Gateway Project Rail Tunnel Between NY And NJ Breaks Ground After Decades Of Red Tape

Gateway Project Rail Tunnel Between NY And NJ Breaks Ground After Decades Of Red Tape

A $16.1 billion rail tunnel in between New York and New Jersey is finally set to break ground after more than 10 years of delays. And we’re sure we’ll be happy to report that its up and operating in probably another 100 years.  

But we digress. “A new rail tunnel linking New York and New Jersey is officially starting construction,” Bloomberg reported last week. The project is called the “Gateway Project”. 

US Secretary of Transportation Mayor Pete was joined at a ceremony in Hudson Yards by New York Governor Kathy Hochul, Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer. He remarked: “This is a day that I know that this city, this region, this country has been looking for and waiting for for a very long time.” 

Uh, no, Pete. That will be the day when the tunnel is actually up and running and people don’t need to wait 2 hours and pay $75 to get through the Lincoln Tunnel. 

But we digress again. The Bloomberg report notes that The Gateway Project should be a crucial solution for alleviating traffic bottlenecks beneath the Hudson River—a pivotal juncture on the Northeast Corridor that spans from Boston to Washington.

It is the nation’s most frequented passenger rail line, catering to over 750,000 passengers daily. The current tunnel, under Amtrak’s ownership and also serving New Jersey Transit, has stood for over a hundred years and faces mounting reliability concerns.

The first construction phase will lay underground casings linking the new tunnel to New York’s Pennsylvania Station. However, commuters won’t see benefits until the tunnel, with its two tracks, is operational by 2035. And we’ll take the “over” on that date. 

This year, the Gateway tunnel secured a $6.9 billion grant from the Federal Transit Administration, with an additional $3.8 billion announced on Friday. This brings Washington’s total contribution to over $11 billion, covering around 70% of the project’s cost, according to Schumer. New York and New Jersey will shoulder the remaining expenses.

The push for a tunnel alleviating rail congestion between New York and New Jersey began in the 1990s but faced political hindrances and delays. A prior tunnel initiative, already funded, was halted by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in 2010. The Gateway proposal surfaced in 2011 but faced challenges during the Trump era, according to Bloomberg

Biden’s infrastructure legislation allocated $8 billion over five years to the Capital Investment Grant program, which prioritized Gateway. Additionally, Biden’s team earmarked $292 million from this law earlier this year for a pivotal early stage of the project.

Think of how many tunnels we could have built – and how quickly we could have them finished – with the $100 billion we just shipped to Ukraine?

Tyler Durden
Sun, 11/05/2023 – 13:55

 

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