Secretary of Transportation Buttigieg, Gov. Murphy break ground on Portal North Bridge

Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and Gov. Phil Murphy were in Kearny this morning to formally break ground on the long-delayed Portal North Bridge.

News 12 Staff

Aug 1, 2022, 4:14 PM

Updated 694 days ago

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Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and Gov. Phil Murphy were in Kearny this morning to formally break ground on the long-delayed Portal North Bridge.
The new $2.2 billion rail bridge is designed to lessen delays for commuters and keep the regional economy going strong. It’s also a new key component in the progressing Gateway transportation project.
"All of this adds up to public service at its best," said Buttigieg. "The infrastructure you see here is so consequential that if there were to be a failure here you could feel the economic results as far away as where I grew up in Indiana." 
Next to it is the current Portal Bridge. The 110-year-old span from the time of President Theodore Roosevelt sometimes gets stuck open and has to be bashed back into place with sledgehammers. When it does get stuck open, it snarls rail traffic up and down the Northeast corridor -- frustrating commuters and impacting the region’s economy.
Replacing the bridge has been a priority for decades. Funding was delayed during the Obama administration, approved as the Trump administration was leaving office, and was now delivered by the Biden administration, with $600 million in matching funds from New Jersey Transit. Despite the celebratory air today, Murphy said New Jersey Transit still has room for improvement.
You'll not see it in your tax dollars, it's just money that we have accumulated and put in place to be able to do these kinds of things," said Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin.
The bridge is set to open in 2026.


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