Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stimulus Money Could Help Build Hudson River Tunnel

The economic stimulus package signed into law earlier this week could provide up to $1.5 billion toward construction of the Access to the Region's Core project, which includes new tunnels under the Hudson River and a new terminal in Midtown Manhattan for NJ Transit, according to New Jersey's two U.S. Senators.

In a joint statement issued last week, Sen. Robert Menendez said:
“This much-needed rail tunnel embodies what we’re trying to do with this recovery package. We’re jumpstarting a ready-to-go project that creates jobs now and lays the groundwork for a more secure economic future.”
“Not only will this package serve as an engine for job creation, but these investments will pay off in the years to come by reducing congestion on our roads and providing new, energy-efficient options for travelers,” added Sen. Frank Lautenberg.

However, even if the full $1.5 billion were to come through, New Jersey would still have a $1.25 billion funding gap for the $8.75 billion project, which has been criticized by some rail advocates for its failure to provide a connection to Pennsylvania Station, NJ Transit's current terminus in New York.

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