NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A feasibility study released Wednesday urged transportation officials to move forward with an extension of the No. 7 subway line to Secaucus, N.J.
The report was issued by the City of New York by the engineering and construction firm Parsons Brinckerhoff.
The report said rapid and continuing population growth in northern New Jersey is soon to exceed the capacity of the trans-Hudson transportation system. Extending the No. 7 line to the Frank R. Lautenberg Station in Secaucus – and outside the New York City limits for the first time – would help alleviate that problem, the study said.
Talk of the No. 7 subway train running into Secaucus goes back to 2010 — ever since Gov. Chris Christie put the brakes on a controversial Trans-Hudson rail tunnel in the fall of that year.
Christie killed the plans to build the tunnel because of the $9 billion to $14 billion price tag.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said in 2011 that he hoped the No. 7 line extension would get the green light before he left office this year, and Christie said the same year that he was “intrigued” by the idea.
The project would ultimately involve digging a new tunnel under the Hudson River. The estimated cost was reported in 2011 at $10 billion.
But the study concluded an extension would be worth it, allowing trans-Hudson access between New Jersey and the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, Hudson Yards, Times Square, Grand Central Station and major attractions in Queens.
Financially, the project would also leverage existing investments, including the city’s $2.1 billion plan to extend the No. 7 line to Eleventh Avenue and 34th Street, and New Jersey’s $1 billion or more investment in the Lautenberg station and the Access to the Region’s Core project for transportation improvements, the report advised.
The multimodal facility that would open at the Lautenberg station in Secaucus would include a No. 7 terminal in yard, along with a bus station for trans-Hudson commuter and local intrastate buses, and connections to NJ TRANSIT rail and Amtrak trains, the report said.
The extended line would allow for a ridership of 128,000 riders per day, the report said.
If New York City and New Jersey officials agree to go ahead with the project, an advanced feasibility study with a business plan and further analysis for engineering, operations, revenue and other factors would be mandated, the report said.
The project could take a decade or more to complete, CBS 2 reported in 2011.
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