Related, Amtrak to construct rail tunnel between Manhattan and NJ

Federally funded "box tunnel" will lie under Hudson Yards megaproject

Feb.February 26, 2013 09:00 AM

Related Companies and Amtrak have agreed to begin work on a new rail tunnel between New Jersey and Manhattan, the New York Post reported.

Construction on the 800-foot-long “box tunnel” will begin this summer right under Related’s Hudson Yards megaproject and is expected to cost between $120 and $150 million, primarily funded by federal dollars. Sen. Chuck Schumer, who championed the deal, told the Post that it marked “a red-letter day for the future of New York-New Jersey mass transit.” He recognized the agreement as a commitment to a new tunnel for the first time since New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie nixed plans for a $15 billion four-track project in 2010. 

The box tunnel cannot be used for train transportation at first; instead, it will serve as a shell for the Manhattan end of the future Hudson tunnel that Amtrak intends to building in the future, as well as for the proposed Moynihan Station.

The box will hold the space for a rail link between the future Hudson tunnel and existing tracks at Penn Station — and for the proposed Moynihan Station if it’s ever built. The construction of the box tunnel was pressing because it could not be carried out once Related had built a deck over the rail yard.

Hudson Yards has been pushing hard to woo corporate tenants and is building a 900-foot, 1.7 million-square-foot office tower that will be the headquarters of Coach.

Schumer deemed Related “a good citizen” for its cooperation on the project. “I give Steve and Related a lot of credit,” Schumer said, referring to Related chairman Stephen Ross. [NYP]  –Hiten Samtani

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