SUNSET PARK — A secondary entrance at the Eighth Avenue N train station that was closed for several years recently reopened after a major rebuilding project was completed and New York City Transit President Andy Byford joined local officials at a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Byford, Assemblymember Peter Abbate and Community Board 10 District Manager Josephine Beckmann were among the officials who cut the ribbon to mark the reopening of the Seventh Avenue entrance of the Eighth Avenue subway station on Sept. 26.
The entrance is located at Seventh Avenue and 62nd Street. The station’s main entrance is at Eighth Avenue and 62nd Street, in the heart of Sunset Park’s vibrant and growing Asian-American community. The Seventh Avenue doorway has always been used as a secondary entrance into the subway station.
The reopening is a boon to subway riders, according Byford, who also called it “a win-win for the local community.”
Beckmann said the reopening of the Seventh Avenue entrance is important to local residents because riders now have another way to enter the station. “It relieves congestion at the Eighth Avenue side. It’s a heavily used station. I’m delighted that it’s open again,” she told the Home Reporter.
Ridership figures released by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority support Beckmann’s statement about the Eighth Avenue station being heavily used. In 2018, an average weekday saw 11,474 riders use the station.
The station entrance renovation was part of a massive, $395.7 million project to modernize nine subway stations along the N Sea Beach line, according to an MTA spokesperson. The work at all of the targeted stations included installing improved platforms and overpasses, building new stairways and handrails, repairs to canopies and columns, painting and rehabilitating historic station entrances and fare control areas, enhancing safety features, and upgrading communication systems.
“And we’re not done!” Byford told the Home Reporter at the Seventh Avenue ribbon cutting. The MTA plans to construct an elevator at the Eighth Avenue station to make the station fully accessible, he said.
The subway station’s importance to the surrounding community cannot be overstated, according to Abbate, who said that in addition to local residents, it also serves doctors and the medical staff at the Maimonides Cancer Center at 6300 Eighth Ave.
“And you have a lot of families moving into the neighborhood,” Abbate said, adding that it’s important for residents to have a modernized subway station.
UPDATE: Story has been updated. The Eighth Avenue N train station has been closed for several years.