MTA installs new turnstiles designed to stop fare evasion

December 5, 2023

Photo courtesy of Ray Raimundi / MTA on Flickr

The traditional turnstiles at a subway station in Queens have been fully replaced with new wide-aisle fare gates, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced Monday. Designed to increase accessibility and prevent fare evasion, the new fare gates were deployed at the Sutphin Boulevard Archer Avenue-JFK Airport subway station in Jamaica. The fare gates replace the emergency exit gate at the end of the station; more than half of all fare evasion occurs through these emergency gates, according to the MTA.

Image courtesy of Ray Raimundi / MTA on Flickr

In May, the MTA unveiled the design prototype for its anti-fare-evasion turnstiles, following the release of a report by the MTA’s Blue-Ribbon Panel on Fare Evasion that found that the transit agency had lost $690 million in unpaid fares and tolls across the system in 2022. Approximately 400,000 daily riders, or 10 to 15 percent of riders, did not pay a fare.

“New York City Transit’s North Star is improving the customer experience, and we are doing just that at Sutphin Blvd by introducing new, easier-to-access, fare gates and by opening our 14th Customer Service Center,” NYC Transit President Richard Davey said.

“Customers traveling to and from JFK with their luggage, commuters transferring from the LIRR at Jamaica, and local commuters can look forward to faster, more accessible journeys, and a more welcoming station environment.”

The new fare gates feature wide aisles, making it easier for those with strollers, wheelchairs, and luggage. Additionally, at the north end of the station’s mezzanine, four traditional turnstiles installed with OMNY technology have been installed to improve customer flow.

The installation marks the first full deployment of the new fare gates in the subway system following a test pilot at the Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center station in March 2023. The MTA plans to assess the effects of the new fare gates to determine the possibility of replacing turnstiles at other subway stations in the future.

In addition to the new fare gates, the MTA has opened a new customer service center in the Jamaica station, the 14th center in the entire subway system. Historically, subway customer service has been limited to NYC Transit’s service center at 3 Stone Street in Lower Manhattan. With the new service centers, transit officials can assist commuters directly at stations within their home boroughs.

New York City Transit plans to open another center before the end of the year.

The service centers feature repurposed booths, new retail outlets, improved accessibility, OMNY technology, and a more welcoming visual aesthetic for customers. This includes new lighting, branded wrapping, and canopies with customer service agents ready to assist with signing up for Reduced-Fare, converting riders to OMNY, and other general inquiries.

NYC Transit plans to open another customer service center in the system before the end of the year.


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Location: Jamaica, Queens

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  1. S

    This is a waste of money. Who’s brother or sister-in-law owns the company that makes this?..many of the fare
    beaters. that I have seen jump over the Turn Style. or entrance way Avoiding paying the fare.
    This new entrance way will not change anything unless transit police are standing right by the entrance.

  2. C

    What makes u believe they won’t pay it looks more easier

  3. M

    Back to the drawing board if crawling underneath or holding the access points open?

  4. D

    not going to work. doors are not long or talk enough. it seems too easy to crawl or jump over them. MTA didn’t think this through.

  5. J

    That type of turnstile won’t work.
    The young and agile will climb over it. And the thin and daring will slide underneath it!

  6. R

    Just raise the price on the people who pay. That’s the progredsive solution.

  7. A

    Now stop fare evaders on the buses. I see more people getting on through the back door than paying customers. This causes the bus to be overcrowded.

  8. D

    You can’t stop fare evasion this is a waste of time and money

  9. S

    People in government have to clue how to do anything right except spend money. The MTA is crying poverty. 1) Try prosecuting people who dont pay. 2) Audit the MTA to see where they are spending money ( to much overtime, to many management people probably doing nothing that fewer couldn’t do ) 3) Investigate how many people went on disability just before they retired to see how much money is being stolen. Try doing these things before putting in new turn styles and wasting more money.

  10. T

    This is absolute waste of money. Will not work on toughened NYC criminal population.
    Which one would work? An open gate that electrocutes anything passing without a pay.

  11. K

    oh my gosh…you do realize that if a disabled person can’t get to the station because there is no elevators or escalators they will never use your new expensive turnstiles. all the increases and fare police is didly squat if I can’t go up with my heavy suitcase from any NY station.

  12. H

    Needs Escalator or Elevator at Vernon-Jackson Blvrd Stations .

    I’m 82 years old,suffering to up/ down the Subway stairs .
    Please build them,please

  13. R

    that’s even better for fare invasion. people can just walk behind another person in

  14. A

    mta made it easier to avoid fare evasion so more arrests can be made to fill police quota. there’s always a secret reason .

  15. T

    It’s really easy to evade fares when someone on the other side is close enough to the sensor for the gates to open. Much easier than the old turnstile if you ask me. If they want to implement these types of doors, they need passengers to swipe out of stations as well, the way it is for other cities with gates like these. Otherwise don’t bother wasting more taxpayer money. It is a lot easier to go in and out of the stations with suitcases id have to say, now there needs to be elevators/escalators at other stations.

  16. C

    on 2 line up in the bronx no one pays the fare on 149th street third ave your going to lose 300 million easy