Subway merch is obviously not a new idea — you’ve all seen the subway-themed shower curtains, T-shirts, dog gear, magnets, umbrellas, and whatnot. But now there’s an entire section of Macy’s capitalizing on people’s need to buy things that remind them of their dreaded commutes. The MTA has announced their first-ever full-fledged MTA boutique, located in The Cellar of Macy’s Herald Square. It’s 1,000-square-feet, which makes it…bigger than a subway car. The collection, developed specially for Macy’s, is called NYC Underground, and in order to make the shopper’s experience as “authentic” as possible, the boutique is decorated with subway maps and benches (and other accoutrement).
No word on rats, lack of trash cans, crazy people, or rude passengers. We suspect that this clean and fancy boutique, which will be around all holiday season, is really more for tourists who will never actually ride the subway but who want to go home with an MTA water bottle to show off to all their friends who have never left Upper Sandusky. But, since sales of items will make money for the ever-budget-troubled MTA, maybe it’s a good thing? (Especially if we don’t have to go to Herald Square, and if fares don’t go up.)
We’ve asked the MTA what profits the boutique might bring in and are waiting to hear back. Currently, the authority makes “roughly $500,000 a year in fees and royalties from companies that receive licenses to use MTA logos and images.”
Meanwhile, we would like to suggest that the MTA come up with a fragrance line. We hear there’s money in that. “Waiting for the G Train”?