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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Joseph Fiordaliso

RELEASE: April 6, 2004

Lettiere unveils NJDOT Capital Program for FY 2005

(Trenton) Appearing before the Assembly Budget Committee, New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Commissioner Jack Lettiere today unveiled the department’s $2.58 billion capital program for NJDOT and NJ TRANSIT for FY 2005. The FY 2005 capital program is a fiscally responsible, yet robust investment in New Jersey’s transportation network. The capital program fulfills Governor McGreevey’s commitment to improving safety, easing congestion by using smart growth and fix-it-first strategies, and providing needed property tax relief to New Jersey’s counties and municipalities.

“This program will support jobs and encourage ‘Smart Growth’ development through targeted capital investments,” said Governor James E. McGreevey. “Virtually half the funding will be provided for public transportation while new highway expansion is limited to just four percent of spending. This substantial investment in our transportation network will facilitate the movement of over $7 billion worth of goods and services and directly support over 100,000 jobs. Our program will enhance safety, stimulate New Jersey’s economy, and increase quality of life.”

This $2.58 billion program implements Governor McGreevey’s Smart Growth and Fix-It-First initiatives and will provide a significant stimulus to the State’s economy. Roughly $1.4 billion of the capital program is for use by the NJDOT, and $1.2 billion by NJ TRANSIT.

At NJ TRANSIT, investments will be targeted to preserving and upgrading a public transportation system that covers more than 5,000 square miles and facilitates more than 222 million annual passenger trips. $257 million will be invested in rail state-of-good repair needs such as basic track, signal, bridge and yard improvements; $16 million will be invested in bus and light rail facility needs, and will allow for the replacement of over 270 transit buses that have exceeded their useful lives. In addition, $59 million will be invested in system-wide improvements, including $9 million for technology upgrades that will allow us to improve our efficiently and reduce our annual operating costs and $15 million to improve our on-board announcement system which has been a key customer complaint. $76 million will be invested in rail station improvements at Newark Broad Street Station, Ridgewood Station, Madison Station, and Morristown Station. Finally, $7.5 million will be invested towards fulfilling Governor McGreevey’s commitment to creating 20,000 new Park & Ride spaces statewide.

“This budget continues our Back to Basics priorities and enables NJ TRANSIT to begin to reverse the historic practice of transferring capital funds for operating expenses,” said George Warrington, Executive Director of NJ TRANSIT.

The FY 2005 capital program allows NJDOT to repair and rehabilitate over 15,000 lane miles of state highway, 32,000 miles of county and municipal roadways, 5,000 state and local bridges. This robust program will also put record amounts of work on the street. In FY 2005 alone NJDOT will award more than $740 million worth of engineering and construction contracts.

Improving safety is the NJDOT’s top priority and roughly $100 million will be spent on engineering, education and enforcement initiatives designed to increase safety on our highways and bridges.

“I will not be satisfied until fatality rates on our roadways are zero, and the resources we are investing in the Engineering, Enforcement, and Education components of Governor McGreevey’s Safety First Initiative are paying dividends, said Commissioner Jack Lettiere. “This capital program furthers that commitment and will continue to reduce the number of accidents down.”

The FY 2005 capital program invests $8.3 million for the Emergency Service Patrol Program; 4 million for the Safe Corridors Program; $1 million for improvements at intersections with especially high accident rates, and $4 million for the Safe Streets to School Program.

The FY 2005 program prioritizes transportation needs in accordance with Governor McGreevey’s Fix-It-First initiative. Once again, expansion projects will be held to 4% of the overall capital budget.

As part of the Fix-It-First initiative, NJDOT will spend $370 million to repair and replace 71 bridges, including $12 million for construction of a new fixed-span Manasquan Bridge in Monmouth County and $34 million for a new Routes 1&9 Elizabeth River Bridge in Union County.

$150 million will be invested in roadway preservation, targeting the worst roads first, including $7 million to rehabilitate I-295 from I-195 to Route 1 in Mercer County.

$235 million is allocated for FY 2005 to ease congestion throughout the state. These measures will make travel on New Jersey’s highways more efficient and will help reduce emissions, protecting the air we breathe. Included is $5.9 million for intersection safety improvements at Route 1&9 North Avenue in Elizabeth and $24.2 million to eliminate the Route 30 Berlin Circle.

Finally, NJDOT’s Local Aid program will provide significant property tax relief to New Jersey counties and municipalities by making direct investments in local communities. NJDOT’s $260 million investment in Local Aid will help rebuild and revitalize communities, improve safety, and enhance the quality of life in New Jersey’s downtowns.

The entire Proposed Fiscal Year 2005 Capital Program is available on NJDOT’s web site and is broken down by projects, counties and routes.

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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
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  Last Updated:  April 7, 2004