Tuesday, December 31, 2013
 

 

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Port Authority says it created almost 18,000 regional jobs in 2013

NEW YORK - As it continues to return to its core transportation mission, the Port Authority announced that in 2013 the agency invested $2.8 billion on infrastructure projects and authorized more than $3.6 billion in projects at the airports, tunnels, bridges, seaport, PATH and the World Trade Center site in 2014 and beyond.

The investments approved by the Board in 2013, under the leadership of Governors Cuomo and Christie, will result in 17,891 direct and indirect job years, $1 billion in total wages and more than $4 billion in economic activity for the region.

“For more than 90 years, our mission has been clear – to build and operate some of the busiest, most critical transportation facilities in the world to foster regional mobility and economic growth,” said Port Authority Chairman David Samson.  “Through the vision of our Board and the tireless work of our professional staff, we successfully met our mission in 2013.  We put shovels in the ground in record time on the Bayonne Bridge project, and finalized a key operating agreement with Atlantic City International Airport that will allow us to leverage our aviation expertise to help that critical South Jersey facility grow over time.  But more needs to be done, and we’ll go into 2014 with an equally ambitious plan to make sure our facilities can safely accommodate the hundreds of millions of people who use them each year.”

The two most high profile projects authorized in 2013 were the $1.5 billion public-private partnership to replace the Goethals Bridge and the $1.29 billion program to raise the Bayonne Bridge to allow larger, post-Panama Canal ships to access our harbor.  Both projects are in New Jersey.

On top of its planned expenditures, the agency also invested nearly $500 million to restore and replace World Trade Center infrastructure that was damaged or destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.  In addition, the agency authorized $50 million to allow for the removal of corrosive salt from PATH’s rails, equipment and tunnels resulting from the storm to ensure the long-term viability and reliability of the 43-mile system.  Up to 90 percent of the PATH costs  are expected to be reimbursed  from $1.3 billion in recovery funding already awarded  to PATH by the Federal Transit Administration.

In addition, the Port Authority also approved the selection of nationally renowned Legends Hospitality, LLC to develop and operate the observation deck on top of One World Trade Center, which will yield significant revenue that will be reinvested in the agency’s transportation facilities. The revenue will be a combination of fixed and variable rent, projected to be worth  $875 million over the term of the 15-year lease.