New York City’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority will install security cameras across the city’s entire fleet of subway cars in an attempt to enhance safety, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s office announced Tuesday. The step comes as overall crime in the city increased last month.
“My number one priority as Governor is keeping New Yorkers safe,” Hochul said in a statement. “I am proud that we will be installing cameras on all Subway cars — expanding our security capabilities, deterring crime, and providing our law enforcement with support.”
Using $2 million in funding from the Urban Area Security Initiative federal grant program as well as $3.5 million from the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, more than 12,700 cameras will be purchased and installed in subway cars. In total, each subway car will receive two cameras.
According to Hochul’s office, cameras will be added to 200 train cars each month until the installation process is completed, which should be in 2025.
The funds will also expand camera coverage in around 130 of the city’s subway stations.
Currently, all of the city’s 472 subway stations have cameras, and there are about 200 cameras in 100 subway cars.
“It’s been proven time and time again that cameras in the transit system help fight crime throughout the whole city, not just on the subway,” New York City Transit president Richard Davey said in a statement Tuesday. “Expanding the camera network will serve to deter those who are intent on committing a crime from entering the transit system.”
The latest measure to curb violence in the city comes as New York City saw a 26% increase in overall crime this year in August when compared to the same month in 2021. During this time, robberies were up 38%, grand larceny increased by 34.7% and burglaries rose by 31.1%. However, August marked the fourth-lowest number of shootings for any August since the early 1990s in New York City.
Police Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell said “there is much more work to be done to address crime in our city.”
“We must push forward as we continue to advocate for further refinements to the state’s well-meaning criminal justice reforms that too many recidivists and violent criminals exploit,” she said in a statement.