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Rail News Home Passenger Rail

7/9/2024



Rail News: Passenger Rail

Hudson River Tunnel rail project locks in key federal funding


Hundreds of thousands of commuters travel through the 114-year-old passenger-rail tunnel daily, underscoring the need to replace and modernize a vital corridor damaged during Hurricane Sandy in 2012, USDOT officials say.
Photo – Amtrak

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The U.S. Department of Transportation yesterday announced the award of $11 billion in federal grants and financing for the Hudson River rail tunnel project.

Federal and state officials yesterday signed a full-funding grant agreement through the Federal Transit Administration’s Capital Investment Grants (CIG) program, allowing the FTA to invest close to $6.9 billion to help build the tunnel and rehabilitate the existing North River Tunnel, representing the largest grant ever signed by the FTA.

In addition, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg approved Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) loans through USDOT’s Build America Bureau totaling $4.1 billion, which will provide financial support at below-market interest rates, USDOT officials said in a press release.

Hundreds of thousands of commuters travel daily through the 114-year-old passenger-rail tunnel that runs under the Hudson River between New Jersey and New York, underscoring the need to replace and modernize a vital corridor damaged during Hurricane Sandy in 2012, USDOT officials said.

The years-long effort to secure the funding necessary to rebuild the tunnel structure included efforts by the USDOT, Congress, the states of New York and New Jersey, Amtrak, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, local officials and labor groups.

Funding for the project comes from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which President Joe Biden signed in late 2021. Project components include a new double-track tunnel between the Bergen Palisades in New Jersey and Manhattan in New York City, rehabilitating the North River Tunnel and creating a concrete casing at Hudson Yards to allow the new tunnel to connect to New York-Penn Station.

The project is designed to enhance service, improve reliability, modernize design and mitigate the impact of future natural disasters.

“For decades, Americans watched one of the most heavily used train tunnels in the hemisphere deteriorate and become a bottleneck that affected travelers from New England to the Mid-Atlantic and beyond,” said Buttigieg.

The new tunnel will revitalize a rail corridor that is essential to the U.S. economy, he said.



Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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