West Side Light Rail Extension Project Picks Up Some Federal Funding

Last fall, NJ Transit approved a study to explore the feasibility of extending the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail from the West Side Avenue station across Route 440 to the planned Bayfront development along the Hackensack River.

The “alternatives analysis,” as it is called, is the first step in the long federal process, and in particular the study is evaluating potential alignments, station planning, park and ride locations, operational needs, cost estimates and integration with the mixed-use redevelopment slated for the area.

Now New Jersey’s two U.S. senators say NJ Transit has picked up $237,500 in federal funding for the study from the U.S. Department of Transportation. Another New Jersey project in Monmouth, Ocean and Middlesex counties is also receiving federal funding.

“Improving mass transportation in New Jersey will create jobs and provide an environmentally-friendly option for thousands of commuters in New Jersey,” Sen. Frank Lautenberg says in a statement.

Jon Whiten

co-founded the Jersey City Independent. He is currently the Deputy Director of New Jersey Policy Perspective.

  • Rock

    Great idea! Seriously! Light rail makes sense in densley populated Jersey City. What they need to do though is figure out a fare system that forces a lot more people to pay for their rides. The honor system that they have for NJ light rail just doesn’t work in a state with so many dishonerable people.

  • Jayson

    I like the current honor system way of paying with random enforcement. I would hate to see the extreme payment system evolve like the subways where you have to go in an out of a literal cage to travel.

  • moosamus

    Any idea what these dollars represent in terms of a project commitment – i.e. the AKRF study, or is this another step in the process that will now be funded?

    Glad to see that this project has picked up some momentum, as it seemed to have lost its luster a bit when NJT saw the West Side line ridership numbers. It’d be great to have this infrastructure (or at least the makings of it) in place to give the Bayside/Riverfront redevelopment a push, even if just in spirit.

    FYI – there is a lot of research on the fare system in place now on the HBLR – it is fairly functional in other implementations and stacks up pretty well overall, especially given the current system architecture.