Subway riders gasping for air while climbing the five flights of stairs at the New Utrecht Avenue subway station are getting some sweet relief… in about five years.
The Brooklyn Daily Eagle is reporting that the MTA is constructing an elevator at the station that should be operational sometime in 2019, just in time to ring in the roaring 2020s.
The MTA plan is part of an ambitious overall effort to improve nine of the cruddier stops along the N line in Brooklyn. The other stops receiving treatment include Eighth Avenue, Fort Hamilton Parkway, New Utrecht Avenue, 18th Avenue, 20th Avenue, Bay Parkway, Kings Highway, Avenue U and 86th Street.
The plan will begin in a year during the fall of 2014 and take an estimated 48 months to complete. Kevin Ortiz, an MTA spokesman, told the Daily Eagle that the project was still in the design stage. The Daily Eagle laid out the details for the other stations as well:
In addition to building the elevator at New Utrecht Avenue, the MTA will reconfigure another station, Eighth Avenue to bring the subway stop into compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, a law that mandates that the physically disabled be provided with equal access to public transportation.
The plan calls for wheelchair ramps to be constructed at the Eighth Avenue station.
The MTA’s website states that the agency currently operates 120 stations that contain elevators or ramps.
The mezzanine area in each of the nine stations will get new windows, canopies, and lighting. The rooftops will be rebuilt and waterproofed. Artwork will be installed in each station. The stairs leading from the mezzanine to the subway platform will be replaced in all of the targeted stations.
Work will also be done on the subway platforms and walls.
For those too impatient to wait for these fabulous new additions to take place, you can always slip into a coma or try freezing yourself with experimental cryogenic technologies. The rest of us will just have to keep marching up those stairs for the next half decade, losing so many precious calories along the way.