Bronx Independent Living Services (BILS) v. Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA)

Scroll to case documents Date Filed: 06/28/2016 Date Settled: 04/11/2024 Status:

Disability Rights Advocates filed a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of New York against the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (“MTA”) and New York City Transit Authority (“NYCTA”) on June 28, 2016 challenging their failure to install an elevator when they completed a $21.85 million rehabilitation to the Middletown Road subway station in the Bronx. The lawsuit alleges that although the MTA closed the station for seven months between October 2013 and May 2014 to undertake extensive work that included replacing staircases, structural steel framing, ceilings, walls, and track structure, they refused to perform the necessary work to make the station accessible to persons who use wheelchairs or other devices for mobility. DRA represents Bronx Independent Living Services (“BILS”), Disabled In Action of Metropolitan New York (“DIA”), and two Bronx residents with mobility disabilities who need elevators to access subway stations.

In March 2019, the Court ruled that the renovations triggered accessibility obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act, no matter how much those accessibility improvements cost. The ruling casts a spotlight on the MTA’s practice of not installing elevators when it makes renovations to subway stations. In March 2021, the Court denied both parties’ motions for summary judgment. The parties entered settlement negotiations and reached a settlement agreement approved by the Court on April 11, 2024.

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