MTA paint jobs paralyzed by institutional indecision

By · Published in 2007

Chipped and peeling paint jobs are a routine sight in the subways. (Courtesy of flickr user tash in ny)

Sometimes, the ridiculous stories just write themselves. This is one of those times because the MTA can’t get it together to use extra cash they have floating around to paint stations that need to be painted. Yes, you read that right.

So the MTA, when the sale of Stuyvesant Town went through, earned a whopping $52 million off of the sale’s mortgage. With this money in tow, the Authority developed a five-year program during which they would paint 200 stations in need of painting. That was seven months ago.

Today, the Daily News reported that the MTA just can’t figure out how to get this program off the ground. Pete Donohue had more:

The MTA last year adopted a budget and multiyear fiscal plan calling for dozens of stations to be painted each year for a decade until every hub is refurbished with a fresh coat. Seven months later, NYC Transit hasn’t decided how to proceed with the station painting program. It’s unclear who will do the work, which stations will be among the first to get a paint job and which would be among the last to be brushed, NYC Transit spokesman Paul Fleuranges said.

“It will go forward, but I don’t know when or what the plan is,” Fleuranges said.

That’s right. It’s taken the MTA seven months (and counting) just to figure out how to proceed with the simplest of plans. MTA board member Andrew Albert summed up my feelings pretty nicely. “They haven’t started?” he asked incredulously. “It shouldn’t take a year to decide what stations to do. There’s little doubt you can find 35 stations a year that badly need a paint job.”

Among the options I came up with were flipping a coin, pulling station names out of a hat or playing that whole “tell me where to stop” game with someone’s finger and the subway map. Someone — anyone — pick a station and start there.

The 149th St.-Grand Concourse station could really use a paint job and so could some of the Bay Ridge stations on the R line. I could name 10 stations without thinking that would benefit from a fresh coat of paint. So come on, MTA. It can’t be that hard, right?

Categories : MTA Absurdity

11 Responses to “MTA paint jobs paralyzed by institutional indecision”

  1. Mike says:

    so could the 86th and Lex station!!!!

  2. Marsha says:

    I was at 125th Street and Lenox Avenue today (2 and 3 trains) and I walked by a garbage pail with a WET PAINT sign on it so I guess the MTA started there.

  3. KidTwist says:

    I can think of 468 stations that could use at least a bit of paint.

  4. Todd says:

    I’ve been thinking about this post all weekend. The anger level keeps rising… I hate the MTA so much.

    As for the “Wet Paint” signs, I always see them on garbage cans. The signs on the vertical I-Beams look like they’ve been there for years.


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