Where do all the taxis go?

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January 11, 2011

The NY Times has an interesting article that explains for the first time why the supply of taxis decreases by 20% at 5:00 PM rush hour when you need them the most. The reason is that each cab is used by two cab drivers per 24-hour period. They have to allow each driver to get a rush hour, so the 5:00 PM compromise was made. Other times would require odd shift hours at night. This was all fine when taxi stations were in Manhattan, but has rents rose, the taxi stations moved to Queens, etc, requiring long commutes by the cabs and dead time in Manhattan.

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