Port Authority Authorizes $9.5M for Major Road Improvement Project in Port of NY and NJ

The Port Authority Board of Commissioners approves a project to upgrade a section of Port Jersey Boulevard, the main access road to the Global Container Terminal in Jersey City.  The project will improve access to the terminal gate complex and enhance the movement of new vehicles between BMW’s processing facility and the vessel berthing area.  Global recently introduced the first automated container handling system in the port – making it one of the most efficient container terminals in North America.

The $9.5 million  road improvement project – funded by Cargo Facility Charges, which are assessed on all cargo that moves across Port Authority wharfs – will include a new left turn lane and  entrance to the BMW auto processing facility to handle additional traffic volume, the realignment and repaving of Port Jersey Boulevard between Colony Road and the Global Container Terminal gate, upgrades to the existing drainage system and installation of a guiderail for vehicle safety.

The roadway upgrades will provide better access and egress to Port Jersey and Global Container Terminal, reducing fuel consumption and associated pollution by minimizing vehicle travel time and truck idling.  The improvements also will increase safety for trucks entering and exiting the Global terminal and BMW’s facility from Port Jersey Boulevard.  Currently, Global and BMW employ approximately 600 people.

The Port Authority recently completed or has underway $117 million in upgrades to the port roadway network, including approximately $27 million to upgrade the North Avenue East/McLester Street curve in Elizabeth, and $34.5 million for the Port Street/Brewster Road project, which will be completed this year. These infrastructure improvements, together with road and common area security investments to improve the port’s efficiency, security and environmental footprint, are funded by the Cargo Facility Charge.  The Port Authority anticipates spending an additional $248 million over the next 10 years at its New York and New Jersey port facilities.  The additional funding is included in the Port Authority’s 10-year Capital Plan.

“Making sure cargo flows safely and efficiently through the port is crucial to attracting international shippers to do business here,” said Port Authority Executive Director  Patrick Foye. “This project will not only improve the speed and reliability for truckers, but provides significant environmental benefits for the port community by reducing truck congestion and idling.”

“We anticipate continued growth at our port, which is good news for the region.  But we must make sure that the infrastructure we have in place can handle the cargo volumes and truck traffic the cargo will generate,” said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Deb Gramiccioni.  “This project will help relieve traffic congestion and increase safety at one of our busiest port facilities.”

Work to realign, widen, and improve roads at the port is helping to enhance safety at key thoroughfares while improving the flow of traffic. The work also allows trucks to make critical turns safely at higher speeds. The current port’s roadway plan is scheduled to be substantially completed by 2019.

The ongoing road projects are part of the Port Authority’s efforts to reduce truck congestion and resulting air emissions in the Port of New York and New Jersey.  In June, the Port Performance Task Force – created by the Port Authority in conjunction with the New York Shipping Association – released 23 recommendations to improve port performance and efficiency.  A group of port stakeholders – the Council on Port Performance – is beginning the task of implementing the recommendations.

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