New York Post: MetroCard On Its Way Out

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When it comes to local news stories, the Post has a unique knack for scooping the Times, Daily News and even the Sun. Like a piece, published Monday, on how the MTA is planning to expand their smartcard program to buses and to commission a study on expanding smartcards throughout the subway system. What this means is the likely death of the MetroCard.

From the Post:

Another option is for the MTA to create its own smart-card successor to the MetroCard. Later this year the MTA expects to award a contract for a one-year study to determine the future fare payment system, NYC Transit spokesman Paul Fleuranges said. There is some urgency as the MetroCard readers and vending machines are nearing the end of their useful life, officials said.

Given the MTA’s skittishness about using any of their windfall for stabilizing fare prices or, in fact, for disclosing what they’re using their funds for… Well, it does not take a genius to realize that the MTA is planning to switch to smartcards. Smartcards (credit or debit cards used similarly to the Oyster card on the London underground) will also mean problems for the tens of thousands of commuters who lack credit cards. You know, the ones who actually make the city run.

C’mon, local dailies. Get on this story. Get the obligatory Gene Russianoff quote. There’s a story here, folks.