March 18, 2022 By Christian Murray
U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has told the Queens Post that she has secured $1 million in federal funding that will go toward the upgrade of the Forest Hills Long Island Rail Road station.
The funds, which were included as part of the historic bipartisan omnibus appropriations agreement, will go toward station repairs, including the replacement of the deteriorated platforms and the construction of elevators.
“Our public transportation system is the backbone of the region’s economy and is an important part of our outer boroughs’ infrastructure that is vital in getting Forest Hills residents around the city,” Gillibrand said.
“Upgrading New York City’s infrastructure has been a key focus of mine, and these funds will help improve not only service for residents who use this major Queens transit hub on a daily basis, but also the borough’s quality of life.”
The MTA announced last year that it plans to upgrade the station.
The plan includes the construction of elevators, in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. The agency said it will also replace and extend the platforms.
The plan is currently in the preliminary design phase. Gillibrand said the state’s Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is being consulted on the designs, given the station’s distinctive architecture.
The upgrades answer the calls of local officials and community groups who have been urging the MTA to revamp the station for years.
Seven local legislators, alongside residents who formed the Burns Street Alliance, penned a letter to the agency in November calling for the installation of elevators and the extension of platforms.
They also asked the MTA to address the pigeon problem and water leaks inside the overpass at Continental Avenue, as well as litter around the station. They also want the loud noise and vibrations from the train to be mitigated.