Back in August, BART announced that it would briefly close a few station entrances in San Francisco in order to build new designer canopies over the stairwells.
Starting October 2 riders will see the first of these start to take shape at the northern Ellis and Market Street entrance of Powell Street station, meaning that entry will be closed for at least five months.
The glass awnings are supposed to protect the system’s (chronically broken) escalators from rain and other environmental hazards, hopefully upping their resilience and minimizing the need for repairs. The installation is a state requirement.
But perhaps the most noteworthy addition is a basic innovation that should have been in place decades ago:
“The canopy will include a digital display to show train arrival times, new security grille, new LED lighting, security cameras, and other improvements,” according to BART.
Yes, BART trains arrival and departure times will be now viewable at street level, without having to use an app.
BART says it plans to have similar awnings over all entries to Civic Center, Powell, Montgomery, and Embarcadero stations by the end of 2019. But the first phase of the plan calls for only two at Powell and Civic Center.
John King reported these new additions to BART two years ago, already of the opinion that they were long overdue.