Will de Blasio Scrap the New Outer Borough Taxi Cab System?

Categories: Taxis

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You're walking down the street, and you pass a cab. Nothing out of the ordinary, it seems, except instead of the traditional yellow the cab is painted a sickly neon green. You rub your eyes. Yup, still green. That's because you've just happened upon an Outer Borough Taxi, one of more than 1,000 already on the road since the program opened in June. For those of us who live in the outer boroughs (read: most of us), this is welcome news: There's nothing worse than standing on a street corner for 20 minutes waving your hands around like and idiot trying to catch a yellow cab that will never come. So why might Bill de Blasio shut down the program when he transitions into office?

The de Blasio campaign took $300,000 from the yellow-cab industry, which feels threatened by the prospect of 18,000 new taxis on the streets by the end of 2015, According to Crain's.

The program is nothing if not popular. The green cabs have given nearly 300,000 rides since the start of the program, according to the Taxi and Limousine Commission.

So why is De Blasio not totally on board with the program if it is clearly serving a need? He is, after all, on the record saying he wants to "go back to the drawing board" while maintaining that his position has nothing to do with being cowed by yellow-cab donors.

In a statement to the Voice, TLC chairman David Yassky demurred on the issue of de Blasio transition, instead pointing to not just the popularity of green cabs among riders, but among potential taxi drivers, too. There's money to be made in serving a serious need (In the early days of the program, there were reports of impostor green cabs on the streets).

The full statement:

The Mayor has pledged a seamless transition with the incoming administration, and that certainly extends to the TLC. This process is underway, however today we are focused on the several important milestones (all 6,000 available permits have been issued, and there are more than 1,000 Boro Taxis already on the road), and that both the drivers and passengers are very happy with the new service and how it has improved their lives. Over 1,500 community livery drivers have already joined a waiting list in eager anticipation of the next batch of 6,000 permits, which will be available starting next June, and we're looking forward to helping them achieve their dream.

The Voice finds itself in an unfamiliar position: agreeing with Mayor Bloomberg, who praised the program on Tuesday for its successes.

"It's good for everybody. It's good for yellow cabs, it's good for green cabs ... and it's good for the people of New York," said Bloomberg according to a report by the Daily News.

Send your story tips to the author, Raillan Brooks.



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8 comments
ecsredeye
ecsredeye

As an aging full time taxi driver who works a 72 hour week to meet his basic obligations I sincerely hope deBlasio dumps Bloomberg's "sounds good to me- make it happen" cockamamie taxi schemes, and they go the way of his "brilliant" group ride plans. These changes have no feasability or environmental studies to back them up - they're just "sounds good" demogoguery. The author knows nothing about the taxi business or how it works and neither do Michael Bloomberg nor the typical Voice commenter. All Brooks knows is that he doesn't like waiting for a taxi. If I lived on a quiet street in a quiet neighborhood I would expect to have to walk to a major thoroughfare or call A car service. Is it really necessary to destroy thousands of livelihoods?

Konstantin Vilenchitz
Konstantin Vilenchitz

de Blasio hasn't had a day in office yet and there are so many cringe worthy stories coming out about his intended changes and policies. I remain cautiously optimistic but this doesn't bode well.

Beth Sherman
Beth Sherman

Hm. Not everyone is so happy with this because the metered green cabs can cost considerably more than what the car service drivers charge to shuttle folks around. But if yellow cab drivers are threatened they should stop being jerks when people want to go to the Bronx. I am hoping de B leaves it alone.

MissKaye Hanes
MissKaye Hanes

That must be exclusive to Queens. The black cars in the Bronx have always offered fair and equitable service...at least to me. I've never paid more than ten dollars to travel in the Bronx, unless I was going way up in the upper Bronx. To take me from my home in Classon Point to my job in Midtown, the fare has always been 35American. I usually give a five to ten dollar tip for that ride. A Yellow Taxi going the same distance can and has cost me between forty and fifty American.

Michael Dicarlis
Michael Dicarlis

DeBlassio is an idiot. I live in queens until now only black car service was available. those peeps rip you off. i welcome the green cabs. more competition. more jobs. etc.

ecsredeye
ecsredeye

Thank your lucky stars you havent been cheated out of your wages time and time again which is what fare beaters do to taxidrivers. Unfortunately for many Bronx residents a night out partying at a few clubs just isn't complete without jumping out of a taxi at a red light, leaving a door wide open. Ask me how I know.

Http://pleasedontvomitinthetaxi.blogspot.com

ecsredeye
ecsredeye

And this informal not perfect yet functional system that has done its job for decades and workscwell for you and many other people has to be defended from ignorant selfish people who want to live on a quiet street but have a taxi driver slave outside their door awaiting their royal whim.

http://pleasedontvomitinthetaxi.blogspot.com

ecsredeye
ecsredeye

Mike when you can walk from your doorstep up the street to Charles Schwab let me know. My guess is it makes no business sense for them to locate on your block. Same for me. I need people who dont drive to their errands etc who have credit cards that are not maxxed out.

Http://pleasedontvomitinthetaxi.blogspot.com

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