Well, that's... not good, right? But wait! What if, like Uber's surge pricing, we just incentivize the cabbies to stay on the road during that time? City Hall already tried that. "Under the Bloomberg Administration," explains Wellington, "the city tried to combat this by adding a rush hour surcharge ... they raised the fare from 4PM-8PM by $1." The result actually made the problem worse -- the surcharge-adjusted data pushes the optimal shift-change time even later, to 5:22pm. So basically, it's harder to hail a cab deeper into rush hour, and it will cost more.
Sweet Jesus, no.
Wellington has solutions, though. He's got the goods! His proposals include reversing the surcharge to move the shift-change sweet spot out of rush-hour, or incentivizing the garages that rent the cabs to offer their vehicles at a sliding rate to drivers. He came by these suggestions by looking at the data, which he laments is only available by filing an FOIA request. In other words, no one can solve this problem because no one is looking at the numbers.