The Metropolitan Transportation Authority
Official website: http://web.mta.info/
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is North America’s largest transportation network, serving a population of 15.2 million people in the 5,000-square-mile area fanning out from New York City through Long Island, southeastern New York State, and Connecticut.
It drives the New York regional economy by opening up countless job opportunities for millions – jobs that are miles from home are easy to get to with their subways, buses, and commuter trains. And after work, the network enables them to get to leisure activities: music, theater, cultural events, sports, and shopping more varied than anywhere in the country.
MTA subways, buses, and railroads provide 2.73 billion trips each year to New Yorkers – the equivalent of about one in every three users of mass transit in the United States and two-thirds of the nation’s rail riders. MTA bridges and tunnels carry more than 285 million vehicles a year – more than any bridge and tunnel authority in the nation.
While nearly 85 percent of the nation’s workers need automobiles to get to their jobs, four of every five rush-hour commuters to New York City’s central business districts avoid traffic congestion by taking transit service – most of it operated by the MTA. MTA customers travel on America’s largest bus fleet and on more subway and rail cars than all the rest of the country’s subways and commuter railroads combined.
This mobility helps ensure New York’s place as a world center of finance, commerce, culture, and entertainment, and New York ranks near the top among the nation’s best cities for business, Fortune magazine has written, because it has “what every city desires. A workable mass transit system.”
MTA mass transit helps New Yorkers avoid about 17 million metric tons of pollutants while emitting only 2 million metric tons, making it perhaps the single biggest source of greenhouse gas (GHG) avoidance in the United States. The people living in their service area lead carbon-efficient lives, making New York the most carbon-efficient state in the nation.
Over the past two decades, the MTA has committed some $98.5 billion to restore and improve the network so that today it runs at unprecedented levels of efficiency. Their employees at all of their agencies work diligently to maintain high service and safety standards.
The MTA is continuing its rebuilding and improvement efforts through the 2010-2014 Capital Program and has committed significant resources to the first substantial expansion of the network in 60 years, including Long Island Rail Road access to Grand Central, the uptown segment of a full-length Second Avenue subway, and the extension of the number 7 line west from Times Square to the Javits Center.
A public-benefit corporation chartered by the New York State Legislature in 1968, the MTA is governed by a 17-member Board. Members are nominated by the Governor, with four recommended by New York City’s mayor and one each by the county executives of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, and Putnam counties. (Members representing the latter four cast one collective vote.) All Board members are confirmed by the New York State Senate.