A $100-million plan to improve how freight moves in and around New York City was unveiled by NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and other officials on July 16.
The plan known as Freight NYC is an ambitious overhaul of the city’s aging freight distribution systems. Officials say strategic investments will modernize the city’s maritime and rail assets, create new distribution facilities, as well as a more sustainable and resilient supply chain network.
“Freight NYC is an investment in our city’s future,” said Mayor de Blasio. “By modernizing our approach to shipping, we will create thousands of good-paying while keeping our streets safer and cleaner.”
Officials point out that 90 percent of freight in the city is moved via truck.
The plan includes three main strategies, which include investing in multimodal infrastructure, creating new freight distribution hubs and promoting the use of clean trucks.
The city, working with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ), says it will invest in marine terminals and barging operations, as well as support the modernization and expansion of rail lines and freight facilities. Specific to rail, the plan calls for the reactivation of underutilized lines by constructing new transload facilities in Brooklyn and Queens within the exiting rights-of-way, as well as the construction of sidings. Freight NYC also includes support for PANYNJ’s Cross Harbor Freight Program and the Metropolitan Rail Freight Council Action Plan.
“Increasing the movement of freight by rail is critical to this region, and this plan represents an important step in advancing this critical initiative,” said Molly Campbell, director, Port Department. “The planned initiatives complement strategic Port Authority, federal and New York State investments into improving and modernizing the region’s freight network, with a strong focus of leveraging underutilized rail and maritime assets. We look forward to further supporting and collaborating with the city of New York and [New York City Economic Development Corp.] to help advance their efforts into the future.”