Boro Taxis can be hailed on the street or using a smartphone and are intended to serve the outer boroughs where the yellow taxis aren’t quite as familiar of a sight. These green taxis pick up anywhere except on Manhattan’s east side south of 96th Street and on the West side south of 110th Street.
The city’s Street Hail Livery program began accepting driver applicants on June 7th and this past weekend we saw of the green hybrid taxis “in the wild” in Astoria. The users hailed it using UberX on the Uber App and it cost $34 flat to get from Astoria to Columbus Circle. Although the Boro taxis are just in the pilot stages, the plan is to release 6,000 livery licenses per year until a max of 18,000 are issued.
There have been various lawsuits related to the Boro Taxis as well. Last year the State Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional because City Council was bypassed in the decision making. The New York State Court of Appeals reversed the decision on June 6th and the city opened the application process the next day. In July, the Metropolitan Taxi Cab Board of Trade attempted to stop the program when the city sent a notice no longer requiring GPS for the Boro taxis. According to Capital New York, the group was miffed because “the administration promised that the all borough taxis would be outfitted with GPS technology, so that the city could track the cars and ensure that they weren’t poaching rides from yellow cabs in the city’s central business district.” The city responded by simply taking back the notice, and the taxis will all have GPS now.
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