$24bn Hudson River tunnels fast-tracked; construction could start in 2019

US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and other officials on Friday, October 14, said the federal government would expedite the environmental review for a new twin-tube train tunnel between New York and New Jersey underneath the Hudson River.

A faster review could save significant money for Amtrak’s $24 billion Gateway project, which includes the tunnel. The review process is expected to take two years or less, compared to many years for past big infrastructure projects.

A draft report of the environmental review is due in mid-2017. The public will be able to comment on the draft before the review is finalized.

By adding the Hudson tunnel to what is called the President’s Permitting Dashboard, officials will be able to stick to the fast-tracked timeline already established. The dashboard helps streamline permitting and review for big infrastructure projects.

Construction would begin in 2019, New York Senator Charles Schumer said at a press conference with Foxx and other officials inside New York Pennsylvania Station.

The existing tunnel could begin to fail in as soon as seven to 10 years, Schumer said. Construction on the new tunnel is slated to start in 2019.

Proponents say Gateway is essential to the economic viability of the region, which generates at least 10 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product.

The existing tunnel, built in 1910, transports nearly 90,000 commuters into Manhattan each day via NJ Transit alone. It was badly damaged in 2012 when Superstorm Sandy flooded the tunnels with salt water and left behind corrosive residue.

In addition to a new tunnel, the overall Gateway project includes new bridges, track and upgrades to train stations in Newark, New Jersey, and Manhattan.

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  • leon

    Hopefully they will use the Pneumatic capsule pipeline method of tunneling and ready mix concrete transport as was done for the Shinkansen High Speed twin train Akima tunnel in Japan.

    By using the shield tunneling method using a road header boom inside the shield where in the entire tunnel width, and height was excavated in one pass and the tunnel spoil was removed using the capsule liners and the same capsule liners delivered the fresh ready mix concrete to the concrete pumper where it was pumped continuously and installed behind the shield using the worlds largest traveling concrete tunnel forming gantry that poured the floor, wall, track divider barrier and roof all in one lift or push so to speak.as the tunnel advanced from one end

    This allowed the Akima Tunnel to be excavated from one side as the opposing portal had no room for excavation equipment or a spoil dump.This also allowed the system to use continuous lengths of ventilation tubing extended and expanded at the tunnel face at all times without blasting

    This method also reduced the amount of labor, equipment needed as neither rubber tired machinery or a belt conveyor was not required to haul tunnel spoil to the tunnel portal as the capsule liners were pushed to the spoil dump away from the tunnel portal by a high velocity low pressure air stream.

    After the spoil was dumped the capsule liners were pushed back to the ready mix concrete plant just outside the tunnel portal where they were filled and then pushed into the tunnel where they entered the capsule pipeline which consisted of reinforced concrete panels that were bolted together to create the capsule pipeline which extended to the tunnel face where the concrete forming gantry and concrete pump were following directly behind the shielded tunneling road header boom that was

    inside the tunnel shield.

    This method was used until the tunnel reached the opposing portal and after the equipment was removed the high speed track was laid down in the tunnels curvature

  • Mike Warfield

    Tunnels here are awarded to the lowest bid. Most times tech looses out to proven methods of tunneling. Low tech,decent production,and low overhead. There isn’t room in most budgets to make modifications if issues arise.

  • Terratec Herrenknecht Robbins VMT Normet CREG Minova World Tunnel Congress