By REZA MALEK
New York City buses are about to catch up to modern technology.
Riders will see a major upgrade as it was announced this week that the MTA is adding more high-tech buses to its fleet over the coming years.
Over the next five years, the MTA will introduce 2,000 new buses to the streets of New York, all equipped with USB charging ports and free Wi-Fi. The new buses, which will begin to roll out as early as April, will cost roughly $1.3 billion and will replace 40 percent of the current buses.
“I think that it’s a good idea. At least with the charging port part, it’ll reduce impatience during longer bus rides or traffic,” said Joshua Bolanos, a student at Berkeley College. “I’d probably take buses more, depends on where I’m going.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio said that Internet access has become a necessity From charging ports to Wi-Fi, this new MTA fleet will provide critical tech services that New Yorkers depend on each day,” he said.
As it becomes easier to check emails and surf the web, phones will surely be out more in buses across the city–which some see as a call for caution.
“I think people will be more nervous, especially on buses. At least I will,” said Ben Gutierrez, a student at Hunter College. “I feel it’s easier for a robbery to occur especially because it’s not like trains where most stations have several police officers. It’s so much easier for them on a bus.”
He didn’t see the expense as necessary. “”Y get mobile signal on busses anyways,” Gutierrez added.
According to MTA Chairman Tom Prendergast, an updated technology system is becoming more and more a necessity.
“We are fully committed to meeting Gov. Cuomo’s challenge head-on to ensure the entire MTA is focused on delivering improvements to the people who rely on us every day,” he said.