Port Chester train station elevator now open
The Journal News 12.1.2017 – After more than a year-and-a-half of pedestrian and traffic confusion downtown, construction on a new elevator and ramp that will make the Metro-North station permanently handicapped-accessible is nearing completion.
Attention riders: a new elevator and handicap accessible ramp at the Port Chester Metro-North station are now open, the Metropolitan Transit Authority said Friday morning.
The $6.1 million project, which started last October, makes the station fully accessible to people with mobility disabilities.
The elevator, built out of structural steel with a glass enclosed cab, is located on Westchester Avenue next to the rail bridge and will lift passengers from the sidewalk level to the Connecticut-bound platform and from the platform to the street. The new permanent ramp to the New York-bound platform is located at 127 Westchester Ave., the former location of the old Port Chester Auto School.
The project was fully funded by the MTA’s 2015-2019 capital budget.
The upgrades are partially the result of a federal lawsuit filed in December 2014 claiming the agency violated civil rights laws by failing to make the station handicap accessible when it spent millions to renovate it that year.
A settlement between disability advocacy group Westchester Independent Living Center and the MTA required the agency to complete the project by the third quarter of 2017.
“I couldn’t be happier to see the elevator working,” said Daniel Brown, an attorney for the plaintiffs in the 2014 lawsuit. “This case began when I saw a wheelchair user stuck on the platform because of the lack of wheelchair access, and I’m grateful that no one will ever again have to suffer such an indignity.”
The elevator construction had closed a portion of sidewalk on Westchester Avenue underneath the rail bridge for over a year. Traffic is now moving smoothly through the area.
The station, on the New Haven Line, serves around 2,800 people a day.
by Gabriel Rom
The Journal News