The Port Authority Board of Commissioners has issued an unprecedented $32-billion draft 2017-2026 Capital Plan for public comment and review. The draft plan will be the subject of the most extensive public outreach campaign ever undertaken to ensure a broad spectrum of stakeholders and the public can provide input on its contents.
At a special meeting, the Board unanimously passed a resolution that requires the draft 10-year Capital Plan to be made available for public review on the Port Authority’s website. The review process will include first-ever Capital Plan public meetings in both states that will be attended by at least one commissioner from each state. Meetings will be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on January 31 at Port Authority offices at 4 World Trade Center and from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on February 7 at Port Authority offices at 2 Montgomery Street in Jersey City.
“Hard choices and robust debate led to a balanced 10-year Capital Plan to help meet the entire region’s enormous current and future transportation infrastructure needs,’’ said Port Authority Chairman John Degnan. “These include a new, state-of-the-art Port Authority Bus Terminal for bus commuters, 21st-century airport terminals for fliers and more trains for rail riders.”
“This region needs new and upgraded transportation infrastructure to deal with regional growth,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “This ambitious plan proposes to invest billions to maintain the agency’s world-class bridges, tunnels, airports, seaport and PATH system in a state of good repair while continuing to rebuild and expand existing facilities and build new ones to meet the region’s growth.”
The plan outlines new major capital projects the agency will invest in over the next 10 years, including:
The plan also includes $7.6 billion to finish projects currently in construction, such as the Bayonne Bridge, Goethals Bridge, PATH’s signal replacement program, upgrades to the Harrison and Grove Street PATH stations and the port and rail cargo facility at Greenville Yard. Of that $7.6 billion, a total of $2.5 billion will support LaGuardia Airport’s ongoing Terminal B redevelopment project.
The draft Capital Plan includes a total of $2.7 billion toward the payment of debt service for the critical Trans-Hudson rail tunnel link between New York and New Jersey. That includes an already approved $302 million toward debt service on the Gateway Development Program’s Portal Bridge North project.
The draft plan also includes $8.8 billion – or 30 percent of the total 10-year spending – for critical state-of-good-repair projects at the agency’s transportation facilities, including $1.5 billion to restore the George Washington Bridge, $1.1 billion to replace the Lincoln Tunnel Helix and $360 million to replace wharves and piers.
The public comment period on the document will begin once it is posted, and will continue through February 15, 2017. The Board will carefully review all of the input before taking action on the plan at its February 16, 2017 meeting. The outreach will include two public meetings, one in each state, a measure previously not undertaken prior to previous Capital Plan adoptions. The meetings will be attended by at least two commissioners, one from each state, as well as the executive director and chief financial officer.Related Articles: