At a breakfast event hosted by the New York Building Congress on Friday morning, Senator Chuck Schumer announced his "full-throated support" for an Amtrak plan to add two new tunnels under the Hudson River, and made the case that the project should be funded with federal transportation dollars.
The proposed "Gateway" project, which is still in the early planning stages, would add two more tunnels to the existing two between New York and New Jersey, and, in doing so, replace the planned ARC project that was scrapped in 2010 by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who pulled the state's funding for the project, citing cost overruns.
"To have a bottleneck doesn't just hurt people in New York and New Jersey, it hurts people around the country," Schumer told a packed ballroom at the Pierre Hotel on East 61st Street.
The two-track railroad running from Newark to midtown Manhattan is, by Amtrak's estimates, the most heavily used passenger rail in the hemisphere. Yet the Hudson River tunnels upon which both Amtrak and New Jersey Transit rely are a century old and nearing full capacity.(1)