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NJ TRANSIT TO HOST CUSTOMER FORUM AT HOBOKEN TERMINAL

NJT ticket machine

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Hoboken NJ, NJ TRANSIT is inviting customers to interact with senior management and operations personnel at the latest “We Are Listening” forum at Hoboken Terminal Thursday, October 11th from 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Continue reading NJ TRANSIT TO HOST CUSTOMER FORUM AT HOBOKEN TERMINAL

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Governor Murphy Unveils NJ TRANSIT Audit Results and Recommendations

Ridgewood Train Station

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Trenton NJ, Governor Phil Murphy today revealed the findings of a comprehensive strategic, financial and operational assessment of NJ TRANSIT. This report assesses the challenges and possible improvements to NJ TRANSIT pursuant to Executive Order 5 signed by Governor Murphy. The audit, conducted by The North Highland Company, assessed the following major areas: organizational structure, operating and capital funding sources, personnel recruitment, procurement, and customer experience.

Continue reading Governor Murphy Unveils NJ TRANSIT Audit Results and Recommendations

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Possible Alternate NJ TRANSIT Rail Service To Penn Station New York On Monday, September 10

Ridgewood Train Station

file photo by ArtChick

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ,  NJ TRANSIT is continuing to work closely with Amtrak and the Federal Railroad Administration on the investigation into Friday night’s incident in the Hudson River Tunnels. At NJ TRANSIT, the safety of our commuters and employees remains our highest priority. We assure our customers that, once the Amtrak repairs are complete and all the necessary safety inspections are made, rail service through the tunnels will remain completely safe.

Continue reading Possible Alternate NJ TRANSIT Rail Service To Penn Station New York On Monday, September 10

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Governor Murphy Signs “Tommy’s Law” ,Requires the state to promptly provide NJ Transit accident victims and their families with information regarding the incident

Ridgewood_Train_station_train-_is_coming_theridgewoodblog

file photo by Boyd Loving

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Trenton NJ,  Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi’s legislation assisting NJ Transit accident victims was signed into law today by the governor. Tommy’s Law (A3904) requires the state to promptly provide accident victims and their families with information regarding the incident. Senator Cardinale sponsored the bill in the Senate.

Continue reading Governor Murphy Signs “Tommy’s Law” ,Requires the state to promptly provide NJ Transit accident victims and their families with information regarding the incident

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NJ TRANSIT BUS ROUTES FROM RIDGEWOOD TO DETOUR AS ROUTE 495 LANE CLOSURES SET TO BEGIN

Ridgewood-bus_terminal_theridgewoodblog

August 1,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ,  To accommodate the lane closures necessary as part of the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT) rehabilitation of the Route 495 Bridge over Routes 1&9 and Paterson Plank Road in North Bergen, several NJ TRANSIT local bus routes will require detours.

The Exclusive Bus Lane (XBL) will be maintained weekday mornings (6 a.m. – 10 a.m.) throughout the construction.

Beginning Friday night, August 10, the 31st Street ramp from Kennedy Boulevard to Route 495 westbound will be closed with traffic detoured onto Paterson Plank Road, directly affecting NJ TRANSIT’s local service on 18 bus routes requiring detours in the afternoon and at night. A week later, on Friday, August 17, one lane of Route 495 in each direction will be closed, limiting the roadway capacity and causing severe congestion. The construction requiring detours is anticipated to last approximately two and a half years.

· Buses will operate their regular routing westbound along 31st Street through Union City the entire span of the day.

· All current Union City bus stops on 31st Street will be served, including both Bergenline Avenue and Kennedy Boulevard.

· Between 6 a.m. and 1 p.m. on weekdays, all NJ TRANSIT Buses using the 31st Street ramp will follow regular routes and continue to have access to Route 495 westbound.

· All buses between 1 p.m. and 6 a.m. the next morning will continue to use the 31st Street ramp but will be detoured onto Paterson Plank Road.

· Delays through Union City are anticipated due to increased traffic volume, and customers should plan accordingly for these delays.

Buses may encounter conditions that result in significant delays in the outbound direction during both the morning and evening peak periods.

AFFECTED BUS ROUTES

The following bus routes will be detoured between 1 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily during construction:

No. 87 Jersey City-Hoboken

No. 107 South Orange-New York

No. 108 Newark-New York

No. 111 New York-IKEA-Jersey Gardens

No. 124 Secaucus-New York

No. 127S Ridgefield-Union City-New York

No. 129 Secaucus-Union City-New York

No. 144 Elmwood Park-Hackensack-New York

No. 160 Elmwood Park-Wallington-New York

No. 161 Paterson-Passaic-New York

No. 163 Ridgewood-New York

No. 167 Harrington Park-Teaneck-New York

No. 190X Paterson-Rutherford-New York

No. 190 (local) Paterson-Rutherford-New York

No. 191 Willowbrook-Montclair-New York

No. 192 Clifton-New York

No. 195 Willowbrook-Cedar Grove-New York

No. 199 Clifton-Lyndhurst-New York

The following bus routes do not require a detour, but are expected to be impacted by delays due to increased traffic congestion:

No. 83 Hackensack-Jersey City-Journal Square

No. 85 Mill Creek-Harmon Meadow-Hoboken

No. 127 (regular) Ridgefield-Union City-New York

No. 320 Mill Creek-North Bergen Park & Ride-New York (a detour will be necessary in later stages and information will be provided in advance)

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NJ TRANSIT AND NEXTDOOR PARTNER IN COMMUNITY POLICING INITIATIVE

All Clear at Ridgewood Train Station

file photo by Boyd Loving

July 27,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ,  The New Jersey Transit Police Department  has partnered with Nextdoor, a global, private social network for neighborhoods to utilize the social media app to help increase active “eyes and ears’’ surrounding NJ TRANSIT’s infrastructure.

“Safety is the number one priority for NJ TRANSIT,’’ said Executive Director Kevin Corbett. “The New Jersey Transit Police Department is continually looking at innovative strategies to maintain a safe and secure transit system and is the first transit police department to leverage the Nextdoor neighborhood social network. It will improve direct communication for both sides by allowing the sharing of vital information. Residents will have a chance to express their concerns regarding safety to the very officers who patrol and command their ‘home turf.’ It is a win-win situation.’’

This first-of-its-kind partnership between the New Jersey Transit Police Department and Nextdoor will enhance community policing by helping decrease rail line crime and accidents and promote interaction between those who live within a close proximity to NJ TRANSIT rail and light rail lines and stations, and bus terminals.

“NJ TRANSIT understands how important it is to maintain positive relationships with the local communities we serve,’’ said New Jersey Transit Police Chief Christopher Trucillo. “By utilizing the Nextdoor network, the members of the New Jersey Transit Police Department will be able to directly communicate with our unofficial “eyes and ears,’’ the members of the communities we serve. At NJ TRANSIT, we see the partnership with Nextdoor as a tool to strengthen our connections to these local communities, and it gives our neighbors a way to get to know the men and women of the New Jersey Transit Police Department.’’

For video of today’s news conference, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GHEcsdukwDI

The New Jersey Transit Police Department will not be able to access residents’ network information or content on Nextdoor.

With access to Nextdoor’s public agency platform, the New Jersey Transit Police Department will be able to geo-target Nextdoor residents who live within a one-mile radius of rail and light rail lines and stations, and bus terminals to:

  • Inform nearby residents of criminal activity such as theft and vandalism;
  • Educate residents on how to report suspicious activity;
  • Provide educational information on how to teach children about the dangers of railroad tracks; and
  • Increase the number of residents who interact with New Jersey Transit Police officers who patrol nearby stations and terminals.

Nextdoor is free for residents and the New Jersey Transit Police Department.

Founded in 2010, Nextdoor is a private, hyperlocal social network for neighborhoods used by verified NJ residents. Local residents use Nextdoor for a variety of things such as finding a babysitter to addressing crime and quality-of-life concerns.

This past spring, the New Jersey Transit Police Department conducted a pilot test of the platform for neighborhoods along the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail and Morris & Essex stations. Feedback indicated that neighbors were overwhelming in favor of the partnership.

Those who live within one-mile of NJ TRANSIT’s rail and light rail lines, train stations and bus terminals may sign up for Nextdoor at https://nextdoor.com/agency/new-jersey-transit-police-department/?i=ktzxwqknqbpdnxqhmhwr.

To report a crime in progress or request immediate police or emergency assistance, call 9-1-1 or the New Jersey Transit Police Communications Center at 800-242-0236 or text NJTPD (65873).

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Hudson-Bergen Light Rail (HBLR) service Extenting into Bergen County

July 5,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

What is Northern Branch?

The Northern Branch is a freight rail line owned by CSX Transportation that runs through Hudson and Bergen Counties to the New York State Border. The Northern Branch Corridor, through which the rail line traverses, is a densely settled suburban environment that has not been served by passenger rail since the discontinuation of service on the Northern Branch and West Shore Lines in the 1950s and 60s.


The Northern Branch Corridor Project calls for transit improvements in northeastern Hudson and southeastern Bergen Counties through the restoration of passenger rail service on an existing freight rail line. The electric light rail service would operate on West Side Avenue in North Bergen, and then on existing railroad right-of-way owned by CSX Transportation (CSX) between 91st Street in North Bergen and the northern border of Englewood and would introduce new station stops in North Bergen, Ridgefield, Palisades Park, Leonia, and Englewood.

Project Planning
The growth of automobile usage and accompanying roadway congestion in recent decades led planners and officials to search for solutions to the growing traffic problems in the Bergen County area. In the mid-1990s the West Shore Region Study provided a comprehensive examination of multi-modal opportunities throughout Bergen County, New Jersey and Rockland County, New York. Recommended for further study was an extension of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail (HBLR) from 85th Street in North Bergen along the Northern Branch to Tenafly, New Jersey.

The Northern Branch Corridor DEIS was prepared by NJ TRANSIT in cooperation with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to evaluate the benefits, costs and social, economic and environmental impacts of constructing and operating passenger rail service on the Northern Branch. The DEIS evaluated two Build Alternatives: the Preferred Alternative, which extended existing Hudson-Bergen Light Rail (HBLR) service from North Bergen to the Tenafly-Cresskill border, and a similar HBLR extension that terminated at Route 4 in Englewood.

The DEIS was published in November 2011, and can be reviewed here: Northern Branch DEIS.

Public hearings were held in January 2012, and the public comment period closed on February 21, 2012. More than 1,200 comments were received and reviewed by NJ TRANSIT. While many comments expressed support for the service, residents and community leaders in Tenafly were strongly opposed to the extension of service into their community. After considering the comments, FTA and NJ TRANSIT have developed a new alignment that would extend HBLR service from North Bergen to Englewood Hospital, which is north of Route 4 and south of Tenafly. Light rail service would not extend past Englewood.

This new alignment results in changes to the service plan and potential environmental and social impacts explored in the DEIS circulated for comment in 2012. As a result, this new alignment and associated changes have been analyzed in a Supplemental DEIS (SDEIS) and circulated for public comment and agency feedback in a process closely approximating the one undertaken for the DEIS.
The SDEIS was published on March 24, 2017, and can be reviewed here: Northern Branch SDEIS.

Similar to a DEIS, an SDEIS requires a public hearing and public comment period. The comments on the SDEIS and DEIS will be addressed together in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS). A 60-day public comment period will follow the notice of availability (NOA) of the SDEIS, during which time NJ TRANSIT will hold a public hearing. Comments will be collected and reviewed in the same manner as conducted for the DEIS. Provided that the SDEIS comments do not present compelling arguments for substantial revision to the SDEIS Preferred Alternative, an FEIS will be prepared, incorporating the SDEIS findings and unchanged elements from the DEIS. A response to comments chapter will be included in the FEIS, addressing all comments received during the prior two comment periods.

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Pedestrian Fatally Struck by a NJ Transit Pascack Valley Line Train in Oradell

Photos courtesy of Boyd Loving’s Facebook page

June 21,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Oradell NJ, A pedestrian trespasser was fatally struck by a NJ Transit Pascack Valley Line train just south of New Milford Avenue in Oradell on Wednesday evening, 06/20. The train, carrying dozens of passengers, was traveling from Hoboken to Spring Valley, NY. No injuries to any passengers of members of the train crew were reported. Passengers on board when the incident occurred were taken to their final destinations by NJ Transit buses. NJ Transit Police, Oradell Police, and New Milford Police officers were observed at the scene. Oradell Fire Department and a paramedic unit from Hackensack University Medical Center also responded to the scene.

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NJ TRANSIT APPROVES FINANCING AGREEMENT FOR NEW PORTAL BRIDGE

June 16,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors today approved a financing agreement with the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (EDA) which provides up to $600 million toward the construction of a new Portal Bridge.  The commitment solidifies New Jersey’s local share of the project cost.

“We’re not going to kick the can down the road any longer,” said Department of Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti.   “The time is long overdue for a new Portal Bridge, which is the foundation of many commuter frustrations.  The taxpayers of New Jersey deserve a transportation system which will drive the economy and reliably get them to jobs, schools, and recreation.”

“This funding is proof that Governor Murphy, NJ TRANSIT and the State of New Jersey are firmly committed to advancing this vital transportation infrastructure project,” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Kevin Corbett.  “A better tomorrow for NJ TRANSIT starts today.  Our customers have suffered far too long from the outdated, unreliable Portal Bridge.  A new bridge can’t wait any longer.”

The resolution approved by the NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors authorizes the Executive Director in consultation with the Board Chair to execute and deliver the funding agreement with the NJEDA.  The EDA will issue up to $600 million in bonds which will be paid back over a 30-year term from the state Transportation Trust Fund (TTF).  This same funding structure was utilized in 1999 for the construction of the River LINE light rail system.

BACKGROUND

The existing Portal Bridge, built in 1910, is a two-track, railroad swing-type drawbridge that spans the Hackensack River in New Jersey. The project will replace the existing two-track Portal Bridge with a new two-track fixed structure that will be approximately 2.33 miles long and will have a clearance that accommodates current and forecasted maritime traffic, which will eliminate the need for a moveable span that interrupts rail operations and results in delays due to mechanical failures. When built, the new Portal North Bridge will allow for a 10 percent increase in peak hour passenger capacity.

On July 14, 2016, NJ TRANSIT entered into the Project Development phase of the FTA’s Capital Investment Grant (CIG) program. The Preliminary Design Phase for construction of the new Portal North Bridge is complete and a Record of Decision was received from the FTA in July 2017. Early Work construction, including utility relocation and Right of Way acquisition is underway.  NJ TRANSIT is the project sponsor for the new Portal North Bridge project.

In September 2017, NJ TRANSIT applied for CIG funding that, if approved by the FTA and received by NJ TRANSIT, would cover a share of all project costs. The board actions by NJ TRANSIT and NJEDA will support the application for CIG funds to move forward with an improved rating.

The new Portal North Bridge is fully designed and fully permitted.

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New Jersey Transit Looks at Additional Fare Payment Options

Utah Software Engineer Mints Physical Bitcoins

June 14,2018
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, In a continuing effort to improve the customer experience, NJ TRANSIT is taking steps to modernize the fare payment system and offer additional payment options. The proposed upgrades seek to reduce cash and paper-based tickets while providing customers with quick, easy and convenient ways to pay.

“Improving the customer experience has been at the top of my priority list,” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Kevin Corbett. “Giving customers the ability to utilize the latest technology to pay fares offers a major convenience to them and multiple benefits including easier payment options, speeding up boarding and making our collection systems more efficient and up to date.”

A contract renewal approved by the NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors earlier this year with Conduent Transport Solutions Inc. of Somerset, New Jersey, includes provisions to accept mobile payments, open bank cards and a NJ TRANSIT fare card.

The contract allows NJ TRANSIT and Conduent to develop the future of fare payment systems within the NJ TRANSIT system including:

The acceptance of mobile payments and open contactless bank cards.

A new contactless NJ TRANSIT fare card with options to add cash value to the card at local retailers.

Customer account management through the NJ TRANSIT App or online.

Installation of more than 2,500 validators on the bus fleet and on light rail platforms to accept the contactless fare card, mobile payments and barcodes.

Upgrades to TVMs, ticket office machines and the MyTix sales feature of the Mobile App.

These emerging technologies will incorporate an account based system where customers can manage their account, view ride and ticket history, check balances and add value. Customers who do not have access to mobile payments or contactless bank cards, will achieve the same level of convenience using a contactless NJ TRANSIT fare card. As a result, all customers will experience greater convenience with a tap and ride feel.

The current electronic ticketing through the Mobile App will continue to be used, upgraded and expanded. The contactless fare card is a great option for our cash customers and would be a complement to the NJ TRANSIT Mobile App, MyTix ticketing.