There are some wry San Francisco complaints that are stated so many times that they completely lose their emphasis. Karl rolling in, for example. The incorrect Mark Twain quote about our chilly summers. And, the never-ending saga of broken escalators in BART stations.
But now, at least one of those complaints could be eliminated (maybe). Thanks to demands from the state, BART has been forced to protect new escalator investments, which means stations where escalators are open to the elements — pretty much all of them — will now receive brand new modern canopies. A rendering of a new entrance shows transparent glass sides, white roofs, and prominent signage.
The shiny new canopies have been under discussion since a very rainy January, when our sister publication the Examiner reported that 11 escalators citywide were down. But based on data from a similar canopy design used at 19th Street Station in Oakland, it’s been determined that escalator “down time” was reduced by 2/3, a hopeful sign for those too lazy or physically unable to take the stairs.
If all goes according to plan, work on new Market Street canopies at Powell Station by the Diesel Store, Civic Center Station by the CVS, and Powell Station near the Men’s Warehouse will begin this fall. The remainder of BART entrances at Civic Center, Powell and Montgomery stations will see canopies in a second phase, which starts in 2019.
Now if only we can get more public restrooms and Pit Stops installed near BART stations to quell human waste issues.