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CTA to Sell Naming Rights To Anything Not Tied Down

By Chuck Sudo on Nov 11, 2010 2:15PM

Flush with pride from the beautiful renovation of the North/Clybourn Red Line Station, thanks in part to a $3.9 million deal with Apple that includes future naming rights, CTA President Richard Rodriguez announced yesterday that the Authority will soon look for other sponsors to buy naming rights for anything CTA owns that has some value and can provide exposure to a sponsor.

Rodriguez said, "Providing 1.7 million rides every single day is a value to somebody someplace. The question is, What's it worth?" That's is the $64,000 question, as any potential sponsors will want value for their dollar. And if they have to ride an "L" train with a urine-soaked hobo corner or take the Jeffrey Express to Hyde Park with Stuntman Mike at the wheel hitting every pothole on Lake Shore Drive at 60 MPH. the answer might be, "We're getting fleeced."

But the North/Clybourn station upgrades, including a glorious plaza with free wifi, shows that there's promise if the naming rights go towards improvements in amenities and service. Maybe sometime next year, we'll see the "Berlin Belmont "L" Station," "Macy's CTA Holiday Train," " 'Blue' Line by American Express" "Billy Dec's Rockit Ranch Red Line" and the "Xindy Oriental Massage Halsted Orange Line Station" coming our way..