Hudson Tunnel Project clears final Regulatory Hurdle with Army Corps of Engineers Permit

Permit allows Construction of First Rail Tunnel Under the Hudson since 1910 Once Full Funding in Place

The last major step in the federal regulatory process for the Hudson Tunnel Project has been completed with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ permit issuance for construction within the New Jersey Meadowlands and Hudson River, the Gateway Development Commission announced.  

The Section 404/10 permit allows construction of the new tunnel within the New Jersey Meadowlands and under the Hudson River, signaling the project’s compliance with the Clean Water Act, as well the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899. The permit is the last major federal approval, allowing the Hudson Tunnel Project to progress to full construction once the necessary funding is in place. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit follows the U.S. Department of Transportation’s issuance of a Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) in May, once again demonstrating the renewed partnership between the project’s partners and current Federal Administration in Washington. The EIS and ROD were developed in close coordination with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a Cooperating Agency. Further, the EIS analysis was developed to meet the NEPA procedures of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The issuance of key land use permits by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation – both required by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the Section 404/10 permit – is also an example of the strong bi-state commitment and focus towards the Hudson Tunnel Project.  

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said, “This step brings us much closer to the beginning of construction on the Hudson Tunnel Project, which is part of the single-largest critical infrastructure effort in the nation. I am looking forward to continuing to work with our partners in the Biden Administration, New York, Amtrak, and our Congressional delegation on completing the entire Gateway Program. Thank you to President Biden and his administration for recognizing that this is a project of not only regional importance, but one that affects our national economy.”
New York Governor Kathy Hochul said,“The Gateway project will help support the economic prosperity of New York and the rest of the country for years to come, which is why we need to get this project right and get it moving. I applaud the Biden Administration for its continued commitment to this project's completion, and look forward to continuing the collaboration with our regional partners as we work to upgrade our infrastructure.”

Gateway Commission Co-Chair and New Jersey Trustee Balpreet Grewal-Virk said,“2021 has been a year of real progress for the Hudson Tunnel Project. Working hand in hand with the Biden Administration, we’re thrilled to achieve another key milestone and keep the project moving forward.”

New York Commissioner and co-Chair Steven M. Cohen said,“As the final task in the Federal Permitting Dashboard, issuance of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit is a landmark accomplishment for the Hudson Tunnel Project, and the Gateway Program as a whole. We continue to move closer to finally delivering 21stCentury rail service for this region.”

Amtrak Commissioner and GDC Vice Chair Anthony Coscia said, “The rapid pace of Federal approvals, from the EIS and ROD in May to the USACE’s permit issuance today, not only signals the tremendous coordination between different government agencies at the federal and state levels, but also the prioritization of the Hudson Tunnel Project and its anticipated impact on the economic well-being of the Northeast Corridor and the entire nation.”

The Federal Infrastructure Permitting Dashboard has been updated to reflect that the Hudson Tunnel Project has achieved all of it necessary regulatory approvals.  

Amtrak and NJ Transit were co-applicants for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Permit.

The Hudson Tunnel Project includes the construction of a new rail tunnel under the Hudson River and full rehabilitation of the existing North River Tunnel, more than 110 years after it began service and a decade after inundation by seawater during Superstorm Sandy in 2012. The Hudson Tunnel Project will increase the reliability, resiliency, safety and redundancy of the rail infrastructure between New Jersey and New York to better serve the hundreds of thousands of daily commuters and intercity passengers that rely on NJ Transit and Amtrak.

Source: The Gateway Development Commission

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