Bronx Independent Living Services (BILS) v. Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA)
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, in September 2023, reached an agreement that is now subject to Court approval. Read the Class Notice describing a proposed settlement of a class action lawsuit that may affect your rights, and read more class notice information.
- Read the Short Class Notice (English)
- Read the Long Class Notice (English)
- Read the Short Class Notice (Spanish)
- Read the Long Class Notice (Spanish)
- Read the order granting motion for summary judgment
- Read the Complaint
- Read the Motion for Partial Summary Judgment
- Read the DOJ's letter in support of the plaintiffs
- Read the order granting class certification
- March 6, 2019: Federal Court Issues Landmark Civil Rights Ruling Likely to Lead to More Elevators in the New York City Subway
- April 27, 2018: Class Certified in Elevator Access Case against MTA; Summary Judgment Motion Pending
- June 28, 2016: Bronx Subway Station Still Inaccessible For Wheelchair Users $21.85 Million Later