Volume 73, Number 33 | December 17 - 23, 2003



Nadler couples together support for tunnel project

Rep. Jerrold Nadler recently got the support of 25 of New York’s 29 congressmembers, plus two representatives from Connecticut, for an estimated $2.1 billion rail freight tunnel to connect New Jersey and Brooklyn.

The representatives signed a letter three weeks ago attesting to the importance of the project for national security. The story was first reported by Crain’s Insider.

The letter has been passed on to congressional committee chairpersons who in the next session of Congress will reauthorize a projected $375 billion omnibus transportation bill, called “T Lu” (after Transportation Committee Chairperson Rep. Don Young’s wife, Lu.)

Nadler contends the tunnel would be vital to national security if other routes, such as the George Washington Bridge, were crippled by terrorism.

Laura Friedman, Nadler’s policy director, said they hope to get a significant chunk of the money in this bill to cover the tunnel’s design and part of the construction. A draft environmental impact statement for the project is expected to be released this month. In the best-case scenario, a final E.I.S. could be approved by next year; the tunnel’s design would then take a few years; and the tunnel would be completely built by six years from now.

“This project is being supported by a cross-section from the business community, from the environmental committee from the planners, who realize that this project is fundamentally important for the region’s economic development and for the environmental impact it will have in taking a million tractor-trailers off our roads each year,” said Friedman.


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