The Market For Subways

Jun 6 2012 @ 7:34am

Timothy B. Lee reads up on the history of NYC's subway system. He asks libertarians to address the "the tricky questions raised by this kind of infrastructure project":

In the early 20th century, there was widespread skepticism of government subsidies for transit projects. But city planners found they couldn’t convince private firms to create subways without sweetening the pot. For example, when the government sought bids for private firms to construct a subway line without subsidies in 1892, they didn’t receive a single serious proposal. This despite the fact that the 1892 franchise would have offered the winning bidder favorable terms, with minimal regulatory oversight, and run for 999 years.