New York outer borough cabs 'go green'

Posted by Mark Raby

The streets of New York City are about to get a little greener.

Unfortunately, in the context of this story, that doesn't mean the city will be reducing carbon emissions or coming up with clean energy sources.

No, in fact what we're talking about is nothing more than the actual color green. The New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission has just donned "apple green" as the new official color for taxi cabs that primarily serve the outer boroughs.

As long as there have been taxis, there has been a very prominent distinction in the world of New York City cabs - if you're in Manhattan, you can easily pick up one of those iconic yellow cabs on pretty much any street corner.

But if you're out in Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, or Staten Island, you're stuck with the less regulated, non-yellow taxis.

Often referred to as "gypsy cabs," these vehicles are officially known as livery cabs and they are an important part of the Big Apple's non-Manhattan economy.

Now, licensed cabbies who want to be an official livery cab driver can take their vehicle to pretty much any auto shop to have it painted the new official color, which Mayor Michael Bloomberg said is "easy on the eyes and easy to pick out from a distance in traffic."

Currently, livery cabs are black and often difficult to distinguish among normal traffic.

Also, because there's nothing to really make them stand out, the market of illegal cab drivers in the outer boroughs is a significant problem.