For immediate release
NJ Transit's announcement that it will suspend ARC tunnel funding for 30 days casts a dark shadow over the project's future.
Tri-State calls on Governor Christie to commit to this project and ensure that the review and suspension of funding will be temporary. Raiding the funds dedicated to the tunnel cannot be an option. New Jersey has failed to adequately fund its transportation network for decades, opting instead for budget gimmicks - and now those mistakes are jeopardizing one of the region's most important public works projects.
ARC will provide a much needed expansion of transit capacity to Manhattan, creating jobs, reducing traffic and pollution, and increasing property values around connecting stations. A slowdown in work or reduction of tunnel funding will be disastrous for the project and for the region's mobility.
This announcement calls into question this administration's commitment to transit. There has been no call for review of current roadway projects with similar price tags, sounding an ominous warning for those interested in a sustainable and 21st century transportation policy.
NJ Transit, Governor Christie, and NJDOT Commissioner Simpson need to do the right thing, and keep sight of the big picture: New Jersey needs transit; New Jersey needs jobs; New Jersey needs ARC.
The Tri-State Transportation Campaign is a non-profit organization working toward a more balanced, transit-friendly and equitable transportation system in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. www.tstc.org