BY TRISHA SAKHUJA
If you have seen an apple-green cab pass by you on the street, hail for it next time because it is a new taxi service.
“Apple green is very fitting for the new Boro Taxis,” Limousine Commission Chairman and Commissioner David Yassky said in a statement. “It’s pleasing to the eye, easy to see from a distance and blends well with the urban landscape.”
According to Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the Taxi Boro program provides safe, less costly and legal service outside of Manhattan.
Erika Leyva, external affairs analyst for the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission, presented the plan during Community Board 2’s meeting on Oct. 3.
Leyva explained, once you hail a cab, you will not need to negotiate the fare with the driver because he or she will use a metered fare, which is the same as the yellow taxi rate.
The Five Boro Taxi program aims to expand taxi service to all boroughs, not just Manhattan and the airports.
TLC spokesperson Allan Fromberg said “there are a number of vitally active shopping and transit hubs in Western Queens that we see are already benefiting from the availability of Boro taxis, and we anticipate that their popularity will only increase with time and the number of vehicles.”
The program was proposed by Bloomberg in his 2011 State of the City address, which was then passed by the NYS Court of Appeals in June.
“The new Apple Green vehicles will bring thousands of hard-working livery drivers out of the shadows and into the legal economy, increase transportation options for those in need of accessible vehicles,” Bloomberg said.
Since June, the TLC began licensing livery vehicles that are legally picking up the seven million New Yorkers, except in Manhattan, below West 110th Street and East 96th Street.
The City is allowed to sell 18,000 special hail licenses in the next three years, as well as 2,000 new medallions for yellow cabs that must be handicapped-accessible.
All Boro Taxis will have roof lights, indicating their availability, a taximeter, to standardize the fares, a GPS, a credit and debit card reader, and every taxi comes with a unique number, so you can use it to file a complaint.
Reach Trisha Sakhuja at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 128, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @Tsakhuja13.