Gateway Tunnel

Governor Cuomo's Office

Murphy Urges House Transportation Committee To Approve Gateway Funding

May 03, 2019 - 1:22 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure held a hearing Friday on the Gateway Tunnel Project a day after members toured the 109-year-old rail tunnel under the Hudson River.

"This is truly a nationally significant project and we are almost out of time," said committee chairman Peter DeFazio (D-OR).

New Jersey Gov. Murphy pointed out 20% of the nation's GDP depends on the Portal Bridge and Trans-Husdon Tunnels the Gateway Project would impact.

"Gateway is going to be built one way or another. Either the federal government is going to finally come to the table with New Jersey, and New York, and our partners, and Amtrak, and Port Authority to get this done proactively or there is going to be a catastrophic failure in one of these tunnels that is going to force us to build it," Murphy said. "It is of the utmost importance that we focus on the former because the latter would be truly a national disaster."

Murphy said both he and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo have had meetings with President Donald Trump in which the president expressed goodwill about Gateway, but Murphy asked, "Where's the beef?"

Murphy told the committee the critical Portal Bridge project is shovel-ready and that New Jersey has upped its promised funding the Gateway Tunnels but is getting nowhere with Washington.

"You know that phrase, 'And then they moved the goalposts?' I don't think it's ever applied more appropriately, at least in my experience, to this project," Murphy said.

Murphy said he's offered to meet with Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao after President Trump suggested she would handle the Gateway matter, but Murphy added he can't even get a phone call with her.

DeFazio on Thursday vowed, “If we do a bill, Gateway will be funded." He said the project to build a new rail tunnel under the Hudson will be included in the $2 trillion infrastructure deal agreed to by top Democratic leaders and President Trump.

He noted he can guarantee the money will be sent to the project when he creates the proposed legislation.