Hudson River Tunnel secures largest ever FTA grant, CIG FFGA signed

Hudson River Tunnel secures largest ever FTA grant, CIG FFGA signed Image credit: Amtrak train, Hudson Tunnel

The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has signed a Full Funding Grant Agreement wth the Gateway Development Commission (GDC) through the Capital Investment Grants (CIG) program, allowing FTA to invest close to $6.9 billion to help build the Hudson River Tunnel and rehabilitate the existing North River Tunnel, representing the largest grant ever signed by FTA. 

Hudson River Tunnel project will construct a critical new rail tunnel between New York and New Jersey along a vital economic corridor. It represents the largest project in the history of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT). 

Three Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing (RRIF) loans through DOT’s Build America Bureau totaling $4.1 billion will provide financial support at below-market interest rates.  With these actions, GDC has secured the entire $16 billion commitment needed to complete the project. This includes $12 billion in federal funding – the largest federal funding commitment to a rail transportation project in modern history.

The Hudson Tunnel Project encompasses a range of components, including a new double-track tunnel between the Bergen Palisades in New Jersey and Manhattan in New York City, rehabilitating the North River Tunnel damaged by Superstorm Sandy in 2012, and creating a concrete casing at Hudson Yards to allow the new tunnel to connect to New York-Penn Station. 

When the new tunnel and the rehabilitated tunnel open, estimated by 2038, the project will provide four modern rail tunnels for Amtrak and NJ Transit trains. In addition, the project will provide the capability to significantly expand capacity in the future. 

Additional project benefits include building resiliency and safeguarding rail operations against future extreme weather events, managing floods on both sides of the Hudson River, and creating a safer environment for first responders, maintenance workers, and the public, especially in the event of an evacuation. 

Other sources of USDOT support for the project include: 

  • $3.8 billion through the Federal Railroad Administration FY 2022-2023 Federal-State Partnership for Intercity Passenger Rail Program for the Northeast Corridor Program. 
  • $1 billion through Amtrak annual grant funding. 
  • $25 million through the United States Department of Transportation 2023 Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program for the Tonnelle Avenue Bridge Project. 
  • $292.1 million through the USDOT 2022 MEGA Grant program for the Hudson Yard Concrete Casing Phase 3 project.

Source: FTA