Pizza Principle

pizza connection

The New York Pizza Connection, or Pizza Principle, is a humorous but generally historically accurate ‘economic law’ proposed by native New Yorker Eric M. Bram. He noted in 1980 that from the early 1960s the price of a slice of pizza ‘matched, with uncanny precision, the cost of a New York City Subway ride.’┬áThe term ‘Pizza Connection’ referring to this phenomenon was coined in early 2002 by ‘New York Times’ columnist Clyde Haberman. He predicted the cost of a slice of pizza would increase by as high as two dollars in midtown Manhattan.

In 2003 ‘The New Yorker’ magazine proclaimed the validity of the Pizza Connection (which they renamed the pizza principle) in accurately predicting the rise of the subway fare to $2.00 the week before. They also quoted Mr. Bram (by then a patent attorney) as warning that since the New York City Transit Authority had announced the discontinuation of the subway token itself in favor of the variable-fare cost MetroCard, the direct correlation between the cost of an off-the-street slice of cheese pizza and the cost of a subway token might not continue to hold. However, in 2005, and again in 2007, Haberman noted the price of a slice was again rising, and, citing the Pizza Connection, worried that the subway fare might soon rise again. The fare did indeed rise to $2.25 in 2009 and again in 2011 to $2.50.

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