Elected officials in Brooklyn held a demonstration Monday demanding the MTA reopen the Pennsylvania Avenue stop on the 3 line in Brownsville, which has been closed since being damaged in an accident last year. NY1's Michael Herzenberg filed the following report.
The three train bypasses Pennsylvania and Livonia Avenues.
"It's very annoying," said one straphanger.
Commuters say they come to the entrance each day with hope and leave hopeless, feeling helpless.
"It don't matter what the commuter think," said another straphanger.
It's been four months since a truck crashed into the walkway above Pennsylvania Avenue, forcing the station's closure.
The MTA initially said there was no structural damage and the repairs would take four weeks. But the agency later said the repairs would be more extensive than first thought, setting a new reopening date of February 27. But with cosmetic damage still showing that's not happening.
"We are saying to the MTA you're dragging your feet you're inconveniencing our community and we want a response from you we want this station opened," said City Councilmember Inez Barron.
Barron complains that residents have been without subway service at Pennsylvania for the better part of a year because the station only reopened in September after six months of renovations. State Assemblyman Charles Barron, a political firebrand and Inez Barron's husband, sees the delays as racism.
"We're saying to the MTA just like you prioritized the Second Avenue subway in the white community you made sure that there was a lot of hoopla around that the governor came everybody came and you opened the Second Avenue subway put billions of dollars into that. Well treat the black community the same way," Barron said.
A change cannot come soon enough for local residents. They have spent the winter taking free shuttle busses to an open subway stop on Van Siclen Avenue almost a mile away but they say the busses are not very dependable.
"For us it's terrible especially when we have the terrible snow oh it was terrible. I had to walk from here to van Siclen Avenue because I didn't see no buses and I didn't want to be late to my job," said one straphanger.
The MTA responded saying it "always puts the safety of our passengers first – regardless of location – and the Assemblyman’s rant is false and beyond the pale."
The subway station is set to open next Monday.