Following the successful installation of the new South Tyson Avenue Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) bridge in Floral Park this past August, new Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant elevators are being installed at the Floral Park LIRR Station as part of the third track project. Relocation of utilities is underway, with the installation of the north, central and south elevators scheduled to begin before the end of 2019. When all three elevators are completed in the summer of 2020, travel by train will be undoubtedly easier for the nearly 16,000 residents of Floral Park who use the LIRR.
Floral Park Station was built in 1878 and converted to an elevated station in 1960. This station services both the main line and the Hempstead branch, and serves nearly 3,000 customers each weekday.
The addition of the elevators at the station is especially welcomed by Floral Park resident Nadia Holubnyczyj-Ortiz.
“Our train station is 58 years old and has never seen an improvement or renovation project,” said Holubnyczyj-Ortiz at a third track project public hearing in 2017. “The fascade is crumbling, concrete is breaking away and rust can be seen from top to bottom. Access to the tracks are by 12 metal staircases, each comprised of 40 steps from street to track level. One escalator for platform B leads to one westbound track on the Hempstead line and one eastbound track on the main line. There is no public elevator.”
Citing statistics from the 2010 U.S. Census, Holubnyczyj-Ortiz said that out of the 16,000 village residents, 2,348 were over the age of 65, while 761 were disabled and under the age of 65, including Holubnyczyj-Ortiz. Additionally, 920 children under the age of 5 reside in Floral Park showing that 25 percent of village residents who are at a disadvantage.
“The Floral Park train station must be renovated, must be updated and must become ADA compliant,” Holubnyczyj-Ortiz said at the time. “There is no question. There is no debate. There is no compromise. This is not a favor, this is not a bargaining tool for mitigation. This is a public right to public transportation.”