MTA expands OMNY readers to half of subway stations, accelerates bus timeline by 6 months

LONG ISLAND CITY, Queens (WABC) -- The MTA has now installed its OMNY contactless payment system at half of all New York City subway stations and is announcing plans to accelerate the timeline for OMNY on buses by six months.

The readers went online at the Queensboro Plaza station Thursday, with the MTA marking another milestone of the expansion of the system.

Transitioning the transit system to contactless payment couldn't have come at a better time for the MTA amid the coronavirus pandemic.

OMNY readers allow subway customers to pay their fare by simply tapping a contactless, bank-issued payment card or a smart device, and the number of taps continues to exceed even optimistic usage projections.

"Not even a pandemic will prevent us from completing this project on time and on budget,"OMNY Program Executive Al Putre said. "I work with the greatest team I've ever been a part of in more than three decades of service at the MTA, and I'm confident we'll reach our goals despite the historic pandemic that forced us to shut down work for 43 days beginning in March. We've spent that time strategizing about how we can still get this done in a post-COVID-19 work environment, and have accelerated many aspects of the schedule. Our recently redeployed crews, using revised work protocols with requisite PPE, have been fantastic thus far."

The MTA remains on track to deploy OMNY readers at every subway station by the end of the year.

The MetroCard will coexist alongside OMNY until 2023.

The June OMNY installation schedule has been accelerated, with nine stations activated Thursday:
- Hunters Point Av 7
- Queensboro Plaza n w 7
- Howard Beach-JFK Airport A
- Park Place S
- Botanic Garden S
- Franklin Av C S
- Franklin Av 2 3 4 5
- Prospect Park Q S
- York Street F

OMNY will also be activated at nearly a dozen other stations this month, mostly in Queens:
- Court Sq G 7
- Court Sq-23 St E M
- Astoria-Ditmars Blvd N W
- Astoria Blvd N W
- 30 Av N W
- Broadway N W
- 36 Av N W
- 39 Av N W
- 5 Av-59 St N R W
- 57 St-7 Av N Q R W
- 49 St N R W
- 28 St R W

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