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Bipartisan Support for NY-NJ Gateway Project; Aging Infrastructure an 'American Problem'
Jersey’s Democratic Sen. Cory Booker and Republican Gov. Chris Christie
participated in a press conference April 19 to express their support for the
Gateway Project, an estimated $24 billion tunnel system under the Hudson River between
New York City and New Jersey that would help ease congestion in the busy
“We’re teetering every single day on
the brink of truly a traffic Armageddon,” Booker said of the existing
100-year-old tunnels, which also sustained significant damage from Superstorm
Sandy. Booker added that the aging infrastructure “is not just a New Jersey
problem, not just a regional problem, but really an American problem.”
Christie, a former critic of the
Gateway Project, said, “I’ve already spoken to the president about this. The
president is well aware of my point of view on this project and I absolutely
will continue to speak my mind on this, both publicly and privately.”
During the press conference, Booker
called on DOT Secretary Elaine L. Chao to visit the area, repeating the request
he and Sens. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Kirsten
Gillibrand (D-NY) sent in a letter earlier on April 19.
As you continue your work to
develop the Trump administration’s $1 trillion infrastructure package, we urge
you to consider the urgent need for major investments in our nation’s rail and
transit infrastructure,” the senators wrote.
“[A] site visit, particularly one that
allows you to witness the volume of passengers at peak travel times, will
provide you detailed information about the status of the current infrastructure
and the urgent need for federal investments in advancing the Gateway Project,”
the letter stated.
DOT issued a statement reporting that Chao
intended to visit some of the country’s “nationally significant infrastructure
projects,” including the Gateway Project.