MTA announces new and improved elevators at Penn Station

MTA announces new and improved elevators at Penn Station

MTA officers unveiled a new elevator at Penn Station immediately, pledging that it’s going to enhance entry to and from the Lengthy Island Rail Street. Three current elevators at the station serving the 1, 2 and 3 trains have additionally been changed.

“This is particularly important for me as a New Yorker with a disability,” MTA Chief Accessibility Officer Quemuel Arroyo mentioned at a press convention. “Now more than ever, that demand for our accessible features like elevators and ramps is the highest it’s ever been because accessibility is truly universal.”

Penn Station is amongst New York Metropolis’s busiest mass transit hubs; greater than 9 million individuals handed by way of its subway in 2021, in line with the latest information accessible from the MTA.

The MTA has pledged to make 95% of the town’s subway system accessible over the following three a long time as a part of a settlement from two class-action lawsuits introduced by individuals with disabilities and advocacy teams.

MTA officers and incapacity rights organizations alike have acknowledged sluggish progress towards accessibility within the subways.

Jean Ryan, one of many plaintiffs and president of the group Disabled in Motion, mentioned that any new elevators had been a optimistic — although they might solely profit a fraction of people that wanted entry.

“If you live in a part of New York City where there are no elevators on the subways, or no subways at all, you’re not going to be even able to get to Penn Station,” she mentioned. Ryan, who makes use of a wheelchair, mentioned she has not been on the subway since 1994.

Cara Liebowitz, advocacy coordinator for Brooklyn Middle for Independence of the Disabled, mentioned elevator upkeep and correct signage must also stay high of thoughts. Liebowitz, who identifies as mobility-disabled, primarily makes use of a wheelchair.

“I have almost missed trains trying to find elevators in Penn Station, and I grew up going back and forth to the city on the Long Island Rail Road,” she mentioned. “I do know what I’m doing in Penn — particularly if I’m in a much less acquainted space of Penn to me, typically I nonetheless can’t discover the elevators.”

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