Investments approved for commuter rail line connecting Manhattan, New Jersey

The Port Authority Trans-Hudson (PATH) heavy rail rapid transit system that connects Manhattan and New Jersey will see $376 million in investments to improve services, equipment, and facilities, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced on Thursday.

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The PATH board approved purchasing 50 rail cars from Kawasaki Rail Car with funding made available under a 10-year, $150 million capital improvement plan. The new cars will help support increasing ridership, which topped 78.6 million passengers in 2016.

“Demand on the PATH system is growing significantly with each passing year,” PATH Board Chairman Kevin O’Toole said. “(Thursday’s) board votes to purchase new rail cars and provide critical repair and maintenance work will go a long way to ensuring that our PATH customers continue to receive the highest and most efficient level of service.”

PATH commissioners also approved $79.5 million to modernize its fleet of 350 PA-5 rail cars and $60 million to upgrade essential railcar components. Plans were also approved to replace PATH power substation 14 at a cost of $70.6 million and to spend $29.9 million on interlocking and track work at a Hoboken station that was damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

“The actions approved today provide the board with an important opportunity to improve our rail fleet for the foreseeable future and to make necessary repairs to restore the system in the wake of Superstorm Sandy,” Port Authority Vice Chairman Jeffrey Lynford said.