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Two Queens A Train Platforms Close for Overhaul

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Two platforms on the Queens-bound A line are closing Monday for renovations that many riders say have been a long time coming, while some feel inconvenienced. NY1's Jose Martinez filed the following report.

A trains coming from Manhattan won't be stopping at the 88th Street station until mid-August—not exactly welcome news for riders who get off here after a day at work or school.

"I have to walk either six blocks or go past the stop and then get off at Rockaway to transfer back, so it's very inconvenient," says one rider.

"I'll get home later. Way later," says another.

Starting Monday, the Queens-bound platforms at 88th Street and 104th Street are closed for the next few months as part of $39 million in renovations at five elevated stations that run along Liberty Avenue.

Some riders, on the other hand, say the transfer or extra walking will be worth it.

"A lot of stations need a lot of work, so I'm glad that they're actually putting their money where their mouth is and doing the work for us," says a third rider.

The other stations undergoing renovations along the A include 80th Street, Rockaway Boulevard and 111th Street.

For now, though, it's only those platforms at 88th and 104th streets that are getting shut down as workers rebuild platforms, replace staircases as well as other weathered station parts.

Once the first phase of the project is completed, work at both stations will then shift over to the Manhattan-bound platforms. That work is expected to start in September.

Transit officials say taking out one platform at a time is preferred to shutting down an entire station. That would mean moving riders around on shuttle buses.

"It's just a plan in order to minimize the impacts upon our customers. And you know, these are stations that have been open for nearly a hundred years. So, you know, it's time to get them into a state of good repair," says Kevin Ortiz, a Metropolitan Transit Authority spokesman.

Riders couldn't agree more.

"Everything needs work. When rain's falling, when snow's falling, everything is wetting you up. You're waiting for the train, getting all wet in the subway," says another rider.

Lucky for her, new canopies will also be part of the makeover.

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