Urban Fold

Should Cities Sell Naming Rights to Transit Stations?

Philadelphia is considering renaming a stop on the Broad Street Subway 'AT&T Station' for $3 million. With transit agencies hurting, is this a solution or a sell-out?

Yonah Freemark comments that Philadelphia's complete rename of the station, which replaces the station name completely on all maps and signage, "will remove the sense that the station's name in some way denotes the urban geography of the place it serves."

"The whole situation raises the frightening prospect in the near future that, instead of riding the Broad Street Subway from City Hall to Pattison, people will take the Coca-Cola Trolley from Pizza Hut to AT&T."

Freemark also singles out Detroit and Pittsburgh as other cities considering this approach.

Full Story: Philadelphia May Accept Money to Privatize Station Naming; Pittsburgh Considers Similar Move

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