The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today unveiled 3 new elevators and 2 new staircases at the 170th Street subway station on Jerome Avenue in the Bronx. The elevators allow the station to be accessible to all customers for the first time.
The station is the 14th to be made newly accessible in the past 22 months, the fastest rate of new station accessibility upgrades in MTA history.
“Everyone at the MTA shares a commitment to create the most inclusive transit system possible,” said Janno Lieber, Acting MTA Chair and CEO. “Accessibility projects will continue to be a top priority for all of us in the years ahead. We will push them to follow the example set by 170th Street, which was completed on budget and ahead of schedule.”
“Hastening the speed of accessibility upgrades holds costs down and enables the MTA to perform more upgrades more quickly,” said MTA Construction & Development President Jamie Torres-Springer. “We are using every tool at our disposal to make stations accessible, including setting in motion 26 new stations for accessibility upgrades at the end of last year.”
“This vital project will greatly benefit the Bronx community for years to come,” said NYC Transit Interim President Craig Cipriano. “An accessible station plus the addition of security cameras means a more reliable and safer transit system for all riders.”
“With every new ADA station, we can attract new subway and rail users, and close the geographic gaps between accessible stations on our subway map,” said MTA Chief Accessibility Officer Quemuel Arroyo. “These new elevators will improve the experience at this station for customers with mobility disabilities, and the countless riders who travel with luggage, strollers, bicycles and more.”
“New Yorkers deserve an accessible subway system, whether they are using a wheelchair to get around; traveling with a stroller; or carrying luggage,” said New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez. “We are proud to support the MTA’s goals to make this station and many more fully accessible to all.”
“In planning for Jerome Avenue, we heard loud and clear that improved subway accessibility was sorely-needed. We are proud to have collaborated with DOT, the MTA and Bronx residents to bring this new elevator to 170th Street, one that will make life easier for those with disabilities, seniors, parents with young children, and all New Yorkers,” said Department of City Planning Director Anita Laremont.
“One of the ways to both create and nurture a robust economy, especially as we try to recover from the CoViD-19 pandemic, is focusing on our borough’s infrastructure system and accessibility,” said Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson. “The upgrades made at the 170th Street Station are key, particularly in helping our most vulnerable communities get the same access to public transportation as everyone else. A thriving city like ours requires upgrades on all forms of transportation, and the ADA improvements made in the 170th Street station is a step in the right direction. That is why I was proud to play an instrumental role in this project during my time in the City Council to ensure ADA accessibility for the residents of the West Bronx , and as Borough President, I will continue to ensure our transit hubs receive the resources they need. I would like to thank the MTA for their dedication to this.”
“Improving the accessibility of our transportation system is vital, as it provides equal opportunity for everyone to effectively travel throughout the city,” said City Council Member Althea Stevens. “Everyone deserves to be able to travel throughout New York City safely and comfortably.”
At 170th Street, crews built a new elevator that touches down at the southeast corner of 170th Street and Jerome Avenue, replacing what had been a stairway. From there, customers can ride to the mezzanine, where crews built two additional new elevators, one each between the mezzanine and the northbound and southbound platforms.
Crews also renovated two pre-existing stairways on the south side of 170th Street and built two new stairways north of 170th Street, allowing customers from the north to reach the station without having to cross the busy street for the first time.
Additional work at the 170th Street station includes new lighting, repair of some platform and canopy areas to ensure ADA compliance, replacement of tactile strips, some sections of rubbing boards and installation of CCTV security cameras.
An installation by artist Dina Bursztyn features a series of faceted glass windscreens and windows using the unique vantage point offered from the elevated trains and platforms.
The most recent station accessibility upgrades have come in four boroughs. In the past year, accessibility upgrades have been completed at the Avenue H station in Brooklyn, the 57th Street Station in Manhattan, the Gun Hill Road Station in the Bronx, and at Court Square -23rd Street in Queens.
The 170th Street station was built in 1916 by the Interboro Rapid Transit Corp.
The work on this project was performed under MTA supervision by Citnalta-TAP J.V., a joint venture of the Citnalta Construction Corp. of Bohemia, N.Y., and TAP Electric Contracting Services, Inc., of Holbrook, N.Y. The elevators were manufactured by Hydraulics-Mongrain Vertical Transport and Elevator Doors & Elevator Cabs Inc and installed by Mid-American Elevator.