Date: Nov 24, 2003
Press Release Number: 155-2003
One month ahead of schedule, New York Governor George E. Pataki and New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey today officially opened the temporary PATH station at the World Trade Center site – restoring a crucial rail connection between the states that was severed in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
The Governors marked this milestone in the rebirth of Lower Manhattan by riding from the Exchange Place PATH Station in Jersey City to the World Trade Center site on the same PATH train that was the last to carry people to safety from the World Trade Center on the morning of September 11, 2001.
Joined by relatives of Port Authority heroes of September 11, the Governors also presented a replica of a memorial plaque that will be dedicated at the station to honor the nearly 3,000 people who perished in the attacks, including 84 members of the Port Authority family.
Governor Pataki said, “Today, as we pause to remember the heroism of the brave men and women who gave their lives on September 11, 2001, we make a powerful statement to the world about the resilience of the people of this city, this state and this region to rise above the tragedy of that terrible day.
“We open this station ahead of schedule, a mere 16 months after construction began. It is a tribute to the countless people who have worked so hard since September 11, 2001, to rebuild the World Trade Center site, to restore Lower Manhattan and to honor the memories of those who made the ultimate sacrifice,” Governor Pataki said.
Governor McGreevey said, “The terrorists on September 11 thought they could destroy not just lives, but our spirit, our economy and our sense of stability. But today, as we have on so many other occasions, we’ve proven them wrong.
“Immediately after the terrorist attacks, some people predicted it would take two years just to remove the debris from the World Trade Center site. For practical reasons, we needed this work to get done sooner,” Governor McGreevey said. “This station is opening today, ahead of schedule, because of our commitment to rebuild the hub that links New Jersey to New York and unites us as a regional economic force. This station will make commuting faster and more convenient for the tens of thousands of New Jersey residents who work in Lower Manhattan. We’re restoring an essential part of our economic strength.”
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, “More than 40 years ago, the visionary leaders of New York and New Jersey worked together to support the long-term economic viability of Lower Manhattan by building the World Trade Center and linking it directly to the PATH system. Working together once again, New York and New Jersey have completed the first step in the renaissance of the World Trade Center site, and we have begun to restore the vision of Governors Nelson Rockefeller, Robert Meyner and Richard Hughes of a direct rail connection from New Jersey to a vibrant center of global commerce in Lower Manhattan.”
Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, “One-third of all the people who work in Lower Manhattan commute from New Jersey. A convenient mass-transit connection from New Jersey is a key element of Lower Manhattan’s continued economic recovery. Today’s opening of the temporary World Trade Center PATH station, and the restoration of this vital transportation link below the Hudson River, will significantly aid our efforts to retain jobs in Lower Manhattan, and to create new jobs in the nation’s third-largest business district.”
Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, “Since September 11, 2001, the men and women of the Port Authority have worked around the clock for 26 months to restore PATH service to Lower Manhattan. Now that this tremendous task has been completed, the Port Authority turns its attention to the creation of a permanent World Trade Center Transportation Hub, which will include a permanent PATH terminal, pedestrian connections to ferry and subway service across Lower Manhattan, and a Grand Point of Arrival that will be worthy of this site. In the coming months, we look forward to seeing the designs for this world-class transportation hub from the world-renowned architect Santiago Calatrava.”
The proposed $2 billion permanent World Trade Center Transportation Hub is scheduled to begin serving passengers in 2006. It is expected to include underground pedestrian connections to New York City subway stations on the 1/9, N/R and E lines, as well as connections to the 2, 3, 4, 5, J, M, Z, A and C lines at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s proposed Fulton Street Transit Center. The Port Authority has begun the environmental review process for the World Trade Center Transportation Hub, which is being developed in cooperation with the Federal Transit Administration.
The Port Authority has hired the Downtown Design Partnership, in association with Mr. Calatrava, to design the World Trade Center Transportation Hub. Mr. Calatrava’s preliminary drawings for the transportation hub are scheduled to be submitted to the Port Authority in the spring of 2004.
The temporary station – the final piece of the Port Authority’s $566 million program to restore PATH service as quickly as possible from New Jersey to Lower Manhattan – is the first public space to open within the World Trade Center site since the terrorist attacks.
The temporary station provides a basic level of passenger service. It does not include many of the customer amenities that existed in the World Trade Center PATH station prior to September 11, 2001, such as heating, air conditioning and restrooms. Those customer amenities will be restored in the permanent World Trade Center Transportation Hub.
The Port Authority is providing a heightened level of security at the temporary station. The station complies with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, and with life-safety provisions established by the National Fire Protection Association, which is the standard for transit facilities across the nation.
On a typical workday, 280 PATH trains will travel into the temporary station. New Jersey commuters to Lower Manhattan will see their travel times cut by approximately 10 to 15 minutes in each direction.
Today’s opening restores the routes that PATH operated before September 11, 2001. They are: Newark to World Trade Center; Journal Square to 33rd Street; Hoboken to 33rd Street; and World Trade Center to Hoboken.
The temporary World Trade Center station will be the first in the PATH system to accept pay-per-ride MetroCards sold by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. In the latter part of 2004, the Port Authority plans to begin phasing in pay-per-ride MetroCard capability at other PATH stations.
Regular passenger service at the temporary World Trade Center PATH station begins at 2 p.m. on Sunday. Customers are allowed to enter the station for free until 12:01 a.m. on Monday, November 24.
The Port Authority invested $323 million to build the temporary World Trade Center PATH Station.
The bistate agency invested an additional $106 million to restore the PATH tunnels below the Hudson River. The tunnels’ interiors were stripped to remove and replace all equipment that was damaged by flooding on September 11, 2001, including track, electrical wiring and signals.
Another $137 million was invested to restore and enhance the Exchange Place Station in Jersey City, which was damaged by flooding on September 11, 2001. Work included replacing track, electrical equipment and related components. The Port Authority restored PATH service at Exchange Place on June 29, 2003.
The PATH restoration is being funded by Federal Emergency Management Agency money, Port Authority funds and insurance proceeds.
The Port Authority began service on the Port Authority Trans-Hudson system, more commonly known as PATH, in 1962 after taking over the system from the b