Fox recommends Ramsey for
new rail station along Route 17
Transportation Commissioner Jamie Fox announced today that he is recommending the siting of a new state-of-the-art rail facility at the intersection of NJ TRANSIT’s main line and Route 17 in Ramsey.
“I recognize the concerns raised by local officials and residents about the impacts this project would have on the community,” Commissioner Fox said. “I am committed to meeting and working with all interested parties so that together we can develop a sound project that has the fewest impacts upon the community.
“Ramsey is the preferred location for many reasons, and I would like to credit Mayor Scerbo for pursuing a study of potential alternatives for the station. Ramsey residents should know that based on his leadership in this effort, we intend to re-evaluate and modify certain aspects of the project and its final design. I have also accepted an invitation from the Mayor to come to Ramsey to meet with residents and listen to their concerns.”
The new regional station is needed to support additional rail service once the Secaucus Transfer station becomes operational. In choosing the 2.9-acre site in Ramsey just off Route 17, Commissioner Fox said he is willing to consider making a number of transit and transportation-related improvements in the town. Fox also said he does not believe the State should pursue an alternative site along the border of Mahwah and Ramsey because of costs and environmental considerations.
“Clearly, this project generated both opposition and support,” the Commissioner said. “I think we all agree on the pressing need for a regional rail station, but, at the same time, I appreciate that the community is being asked to bear some burden for hosting a regional transportation facility. We are committed to making this project work for NJ TRANSIT and the community.”
The reasons for recommending Ramsey include:
- The Ramsey location (2.9 acres) disturbs less area that the Mahwah site (11.5 acres)
- The Ramsey location is vacant, while the Mahwah site has existing commercial uses.
- The Ramsey location is adjacent to the Spring Street exit off of Route 17 and provides convenient access with minimal roadway impacts. The Mahwah site will require considerable road improvements to provide similar access.
- The Ramsey location can be constructed 48 months sooner than the Mahwah site.
- The land acquisition costs at the Ramsey location are about a quarter of the costs at the Mahwah site.
- The project at the Ramsey location is estimated to cost $10 million less than the Mahwah site.
In making his recommendation, Commissioner Fox indicated that some of the transportation improvements he is considering include rehabilitation of the existing Ramsey station and preferential parking at the new station for Ramsey residents. The Commissioner intends to meet with Ramsey as early as next week to discuss the project.