New York House delegation asks for ARC moneyBy
While it sounds as though the $3 billion in federal money that was to go to the ARC Tunnel is slowly slipping away from the northeast, a group of New York House representatives have written to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood formally requesting the money be transferred to New York. The lawmakers — Carolyn Maloney, Jerrold Nadler, Peter King, Gregory Meeks, José Serrano, Paul Tonko, Bill Owens, Nita Lowey, Edolphus Towns, and Steve Israel — have asked for federal support for the Second Ave. Subway, the East Side Access project, Moynihan Station and high-speed rail initiatives.
The money, they say, should remain in the northeast, and since New York City leads the nation in transit riders, it is only natural for the funds to boost federally-qualifying projects. “In a region with strong patterns of mass transit use, coupled with a serious lack of capacity, the taxpayers of this nation can rest assured that federal transportation dollars redirected to projects in our area will be put to good use,” the letter says.
As the fallout from Gov. Chris Christie’s decision to cancel the ARC project has continued, the city has jockeyed for the funds. Recently, Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed to extend the 7 line from 11th Ave. and 34th St. under the Hudson River to Secaucus, New Jersey. He had hoped to secure federal funding for this project, but sources said that LaHood was considering redistributing the money to other eligible New Starts projects. This letter then might just be a last-gaps effort to keep this money in the area.
“We believe,” it says, “that it makes sense to keep the New Jersey transportation funds in this region to help address our area’s severe and growing transportation needs. We have great projects underway that can make effective use of the funding.”
After the jump, read the full text of the letter.