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The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) has issued a request for proposals (RFP) for preliminary engineering and planning work for a people mover system at LaGuardia Airport, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced yesterday.The chosen team will perform preliminary engineering work for the construction of up to two new stations at the terminal buildings at the airport, as well as another station at Willets Point in Queens. The team also will analyze building right-of-way for the train from the airport to Willets Point.In addition, the firm will conduct a detailed ridership analysis for the so-called "AirTrain" system and begin analyzing public-private partnerships and other financing options, according to a press release from Cuomo's office. The Willets Point station will be part of a new three-station complex in the area. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) already has initiated preliminary engineering work to build a new Long Island Rail Road station and 7-line subway station at Willets Point.The AirTrain station will be integrated with the construction of the two MTA stations, providing passengers a "seamless transfer" between the people mover system and the MTA's services.The elevated AirTrain will provide a six-minute ride from LaGuardia Airport to Willets Point. Total travel time between Midtown Manhattan and LaGuardia would be less than 30 minutes via the new system, according to the governor's release."LaGuardia is an anachronistic anomaly and is the only major airport on the East Coast — from Boston in the north to Miami in the South — that does not have rail access," said Patrick Foye, PANYNJ's executive director.
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