
Study Calls For Full Funding Of MTA Capital Program, Citing Benefits To New York
Urban Land Institute New York and Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee To The MTA Unveil New Report Ahead Of Final Decisions On 2015-2019 Program
NEW YORK, NY — The Urban Land Institute New York and Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the Metropolitan Transport Authority unveiled a new study and microsite highlighting the economic benefits of the MTA’s capital investments and calling for full funding of the MTA’s 2015-2019 Capital Program.
The report, Keeping New York On Track: The Importance of the MTA Transit Network in a Changing World examines the importance of the Capital Program to the continued economic and social vitality of New York, concentrating on its support of regional economic strength, social equity, and neighborhood growth. The study makes the case for a fully funded Capital Program that would renew the existing system and expand capacity to meet increasing ridership demand.
“The MTA’s Capital Program helped bring a struggling subway system back to life in the early eighties,” said Robert C. Lieber, Chairman of ULI New York. “Today, the MTA faces a new set of challenges, be it the growing threat of climate change or growing competition from other cities. With New York City at a crossroads, the need for a robust Capital Program is stronger than ever.”
The MTA’s capital investments have helped boost the growth and transformation of new neighborhoods like Williamsburg, the Far West Side and Long Island City, increasing ease of access for locals and tourists alike. The growing transportation network has also promoted social equity, giving New Yorkers across the city access to an affordable form of transit to offset the rising costs of housing. New York was ranked the fourth most affordable transportation network of 15 major global cities in a recent study, and transportation costs make up only 9% of a New Yorker’s budget, less than most other US cities.
William Henderson, Executive Director of PCAC added: “We need to focus on continuing to deliver to New York commuters an affordable, accessible transit network that is equipped for the challenges of tomorrow. As the state’s leaders determine the final shape of the Capital Program, it is vital that they keep everyday New Yorkers at the top of their agenda.”
The MTA Capital Program, started in 1982 to revive the Metropolitan Transportation Authority after years of decline, has injected billions into NYC Transit, Metro-North, and the Long Island Rail Road. As a result, annual ridership is up 72 percent on New York City subways, while train delays and mechanical failures have plummeted.
Yet the system now faces new challenges, including overcrowding, the growth of neighborhoods in the outer boroughs, the destructive impacts of climate change, and increased global competition. For the first time since World War II, more people are moving to New York City than Long Island, New Jersey and Southwest Connecticut combined, exhausting the capacity of trains and buses. Expansions like the Second Avenue Subway will be required in coming years to accommodate this added capacity. The MTA also badly needs a tune-up: PriceWaterhouseCoopers ranked New York’s transportation infrastructure 16th, behind London, Hong Kong, and Paris. With the added threats of climate change to boot, it is clear the MTA still has more work to do on getting its infrastructure up to speed.
“Our findings show what any New Yorker already knows: underinvesting in transit is bad for business, bad for commuters, and bad for the future of New York,” said Eric Rothman, President of HR&A Advisors, who were commissioned by ULI NY and PCAC to produce the report. “This report demonstrates that a fully funded Capital Program is in the best interests of New Yorkers.”
To read the report, please visit ULI New York and PCAC’s newly launched website, http://www.keepnyontrack.org/.
About the Urban Land Institute New York
ULI New York serves as the principal forum for real estate professionals in the New York area. The organization provides its members with educational and informational forums, as well as professional networking opportunities, to influence important issues in land use policy and real estate development. In so doing, ULI New York provides leadership in the responsible use of land and in creating and sustaining thriving communities.
For more information, please visit newyork.uli.org.
About the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the MTA
The Mission of the Permanent Citizens Advisory Committee to the MTA (PCAC) is to give users of MTA subway, bus, and commuter rail services a voice in the formulation and implementation of MTA policy, and to hold the MTA Board and MTA management accountable to riders. The PCAC also provides the MTA with informed and timely advice on such matters as service, finance, intergovernmental relations, communication and management. The PCAC consists of 38 members, all of whom are regular MTA commuters on Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North Railroad, and New York City Transit.
For more information, please visit www.pcac.org.