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Photo by Marc A. Hermann for MTA New York City Transit
Interim MTA New York City Transit President Sarah Feinberg; MTA Construction & Development President Janno Lieber; MTA New York City Transit Senior Advisor for Systemwide Accessibility Alex Elegudin; and Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities Commissioner Victor Calise commemorate the 30th anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) at the Astoria Blvd station on the N/W lines on Monday, July 27, 2020.

Astoria Boulevard’s N and W train station now has a working elevator.

The MTA announced the completion of the ADA-accessible elevator, which coincided with the 30th anniversary of the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, at an event in the Astoria train station on Monday, July 27.

“When we talk about modernizing mass transit, it’s not just about better signals and newer train cars,” said MTA’s Interim President Sarah Feinberg. “It’s about making sure all of our customers can use the system with ease. Make no mistake: we have a long way to go toward accomplishing this goal and today’s anniversary is by no means a victory lap. There is much work that still needs to be done, but this latest package of stations brings us one step closer toward achieving a more equitable and accessible system.”

The Astoria Boulevard station, which also serves the M60-SBS bus to LaGuardia Airport, reopened last December after a nine-month closure as the transit agency worked on revitalizing the station.

The completion of elevator work includes a pair of street-to-mezzanine elevators as well as two mezzanine-to-platform elevators. Additional accessibility features like rebuilt elevated walkways, new benches, finished platform stair enclosures, new digital service information signage, and a pair of new street-to-mezzanine staircases are also set to be incorporated by the time the project is completed.

Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris sent out a statement in anticipation of the new elevator, the first in the Astoria neighborhood.

“The long wait for new subway elevators at Astoria Boulevard is finally over,” said Gianaris.“While there is more to be done to have a truly accessible subway system, today’s achievement is a step forward for all transit passengers.”

Gianaris has been advocating for transit accessibility for years, and has tried to press the MTA into installing more elevators in other stations.

In his statement, he included comment from Colin Wright, senior advocacy associate at Transit Center, about the new ADA-accessible elevator at Astoria Boulevard.

“The elevators at Astoria Boulevard opening today will give neighborhood residents with disabilities, parents with strollers and older riders in Astoria more access to life in New York City,” Wright said. “It’s up to Governor Cuomo and the MTA to make every subway station accessible and to protect the historic investments in accessibility promised in the 2020-2024 MTA Capital Program.”

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