Date: Feb 04, 2014
Press Release Number: 30-2014
Ten-Year Capital Spending Plan Returns Agency to its Core Mission;
Serves as Regional Economic Engine Resulting in 126,000 Total Job Years and $29 Billion in Economic Activity
The Port Authority today unveiled a record $27.6 billion, 10-year proposed Capital Plan that provides a roadmap to focus the agency on its core mission of maintaining and building transportation infrastructure and provides for projects that will have meaningful benefits to the millions of travelers who use its airports, tunnels, bridges, ports and rail system.
The 10-year capital spending plan – which covers the years 2014 through 2023 – will serve as a regional economic engine, resulting in 126,000 total job years and $29 billion in economic activity. It is one of the most comprehensive efforts ever undertaken by the 93-year-old agency to painstakingly identify and prioritize its critical long-term transportation needs.
The Port Authority is seeking public comment on the proposed 10-year Capital Plan, which will be available online today on the Port Authority website http://www.panynj.gov/corporate-information/budget-capital-plan.html. The Capital Plan is subject to Board approval on February 19. The agency is requesting that comments be received by February 14, but will review any submissions through February 18.
Development of the plan followed a lengthy, rigorous risk-based scoring process undertaken by the agency’s operating professionals and engineering staff to define projects that are of the most importance to the regional movement of people and goods. Approximately 46 percent of the total Capital Plan spending is on state of good repair projects as the agency focuses on maintaining the assets in its existing portfolio.
The Capital Plan also continues the Port Authority’s ongoing resiliency efforts to recover from Superstorm Sandy – including $1 billion of capital investment over 10 years to pay for repair, mitigation and resiliency projects. More than $700 million dollars will be invested in the period making permanent repairs to the PATH system, which was the most severely impacted Port Authority facility.
For the tens of millions of customers who use the Port Authority’s facilities every year, the plan also contains projects that will directly impact their daily travel, including the redevelopment of the Central Terminal Building at LaGuardia Airport; the raising of the Bayonne Bridge to ensure the long-term viability of the region’s port; the extension of PATH to Newark Liberty International Airport, giving travelers a one-seat ride from Lower Manhattan to the airport; the replacement of the Goethals Bridge with a state of the art bridge that will speed access across the bridge and improve safety, an upgraded PATH signal system that will result in more reliable train service and fewer delays, and the reconstruction of the Lincoln Tunnel Helix, which will provide greater roadway capacity for future growth.
The 2014-2023 Capital Plan provides the Board and public with transparency as to planned capital expenditures and priorities. Each project in the Capital Plan will, as now, be subject to separate approval. The Port Authority will regularly monitor progress on the plan, new developments including changes in risks, and availability of funding and modify the Plan as necessary.
“The proposed 10-year capital plan is a transformational moment in the Port Authority’s history,” said Port Authority Executive Director Patrick Foye. “Under the leadership of Governors Cuomo and Christie, the agency has undergone a rigorous, data-driven process to identify and prioritize the most important capital projects, including significant investment in state-of-good-repair projects that strengthen the region’s aging transportation infrastructure while also enhancing transportation capacity and service for our customers. The $27.6 billion investment plan will return this agency to core mission and ensure that the Port Authority remains a key economic engine, creating more than 126,000 jobs for the region.”
“The proposed $27.6 billion, 10-year capital plan lays out a bold vision that combines significant investment in state-of-good repair projects with funding for vital new transportation infrastructure such as the raising of the Bayonne Bridge, a new Goethals Bridge and the extension of PATH to Newark Liberty International Airport,” said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Deborah Gramiccioni. “We are committed to revitalizing the region’s aging transportation infrastructure in a smart, cost-effective and efficient manner that allows us to get the most out of every dollar we invest. The plan will serve as a living document subject to continued review and revision as necessary, ensuring a transparent and thoughtful process that benefits the region and our customers.”
During the next 10 years, $8 billion will be invested in the region’s airports, including major initiatives to redevelop LaGuardia Airport’s Central Terminal Building and Newark Liberty International Airport’s Terminal A.
The $3.6 billion LaGuardia Airport project is under way and being done under a unique public-private partnership, with a private-sector partner to be chosen during the first half of this year. Under Governor Cuomo’s management responsibility, construction of a new terminal will replace the existing 1964 Central Terminal Building and associated aeronautical ramps, utilities, roadway network and other supporting infrastructure. The project includes a new 35-gate terminal, 70 acres of aeronautical ramps, frontage roads and other related facilities.
The $2 billion Newark Liberty International Airport Terminal A redevelopment project includes construction of a new 33-gate terminal (expandable to 45 gates), 144 acres of associated airfield work, a new roadway system and a 3,000 space parking garage.
A $71 million project to rehabilitate Runways 9-27 and 16-34, the two main runways at Stewart International Airport.
Aviation’s core spending program consists of 188 projects with $4.7 billion to be invested over the next 10 years. Of the core projects, 104 of them – or 75 percent – are for state of good repair work.
Tunnels, Bridges and Terminals
The Tunnels, Bridges and Terminals program calls for $7.9 billion in investments in the agency’s tunnels and bridges, including five major initiatives – the raising of the Bayonne Bridge’s roadway to accommodate larger ships; a new Goethals Bridge; the replacement of the suspender ropes on the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln Tunnel Helix Replacement Program and the Lincoln Tunnel Access program.
The $1.3 Bayonne Bridge project involves an extraordinary engineering feat under which the 82-year-old bridge’s existing roadway will be raised to 215 feet while traffic is maintained on a portion of the bridge during the construction period. The project will accommodate larger more efficient ships that will call on the Port of New York and New Jersey when the Panama Canal expansion is complete. Construction is already well underway.
The $1.5 billion Goethals Bridge project also is being done under a unique public-private partnership agreement. The project involves the replacement of the bridge, built in 1928, which is functionally obsolete. The current bridge, which is 85 years old, has two substandard 10-foot lanes in each direction and lacks emergency shoulders. The new crossing will have six 12-foot-wide lanes, shoulders and a bikeway. Early stage construction activities are underway.
The $1.2 billion replacement of the 85-year-old George Washington Bridge suspender ropes consists of the replacement of all 592 suspender ropes, rehabilitation of the four main cables supporting the upper level and lower level roadways, replacement of the upper level sidewalks and related work.
The $1.4 billion Lincoln Tunnel Helix Replacement Program involves the construction of a new roadway structure with new foundations to replace the existing helix, which serves as the main access for travelers heading into and out of the Lincoln Tunnel. On an average weekday, the helix carries more than 120,000 vehicles and 1,800 buses into the tunnel.
The $1.8 billion Lincoln Tunnel Access Program, being done by and in coordination with the New Jersey Department of Transportation, consists of three distinct projects, designed to improve the mobility of goods and services in the region. They are the rehabilitation of the Pulaski Skyway, the Wittpenn Bridge and the Routes 1 & 9 truck route connecting Tonnelle Circle in Jersey City to Interstate 495.
Tunnels, Bridges and Terminals core capital spending involves 123 projects at a cost of $2.3 billion. Of the 123 projects, 90 – or 86 percent – are for state of good repair work.
PATH’s capital program calls for $3.3 billion, including three major projects – the replacement of the Harrison PATH Station, the modernization of the Grove Street PATH Station and the PATH extension to Newark Liberty International Airport.
The $249 million Harrison Station project involves construction of a new station to replace the existing facility, which was built in 1936. The new station will feature a glass-enclosed entrance with entrances on both the westbound and eastbound sides of the station. It also will contain ADA accessible elevators and other amenities.
The $192 million Grove Street project provides improvements to accommodate 10-car train operations and new elevators that comply with ADA requirements.
The $1.5 billion PATH extension to Newark Liberty International Airport will, for the first time, give travelers a one-seat ride from Lower Manhattan to Newark Liberty International Airport. It involves the extension of PATH from its current terminus at Newark Penn Station to the airport’s Rail Link Station.
In addition to the major projects, there are 71 core PATH projects in the program, of which 57 – or 77 percent – are state of good repair work.
Port Commerce’s 10-year spending plan includes $1.5 billion in investments, including a major project to design and build an upgraded Cross Harbor Car Float facility and a new on-dock rail facility at Greenville Yards that will serve the Global Container Terminal in Jersey City.
In addition, the $1.3 billion Bayonne Bridge project will allow the port to accept new, larger ships that will call on the port as soon as the Panama Canal widening is complete. This will ensure the port’s long-term viability to maintain its position as the East Coast’s leading destination for international shippers.
In addition to the Greenville Yards development program, there are 51 core projects in the Port Commerce program, of which 25 – or 54 percent – are state of good repair work.
World Trade Center Redevelopment
During the next five years, the Port Authority will complete its commitment to rebuild the site and revitalize Lower Manhattan following the events of 9/11. The World Trade Center capital projects will account for $4.9 billion in spending, with 62 percent of that amount devoted to World Trade Center Retail development and World Trade Center common infrastructure.
The One World Trade Center project will be finished this year, and the agency has already reached agreements for 70 percent of its net operating income target for the tower. Tenants will include publishing giant Condé Nast, Vantone China Center and the U.S. General Services Administration.
In the agency’s continuing effort to return to core mission, late last year it approved the sale of its remaining 50 percent joint venture in the World Trade Center retail project to the Westfield Group for $800 million, providing much needed capital to reinvest in transportation infrastructure.
The World Trade Center Transportation Hub will soon open its first permanent PATH train platform and the entire facility remains on schedule to be opened in 2015.
The Port Authority also continues to build out the site’s street grid as part of the long-envisioned development plan.
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Founded in 1921, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey builds, operates, and maintains many of the most important transportation and trade infrastructure assets in the country. The agency’s network of aviation, ground, rail, and seaport facilities is among the busiest in the country, supports more than 550,000 regional jobs, and generates more than $23 billion in annual wages and $80 billion in annual economic activity. The Port Authority also owns and manages the 16-acre World Trade Center site, where construction crews are building the iconic One World Trade Center, which is now the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere. The Port Authority receives no tax revenue from either the State of New York or New Jersey or from the City of New York. The agency raises the necessary funds for the improvement, construction or acquisition of its facilities primarily on its own credit. For more information, please visit http://www.panynj.gov.