My favorite object of institutional incompetence are the unused train arrival displays hanging in many stations. Some of them were installed years ago and yet they still are covered up with plastic.
The MTA is in total crisis. The operational budget has barely adjusted for inflation, city and state funding is paltry, and it’s been intentionally loaded up with debt. Arrival times are just a bit more reliable than a coinflip because it’s running on century old infrastructure that needed replacing decades ago. Most graffiti is gone, but the subways are still dirty as fuck, and resources for station upkeep are put towards garbage mosaics or, even worse, train car poetry. Fare is slated to rise to $3.00 and one of the city’s busiest lines is scheduled to shut down for over a year for a long neglected overhaul.
It’s nothing short of miraculous that anything runs at all.