Recent news about more problems with 264 of the 318 R179 subway cars resulting in removal from service is nothing new.
At a cost of $635 million, the MTA purchased this equipment from manufacturer Bombardier using funding provided by the Federal Transit Administration. The first cars went into service in 2017. Since the average useful life for a subway car is 40 years, this equipment is relatively new.
It should also be consistently reliable, but this has not been the case to date. I wonder if the MTA conducted a formal “lessons learned” report from this procurement?
Earlier this year, the MTA Board approved a $1.4 billion contract to Kawasaki Rail Car for the purchase of 535 new subway cars. Let's hope that the next generation of subway cars doesn't suffer from the same problems as the R179 fleet.