About RIOC’s Proposed Miracle Budget, Balanced, Jams More People on Tram Cabins

About RIOC’s Proposed Miracle Budget, Balanced, Jams More People on Tram Cabins

State agencies’ proposed and actual budgets must balance each year. RIOC is no exception. For the coming fiscal year, they balanced a miracle budget with money from a vast increase in Tram ridership. That’s right, the overloaded, rocking and wobbling cabins, RIOC says, will welcome over 50% more riders next year.

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

RIOC’s Miracle Budget

“RIOC’s Proposed Budget FY 2024‐25 projects revenues of $39,155,275, an increase of $4,875,275 or
14.22%,” the proposed budget narrative says. And You Know Who will pay for it.

One innovation being studied is copying the San Francisco Trolly System. If RIOC adds foot rails alongside the cabins, at least in fair weather, that increases cabin capacity in relation to how many RIOC and POMA get to take the dare. Costs for safety equipment and for insurance may lessen the benefit.

It’s another massive drag on residents’ resources, but the most dazzling piece shows up in how they say they’ll pay for about half the increase. That is, they’ll cram more riders into the Tram cabins.

Tramway revenues are projected to increase by $2,455,439 or 53.06% mainly due to the adoption of OMNY and ridership increase. Innovative solutions must be found, and we’re here to help.

brown wooden logs covered with snow
Modeling after economics in lumber yards, with appropriate safety and privacy add-ons, passenger stacking could make better use of all that empty space under the roof. Segregation by gender might be essential, but what about non-binary riders? RIOC’s brain trust can figure that out.

In the current fiscal year, RIOC expects a total of $4,628,173 in Tram revenue. But for next year, that number soars to $7,083,439.

A conscientious reader might imagine that a better revenue-sharing deal with the MTA is part of it. But no, depriving the MTA of the $100,000+ they steal every month is not in the calculations.

girl climbing on a ladder to the top bunk bed
Inspired by dormitory bunk beds, doubling up offers some promise. As with other ideas, RIOC managers must make sure passenger views are not restricted. What would YouTube and TikTok with the daily banquet of Tram videos?

Finally, RIOC’s deep thinkers must consider shelving as a way of better utilizing space. If it works in the bus garage, why not on the Tram?

Shelving - Old Lolly Shop, Carlton North, circa 1939


We’re confident that RIOC’s brainy management team can come up with even better solutions. So, we’re looking forward to the fun of the year ahead and seeing tourists side-boarding on the Tram cabins or snugly getting to know each other while stacked like logs with strangers

Then, they’ll know how Roosevelt Islanders have felt the last few years.

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