Posted August 24, 2017 in Articles
Author: Beth Mlady, cleveland.com
BROOK PARK, Ohio -- The newly renovated Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority Brookpark Station opened Aug. 23 with city and RTA officials participating in a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
It signified the conclusion of a $16.5 million project begun in 2015 that modernized the structure, made it more ADA-accessible and added a new underground tunnel that connects the east and west entrances. In addition, a new rail platform was constructed and real-time information signage was installed so passengers can see when the next train will arrive. The original station was constructed in 1969.
Transportation Program Specialist Nichole Neal spoke on behalf of the Federal Transit Administration.
"This project is very significant and important to FTA," Neal said. "The Brookpark Station is the first stop after Hopkins airport. We were under budget, and it's a beautiful project."
Brook Park Mayor Tom Coyne, who served on the RTA board in the past, said transportation "needed to be going where folks were going, not where they used to go."
"As a result, we improved the facilities and stations," he said, noting the updated Brookpark Station pays homage to the Ford Motor Company engine plant across the street and also to Rosie the Riveter and the working class. "This station is a monument to working people of America in Northeast Ohio. We're grateful they made the improvement in Brook Park. The more opportunities we have to get skilled employees to our suburban areas ... the better we are."
Other officials in attendance included Brook Park council representatives Carl Burgio, Jan Powers and Tom Troyer, Cleveland Ward 17 Councilman Martin Keane, RTA Board of Trustees President George F. Dixon III, Ohio governor's liaison Dustin Russell and Joe Calabrese, CEO and general manager of the Greater Cleveland RTA.
"This is a great spot, and we've waited a long time to stand here," Calabrese said. "This is our highest ridership West Side station."
More than 200 trains a day service the Brookpark Station, he said, and approximately 40 percent of those who board transportation there come from Lorain and Medina counties. The station serves 750,000 customers a year, he added.
"I'm very proud of this station and how it came out," Calabrese said.