The MTA construction site near the busy intersection of Bedford Avenue and N 7th Street in Williamsburg is finally cleared following a year of subway station upgrades. The MTA hosted an unveiling ceremony on Monday debuting a pair of elevators which became available in August to transport commuters from street level to the subterranean L train station.

MTA’s Chief Development Office Janno Lieber speaks at the elevator unveiling in Williamsburg. (Image courtesy of MTA)

The looming L train shutdown, or L’pocalypse, was a major point of contention for North Williamsburg businesses and residents for years as the entire L line faced temporary closure in April 2019, until Governor Cuomo pushed for a partial shutdown. Work to repair the Superstorm Sandy-damaged Canarsie tubes, which run underneath the East River, quietly wrapped in April as New Yorkers grappled with the initial outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. With the Bedford Avenue L station upgrades now complete, the MTA’s L Train project to fast track station improvements during tunnel repairs has also wrapped.

A commuter enters the newly improved L subway station. (Image courtesy of MTA)

Additional renovations at the Bedford L station include (via MTA):

  • New and rebuilt staircases at street level and from the platform to the mezzanine – doubled stair capacity at the Driggs Avenue end of the station
  • More efficient turnstile layouts and additional turnstiles
  • New ADA boarding area at platform and new tactile tiles on platform edge
    New wall tiles in the Bedford Av and Driggs Av mezzanines
  • Reconstruction of N. 7th Street roadway
  • Reconstruction of sidewalks between Bedford and Driggs Avenues
  • New station emergency lighting
  • New digital information screens
  • New closed-circuit television security system
  • New Help Point intercom

The MTA’s Chief Development Office Janno Lieber warned at Monday’s unveiling that the fate of the additional planned ADA upgrades at 29 other subway stations hinges upon $12 billion requested in federal aid. The MTA’s budget is deep in the red due to the pandemic which caused declining ridership, and only 15 of the 29 stations are currently slated for ADA improvements.

Bedford L subway station. (Image courtesy of MTA)
Bedford L subway station. (Image courtesy of MTA)
Bedford L subway station. (Image courtesy of MTA)
Bedford L subway station. (Image courtesy of MTA)


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