The MTA recently announced it will trial platform barrier doors at three New York City subway stations, responding to calls for more safety features in the city’s subway system. The doors will be tested at the 7 line in the Times Square station, the L stop at Third Avenue and the E stop at the Sutphin Boulevard station in Queens.
The three locations were chosen for the trial due to their engineering, as many of the city’s subway stations are not suited for platform doors. The MTA will pilot additional technologies along with the doors. These technologies have the potential to detect danger in the subway, such as thermal and laser technology that can detect people on the tracks.
Currently, there is no publicly available estimate of when these doors will be installed or what they will look like. Though, MTA CEO and Chair Janno Lieber, said in a recent statement that the trial will cost the agency around $100 million and take multiple years to fully install.
Plans for the barrier doors and additional technologies coincide with Mayor Eric Adams’s new Subway Safety Plan. The mayor, in collaboration with Governor Kathy Hochul, designed the plan to ensure commuters’ safety and provide assistance to unhoused New Yorkers living in the subway system.
In the weeks following the announcement of the Subway Safety Plan, crime in the subway system spiked 30%. Recent incidents include a March 1 altercation during which four people were stabbed on a Brooklyn subway platform.
The new Subway Safety Plan is meant to address incidents such as this one and provide resources for New Yorkers in need of support.
In a recent statement, Lieber said the MTA is working in collaboration with government officials to further address New Yorkers’ safety concerns.
“Governor Hochul and Mayor Adams focused from the start on subway safety, and it’s a game changer,” said Lieber. “Now, with additional strategies on how to enforce system rules and provide services to vulnerable New Yorkers, we are standing up for millions of riders who want to see change.”