In fact, environmental challenges and public safety were Transit's biggest challenge, Bayne said. The provider had to use hardened equipment that could hold up against extreme temperature changes, potential water damage, and even vandalism, while also ensuring the equipment could support demanding high-performance networking requirements.
The New York City subway system also runs 24/7, making the deployment of the equipment a unique challenge, too, he added.
"We had to find a way to install networks in nearly 300 stations, while minimally disturbing traffic, so we had to do most of our work between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. We could only work in 20-minute bursts across the tracks to get equipment installed and also let trains through."
The project comes at no cost to New York taxpayers. Transit has invested more than $300 million into the connectivity project, and each service provider or agency with services present on the network is paying Transit to operate the network. The revenue from the carriers, in addition to revenues derived from additional network services offered on the network, will be shared between Transit and the MTA, Bayne said.
Down the road, Transit's network will help the MTA modernize the subways system by powering new services, such as digital advertising screens and train arrival countdown clocks.
"It's almost like a technology hotel," Bayne said. "We are an extension of the service provider's networks, and our network can connect users who expect to be connected wherever they are, to the outside world."