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NYC Transit set to unveil subway signal system project with $20 billion price tag

NYC Transit
NYC Transit set to unveil subway signal system project. Photo: Wikimedia

In the coming days it has been reported that New York City Transit Chief Andy Byford will unveil a new project to revamp the subway’s outdated signal system.

The subway signal system project could cost up to $20 billion to revamp as it is has not seen updates since the 1930s. Byford plans to install the signal system at all 472 stations.

The decision to update the system comes after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency last year after a slew of delays and train derailments that caused injuries to dozens of commuters.

New to the job, the British born Andy Byford, who has helped improve the transport systems for London, Toronto and Sydney, experienced Cuomo’s concerns first hand after only a month in his position as New York City Transit Chief when the subway’s signal system was the cause behind a five-hour delay in Queens.

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Since taking on his post, Byford has been seen riding the subway, talking to New Yorkers to get their take on how they would improve the MTA.

"To be honest, I expected to get a lot of flak but people were very appreciative that I was there," Byford shared.

While attending the Regional Plan Summit this past week, Byford supported the idea of funding the $20 billion subway signal system project by charging congestion pricing, a fee to drivers entering Mid Town an idea raised by Govenor Andrew M. Cuomo

In the meantime, Andy Byford admits that there is plenty of work to be done to earn back the public’s trust following the revelation that the New York MTA’s East Side Access Plan is a $1 billion over budget. The project began more than a decade ago. The initiative to connect the Long Island Rail Road to Grand Central Terminal has seen many delays due to construction issues, angering the public.