Corporate sponsorship on the T?

Work at Park Street will force busing along the Red Line this weekend.

Picture it — you leave McDonald’s Station at Park Street and arrive at Starbuck’s Landing on the Green Line.  

From there, you walk to the Dunkin’ Donuts stop to catch the next train.

If corporate sponsors  buy into the MBTA’s rehashed 2001 idea to sell the naming rights of subway stations, these monikers could stick.  

“It’s a possibility. We would incorporate both [the corporate name and the station name] and we would have to change signage and maps,” said MBTA GM Rich Davey, who is hoping the idea would conquer the fiscal 2012 deficit and avoid a fare hike.

Davey said some universities, which he wouldn’t name, showed interest in buying naming rights. He also said corporate sponsors have had a desire for name ownership.

The MBTA recently put out a Request For Proposal for a consultant to handle the bidding process for those rights, he said.

Ten years ago, former state Transportation Secretary Kevin Sullivan tried to raise $22 million for the T by letting companies name  stations, but ultimately there were no takers.

But since then, Davey said other agencies have had success with the idea and he thinks it could now work in the Hub.

Davey said if a passenger has enough cash, the  station could don any name that person chooses — within reason.

“I wouldn’t want someone with a lot of money who wanted to be clever and joking to confuse customers, or duplicate station names, though.” 


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