More Displays and Ads Coming to the CTA

By Alan Spencer
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Intersection holds the concession for advertising on Chicago Transit Authority’s vehicles and real estate, and now the transit authority wants to increase the number of digital displays from 130 to 400 at L-stations. The new screens, which will display arrival information, service alerts and advertising, will be installed at no cost to the transit authority, as they will generate revenue as part of a profit-sharing deal.

The arrangement suits the transit authority as they can display useful information to their customers without the need to increase budgets, and hence not put up fares. In fact, due to the profit share deal, with the increased advertising, the transit authority will gain additional income.

An additional part of the contract with Intersection, requests that 159 of the existing 283 advertising displays will be upgraded to include a continual display of arrival information and service alerts, as well as advertising. Some of the new screens will be urban panel displays at station entrances.

Installation will begin this summer and should be finished next year. The transit authority gets a minimum of 65% of the advertising revenue, depending on location. The cost of the hardware and installation will be deducted from the transit authority’s share.

The transit authority says that ads on buses, trains and in stations brought in more than $27 million last year.

Chicago has also has a contract with the outdoor advertising company JC Decaux which brings in millions of dollars for the city every year.

Existing Ad and Info Panel at Midway Station