The Transportation Capital Program for Fiscal Year 2005 describes all the capital investments planned by the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) and NJ TRANSIT for the fiscal year beginning on July 1, 2004. This program is the product of extensive, ongoing participation by the state’s three metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) and a wide variety of stakeholders. A companion document, “Capital Investment Strategy, Fiscal Years 2005-2009,” puts these investments in the context of longer-term goals for improving New Jersey’s transportation system. The capital program pursues the goals set out in the capital investment strategy within the limits of constrained resources.
This $2.6 billion program implements the Governor’s “Smart Growth” and “Fix-it-First” initiatives and will provide a significant stimulus to the state’s economy.
NJDOT’s program is a balanced investment plan which advances our “Fix-it-First” approach through increased funding for bridges and pavement, targets funding for projects which support urban and suburban redevelopment and protection of environmental values, increases funding and innovative programs to promote safety, and provides balanced, economical, effective attack on the highway congestion problem.
NJ TRANSIT’s $1.2 billion Fiscal Year 2005 Capital Program continues the agency’s “Back to Basics” approach; investing in core transit infrastructure to maintain the State’s rail, bus and light rail system at a State of Good Repair. The Program provides $301 million in debt service payments for prior rolling stock purchases and light rail expansion projects; $356 million to subsidize operations; and $417 million targeted at fundamental capital needs. The program also includes $114 million in federal and other funds earmarked for specific projects and programs administered by NJ TRANSIT. The Fiscal Year 2005 NJ TRANSIT Capital Program will continue to support the ongoing effort to bring the state’s transit system to a state of good repair, ensuring safe, reliable and sustainable transit service for the state’s residents.
- The program invests about $380 million in improvements to New Jersey’s aging highway bridges, the largest bridge program in the state’s history. A total of 77 bridges are funded for some phase of work, in addition to projects in early “study and development” stages. An expanded program of bridge deck rehabilitation will prolong the life of many bridges at reduced cost.
- The program increases funding for highway pavement resurfacing while continuing funding for all elements of NJDOT’s new pavement management program, including highway rehabilitation and preventive maintenance projects.
- Funding for safety programs is significantly increased. New programs funded under NJDOT’s Safety First initiative include Safe Corridors (implementing improvements identified by Safety Impact Teams in high-hazard corridors), the Local Safety program (improvements on local roads prioritized by the metropolitan planning organizations), and an experimental State Police expanded patrol program on roadways with very high crash rates. Funding is continued for the popular and successful Median Cross-over Crash Prevention program, the Safe Streets to Schools program, and the low-cost Intersection Improvements program.
- Regarding state of good repair and reliability, the program budget allots $257 million to replace up to 13 miles of track, over 50,000 new rail ties, improve as many as eight culverts, and continue installation of the automatic train control and positive train stop rail safety system. Funding is provided to continue the reliability overhaul of the Arrow III railcar fleet, and mid-life overhaul of transit buses and the reconstruction of Morris & Essex Lines Viaduct. The program also includes funding for bridge and tunnel inspections, security improvements, Federal Railroad Administration mandates, and Americans-with-Disabilities-Act station improvements.
- $76M will be invested in Rail Station improvements at Newark Broad Station, Ridgewood Station, Madison Station, and Morristown Station. All these station accessibility improvements are required to keep NJ TRANSIT in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Improvements will also begin with the construction of the Trenton Station Rehabilitation, construction of high level-platforms at South Amboy Rail Station, and reconstruction of platforms at Metropark Station and Woodbridge Stations.
- The FY05 program attacks congestion through providing over $20.0 million for park-and-ride projects, advancing the Governor’s goal of adding 20,000 new spaces over the next five years. This year, NJ TRANSIT has opened over 3,100 new spaces on the River Line, and will open an additional 1,500 spaces at Montclair State University and 1,260 spaces at Route 17 in Ramsey. The NJ TRANSIT Fiscal Year 2005 Capital Program includes funding to design and construct another 1,200 new spaces at Edison Station, Rahway Station, and Howard Boulevard.
- Increases funding for low-cost, fast-turnaround congestion
relief projects under the Fast Move program.
- NJ TRANSIT will also be moving forward on other critical initiatives to meet forecasted market growth and travel demand over the next decade in New Jersey and the surrounding region, including a new trans-Hudson tunnel, the Meadowlands rail link and other planned
investments to expand core capacity of the railroad to allow for more frequent service. Stations and terminals will be improved and modernized and rail and bus equipment will be overhauled or replaced. More parking and improved access are also key elements of the makeover, as is better use of technology to produce a more rapid transit-like fare collection system that is faster and easier to use.
- The program funds a balanced attack on highway congestion, with increased investment in highway operational improvements, which focus on relieving high-congestion bottlenecks. The Emergency Service Patrol program is expanded and a new program is funded to improve the functioning of traffic signals. Funding for highway capacity increase projects (major widenings and construction of new highways) is limited to less than 3% of the total program in order to provide funding for lower-cost congestion relief projects and Fix-it-First projects.
- The program supports Smart Growth development in New Jersey through projects which support urban access and mobility, suburban redevelopment, and protection of rural environments. Key projects include rehabilitation of Route 18 in New Brunswick, continued funding for the rebuilding of Route 21 in downtown Newark, preliminary design of a new pedestrian connection from the Performing Arts Center to the waterfront in Newark, improving access to Camden from Route I-676, right-of-way acquisition for the Route 440 High Street connector road in Perth Amboy, continued development of projects in the Route 130 corridor in Burlington County, continued funding for the Transit Village program, and additional funding for the innovative Route 57 corridor scenic preservation and improvement program in the Highlands region of Warren County.
Financing our transportation needs
The Transportation Capital Program for Fiscal Year 2005 is funded at a level of $2.6 billion. Of this amount, $1.4 billion is programmed for use by NJDOT and $1.2 billion by NJ TRANSIT. The NJDOT amount also includes Local Aid for counties and municipalities.