Incoming NYC subways and buses chief Richard Davey talks safety, reliability and baby strollers on buses


The incoming president of MTA New York City Transit, Massachusetts transportation executive Richard Davey, has said his first-day priorities for the agency will be safety, reliability and cleanliness in order to get commuters back.

“The riders deserve a better system and want a better system, and so it’s incumbent upon us in transit to be efficient, to see if there are better ways to do business,” Davey said. “There’s going to have to be investment, if it’s the kind of service that New Yorkers want and deserve.”

The MTA is carrying between 50 and 60% of its pre-pandemic weekday ridership, with the subway carrying over three million riders a day, and the bus carrying more than a million riders a day.

But the MTA is struggling to provide reliable service because of crew shortages. Meanwhile, high-profile crimes and rule-breaking have kept some riders from taking mass transit as much as they did before the pandemic.

Davey said he cited safety as job number one when he starts on May 2.

“In many respects, subway systems here and around the world are the public square, so whatever’s happening out in the public spills into our subway system, that’s what’s happening now, where there’s crime, homelessness addiction,” Davey said. “So we need to bring those issues to light and help those folks where they need help and prosecute those folks when they’re doing bad things.”

Davey indicated he would be following policies and strategies for service already in place at the MTA, and did not mention any new policy or initiative when asked by NY1.

“Honestly, there’s probably some new ideas but candidly, again, having spent just a few days here, I think it’s taking the ideas that exist and accelerating the heck out of them so that they’re making a difference today,” he said.

Most recently, Davey worked at Boston Consulting Group, advising transit systems, including the MTA. He previously served as Massachusetts transportation secretary and chief of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, which operates the Boston T subway system.

“He’s dealt with the issues of an industry and a system that has financial challenges and is out there trying to win riders back,” said MTA Chairman Janno Lieber, who joined his incoming transit chief at the news conference.

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.