Ask the MTA | Fall internships, congestion pricing grace period, and Hunter College station

Congestion pricing toll gantry in Manhattan
An unactivated congestion pricing toll gantry in Manhattan.
File photo/Aidan Graham

amNewYork Metro, in conjunction with the MTA, present “Ask the MTA,” a column where MTA officials answer your questions about transit service in New York City. If you have a question for the MTA about subways, buses, commuter rails and more, email askthemta[@]amny.com.

Q: With the summer fast approaching, I want to know if the MTA is still hiring for summer internships? If not, are internships offered at the agency during the fall? Erica P., Jackson Heights

A:  While we’re no longer accepting applications for summer positions, we are actively recruiting for our fall 2024 cohort of college aides. Students from any university can apply. Interested candidates should email emergingtalent@mtahq.org

We also have a special partnership with CUNY to offer full-time internships to students and recent grads. The application period for fall opportunities closes at the end of the day on June 3. Details are available on CUNY’s website. We’ll be conducting interviews all month. Candidates will then be selected in July and onboarded in August before the program starts in September.

Lisette Camilo, MTA Chief Administrative Officer 

Q: When congestion pricing begins, will there be a grace period on collecting tolls so customers can adjust to the new program? Magda V., Crotona

A: Starting June 30, vehicles entering the Congestion Relief Zone in Manhattan will be charged a toll. However, for the first 60 days, drivers will not be charged any additional fees or fines, such as late fees. 

Until tolls begin, we are running a robust public outreach campaign on what New Yorkers can expect when they go live. We’re hosting dozens of in-person events, including a series of six public webinars. We have a dedicated program website with explainer videos, a newsletter folks can sign up to receive, and we’re doing a ton of in-system and paid advertising. You might have seen ads already on social media and on streaming services like YouTube, Hulu, and Disney+. There’s also an email campaign underway to reach individuals and organizations eligible for discounts and exemptions, and we’ve been holding regular briefings with elected officials so they can explain the program to constituents too. 

Bottom line – we know congestion pricing is a big change for New Yorkers and we’re passionate about making sure everyone has all the facts before day one.

Juliette Michaelson, Deputy Chief, MTA Policy and External Relations   

Q: What’s the status of the ongoing accessibility project at the 68 St-Hunter College station? Virginia M., Upper East Side

A: 68 St-Hunter College is one of 38 stations currently under construction for ADA upgrades. Work is running on schedule and expected to wrap up this December. 

Once completed, customers will be able to use three brand new elevators, two new entrances (including one at 69th Street and Lexington Avenue) and two refurbished staircases to get in and out of the station. We’re also expanding the existing mezzanine and relocating utilities that span the footprint of this 105-year-old facility.

– Syed Rizvi, Senior Director of Projects and PCEO, MTA Construction & Development