HOBOKEN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — If you commute to the city from New Jersey, get ready for some big changes.
Starting Monday, Montclair resident Jack Pitts can expect some commutes to Penn Station to be longer and more crowded due to track work that means getting off in Hoboken and finishing journeys on PATH or some other alternative.
“The stress of it all is going to be something that’s going to take some getting used to,” Pitts told CBS2’s Dave Carlin.
Starting June 17, some trains on the Montclair-Boonton Line and the North Jersey Coast Line that normally travel into New York Penn Station will divert to Hoboken Terminal.
It will last until Sept. 6 to accommodate Amtrak repairs on two Penn Station track interlockings.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey reminds riders they are doing something to help ease the pain of this project.
“New Jersey Transit is reducing the fare that they normally impose,” Ben Branham, Port Authority chief communications officer, said. “The most important thing for customers to know is, because they’ll be transferring at Hoboken, is to purchase their fare in advance either using MetroCard or using the SmartLink card.”
The new schedules, confusion and crowding come as New Jersey Transit’s own records show trains breaking down more frequently with on-time and reliability statistics down.
Governor Phil Murphy, who promised a transit overhaul, admitted to CBS2, the numbers look bad, but blamed some of it on federal mandates for the Positive Train Control Breaking system, with software installations that disrupted service.
“That data that came out was skewed, I think dramatically, by that. I make no excuses,” Murphy said.
As for Monday and beyond, the riders impacted by the changes are smart to pre-pay or take later trains, if they can.
For more information about the changes, visit the New Jersey Transit website here.