Discussion relating to the past and present operations of the NYC Subway, PATH, and Staten Island Railway (SIRT).

Moderator: GirlOnTheTrain

  by fordhamroad
Congratulations to the brave souls who demonstrated by shooting photos on the subways June 6th. You waved our flag as railfans, and you waved the American flag too, by asserting the constitutional rights of free Americans.
Nonetheless, security officials, transit and police are still nervous about behavior on rail lines. I do think that there should be no harassment of persons taking pictures on public property in safe areas and causing no behaviour problems. Trying to force every photographer to put up with the cumbersome and expensive processes designed for commercial firms is ridiculous. What might help both railfans and rail police is a simply obtained ID which would satisfy some security concerns and reduce potential hassle. It could be a positive way of relating rail fans and rail systems.
So, how about a RAILFAN METROCARD for persons who want to spend a lot of time riding on and photographing subways? This might involve:

-railfans submit personal info and a photograph, process similar to presently issued senior citizen Metrocard holders.

-MTA issues them a railfan Metrocard with photo ID. It could be good for one or two years, renewable, so their files are up to date. Rail cops would know the person had been vetted and was presumably ok. No big trackside discussions. Railfans would promise in the application to obey the rules, act safely, and shoot from public property or when escorted by an apppropriate MTA employee.

-railfans would be encouraged to relate positively to transit police and vice versa, to report really suspicious behavior , vandalism etc.

-MTA could sweeten the pot by giving some discounted travel time of the Metrocard when first issued, and charge a small fee. This might encourage railfans to fan even more frequently.

- since the whole senior citizen procedure is already set up, it would be easy to add a new category. MTA Subway cards would be usable as ID on the suburban lines as well.


  by JayMan
Your idea sounds too good to ever seriously be considered by the Transit Authority, unfortunately. :(

  by Otto Vondrak
I dont think it sounds like a good idea at all. We dont need special treatment or identification... and the resources that the MTA would need to invest wouldnt be worth the trouble to implement such a system. Your heart's in the right place, though.