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LES Subway Station Escalator Stops Working Hours After Debut

By Serena Solomon | February 21, 2014 11:25am
 The escalator at the East Broadway subway station stopped working after opening on Thursday night.
East Broadway Subway Station
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LOWER EAST SIDE — The East Broadway F subway station's long-awaited new escalator was forced to shut down early Friday morning due to an electrical issue, just hours after it was switched on.

Commuters Thursday night were greeted with the surprise of a working escalator at the station, after the MTA delayed the opening several times during 18 months of construction.

However, power to the escalator went down at about midnight, according to workers on the scene, leaving straphangers to walk up 81 steps from platform to street once again Friday morning. 

"What kind of workmanship is that if it works for a day and it's out of service a few hours later?" asked George Brighwaite, 60.

"They gave us some jelly on bread last night, now it's just the bread."

Brighwaite, who lives two blocks from the station, said walking the three flights of stairs is exhausting.

"It wears on my body," he said, while calling the new escalator's look "charming."

MTA and Con Edison workers said the stoppage was due to an electrical issue. They said they hoped the issue would be resolved in the next few hours.

A spokesman for the MTA was not immediately available for comment. The escalator was still not working as of 10 a.m.

Other straphangers marveled at the beauty of the shiny new escalator with silver paneled handrails and bright white tiles.

"It's not working," said one woman, "but it's beautiful."