New Study Shows Subway Platforms Are Disgusting

New Study Shows Subway Platforms Are Disgusting
Prospect Avenue Platform

The NYPIRG Straphangers Campaign issued its third annual State of the Platforms report today, and the news is, well, not particularly shocking. Turns out subway stations are gross!

“We found what many riders know from bitter daily experience: Many subway platforms are grim and dreary,” said Jason Chin-Fatt, the Straphangers Campaign field organizer.

From June through August (arguably the subway’s most disgusting months), they sent 20 staff members and interns to rate platform conditions on weekdays, between the morning and evening rush-hour periods, at all 862 subway station platforms (except those that were closed or under construction). Here are some of their startling conclusions:

• 13% of staircases or handrails were in disrepair
• 24% of platforms had exposed wiring
• 26% had areas where substantial tile was missing
• 32% had substantial graffiti
• 39% had substantial floor cracks

Ah, but it gets better. They broke the categories into another level for below-ground platforms (525 of them), where they found:

• 13% had rats
• 20% had broken light fixtures
• 74% had substantial peeling paint
• 82% had substantial water damage

Compared to last year’s study, four of nine conditions they observed appeared to have grown substantially worse: exposed wiring, missing tile, graffiti, and floor cracks. Brooklyn’s stations come out the worst in all the boroughs for peeling paint. However, five areas overall in the city got slightly better: rats, broken lighting fixtures, broken handrails and staircases, peeling paint, and water damage. Woo?

“The items in the Straphangers report highlight elements that would be extremely costly to keep in perfect condition and would do little, if anything to either improve service or make stations safer,” says part of the MTA’s response to the report, according to the Daily News. Or, if we were to paraphrase: “Deal with it.”

In the Slope, we are seeing at least some attention to the problems, as staircases at the 7th Avenue F/G station are currently being repaired. How do you feel local platforms stack up — better or worse than others in the system? Any you think are the absolute worst?

Photo by abrooklynsoul


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