Why Barclays is new name on NY subway

There is a Barclay Square in London and a Barclay Street close to the where the Twin Towers once stood in lower Manhattan. But the maps of New York City will soon have to be reprinted to make way for a brand new name among the myriad already attached to stations along the subway system: Barclays Center.



In a deal signed this week, the people who run the New York subway – the Metropolitan Transport Authority – agreed that the second busiest station in the borough of Brooklyn that for decades has been known to train riders as Atlantic Avenue-Pacific Street will soon be called Barclays Center.

The name change will coincide with the completion of the first phase in early 2012 of a huge redevelopment of train yards owned by the MTA in downtown Brooklyn, the centre-piece of which will be the largest and most expensive basketball arena in the country. A certain British bank will hold the naming rights to the arena and, New Yorkers are now learning, to the subway stop that will serve it.

It is not the first time that a public transport system in America has dabbled with corporate naming deals to raise extra cash. The monorail taking gamblers up and down the strip in Las Vegas is called the Nextel after the telecommunications giant, for example. But London-based Barclays is the first company to get its name attached to a stop on the New York subway.

Critics who think the tradition of naming stops in New York according to their geographical location works perfectly well will wonder what the MTA will come up with next. Could 42nd Street be renamed Disney Junction or, worse, Tinkerbell Terminus? Perhaps Continental Airlines would like to buy the naming rights to Columbus Circle.

Officials at the authority are indeed indicating that anything that would provide more cash for a system that is already bleeding dollars would be considered. "We're not closing anything out," a spokesman commented.

Not clear, however, is how much benefit such arrangements offer corporations. Barclays, however, may have a special motivation. It is one of the most powerful banks in the world and, since it purchased much of the defunct Lehman Brothers last year, also in New York. But few denizens of the city have ever heard of it. That will soon change, particularly for those riding the subway through Brooklyn.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA celebration of British elections
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...

Ashdown Group: Database Analyst - Birmingham - £22,000 plus benefits

£20000 - £22000 per annum + excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...

SThree: Recruitment Resourcer

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped Commission: SThree: Do you want to get in...

Ashdown Group: Project Manager - Birmingham - up to £40,000 - 12 month FTC

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Project Manager - Birmingham - ...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before