NYC Update

MTA to Receive $254M In Federal Money for Accessibility Projects

NEW YORK—The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced earlier this month it earned a $254-million federal grant as part of the Federal Transit Administration’s new All Stations Accessibility Program, which makes competitive funding available to improve accessibility for people with disabilities at some of the nation’s oldest and busiest rail transit systems.

The funding, part of President Joe Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, was spearheaded by both U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.

The MTA stated it is deploying every innovative tool at its disposal in creative ways to achieve ADA improvements. Since 2020, 16 additional subway stations have been made ADA-accessible, and the MTA’s historic 2020-2024 Capital Plan includes $5.2 billion to make additional stations accessible. In June 2022, the MTA committed to bringing ADA-accessibility to at least 95% of subway stations by 2055. In addition, the MTA partnered with the City of New York on Zoning for Accessibility in 2021, which created a framework for developers to make accessibility upgrades to stations without requiring MTA capital dollars. Four stations are already slated for upgrades through this program.

The MTA will use the funds to advance the design process that will make the Myrtle Avenue, Norwood Avenue and Avenue I subway stations in Brooklyn and the Burnside Avenue subway station in the Bronx fully accessible. Plans include installing elevators, updating platforms to reduce gaps, adding tactile platform edge warning strips, modifying fare gates and stairs and improving handrails. These four stations were chosen with a focus on equity concerns and filling some of the largest remaining geographic gaps between accessible stations in the system, MTA officials stated.

Last month, the MTA Board approved Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) upgrades at several subway stations across four boroughs and announced multiple elevators would be replaced across eight station complexes in Manhattan and Queens including some of the system’s busiest stations.

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