Press Release Article


PORT AUTHORITY PREPARED TO HANDLE HOLIDAY TRAVELERS AT REGION’S AIRPORTS, TUNNELS, BRIDGES AND PATH SYSTEM More Than 2.2 Million Passengers Expected to Use Region’s Airports During 12-Day Christmas-New Year’s Holiday Period

Date: Dec 19, 2001
Press Release Number: 169-2001

Although fewer people are expected to travel by air, car or rail this Christmas and New Year’s season, the Port Authority is prepared to handle heavy travel volumes at its airports, tunnels and bridges and PATH rapid transit system during the 12-day holiday period.

“Despite projections of a 19-percent drop in air travel, this holiday season will be one of the busiest travel times of the year,” said Ernesto Butcher, the Port Authority’s Chief Operating Officer. “The Port Authority will do its part to assist customers who use our airports, tunnels, bridges and PATH system. We also urge travelers to allow extra time to get to their destinations to accommodate the increased security in place at all facilities.

“To further improve holiday traffic flow, the Port Authority will lift the ban on single-occupant vehicles at the Lincoln and Holland tunnels on Christmas and New Year’s days. And all construction projects at bridges and tunnels will be suspended during the holiday period,” Mr. Butcher said.

During the 12-day holiday period, from Saturday, December 22, through Wednesday, January 2, the Port Authority forecasts 840,000 passengers at Newark International Airport, 770,000 at JFK and 600,000 at LaGuardia.

The 2.2 million passengers who will use the region’s three airports are urged to use public transportation whenever possible – including the new AirTrain Newark service to Newark International Airport – in case parking is limited at airport lots.

For Newark Airport parking information, call 888 EWR-INFO and press 22 or tune radios to 530 AM when near the airport. For Kennedy Airport parking information, call 718 244-4444 or tune radios to 1630 AM. For LaGuardia Airport parking information, call 718 533-3400. Information also is available online at www.newarkairport.com, www.kennedyairport.com, and www.laguardiaairport.com.

Approximately 3.7 million eastbound vehicles will use the Port Authority’s four bridges and two tunnels during the 12-day holiday period. Approximately 300,000 travelers will use the crossings on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, about the same number as last year. Traffic volumes for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are expected to be approximately 20 percent lower than those on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

PATH will operate normal weekday schedules on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. Additional trains will be operated if needed on the 33rd-Hoboken and 33rd-Newark routes to accommodate commuters who leave work early. To accommodate New Year’s Eve travelers heading to Times Square, PATH will operate trains every 10 minutes until
11:30 p.m. After 11:30 p.m., Newark-33rd Street via Hoboken service will operate every 10 minutes until 4 a.m., with more frequent service from 33rd Street to Newark via Hoboken to serve New Year’s Eve revelers leaving Times Square.

On Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, PATH will operate on a Sunday schedule. Between 9 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., trains on the Newark-Hoboken, Journal Square to 33rd Street and Hoboken-33rd Street routes will operate every 15 minutes. Overnight, trains on the Newark-33rd Street via Hoboken route will operate every 30 minutes.
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