Has Your Transit Agency Signed On? Taken the Pledge?

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) has launched the Health & Safety Commitments Program to help “earn riders’ confidence” and encourage public transit use throughout the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.

Cuomo: No Mask? It’ll Cost You

Starting Monday, Sept. 14, New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will issue a $50 fine to any rider who refuses to wear a mask on New York City subways and buses, Metro-North Railroad (MNR), and the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR). This follows New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s executive order on Thursday, Sept. 10, directing the MTA to develop a plan to increase mask compliance.

FTA Awards $14M in Grants for 25 ‘Innovative Mobility’ Projects

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) recently announced that 25 projects in 24 states, plus the territory of Guam, would share approximately $14 million in funding through its Accelerating Innovative Mobility (AIM) initiative.

Strato Earns Spot on Top-New Jersey Business List

Strato, Inc. has ranked No. 71 on business journal NJBIZ’s 2020 list of Top 250 Privately Held Companies in New Jersey.

Marybeth Luczak Named Railway Age Executive Editor

Marybeth Luczak has returned to the Simmons-Boardman Rail Group as Executive Editor of Railway Age, effective Sept. 10, 2020.

September Railway Age Digital Edition On Line

The September 2020 issue of Railway Age is now available digitally. It includes feature stories on machine vision, top-of-rail friction management and digitalizing the Interline Settlement System, as well as a Product and Innovations Showcase spotlighting the rail supply community.

LA Metro’s Touchless TAP App

The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) on Sept. 4 extended functionality of its regional Transit Access Pass (TAP) automatic fare collection (AFC) card to the iPhone and Apple Watch, describing it as “a new and safer way to pay transit fare that allows Metro and 25 TAP transit agencies in L.A. County to offer easy, contactless bus and rail fare payment to riders.”

The Federal Transit Man: Douse Your Own Fire, MTA

There are always two sides to every story. I don’t have the financial resources to hire an army of public relations people to ghost write columns like New York MTA Chairman Pat Foye has and send them to every media outlet in town. Nevertheless, here’s my take on an alarmist op-ed that recently appeared in the New York Times, re-printed by Railway Age.

“The Subways Are Facing a Five-Alarm Fire”

“New York City cannot recover without a robust transit system, and the country cannot rebound without New York,” New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye and Transport Workers Union International President John Samuelsen wrote in a Sept. 1 op-ed published in the New York Times on what they say is “the MTA’s dire fiscal crisis.” The MTA released the op-ed to media outlets. We reproduce it here.

WMATA: “Apple Tap and Ride”

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) and Cubic Transportation Systems (CTS) have enabled the agency’s SmarTrip AFC (automated fare collection) system on the iPhone and Apple Watch, “giving transit riders a contactless way to pay for their journeys on trains and buses in Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia. In addition, Cubic and WMATA have launched a SmarTrip app, “the first mobile app for the region.”