THE PORT AUTHORITY OF NY & NJ

Press Release Article


PORT AUTHORITY BOARD AUTHORIZES REPLACEMENT OF PATH'S HARRISON RAIL STATION

Date: Apr 04, 2012
Press Release Number: 45-2012

Estimated $256M project will create $344M in economic activity, more than 1,000 jobs, and take two years less than expected to complete

A gleaming new glass-and-steel Harrison PATH rail station is now on track to replace the currently deteriorating 76-year-old facility after Port Authority commissioners last week authorized key steps to move the project forward.

The Board's action to approve $256 million in project authorizations enables PATH officials to award contracts for professional and advisory services to finalize the station's design, hire a construction manager and acquire outstanding properties. The construction portion of the project is estimated at $153.8 million and this expedited process will shave two years off the expected timeframe. The move will help meet the city's growing residential and commercial needs, as well as those related to Red Bulls Stadium.

The city of Harrison's ongoing renaissance, led by Mayor Raymond McDonough means significantly increased passenger use of the existing station, which was built in 1936 and is unable to be refurbished to meet the city's 21st century needs. The new station will accommodate increased ridership at Harrison and eventually along the entire Newark-World Trade Center PATH line, with the addition of longer platforms to accommodate 10-car trains instead of the current 8-car limit.

"The replacement of the aging PATH station at Harrison, along with the addition of 340 new rail cars, demonstrates the Board of Commissioners' commitment to modernize the PATH system for the 76 million riders who use it each year," said Port Authority Chairman David Samson. "The new station will be a centerpiece for Harrison's revitalization and create over a thousand jobs and $344 million in economic activity."

"Trimming two years off the construction timeline will enable us to deliver this important rail station in five years rather than seven," said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. "This exemplifies the Port Authority's drive to regain its place as one of the region's most efficient economic engines by eliminating bureaucratic hurdles that will enable projects to be built in a timelier fashion."

"Mayor Raymond McDonough has made this project a key priority for Harrison and for commuters across New Jersey," said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Bill Baroni. "The mayor's leadership and tireless advocacy on behalf of modern and efficient public transportation, together with our new leadership team, have enabled the project to finally move forward after years of delay."

"The Port Authority, under the leadership of Governors Chris Christie and Andrew Cuomo, has finally given the green light to the modernization and revitalization of the Harrison PATH station," said Harrison Mayor Raymond McDonough. "This project will provide numerous economic incentives not only to Harrison but to surrounding communities in New Jersey for years to come."

Last year, the Port Authority completed its three-year phase-in of 340 new rail cars, a $744 million program that made PATH one of the nation's newest fleets after years of being one of the oldest. The $580 million computerized signal system will replace an aging, mechanized system and allow PATH trains to run closer together while maintaining safety requirements. Running trains more efficiently, combined with the 10-car platforms on the Newark-WTC line, will allow PATH to increase future ridership by more than 20 percent.

This is important given that the Red Bulls soccer has brought increased ridership to Harrison's PATH station over the past two years and various developers are now planning significant residential and commercial construction projects within the city.

The Port Authority took over PATH from the bankrupt Hudson and Manhattan Railroad in 1962. PATH set a record in its 50-year history in 2011 with 76.6 million passenger trips, surpassing the previous 2008 record by 1.7 million trips.

Passengers took approximately 256,000 weekday trips and 211,000 weekend trips in 2011 on PATH, which comprises 43 miles of track and 13 stations in New Jersey and New York. Last year, the Harrison station experienced the highest weekday growth of the system's stations, jumping 8.7 percent above 2010 levels.

Additionally, the Board approved a $71 million reauthorization to replace and upgrade the PATH's Christopher Street substation, which will maintain the facility that provides electrical power to the uptown PATH system in a state-of-good-repair. Authorization included a $31.8 million construction contract with Mass. Electric Construction Company following a publicly advertised bid solicitation.

CONTACT:
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Ron Marsico or Sara Beth Joren, 212 435-7777

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which does not receive tax dollars from either state, operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. This includes John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, Stewart International and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; the Port Authority-Port Jersey Marine Terminal and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.