MetroCards Reborn

Stephen Shaheen creates a bench using MetroCards

Artist Stephen Shaheen attaches a sheet of MetroCards to the steel frame of the seating structure he designed. Shaheen used approximately 5,000 discarded MetroCards in the completed bench.

By Sophia Kelley

At EPA, we spend a lot of time thinking about big environmental issues like climate change, clean water, air toxics, etc., but sometimes the little things can be vexing too. (Twist ties, for example. Anyone have creative ideas for what to do with them?) What about the ubiquitous Metropolitan Transit Authority’s MetroCard? Visitors and residents of New York City both recognize the importance of the thin piece of blue and yellow plastic; its magnetic strip has the power to open every turnstile in the city. What happens to MetroCards when they’re used up? What does the afterlife for the typical (and not-so-typical) New York City MetroCard look like? More