Access Denied Campaign - TransitCenter

Access Denied

Improving subway accessibility for all New Yorkers

Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers require elevators to access the subway every day: people with disabilities, parents pushing strollers, travelers carrying luggage, and residents suffering from an injury. But New York City's subway system is the most inaccessible in the country, with elevators at only a quarter of the stations. Our Access Denied campaign launched in 2017, and was successful at securing unprecedented accessibility commitments from the MTA under the leadership of Andy Byford.

Currently the campaign is working with partner organizations to ensure that the MTA follows through on its commitment to build elevators at 50 stations in the next five years, and take the necessary steps towards creating a fully accessible system by 203.

Campaign Timeline
July 2017
July 2017

Access Denied Campaign Launches

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We launched the campaign with the release of our Access Denied report, which chronicled the failure of the MTA to make the subway system accessible. The campaign quickly found footing in the media, and became a salient issue for the public, and elected officials. Our Access Denied report recommendations helped to influence the settlement negotiations for 2 major accessibility lawsuits against the MTA and legislation currently pending in the NYS Assembly.
Jun 2018
Jun 2018

Protests over Governor Cuomo’s Enhanced Station Initiative bring public awareness to transit accessibility

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TransitCenter led advocacy against the Enhanced Station Initiative program, which included $1 billion for station enhancements but no newly-accessible stations. We were able to help secure funding for an accessible station in the Bronx when the program was dissolved.
May 2018
May 2018

MTA/New York City Transit commitment to full subway accessibility is adopted as policy in the Fast Forward plan

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Won an unprecedented commitment for systemwide accessibility from NYC Transit by 2034. We also helped to make accessibility a key factor in the political support for passage of congestion pricing.
Jun 2018
Jun 2018

New York City Transit hires a new Senior Advisory for Accessibility

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Our advocacy led to the hiring of Alex Elegudin, NYC Transit's first senior accessibility advisor.
Jan 2020
Jan 2020

2020-2024 MTA Capital Plan passes with funding for 70 new accessible stations

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Our advocacy helped to secure a historic commitment to accessibility from the MTA.
Campaign Videos
Making Transit Work for Parents and Caregivers
Access Denied: Christine
Access Denied: Dustin Jones
Access Denied: Beth Childs
Aging in Place in NYC: AARP + TransitCenter
Access Provided
TransitCenter Goes to the Panorama
Campaign Reports
#AccessDenied on the Blog