Despite facing many setbacks and delays, the renovated Buhre and Zerega avenue IRT 6 stations are now open for service.
The MTA has completed the Buhre and Zerega stations’ rehabilitation which was part of a five station renovation project on the Pelham Bay Line.
On Monday, April 27 at 5 a.m., both stations officially reopened service in both directions following a closure lasting nearly nine months.
The revitalization started last July and included the installation of new structural steel replacing the severely deteriorated original structures.
Slated for a Febraury 16 completion, this discovery reset the deadline for mid-May, but the MTA has completed the project two weeks ahead of this time table.
The renovations included repairing mezzanine, street and platform stairs; replacing platform and street canopy roofs and track beds; installing bird deterrent systems and ADA equipment like new platform edges, tactile warning strips and boarding areas; painting; and amenities such as MTA Arts & Design commissioned artwork installations.
“The Zerega and Buhre Avenue stations are on elevated tracks and have open-air platforms that have been exposed to the weather every day, every hour, for nearly 100 years,” New York City Transit president Carmen Bianco said. “The renewal work at these stations is necessary to improve our customers’ experience and help us better serve them, and we hope that our customers enjoy these new upgrades.”
Buhre Avenue Station’s installation, a glass mosaic portraying geometric shapes animates Buhre’s platform level by taking advantage of bright natural light offered by the open-air station platform.
The piece, ‘Have a Happy Day,’ by Soonae Tark clashes rigid lines and squares with other shapes formed by curves and circular motifs.
Zerega Avenue Station’s artwork is a large colorful glass mosaic with hand-formed porcelain panels installed on the platform level.
‘Garden of Earthly Delights,’ by James Arredando, illustrates the four seasons in images of crocuses, marigolds, daisies, pansies, morning glories, and roses.
Arredando’s desire was to bring a pastoral element to the urban Bronx environment through his floral mosaics’ colors and fanciful imagery.
Some minor work remains in the stations’ electrical rooms and staff quarters and Help Point Intercoms are slated for installation in the upcoming weeks.
Once completed, MTA personnel, elected officials and stakeholders will unite for a ribbon cutting ceremony commemorating Buhre and Zerega’s reopening.
“This is such a welcomed relief for our community and we are very glad the MTA has finally completed this project. The results look excellent and the MTA should be highly praised for how well they worked together with our community throughout the project’s duration,” Assemblyman Michael Benedetto expressed.
“It’s great news for all of us that these two very important neighborhood stations are now open. It’s a huge relief it didn’t take any longer than it already has,” Councilman James Vacca said.
“As the closure of the Buhre and Zerega Avenue stops posed an inconvenience for many, I’m happy to hear the MTA reopened these stops this week without further delay. I applaud the MTA for their continued work to both improve service and provide a safe, secure ride for all New Yorkers,” said Senator Jeff Klein.
“I take the train from the Buhre Avenue station in the morning and this morning was my first time. It looks great with the new artwork and it is also very clean. I hope they continue to maintain this station for many more years to come,” Nicole Luciano, a Pelham Bay resident, said.
Additional reporting contributed by Steven Goodstein.