The New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) Board of Directors has voted unanimously to approve a proposed alignment of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail's (HBLR) upcoming expansion into Bergen County as outlined in its Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement from March 2017.
NJ Transit said the locally preferred alternative is a 10-mile, two-track extension of the HBLR from Tonnelle Avenue to the Englewood Hospital and Medical Center, using CSX Transportation’s Northern Branch running track.
The public transportation system’s board vote also allows for the submission of the locally preferred alternative to the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority board of trustees for inclusion in the long term Regional Transportation Plan.
NJ Transit said the project sponsor must select a locally preferred alternative during the project development phase and ensure the locally preferred alternative is included in the metropolitan transportation plan. The project sponsor will also be required to complete the environmental review process in alignment with the National Environmental Policy Act.
In its selection of the locally preferred alternative, NJ Transit said the system will be able to begin design and engineering work following the Final Environmental Impact Statement and receipt of the Record of Decision from the Federal Transit Administration before requesting entry into the project development phase.
The project is set to bring about seven stations in North Bergen, Ridgefield, Palisades Park, Leonia and three Englewood stations, as well as parking space that would serve more than 2,700 vehicles. Officials estimate that the project will serve more than 12,300 passengers per weekday in the year 2030.