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Nothing ever gets easier for the MTA: NYPIRG reports that many subway phones don't work, with 27% of payphones not working. The odd thing is that seems low, because given Gothamist's subway payphone experience, they never work. Anyway, based on 540 phones in 25 stations, the survey showed that the non-working payphones had blocked coin slots or no dial tone, leading the Straphangers to complain, "Riders need station pay phones to keep in touch, especially during times of delay and emergency, when cell phones aren't an option." That's true, unless you're in one of those mysterious stations that get cellphone service.

Other interesting facts:
- The worst station is Union Square, with only 40% of the phones working; the best is Canal Street, with 95% working phones.
- An independent contractor found that over 80% of the payphones in the MTA's network work, but that included LIRR and Metro-North stations as well.
- Verizon is under contract to make sure 95% of subway payphones are in working order; Verizon claims that subway stations are hard to maintain, given vandalism, and that they do respond to complaints within 24 hours.

Well, maybe the city should (shudder) get cellphone service in subways - maybe Verizon should sponsor that development! You can see the list of the 25 subway stations in the survey via this PDF or after the jump. For payphone fun, there's a directory of payphones around the world and there's Project Payphone, which is about payphone incidents from all over.

Information from NYPIRG's Subway Payphone survey; subway station name is followed by % of payphones working

Canal Street (6JMNQRWZ) 95%
14 Street/6 Avenue 91%
42 Street/Grand Central 89%
68 Street/Hunter College 88%
West 4 Street 86%
59 Street/Columbus Circle 83%
42 Street/5 Avenue 83%
23 Street (6) 82%
Chambers Street/Brooklyn Bridge 81%
47-50 Streets/Rockefeller Center 79%
34 Street/Herald Square 75%
34 Street/Penn Station (ACE) 75%
Main Street/Flushing 75%
Bowling Green 75%
42 Street/Times Square 74%
34 Street/Penn Station (1239) 74%
Fulton Street/B'way-Nassau 69%
59 Street/Lexington Avenue 69%
Court Street/Borough Hall 68%
86 Street (456) 67%
74 Street-B'way/Roosevelt Avenue 67%
Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer 64%
Jay Street/Borough Hall 53%
Lexington Avenue/53 Street 50%
14 Street/Union Square 40%
- Top 25 Station Average 73%