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MTA Announces Installation of Wide-Aisle Fare Gates and New Customer Service Center Now Open at Sutphin Boulevard–Archer Avenue–JFK Airport Station

New York City Transit
Updated December 4, 2023 9:00 p.m.
NYCT President Davey At Wide-Aisle Gate Event

First Full Replacement of Traditional Turnstiles in the System Enhances Accessibility and Combats Fare Evasion 

14 Customer Service Centers Now Open  

View Photos of New Fare Gates and Customer Service Center    

View B-Roll of Wide-Aisle Fare Gates and Customer Service Center

View Video of Event


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today announced the first-ever low turnstile fare array replacement with new wide-aisle fare gates at Sutphin Boulevard–Archer Avenue–JFK Airport  Station in Jamaica, Queens. The installation of modern fare gate technology reflects the MTA’s commitment to reimagining fare arrays in the subway system, enhancing accessibility and improving the station environment. The new faregates replace the emergency exit gate at that end of the station, which was a major contributor to subway fare evasion. The wide-aisle design of the new faregates allows customers with strollers, wheelchairs, and luggage to smoothly enter the system. This will allow the MTA to examine the feasibility of placing new fare gates at other stations in the future. 

This is the first full deployment of new fare gates in the subway system following a pilot of the wide-aisle gates at Atlantic Av-Barclays Center subway station in March 2023. In addition to wide-aisle gate installation, four traditional turnstiles were installed at the north end of the mezzanine to enhance customer flow. All new fare gates are equipped with OMNY, the MTA’s new tap-and-go fare collection system.

The MTA also announced the opening of a new customer service center, making this station the fourteenth center in the subway system. Customer service centers provide services historically limited to 3 Stone St located in Lower Manhattan, but now enable the Authority to meet customers where they are directly in stations in their home boroughs. Centers comprise repurposed booths, new retail outlets and feature enhanced accessibility, OMNY technology, and a dedicated, more welcoming visual presentation for customers. This includes new lighting, branded wrapping, and canopies with enhanced customer service functions such as station agents on hand to assist in converting riders to OMNY, signing up for Reduced-Fare, and helping troubleshoot general concerns.

New York City Transit plans to open another center before the end of the year.

“New York City Transit’s North Star is improving the customer experience, and we are doing just that at Sutphin Blvd by introducing new, easier to access, fare gates and by opening our 14th Customer Service Center,” said NYC Transit President Richard Davey. “Customers traveling to and from JFK with their luggage, commuters transferring from the LIRR at Jamaica, and local commuters can look forward to faster, more accessible journeys, and a more welcoming station environment.”

With a direct link to the AirTrain the Sutphin Boulevard – Archer Av – JFK Airport subway station is often visitors’ first introduction to New York, making it a perfect spot for a new customer service center and wide aisle fare gates,” said MTA Acting Chief Customer Officer Shanifah Rieara. “The station agents at the center will help both first time customers navigate the system and long-time customers with any issues that may arise.”

“This new generation of fare gates is critical not only to advancing accessibility but also preventing fare evasion, which threatens the financial wellbeing of our entire transit system,” said MTA Construction and Development President Jamie Torres-Springer. “More than half of all subway fare evasion occurs through emergency exit gates, and this redesign of our fare array infrastructure will eliminate this opportunity.”

“It’s exciting to see the first full fare array of wide aisle gates in our system, another step in our efforts to make our stations more accessible for all riders including those with mobility devices, strollers, and luggage,” said MTA Chief Accessibility Officer and Senior Advisor Quemuel Arroyo. “These gates also help combat fare evasion, not just making it harder to skip the fare but easier for customers who want to do the right thing to pay their fare, easily and seamlessly."

“As we open more customer service centers, we are providing support directly to riders where they are,” said NYC Transit Senior Vice President of Subways Demetrius Crichlow. “Finding ways to enhance customer flow with new fare gates and at busy stations like Sutphin Boulevard – Archer Avenue – JFK AirTrain is another indication of NYCT’s commitment to providing the best transit experience possible.”

"As a strong and vocal supporter of the MTA's responsibility to make ADA improvements I am pleased to see the Sutphin Boulevard – Archer Avenue – JFK Airport station prioritize these concepts in their latest installments," said Senator Leroy Comrie. "This station connects to one of the busiest airports in the world and with thousands of travelers, residents and commuters passing through these gates every day, efficiency and ease of use must be delivered at the highest standard. I applaud the MTA on the completion of this project and look forward to its positive impact."

"I applaud the MTA for its commendable efforts in making our transit system more accessible,” said Council Member James F. Gennaro. “This transformative initiative not only improves the functionality of our transit system but also underscores the MTA's pledge to make public transportation more inclusive, convenient, and customer centric.”

"I'm thrilled to see the MTA's continued strides in creating better systems for New Yorkers, especially for the residents of Queens,” said Council Member Nantasha Williams. “The upcoming opening of the new Customer Service Center at Sutphin Boulevard – Archer Avenue – JFK AirTrain station and the innovative Wide Aisle Gates initiative will bring a significant improvement to the daily commute and overall transportation experience for Queens residents. These positive changes reflect a commitment to enhancing convenience and accessibility, making journeys smoother and more efficient. It's exciting to witness these improvements that will undoubtedly benefit our city's residents."

“Modernizing our century-old subway system isn’t just a necessary investment structurally, it’s a critical move toward ensuring Queens commuters of any ability can easily and safely travel to any destination in the city. That’s exactly what today’s announcement entails,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “Thank you to the MTA for its efforts to support Southeast Queens riders and strengthen one of our community’s most important transit hubs.”