Press Release Article


Date: Jul 31, 2012
Press Release Number: 109-2012

10 Percent Surge in First Half of 2012 Validates Agency’s $600 Million Investment in Rail Infrastructure

ExpressRail, the Port Authority’s rail system serving New York and New Jersey marine terminals, reported a record 10 percent increase in cargo transported during the first half of 2012, validating the agency’s $600 million investment in building the system.

During the first six months of this year, ExpressRail transported 228,298 cargo containers from port terminals in Elizabeth and Newark, New Jersey, and Staten Island, New York. This is 10 percent more than during the same period in 2011, and puts the Port Authority on pace to exceed the previous record for annual rail cargo movements set in 2011. The increase is attributable, in part, to a new express rail service between the Port of New York and New Jersey and Chicago that began this year.

The New York Container Terminal at Howland Hook, Staten Island, reported the biggest increase in rail cargo transported, up 45 percent this year compared with the same six-month period in 2011.

The Port Authority invested in the ExpressRail system as part of its commitment to a cleaner environment in the Port District. The system helps to reduce congestion on roadways in the New York-New Jersey bi-state region. The agency estimates that the number of cargo containers transported on ExpressRail during the first half of 2012 resulted in approximately 525,000 fewer trucks on area roadways. At full capacity, the ExpressRail system can handle 1.3 million cargo containers annually and reduce the number of trucks on local roads by 3 million, along with their corresponding emissions.

“ExpressRail provides shippers with a modern, cost effective, and environmentally friendly way to move goods to the most robust consumer markets in the country; giving our port another advantage to ensure that we remain the premier destination for cargo on the East Coast,” said Port Authority Chairman David Samson.

“The investments we have made in rail and other critical port infrastructure demonstrate our commitment to facilitating global commerce and ensuring that our ports are ready to handle cargo volumes from around the world,” said Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler.

“When international shippers make decisions about where to ship cargo, our port rail system gives them a quicker, more environmentally friendly option to move their goods from the docks to the store shelves and into the hands of consumers,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “That’s good for their business, good for the port, and good for the jobs and economic activity the port generates.”

“Our commitment to ExpressRail shows the Port Authority working to protect our environment, to reduce truck congestion on our roads, and to create jobs throughout the region,” said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Bill Baroni.

The Port Authority’s $600 million investment in ExpressRail has allowed the agency to build an 18-track facility that straddles the APM and Maher Terminals at the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminals. In addition, the Port Authority built a second lead rail track that allows trains to move into and out of the ExpressRail Elizabeth facility at the same time. ExpressRail facilities also serve the Port Newark Container Terminal and the New York Container Terminal on Staten Island.

In addition, the Port Authority completed construction in 2009 on a rail support facility along Corbin Street that can handle four 10,000-foot trains daily. Construction is currently under way on a bridge that will link the Port Newark Container Terminal with its rail facility on the western side of Corbin Street. When completed in 2013, the bridge will greatly improve the flow of truck traffic carrying containers to the trains.

Steve Coleman

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 New York. 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 relies on revenues generated by facility users, tolls, fees and rents as well as loans, bond financing, and federal grants to fund its operations. For more information, please visit

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