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MTA Announces Significant Infrastructure Investments to Combat Climate Change, Expand Accessibility, and Improve Service

Updated Dec 19, 2022 5:15 p.m.

MTA to Seek Board Approval for $2.5 Billion of Procurements to Enhance B&T, LIRR, Metro-North and New York City Subway and Buses   

Includes $345 Million in Subcontracts to MTA-Certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs)    

Package Features 15 Design-Build Procurements    


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) today announced that MTA Construction & Development contracts will be awarded in multiple pivotal projects for Bridges & Tunnels, Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North Railroad and New York City Transit (NYCT) following MTA Board approval. Through nineteen different procurements, $2.5 billion will be invested to enhance resiliency efforts to combat climate change, aid in the MTA’s mission to go green, make the transit system more accessible to all through ADA upgrades and ensure riders have safe, efficient, and reliable commutes for years to come. Millions of riders will experience the benefits of these projects on their daily commutes.   

Design-Build contracts will be awarded for redeveloping the Jamaica Bus Depot in Queens, ADA upgrades and elevator replacements at 12 subway stations across four boroughs, resiliency and rehabilitation efforts on the Rockaway Line in Queens, and Fulton Av and South St Bridge repairs on Metro-North’s New Haven Line. Contracts for the Rockway Line, ADA upgrades, elevator replacements and the Fulton Av and South St bridges were made possible through federal funding.    

The MTA is piloting its first-ever local hiring goals for Jamaica Bus Depot, Rockaway Line and ADA projects in order to create job opportunities in the local communities where these projects take place. For these three projects, the MTA has set a goal that at least 20% of New York State workforce come from neighborhoods surrounding the project – in Southeast Queens for the Jamaica Bus Depot and Rockaway Line, and around the station areas planned for ADA upgrades. Through meeting local hiring goals, these projects can create over a hundred jobs for residents impacted by the project and ensure that the local communities share in the benefits of project construction and delivery.  

“These projects will ensure the MTA meets the needs of today’s riders while fighting climate change, expanding accessibility, and making sure our transit infrastructure is kept in condition to keep delivering for the next century and beyond,” said MTA Chair and CEO Janno Lieber. “This month, the MTA is proudly investing $2.5 billion to ensure the system continues to be the fastest, greenest and most reliable way for everyone to get around the New York metro region.” 

“MTA Construction & Development is delivering on the MTA’s historic Capital Program, making essential investments to make the transit system more resilient, more accessible, and more reliable,” said MTA Construction & Development President Jamie Torres-Springer. “These awards are critical to riders now and for decades to come.”  

“As the MTA invests in the region’s infrastructure it’s also investing in a pool of MTA certified Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs) by providing $345.3 million in subcontract opportunities with these critical infrastructure construction projects.” said MTA Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer Michael J. Garner. “As a result of these subcontracts, the MTA continues to drive equity within the disadvantaged business communities, specifically by creating jobs, homeownership, better education opportunities and healthcare options. The MTA is fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion.  

Redeveloping the Jamaica Bus Depot  

The Jamaica Bus Depot in Jamaica, Queens is critical to the MTA’s day-to-day bus operations and will now serve as a key element of the Authority’s mission of converting to an all zero-emissions New York City Transit (NYCT) bus fleet. As part of that initiative, the MTA has approved a contract to redevelop the depot to enable a capacity for 60 electric buses with 60 charging stations. Once open in the summer of 2026 the depot will accommodate over 270 buses. By 2030, the depot is expected to accommodate an all-electric bus fleet. The facility will also receive much-needed quality of life upgrades to enhance the work life of transit and maintenance workers stationed there.   

The new bus depot will span 134,000 square feet in addition to a 37,000 square feet three story administrative building. Sound barrier walls, up to 31 feet tall in some sections lining two sides of the facility, will shield residents from noise from depot operations. Nearby residents can also expect to see trees planted, architecturally pleasing security lighting, and an art mural wall installed along Merrick Boulevard as part of a restored sidewalk.   

The contract will be awarded pending Board approval for an estimated $483 million to cover 48 months with the awardee required to adhere to regulatory requirements including excessive noise, dust, emissions, among other potential nuisances to the nearby community. The City University of New York (CUNY) campus will be allowing the MTA to use their parking lot nearby the depot for temporary parking during the duration of the project.  

This project is expected to be completed by the end of 2026. Queens bus riders should not expect any service disruptions.  

“The Jamaica Bus Depot modernization plan is a reconstruction project worth being excited about,” said Congressman Gregory Meeks (NY-05). “The project allows for the Depot to modernize by constructing a state-of-the-art facility equipped with sustainability resources needed to operate and store a zero emissions electric bus fleet. This enhancement plan is a step toward combating climate change and benefiting the Queens community by providing riders and employees with an overall better travel experience and healthier environment.”  

“We have been working towards this new bus depot for the last 40 years, to complete the work of my predecessor on the City Council, then-Council Member Archie Spigner. He was promised an updated bus depot during his tenure on City Council, which ended in 2001. There had been many attempts by the community to pursue a redeveloped bus depot, particularly because of the high asthma rates in that area. Thanks to former Council Member Daneek Miller, Assembly Member Vivian Cook, Assembly Member Alicia Hyndman, and Queens Borough President Donovan Richards — for all making sure we are at the point where we finally have a contract to make this new project a reality,” said NYS Senator Leroy Comrie. “I also extend my thanks to MTA Chair Janno Lieber and his team for understanding the importance of this project, ensuring that it was funded, developed, and designed. Thanks to Governor Hochul for ensuring that this project has reached this important milestone. I welcome the benefits for MTA workers, who will have a workplace that better meets their needs. I also welcome the first fully electrified bus station in the MTA portfolio, able to accommodate the next generation of vehicles; having electrified buses will greatly reduce the carbon footprint in one of the highest asthma corridors in the city. I look forward to continuing to work with the MTA on future-forward projects.”  

“The Jamaica Bus Depot will have 60 electric busses that will benefit the environment and community. Improving services for the community is always a positive,” said Assembly Member Alicia L. Hyndman. “With the MTA’s plan to transition to a zero-emissions bus fleet, my hope is that passengers will continue to be driven safely in an environmentally safe atmosphere. This is a wonderful plan for Jamaica Queens, and I am looking forward to seeing implementation by 2024.”  

“The redevelopment and modernization of the Jamaica Bus Depot — a longtime goal of mine and many others in Southeast Queens — is nothing short of a game changer for The World’s Borough,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “Not only will commuters see improved conditions as they wait to board and improved service as they ride, but Queens as a whole will benefit environmentally from the electrification of the depot and the fleet of buses that will use it. I look forward to working with the MTA and all our partners to expedite this critical project as we reimagine what public transit can and must look like in the years to come.”  

“New York has historically underinvested in transit infrastructure in Southeast Queens, and I applaud the MTA's efforts to remedy the State's long-time neglect of our neighborhoods," said New York City Council Majority Whip Selvena N. Brooks-Powers, Chair of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. "The Jamaica Bus Depot Reconstruction will provide a much-needed overhaul of the existing depot building, and I look forward to working with the MTA to ensure the community’s feedback on this project is heard and heeded."  

"The Jamaica Bus Depot has been an eye sore for many years and was overwhelmingly outdated. I am excited to see that the new depot will be functioning as an all zero emissions fleet and that the concerns of neighboring residents were taken into consideration,” said Council Member Nantasha Williams. “I would like to thank my predecessor, Daneek Miller for his advocacy and the MTA for being a great partner. I look forward to the bus depot's completion at the end of 2024."  

ADA Station Upgrades and Elevator Replacements  

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) upgrades are also coming to riders at several subway stations across four boroughs following Board approval. Stations in Brooklyn, Queens, The Bronx and Manhattan will all undergo upgrades to enhance accessibility including Bay Ridge – 95 St   station in Brooklyn, Northern Boulevard   station in Queens, Parkchester E 177 St 6 station in the Bronx, and 137 St – City College   station in Manhattan. The upgrades, executed through two contracts, are expected to cost an estimated $156 million.   

Additionally, multiple elevators will be replaced across 7 stations in Manhattan and Queens including some of the system’s busiest stations including:  

  • Times Sq – 42 St   

  • 14 St – Union Square       

  • 8 Av      

  • 175 St   

  • 125 St    

  • W 4 St 

  • 74 St – Broadway 

  • Jackson Hts – Roosevelt Av    

  • Lexington Av – 53 St 

Repairs to the 19 elevators at the above seven stations are expected to cost an estimated $92 million to be accomplished through two procurements. The Authority is using its new modernized approach to delivering capital projects deploying every innovative tool at the MTA’s disposal in creative ways to achieve ADA improvements.  

“The 4 stations that will be made newly accessible through this project serve a diverse group of riders across four boroughs, from City College students to seniors aging in place in the Bronx,” said MTA Chief Accessibility Officer and Senior Advisor Quemuel Arroyo. “By deepening the commitment to accessibility through these elevator installations and replacement projects, the communities who rely on mass transit the most will directly benefit from this multi-million-dollar investment.”  

Rockaway Line  

A contract will be awarded to conduct much needed rehabilitation and resiliency work on the Rockaway Line serving the A and S trains in Queens. The Rockaway Line is a vital link connecting mainland Queens with the Rockaway Peninsula via the subway and serving over 9,000 daily riders in June, amounting to 60% of pre-pandemic ridership. This project includes designing, furnishing, and installing structure rehabilitation elements in addition to slope protection and debris shielding to ensure a state of good repair for the line that is over 65 years old.  

Ensuring the line is resilient to climate change impacts is crucial. After Superstorm Sandy, service was suspended for over six months due to damage caused by the extreme weather event. While key efforts have been made, such as flood protection and communications upgrades, the threat of damage from future storms remains.   

Pending board approval, the contract will be awarded for 44 months at an estimated cost of $392 million. While service disruptions will be unavoidable due to the narrow passage of the line, incentives are included for the contract awardee to reduce lengths of outages. Numerous travel alternatives will be provided including shuttle services and cross-honoring on the Long Island Rail Road with an anticipated completion of the project expected to be by the end of 2026.  

Metro-North Bridge Replacements   

A Design-Build contract will be awarded following Board approval to replace bridges at Fulton Avenue and South Street in Mount Vernon, New York. This work forms part of an effort to bring eight bridges located in Mount Vernon to a state of good repair. Both bridges were first constructed in 1893 and are essential to ferrying passengers along the New Haven line. The 153-foot Fulton Avenue and 73-foot South Street bridges represent the final two bridges to undergo repairs.    

This is a 27-month contract for an estimated cost of $37 million with the contract awardee providing all planning, design and engineering services to comply with MTA Construction & Development requirements.  

“Keeping our infrastructure up to date, safe and reliable is a vital role of government – and these bridge replacement projects are another sign that all levels of government are focused on quality of life needs for the residents of Mount Vernon,” said Westchester County Executive George Latimer. “Through the jobs they will create and the improved access for commuters & emergency first responders, these projects are great news for our County and the City. I thank Governor Hochul, the MTA & MNR, and all our partners for their continued progress toward our shared goals.”  

“In August of last year, I stood with our MTA partners with excitement for the opening of the 3rd Avenue Bridge, long closed for more than a decade. Today, I am excited to stand with the MTA as we begin the final steps towards replacing the Fulton and South Street bridges that have connected this city for more than 100+ years,” said Mount Vernon Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard. “This is a $37 million plus project and from design/build to opening should take a little over two years.  Once complete, Mount Vernon will be fully reconnected with brand new bridges that will unite both sides of our community. We are moving forward together!”