Press Release Article


Date: Jun 17, 2004
Press Release Number: 79-2004

The Port Authority today launched a record $809 million investment in its Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) rapid-transit rail system by formally seeking proposals from contractors to replace or rehabilitate its entire railcar fleet.

The request for proposals calls for the design and fabrication of 246 new rail cars. As part of their proposal, contractors also were required to submit alternate bids for the rehabilitation or replacement of an additional 94 cars.

The $809 million program cost also includes the award of several contracts for car maintenance equipment, renovations to the Harrison Maintenance Facility, and preliminary work on a new signal system. It is the largest single investment in PATH since the Port Authority acquired it from the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad in 1962.

New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey said, “For more than 40 years, the PATH system has provided a key mass transit option that allows commuters to spend less time in their cars and more time with their families. These new PATH cars will demonstrate our unwavering commitment to public transportation in New Jersey, and will help my administration improve the quality of life for all commuters by reducing congestion at our bridges and tunnels.”

New York Governor George E. Pataki said, “This historic investment in PATH will continue our monumental effort to restore the economy and vitality that existed in Lower Manhattan before the tragic September 11, 2001, attacks. These new cars will convince even more people to use public transportation when traveling to jobs or recreation activities in Lower Manhattan and in other parts of the city.”

Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, “The purchase of new PATH cars is a critical component of the Port Authority’s ambitious $8.7 billion capital plan, which will allow us to fulfill our regional mandate to enhance the transportation system in New York and New Jersey. In addition to buying new PATH cars, the Port Authority also is finalizing plans to build a spectacular World Trade Center Transportation Hub that will rival the great transportation facilities throughout the country.”

Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, “The redevelopment of Lower Manhattan hinges on our ability to provide a world-class transportation system that will allow commuters and visitors to travel easily to and from the downtown area. Upgrading the PATH system is a key component of that plan, along with our efforts to improve the Fulton Street subway station and develop a one-seat ride to John F. Kennedy International Airport.”

Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, “These new cars will further improve our ability to attract more riders to the PATH system. Since the opening of the temporary World Trade Center PATH Station last November, ridership at that station has far exceeded our projections, and we believe it will continue to grow once we provide our customers with the additional passenger amenities available in the new PATH cars.”

The new cars will have improved lighting, air conditioning and heating; cantilevered seats with room for passengers to store items under them; prerecorded station announcements; better signs; and three doors on each side to allow for faster loading and unloading.

The Port Authority expects to award a contract for the new PATH cars late this year, and have the first of them in passenger service in late 2008 or early 2009. The entire fleet is expected to be replaced or rehabilitated by 2011.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit rail system; the Port Authority-Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan. The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.

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