Officials Considering Security Cameras for NYC Subways

May 24, 2006
Concerns over vandalism and other crimes prompt preliminary discussion of CCTV application

NEW YORK_The city's commuters could land on TV if transit officials approve a proposal to install security cameras on subway cars.

Officials are in preliminary talks on the idea, said Michael Lombardi, New York City Transit's senior vice president for subways. It is unclear how much the closed-circuit cameras would cost, he said Monday.

The cameras would be used in part to catch graffiti vandals, said Andrew Albert, a Metropolitan Transportation Authority board member.

"It could probably stop other crime as well, and perhaps they could catch a terror suspect," he said.

Other anti-vandalism efforts discussed Monday at an MTA committee meeting included a $25 million (€19.6 million) proposal to replace most subway windows, many of which have been permanently scarred by knives and etching acid.

The new windows, to be placed in about 5,000 cars, would have a polyester coating that could be peeled off and replaced when damaged by graffiti. The coating is already in use in the newest of the system's 6,200 cars.

Money for the project will be included in a proposed 2007 budget that the authority will consider this year, said Lombardi.