NYC Transit Riders Council Chairman Andrew Albert said, “We welcome the Comptroller’s recognition of the need to bring rail access to areas of the city that are underserved by subways; in fact, his proposal includes many of the recommendations we made in introducing the Freedom Ticket concept in 2015, which the MTA is now testing in southeast Queens as the Atlantic Ticket. Clearly, more can be explored when East Side Access is completed, additional capacity is added to our over-stretched trains and stations, and the new fare payment system is implemented – as we proposed in our multi-phased proposal.
“Our rail network is far-reaching and expanding its use within the city would bring service to many areas that lack access to subways, supporting economic growth and accessibility. At the same time, we also need to recognize the commuters who pay full fare and put assurances in place that their service would not suffer and that they would not bear the financial cost of this service. We look forward to learning more about whether the city would subsidize the difference in the price of the tickets, or how this reduced fare program would otherwise be funded. Conceptually we agree that expanding rail service to communities underserved by subways is a good idea – the devil is in the details, which we have yet to see.”