MTA Sued Over Platform Gaps

Riders with disabilities say that vertical and horizontal gaps of as much as 7 inches between trains and platforms prevent many riders from safely entering and exiting trains.

1 minute read

October 31, 2022, 5:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

A lawsuit filed by three disabled New York City transit riders calls on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to close the gaps between platforms and trains that prevent many people using wheelchairs from safely accessing trains.

As Alissa Walker writes in Curbed, “The complaint argues that the MTA and the New York Transit Authority ‘have not formulated any kind of plan to address the gaps that prevent people with mobility and visual disabilities from using the subway,’ despite spending more than $100 billion on capital improvements to the system since 1982.”

While the agency has committed to installing elevators at more of its stations thanks to other recent lawsuits, repairing the vertical and horizontal gaps on platforms would make train travel safer for not just wheelchair users, but also people with visual impairments.

According to Walker, “Many transit agencies have what’s called universal-level boarding, where all train floors are completely flush with all platforms.” But “In New York, due to variables in rolling stock and station design, the MTA would have to standardize all its train platforms and train cars line by line in order to achieve this.”

The plaintiffs in the suit against MTA say that stair-free access isn’t enough to ensure universal accessibility. Other agencies are implementing temporary or permanent solutions such as retractable bridge plates, portable ramps, and universal platform doors.

Friday, October 28, 2022 in Curbed

View down New York City alleyway at nighttime

Red Cities, Blue Cities, and Crime

Homicides rose across the nation in 2020 and 2021. But did they rise equally in all cities, or was the situation worse in some than in others?

March 12, 2023 - Michael Lewyn

babyt Boomer Homeowners

The Shifting Boomer Bulge: More Bad News for America’s Housing Crisis?

In the first of a two-part series, PlaceMakers’ Ben Brown interviews housing guru Arthur C. Nelson on the sweeping demographic changes complicating the housing market.

March 12, 2023 - PlaceShakers and NewsMakers

Yellow on black "Expect Delays" traffic sign

A Serious Critique of Congestion Costs and Induced Vehicle Travel Impacts

Some highway advocates continue to claim that roadway expansions are justified to reduce traffic congestion. That's not what the research shows. It's time to stop obsessing over congestion and instead strive for efficient accessibility.

March 14, 2023 - Todd Litman

Washington D.C. Protest

IPCC Report: The World Is Running Out of Time on Climate Change

The planet is not doing enough to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a recent report published by the United Nations’ International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

March 20 - International Panel on Climate Change

A view of the Boise skyline, across tress int he foreground. The state capitol is visible amongst other office buildings.

Skyline-Defining High-Rise Potentially Coming to Boise

A rendering making the rounds in Boise depicts a 40-story apartment building that would be taller than all other buildings in one of the fastest growing cities in the United States.

March 20 - Boise Dev

Interior of Tesla car with driver holding hands off wheel in 'full self-driving' mode

Buttigieg: Tesla ‘Autopilot’ Marketing ‘A Concern’

The USDOT secretary says marketing doesn’t fall under his department’s investigative authority, but expressed disapproval of language that implies autonomous operation.

March 20 - Bloomberg

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.