NEW YORK (WABC) -- Governor Kathy Hochul announced plans to move forward with the Interborough Express as part of her 2022 State of the State.
The Interborough Express is a 14-mile existing freight right-of-way that stretches from Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, to Jackson Heights, Queens. The travel time from one end to the other is expected to be less than 40 minutes.
Hochul is directing the MTA to immediately begin the environmental review process for the project, which is the first step in building the major infrastructure investment that would connect communities in Brooklyn and Queens to as many as 17 subway lines and the Long Island Rail Road.
"It's time to invest in the bold, cutting-edge infrastructure projects that will make a real difference in the lives of everyday New Yorkers," Hochul said. "New Yorkers deserve reliable public transit that connects them from work to home and everywhere in between. The Interborough Express would be a transformational addition to Brooklyn and Queens, cutting down on travel time and helping neighborhoods and communities become cleaner, greener and more equitable."
The project would use the existing right of way of the Bay Ridge Branch, which is a freight rail line that runs through Brooklyn and Queens, connecting the neighborhoods of: Sunset Park, Borough Park, Kensington, Midwood, Flatbush, Flatlands, New Lots, Brownsville, East New York, Bushwick, Ridgewood, Middle Village, Maspeth, Elmhurst and Jackson Heights with several new stations in communities not currently served by rail transit.
If adopted, this new service would improve transit and job access to underserved communities along the corridor that is currently home to about 900,000 residents and 260,000 jobs, and with growth expected by at least 41,000 people and 15,000 jobs in the next 25 years.
For many residents along the corridor, crossing from neighborhood to neighborhood is slow and tedious because existing subway lines are oriented toward Manhattan.
The project would provide critical mobility, creating better links for travel to and from Manhattan as well as key connections among neighborhoods, across boroughs, and opening up new opportunities for reverse commuting into Nassau and Suffolk Counties.
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