Considered by some to be the most critical infrastructure project in the country, the Gateway Project is an ongoing example of the extreme costs of bureaucratic and political neglect.
The Gateway Development Commission, tasked with managing the Gateway Program to develop new capacity for the Northeast Corridor between Newark, New Jersey and Penn Station in New York City, announced at the end of August that the project will open three years later than expected and cost $2 billion more to construct.
Officials blamed some of the delay and expense on “market volatility and inflation,” according to an article by Dana Rubinstein for the New York Times. “The commission hopes to make up much of the cost difference with funding from the federal infrastructure law passed last year. The remaining cost overrun will be split between New York and New Jersey and the federal government.”
The news is only the latest unwelcome development in the long saga of the Gateway Program. Since the Biden administration took office, the news has generally been good—funding approval for the Portal Bridge and a $14 billion funding agreement between the states of New Jersey and New York. The last time Planetizen picked up news of time and money being added to the project timeline was in September 2020.
Rubinstein includes a discussion of the high costs of transit infrastructure investments in the article, citing Eric Goldwyn, director of the Transportation and Land-Use program at the N.Y.U. Marron Institute, to explain how expensive is the project compared to other projects in the country and world. The Marron Institute produced the first study on the high cost of transit in 2021.
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