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Sunday, June 7, 2020

The NYC "Great White Fleet" Subway Cars!

Spooky ghost train or massive, rolling blank canvas just waiting to be tagged?

There was a brief period in the early 1980's where NYC made the perplexing decision to paint more than 7,000 subway cars all WHITE.

Why? The infamous paint job was conceived as an ill-fated effort to combat the graffiti which had run amok at the time. Particularly on the 7-Line cars as they rolled through Queens.

The MTA broke out this infamous plan based on the idea of negative reinforcement - all cars would be painted bright white with hope that graffitists would be hesitant to deface such pristine beauty. The repainted cars were launched with much grandeur and known as “The Great WhiteFleet".

You might be shocked to hear this next part: The plan failed miserably and the cars’ original colors were restored quickly.

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