Public transport

Expert Voices

How tapping to pay subway fares could improve transit

A woman using the MTA's new OMNY screens on a subway turnstile.
Credit: Marc A. Hermann/MTA New York City Transit/CC BY 2.0 (Cropped)

The New York City subway system recently reached 1 million “taps” in its contactless payment system, as a growing number of public transit agencies adopt the payment technology for its convenience and efficiency.

Why it matters: Contactless payment technology can bring down operating costs and act as a test case for subsequent attempts to make subways more accessible and modern.

Expert Voices

Cities are trying to get ahead of future e-scooter rollouts

A man starts an e-scooter by a group of others left on an esplanade in Lisbon, Portugal
The scooter situation in Lisbon. Photo: Horacio Villalobos/Corbis via Getty Images.

Dockless e-scooters have arrived in cities from Austin to Paris without safety or storage guidance, resulting in imperiled pedestrians, vandalized scooters, hospitalized riders and bewildered governments — and now other cities are rushing to take proactive steps.

The big picture: Cities, especially those in the first wave to receive e-scooters, have been hamstrung in responding to unsanctioned, unregulated rollouts that call to mind Uber's playbook.