This past weekend, straphangers purchasing their MetroCards in one of ten stations in Manhattan might have noticed a major change. Replacing the card’s iconic gold front were multicolored letters reading “Be Bright NYC” on a navy blue background accented by a “Gap” logo and finished with the card’s signature black strip.
Yup, that’s right. For the first time since the MTA launched MetroCards more than 15 years ago, front-facing advertisement is taking over the familiar design that greets New Yorkers and many tourists that purchase MetroCards at hundreds of booths and vending machines throughout the city. In an effort to promote the opening of its newly remodeled flagship store at 34th St and Broadway, Gap becomes the first brand to take advantage of this new advertising space. (Those who get their hands on these MetroCards also get a 20% discount on merchandise purchases through November 18, 2012.)
As advertisers looking for more creative spaces to gain consumers’ attention, could this mean the beginning of the end of the iconic gold MetroCard front? If it means that fares no longer increase, we’re sure many New Yorkers may be in favor.