Watch: Biden announces investment in ‘Mega Projects,’ including Concrete Casing for Hudson YardsWritten by David C. Lester, Editor-in-Chief
NEW YORK – This week, President Biden and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg announced that the Biden-Harris Administration has awarded nearly $1.2 billion from the new National Infrastructure Project Assistance (Mega) discretionary grant program for nine projects across the country.
“From the Hoover Dam to the Golden Gate Bridge, some infrastructure projects are so large and complex that they defy traditional funding systems—and so significant that they become iconic parts of the American landscape,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “After receiving over one hundred applications, we are proud to fund these nine infrastructure mega projects across the country to create jobs, strengthen our supply chains, expand our economy, and renew America’s built landscape.”
Two of the nine projects are for rail infrastructure. Concrete Casing for Hudson Yards, which received a grant of $292 million is the first. This award will help fund the final section of concrete casing intended to preserve future right-of-way for the new Hudson River Tunnel and lay the groundwork for the much-anticipated Gateway Project. Once completed, the future Hudson Tunnel project will improve commute times, Amtrak reliability on the Northeast Corridor (NEC), and support the NEC regional economy, which is home to 17% of the U.S. population. Amtrak expects the Hudson Tunnel project will result in 72,000 direct, indirect, and induced jobs during construction with union partnerships for job training.
Hudson Tunnel Animation courtesy of Amtrak
The second rail infrastructure grant is for $117 million to the Metra Commuter Railroad in Illinois to make improvements on the Metra Union Pacific-North line on a two-mile corridor from the Addison to Fullerton rail bridges, replacing approximately 11 bridges, 4 miles of track structure, and more than 1.75 miles of retaining walls along Metra’s UP-N line.