Transit Riders Won Congestion Pricing. We Deserve To See It Happen

“With years of work, riders pried congestion pricing from a recalcitrant Albany. We intend to see the program fully and fairly rolled out next year. When congestion pricing is implemented, drivers will pay their equitable share to access the most heavily trafficked and transit adjacent neighborhoods in the United States.”

Adi Talwar

Friday evening traffic at the intersection of 42nd Street and 6th Avenues in Manhattan.

Everyone’s talking about congestion pricing, again. In 2019, after more than five decades of pushing for a comprehensive program to toll vehicles entering Manhattan’s central business district, congestion pricing was made law. The policy would help remedy gridlock while raising billions to finally fix the subway.

The conventional wisdom is that New York passed congestion pricing because the subway was broken and that was the deciding factor for legislators. But ancient signals didn’t lobby Albany policymakers. Door problems didn’t prod the governor to act. Inaccessible stations didn’t join the fight for change. Instead, thousands of subway and bus riders organized. Together, we won a plan and funds dedicated to fix our public transit system.

With years of work, riders pried congestion pricing from a recalcitrant Albany. We intend to see the program fully and fairly rolled out next year. When congestion pricing is implemented, drivers will pay their equitable share to access the most heavily trafficked and transit adjacent neighborhoods in the United States.

In congestion pricing, riders will reap a lockboxed revenue stream that will make our subway far more reliable and accessible, upgrading signals across the city and paying for hundreds of new station elevators and modern subway cars. 

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