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Officials Celebrate Start of New York Construction of Hudson Tunnel Project

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer, U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, New York Governor Kathy Hochul, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Senior Advisor to the President and White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu, and other officials joined Amtrak and Hudson Tunnel Project Sponsor the Gateway Development Commission (GDC) in celebrating the start of construction in New York on the Hudson Tunnel Project and the final phase of the Concrete Casing project.

The Hudson Yards Concrete Casing is an essential rail right-of-way preservation project that will clear the way for the Hudson Tunnel Project’s full construction. The first two sections are complete and run under the block bordered by 10th and 11th Avenues and 30th and 33rd Streets. Section 3 extends the casing on a diagonal alignment from the western edge of 11th Avenue to 30th Street, where it will connect with the new Hudson River Tunnel, providing access for trains that will use the new Hudson Tunnel into New York Penn Station. This portion of the project is expected to be complete in Summer 2026.

In January 2023, President Biden announced that the Hudson Yards Concrete Casing – Section 3 project would receive $292 million through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Mega Grant Program, which was created under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

A Nov. 3 announcement coincides with the two-year anniversary of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Biden Administration’s landmark legislation that represents the largest ever federal investment in public transportation.

“For a long time now, the Gateway project has been my passion. It’s a labor of love. And after many false starts and obstacles placed in our way, Gateway is full speed ahead with billions in federal dollars I secured ready to go towards this critical work and construction,” said Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer. “Gateway’s future is assured and the most important public works project in America is all systems go. I’ve long cautioned the potential failure of one or both of the only two rail tunnels running under the Hudson River is one of the most pressing issues facing New York City right now, and that is why I have worked so hard to advance this project, critical work and the federal funds to New York with all due speed.”

Secretary Buttigieg said, “The Gateway program is critically important not just to this city and this region, but to our entire country’s economic security. That’s why, back in January, we were proud to award $292 million from a brand new program in President Biden’s infrastructure law to help support this effort. Today, we celebrate a major step toward completing the new Hudson River Tunnel, as we begin work on the third and final part of the concrete casing that will eventually connect Gateway Hudson Tunnel to Penn Station.”

“After decades of delays, this project is finally moving forward. The Hudson Tunnel is a nationally important piece of infrastructure and will bring millions of visitors to New York every year,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul. “I am proud of the work we have done with President Biden, Secretary Buttigieg, Senior Advisor Landrieu, Amtrak, and our partners in New Jersey to advance this project and I thank Majority Leader Schumer and the New York Congressional delegation for providing critical support.”

“As we approach the two-year anniversary of the landmark Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, New Jersey thanks the Biden Administration and our congressional delegation for their ongoing support of Gateway,” said New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. “On the heels of Tonnelle Avenue’s Notice to Proceed, today we have achieved yet another pivotal milestone toward the nation’s most critical infrastructure project. The Hudson Yards Concrete Casing will quite literally pave the way toward the construction of the long-awaited Hudson Tunnel, an integral element of the Gateway Program that will increase connectivity within one of the most heavily trafficked transportation corridors in the country.”

“The Hudson Tunnel Project will be transformational for those traveling in and out of New York City, and I am so proud to have helped ensure the long-overdue start of construction that we are celebrating today. This once-in-a-generation infrastructure revitalization project will unclog a major economic bottleneck on the Northeast Corridor, create tens of thousands of jobs, and generate over $19 billion in economic activity,” said U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “Key provisions from my Build Local, Hire Local Act will help incentivize the use of local New York labor to support the critical transportation projects in our backyard. After more than a decade of work, I am grateful to President Biden for prioritizing the safety and reliability of the 200,000 passenger trips taken daily on Amtrak and New Jersey Transit.”

“The Hudson Tunnel Project is the most important transportation infrastructure project in the country and ties together the economic engine that is the New York Metropolitan Area. As Dean of the New York Congressional Delegation, I’m proud to have worked for years to advance and secure funding for this transformational project—including helping to deliver a nearly $7 billion grant for the project from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” said U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler. “I thank President Biden and Secretary Buttigieg for prioritizing this project after years of delays during the previous administration. Now, with the start of construction on the Hudson Yards Concrete Casing, we are a major step closer to creating tens of thousands of jobs, reducing carbon emissions, and securing our nation’s economic security.”

“President Biden is investing a historic $66 billion in rail infrastructure through his Investing in America agenda – the largest investment in passenger rail since the creation of Amtrak,” said Senior Advisor to the President and White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu. “Today’s announcement is a key part of the President’s commitment to creating a world-class rail system that benefits communities nationwide by making it safer, more efficient, and more convenient.”

“The start of construction in New York for the Hudson Tunnel Project signifies something different than all previous milestones – that our vision for new, state-of-the-art infrastructure is no longer just a vision; it’s becoming reality,” said Amtrak Board Chair and GDC Vice Chair Tony Coscia. “We thank the Biden-Harris Administration, Secretary Buttigieg, Majority Leader Schumer, Senator Gillibrand, Governor Hochul, Governor Murphy, the FRA, our GDC partners and all of the federal and local officials who have championed this project and advanced it to this point.”

Alicia Glen, GDC New York Commissioner and Co-Chair, said, “As 2023 began, GDC promised that work would start on both sides of the Hudson River before the end of the year. Working hand-in-hand with our federal and state partners has allowed us to deliver on the promise.”

Balpreet Grewal-Virk, GDC New Jersey Commissioner and Co-Chair, continued, “Today, the most urgent infrastructure project in the country is taking a major step forward. Every commuter and traveler deserves a 21st century transportation experience, and we are committed to making that happen as swiftly as possible.”

GDC CEO Kris Kolluri added, “The tremendous benefits that the new tunnel will bring start now. Today is not just about commemorating the tunnel’s future promise. It’s about the 72,000 new jobs created in the process, the $19 billion in economic activity, and the American suppliers and manufacturers who just gained a very reliable customer.”

A “Notice to Proceed” was also recently given to start mobilization on the Tonnelle Avenue Bridge and Utility Relocation project, which will mark the beginning of the Hudson Tunnel Project in New Jersey.

The Gateway Program has seen significant additional progress in recent months. Construction of the new Portal North Bridge, led by NJ TRANSIT and Amtrak, recently passed the 35% completion mark, and key elements of the Hudson Tunnel Project have advanced, including:

  • The Hudson Tunnel Project entered the Engineering Phase of the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) Capital Investment Grants (CIG) Program, making the project eligible for $6.88 billion in federal grants.
  • GDC was selected for a $25 million Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) Grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation for construction of the Tonnelle Avenue Bridge and Utility Relocation Project.
  • USDOT’s Build America Bureau is advancing applications for Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) loans to support the Hudson Tunnel Project.
  • Five out of nine contemplated Hudson Tunnel Project contracts are in procurement or construction.

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