NEW YORK (PIX11) – A sea of umbrellas shuffling over the pavement is a common sight on New York City streets when it rains.
With the forecast showing no signs of relief for the next few days, umbrellas will surely be a hot ticket item.
The guys that thrive on days like these could be found chanting their catchphrase slogan on any given city block.
“Umbrella! Umbrella! Umbrella!” could be heard amid dozens of commuters tottering around Herald Square Wednesday afternoon.
For many, rain adds to the frustration but for umbrella peddlers it just adds to their income.
“I got people out here sporting the Hugo Boss, the Calvin Klein, the Prada – I gotta keep them dry and that’s why they come to me,” one salesman told PIX11 News.
Their flimsy street umbrellas usually go for $5 a pop and after a few uses, they get trashed.
But now, another alternative to staying dry will soon be coming to the Big Apple. The umbrella-sharing program called ‘brellaBox involves 500 boxes throughout the city that will let you rent a durable, quality umbrella.
According to its website, it’ll cost users $2.50 for 12 hours – or $15 to purchase one.
A lot like the Citibike program, when you’re done with it you just drop it off at a designated location. The goal, according to developers, is convenience while being resourceful.
Afterall, being resourceful especially with umbrellas should be a priority in New York after an eye-opening project shed light on how often umbrellas get discarded in the streets and subways.
Last year, architects created a floating dome from hundreds of discarded umbrellas found in the city. To say it was pretty huge would be an understatement.
The ‘brellaBox pilot program will launch at the end of May. In the meantime, if you find yourself getting stuck in the rain without an umbrella, just look at the silver lining — it’s kind of like a free, impromptu shower.