Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.
search  
 
Subscribe   Subscribe   MI on Facebook Find us on Twitter Find us on Instagram      
 
 
   
 
     
 

Metro International

 

Public Transit Should be Cheaper Option

August 06, 2007

By Hope Cohen

Last month, the board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) voted to increase fares on subways, buses, and commuter trains, as well as tolls on its bridges and tunnels. This happens every few years. Politicians and harried straphangers respond with great cries of protest. More often than not, funds are found at the last minute, and the fare hike is canceled.

But this year, the city’s Independent Budget Office (IBO) put out research supporting the MTA’s need for more money. And Gene Russianoff of the Straphangers Campaign says, “If we don’t get financial help soon, transit riders will face whopping fare hikes.” He is looking to Mayor Bloomberg’s congestion pricing plan to bring in billions of dollars for upgrading and expanding the transit system.

In fact, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released the same day as the MTA decision, the magic words “fare hike” instantly make congestion pricing more popular: 58% of New York City voters support it to prevent the increases.

Besides the transit investments that would be made possible by congestion fees, it’s important to wait for congestion pricing before raising bus and train fares for another reason: providing an economic incentive to use public transportation. A 2006 Manhattan Institute study found that New Yorkers strongly believe in making sure every public transportation trip is less expensive than the equivalent trip by car—to encourage people to take transit.

This city needs less driving, not more. The mayor is right to point out the economic, environmental, and health issues associated with cars and trucks. City Hall’s congestion pricing program is part of a larger effort to solve the traffic problem. Get people out of their automobiles. Urge more walking and biking. Add bus service. Raising transit fares when driving is perceived as “free” would be going in the wrong direction.

The city and the region need Long Islanders to choose the LIRR over the LIE, Jerseyites to choose NJ Transit over the NJ turnpike�and residents of the five boroughs to choose buses and subways over driving the city’s roads and bridges. Fares, fees, and tolls—what the transportation pros call travel pricing—should encourage New Yorkers to leave their cars at home, not drive them into Manhattan.

Original Source: http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/_nymetro-transit_should_be_cheaper.htm

 

 
PRINTER FRIENDLY
 
LATEST FROM OUR SCHOLARS

Reclaiming The American Dream IV: Reinventing Summer School
Howard Husock, 10-14-14

Don't Be Fooled, The Internet Is Already Taxed
Diana Furchtgott-Roth, 10-14-14

Bad Pension Math Is Bad News For Taxpayers
Steven Malanga, 10-14-14

Proactive Policing Is Not 'Racial Profiling'
Heather Mac Donald, 10-13-14

Smartphones: The SUVs Of The Information Superhighway
Mark P. Mills, 10-13-14

Failing The Subways -- On Track For Debt And Decay
Nicole Gelinas, 10-13-14

The Free Speech Movement Won, But Free Speech Lost
Sol Stern, 10-12-14

Book Review: 'Breaking In' By Joan Biskupic
Kay S. Hymowitz, 10-10-14

 
 
 

The Manhattan Institute, a 501(c)(3), is a think tank whose mission is to develop and disseminate new ideas
that foster greater economic choice and individual responsibility.

Copyright © 2014 Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, Inc. All rights reserved.

52 Vanderbilt Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10017
phone (212) 599-7000 / fax (212) 599-3494