MTA chief wants a wired subway ride
If the MTA gets it way, subway riders trying dodge a phone call or text can no longer blame being in a station or train tunnel.
MTA chair and CEO Thomas Prendergast said the agency is continuing its installation of cellular and Wi-Fi service throughout the transit system's underground stations, and wants to eventually bring service to the tunnels.
While Prendergast said he remembers a "different world" before cellphones and beepers, today's transit riders expect a wired system.
"It is one of the features that the [Gen] X-ers and the Y-ers and the millenials consider an expectation or an entitlement, not a luxury," Prendergast said at a Citizens Budget Commission breakfast.
Transit Wireless is the company providing cellular and Wi-Fi service for the system's 277 underground stations. In April, amNewYork reported that the company was planning a pilot program to begin testing service inside the tunnels.
"We expect to get all the underground stations completed," Prendergast said. "Then we would like to move in the direction of having Wi-Fi on board trains."
Transit Wireless is covering the total cost of the station wiring, a $200 million project.