$1.6B Penn Station Access Project to benefit train riders from the Bronx
State and city leaders came together Sunday to announce a more than a billion dollar transportation improvement project that will benefit train riders in the Bronx.
New York State Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand say this project will prioritize transportation deserts and provide access to faster, more reliable and direct service from the Bronx to Penn Station.
The Federal Railroad Administration awarded $1.6 billion for the Penn Station Access Project on Sunday.
The money will go toward the improvements of the 19 miles of rail line that connects New York Penn Station to New Rochelle in Westchester County.
It will also cover construction costs for four new Metro-North commuter rail stations in the Bronx that include Hunts Point, Parkchester and Van Nest, Morris Park and Co-op City. Additionally, the new rail service will connect the East Bronx to Penn Station directly. According to the MTA, that could save up to 50 minutes off commute times.
Local leaders say not only will this provide much-needed transportation options and access to Bronx residents, but also job opportunities.
"It's also taking a moment to see, giving the opportunities for our families to consider employment in other boroughs and understanding now we're making that commute much shorter for them," said Council Member Marjorie Velazquez.
The Pelham Bay Bridge replacement project will also receive some money -- $58 million to be exact. This will go toward the final design to replace the track that will support trains traveling up to 70 mph and reduce openings of movable bridges by 70%.
As for the timeline, construction is already underway with an estimated completion of these projects by 2027.