While the subways will be getting a bit chattier next year, don't expect to see more countdown clocks in your stations anytime soon. And don't even dream of seeing a countdown clock at your local bus stop—city contract-related red tape make those highly unlikely. But don't worry, the MTA is going to install more than of a hundred more of those pretty useless On The Go! machines!
“It will take substantial time," MTA senior official Craig Stewart testified during a City Council hearing on transportation technology yesterday, according to DNAinfo. What will? Installing countdown clocks on the city's lettered subway lines. They're older and harder to wire out, apparently. Though the MTA has tried! "Those efforts have fallen short in yielding the level and type of information we are seeking to provide our customers," Stewart explained.
On the plus side, the city is working hard to expand its BusTime cell phone alert service to all five boroughs. But it can't put that information up on actual bus stops because doing that would interfere with the city's street furniture contract with CEMUSA—y'know, the company who likes to blame subcontractors for your filthy bus stops.
Still! More cell service! And 100 to 150 of those giant iPad-like On The Go! machines. Don't you think the MTA has earned a little fare hike?