WRITTEN BY EVAN KELLER
The MTA will roll out more than 2,000 new buses featuring Wi-Fi and USB charging ports by 2020, Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced.
“We’re reimagining the MTA to improve services for all New Yorkers,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Today’s world demands connectivity, and we’re meeting that challenge with state-of-the-art buses and a major overhaul of the MTA’s fleet.”
2,042 buses will be equipped with Wi-Fi hotspots. The first 75 will make their debut in the second and third quarter of this year in Queens, and over the next two years commuters will get 70 in Brooklyn, 209 in the Bronx and 18 in Manhattan.
The rest of the buses will be assigned to various routes throughout the five boroughs between 2018 and 2020
“Our new buses will also have a new look and new energy to convey this dynamism as we bring rapid improvements to our customers,” MTA President Hakim said in a statement. “More than 2 million people depend on New York City buses on its busiest days, and as the Governor has made explicitly clear, we must enhance our transit system to improve everyone’s daily experience.”
The MTA is also working on upgrading existing busses with Wi-Fi and USB charging ports and will be finished doing so by the end of 2017.
“Wireless connectivity is prevalent in the lives of our customers,” MTA Chairman and CEO Tom Prendergast said in a statement. “More and more people are using Wi-Fi enabled devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets and e-book readers on a daily basis and the MTA can accommodate this growing trend by introducing high-speed connectivity and charging ports on-board MTA buses.”
Buses will also have 35 to 55 USB ports and two or three LCD screens that will provide updates and advertisements.
This is all part of a larger plan to upgrade the MTA system, bringing it into the 21st century and making life much easier for the 8.7 million commuters who use the agency’s services daily.