Governor Andrew Cuomo and MTA officers introduced on Monday that in a single day subway service would begin a phased return on February, twenty second. As a substitute of being closed from 1 a.m. to five a.m. for cleansing, the system shall be closed from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m.
“The trains have by no means been as clear as they’re now,” Cuomo mentioned, including that since he has began to reopen issues like indoor eating and enormous stadium occasions due to declining coronavirus charges, it was solely acceptable that subway service can be elevated.
The subways have been closed to in a single day riders since Could of 2020, when the company began an enormous cleansing effort to fight the unfold of COVID-19. Round 150,000 folks rode the subways in a single day previous to the closure.
Public well being consultants agree that floor transmission of COVID-19 is exceedingly uncommon, and that mass transit within reason secure if riders put on masks. Subway trains nonetheless run in a single day regardless of the closure, as they’re used to move staff and police. Round 50,000 folks use the buses that the MTA has supplied for individuals who want public transit in a single day. Strain has elevated on the Cuomo administration to reopen 24/7 subway service by New York Metropolis lawmakers and transit advocates. A bunch of homeless advocates lately sued the MTA, alleging that its pandemic guidelines successfully discriminate towards homeless subway clients.
“I do not perceive how one can ship folks in hazmat fits via a practice spraying chemical disinfectant with folks on it,” Cuomo mentioned, when requested why the trains nonetheless wanted to be shut down in a single day for cleansing. “It would not make frequent sense to me.”
MTA Chairman Pat Foye and New York Metropolis Transit Interim President Sarah Feinberg joined the governor throughout his press convention, and insisted that the identical stage of cleansing would proceed between 2 a.m. and 4 a.m. Each reiterated their name for the NYPD to dispatch one other 1,000 officers into the transit system, along with the five hundred the NYPD added over the weekend, in response to a collection of subway stabbings that resulted within the deaths of two homeless New Yorkers; two different folks experiencing homelessness have been additionally severely injured.
In response to Feinberg, that might carry the overall variety of NYPD officers within the system to 4,000, roughly the identical quantity the system had in 1995.
Requested in regards to the MTA’s request earlier in the present day, Metropolis Corridor spokesperson Avery Cohen pointed to the five hundred officers despatched into the system over the weekend.
“Tens of 1000’s of riders rely on in a single day subway service. The governor’s partial reopening is a vital step ahead,” mentioned Danny Pearlstein, coverage and communications director on the Riders Alliance. “Riders will proceed to press for full reopening in gentle of the MTA’s clear means to wash trains and the urgent want for extra eyes on the system to maintain New Yorkers secure.”