Nov. 20, 2019 By Allie Griffin
A Jackson Heights resident has started a petition calling on the MTA to add an elevator when it overhauls the 82nd Street subway station.
The Change.org petition, posted by Jackson Heights Beautification Group president Nuala O’Doherty on Tuesday, has already garnered more than 300 signatures at the time of publication.
The MTA plans to overhaul the decrepit station along with at least five others along the 7 line. The agency told the Queens Post last week that the project is currently in the design phase and it will award a contract for the work by summer 2020 with construction possibly beginning soon after.
The petition noted that the MTA will likely spend millions to revamp the 82nd Street station and included in that cost should be the installation of an elevator.
“The MTA will spend millions of dollars revamping the 82nd Street 7 line subway station,” it states. “The renovation must include the addition of an elevator.”
It also noted that the station is blocks away from Elmhurst Hospital Center, which handled nearly 700,000 ambulatory care visits and 130,000 emergency room encounters last year.
With the hospital so close by, the station is heavily trafficked.
“With the volume of traffic at this elevated station, there must be an elevator. Elevators are not high tech, but standard equipment especially for a public facility that must be ADA compliant,” the petition continues. “As the MTA plans the renovation, the must not overlook the need for an elevator.”
Assembly Member Catalina Cruz previously said that she hears complaints from constituents about the 82nd Street station weekly — usually about the condition of the stairs.
The MTA has been criticized for not installing elevators during station upgrades in the past.
Several elected officials and Astoria mothers held a rally in 2017 protesting the MTA’s decision to not include elevators in its $150 million revamp of four Astoria subway stations on the N/W line. They said the upgrades failed to make the stations accessible for the disabled, elderly and parents with strollers.
A spokesperson for the MTA said that 70 subway stations across the city will be made ADA accessible as part of the agency’s next five-year capital plan. He did not specify if the 82nd Street station is one of those 70.
“The MTA’s next five-year capital plan invests an unprecedented amount – more than $5 billion – in order to make 70 stations across New York City accessible, achieving the immediate systemwide goal of having nobody ever be more than two stops away from an accessible station,” the spokesperson said. “Subsequent plans will build on this progress, with the ultimate goal of achieving maximum possible accessibility across the city in 15 years.”
“We look forward to taking input from the public as we move forward to bring unprecedented accessibility to the subway system across the five boroughs,” he added.
The elevator at Junction Blvd & 74 street smells like urine , 82 will be the same .
People with disabilities should have more access to elevators. The one at 74th takes forever to come and is always packed. Most subway stations should include one. An elevator is not just for disabled but for the elderly, parents with babies etc. Many would benefit from more elevators
Access a ride is not a personal taxi service. Like public assistance, you have to apply and be accepted into the program. And your troubles won’t end there. You can be stuck waiting for your ride for an hour or more but don’t you dare be even two minutes late to your pick up area. They’ll leave you behind.
The entrances and streets would have to be made ADA compliant first. Vendors currently block wheelchair accessability
The buses around 82 Street continue to 74th Street which is fully accessible with elevators and escalators to all subway lines, including the #7 train. No reason for this expense or justification in comparison to other 7 train stations.
And buses from 74 Street Terminal, fully accessible with elevators from 5 subway lines go to Elmhurst Hospital, a few blocks away. If 82 Street gets an elevator, than all the other stations being remodeled should get an elevator. And, if there is only one elevator, it should go to another station without bus access to 74 Street, such as 52 Street Station.
Disabled people and others (like parents with children in strollers) may need an elevator just because they live nearer the 82nd Street station. They’re probably not only going to and from Elmhurst Hospital. To say it another way, put the shoe on the other foot: Let’s get rid of some stations altogether because able-bodied people (like you) can walk, can’t they?
Why? Take access-a-ride. Save the money. Why, I never had a elevator growing up here.
I understand it makes you angry to help people with different abilities than you take public transit.
Thanks for telling people what they should do because you didn’t have an elevator 100 years ago.
When you were growing up trains ran with coal.
Don’t humor him. He’s the guy who owns the dump on 71st. Trouble spot.
It’s not a taxi. You have to apply and be evaluated by taking a physical ability test (like getting on and off a mock up of an MTA bus).