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Christie Abuses Power, Cancels ARC Tunnel

Date : Thu, 7 Oct 2010 15:27:49 -0400

 

For Immediate Release
October 7, 2010 Contact: Jeff Tittel, NJ Chapter Director, 609-558-9100

Christie Abuses Power, Cancels ARC Tunnel

Governor Christie's decision to kill the ARC tunnel project is an outrageous abuse of power that will setback New Jersey's transportation needs for decades. Instead of cancelling the project and taking money to build more unnecessary highways, we should be fixing the plan for the tunnel so it meets the transportation needs of the region.

"Governor Christie is using the project's budget as an excuse to steal the money for the Transportation Trust Fund. Instead of cancelling the project, our leaders should be working together to improve it. It's better to have a tunnel from Xanado to Macy's basement than highways through the Pinelands," NJ Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel said.

The ARC tunnel, a NJ Transit project to connect New Jersey to Manhattan, was put on a 30 day hold last month by Governor Christie because of fears it was going over budget. The Sierra Club had hoped that by the end of the 30 days, our leaders would agree to collaborate and develop the best possible plan for the future of the tunnel. But instead of doing what's best for the public interest, the Governor has cancelled the project, ruining all chances for improving transportation access for the people of New Jersey and the region.

While the Sierra Club was initially critical of the ARC project because it did not meet the needs of the region, we strongly believe another tunnel is necessary and vehemently oppose stealing the money for unnecessary road project. Instead of cancelling the project, we should have continued work on the New Jersey side and come together to develop a plan to fix the configuration issues in New York.

With Amtrak's recent announcement that it plans to develop a high speed rail network throughout the Northeast, another tunnel connecting New Jersey and New York is imperative. If the project was combined with Amtrak's plans for a tunnel or improved, we could get additional funding sources, saving New Jersey money. An efficient and coordinated high speed rail system would benefit the people of New Jersey as well as the environment.

Instead of being shortsighted, the Governor should have worked to see that important transportation improvement come to fruition. But rather than put the public interest first, all we have seen is politicking and mud throwing. Instead of using the ARC tunnel as a political football, the Governor should have done his job and helped to develop a plan that works for all the people of New Jersey.

"Shame on the Governor for cancelling the project without trying to fix it," Tittel said. "If the Governor was serious about improving transportation, he would try to improve the tunnel project."

Kara Seymour, Program Assistant NJ Sierra Club 145 W. Hanover Street Trenton, NJ 08618 609.656.7612 (f) 609.656.7618  <http://www.newjersey.sierraclub.org/> www.newjersey.sierraclub.org  

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Received on 2010-10-07 12:27:49

New Jersey Sierra Club, 145 West Hanover St., Trenton, NJ 08618, USA
tel: 609 656 7612, fax 609 656 7618
or email Nicole Dallara, Outreach Coordinator, at nicole.dallara@sierraclub.org

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