Selection of Stories from New Jersey Commuters In Support of the ARC Tunnel to Gov. Christie Horror stories about my commute? I’ve got about 30 of them. Once it took me 6 hours to get home because of track switching, or some such thing. I got home at 3am. I’ve been stuck on the tracks for a couple hours many times also. I’ve been commuting from NJ to NY for 15 years. One thing goes wrong and the whole system gets backed up. I support the ARC Tunnel.
--Chris Mollis, Lawrenceville, NJ, 609-817-5652 I’ve had to stand all the way from Princeton to Penn Station before because the trains are so crowded. By the time the train gets to Princeton Junction it’s already full, plus we stop at more places! Princeton Junction is one of the busiest stations, but still only has limited express service to New York City. What are we stopping all over the place for? We need more direct lines to NYC.
--Newell Anderson, Princeton, NJ, 646-770-6744
My husband takes the train into NYC-Penn Station daily and it takes away from his family time. Half the time, he misses the connecting train due to delays. This causes him to miss dinner. Dinner time is so important to our family. We have two young boys and with sports and school it is hard to connect. Those precious minutes that he would gain would make us all very happy. Please reconsider this train.
--Anonymous, Westfield, NJ
Every time an Amtrak train has problems, and that is a lot more often than NJ Transit, it slows our commute to a crawl because we share the tunnel. In addition, although we live 1/2 block from Mountain Station, we often have to walk a mile to South Orange Station because there are only a few direct trains from Mountain Station to NY.
However, besides the added convenience for our family, the tunnel will provide hundreds of much-needed jobs for New Jersey workers, and will add revenue to the state by adding a new incentive to move here – the convenience of a quick commute to New York City.
I urge you not to pull the plug on 20 years hard work, preparation, and planning.
--Ms. Julie Stern, South Orange, NJ I have been commuting to New York since 1971. A trip that took 20 minutes in 1971 now takes at least 40 minutes, and frequently runs to an hour or more. A new tunnel would shorten my commute and allow me to spend more time at the nursing home with my mother.
--Ms. Frances Duggan, North Arlington, NJ
Please build this tunnel! My husband commutes into the city and never gets to see his children at night because his commute takes too long. The future of northern NJ really depends on adequate transportation resources. And my kids would like their dad home to tuck them in at night!
--Anonymous, Ridgewood, NJ
I'm a life long resident of New Jersey. I'm currently considering purchasing my first home in the great state of New Jersey. With NYC nearby, my career developing, and the Somerville train station growing; the prospect of putting down roots in New Jersey was attractive until learning that you were about to put the breaks on a major mass transit project. With the prospect of a manageable commute into the city now greatly reduced and the NYC job market out of my reach, I'm seriously reconsidering my decision to buy in NJ.
--Mr. David Breeding, Somerville, NJ
If I had more time to spend because of a shorter commute, I would spend it at home with my wife and 2 kids because they are important to me. I could also use it to further my career doing my private contracting, so this would also be creating/saving jobs while saving time for many New Jerseyans. Please make this tunnel a reality in New Jersey!
--Aaron Johnson, Atlantic Highlands, NJ
My wife and I commute together from Edison to Manhattan every weekday. The trains are crowded starting around 6:30 AM so we wake up at 5:00 to get on the early train. In the evening we are usually on the train around 6:30PM and we rarely get to sit together because the trains are crowded. It would improve our quality of life if we had more flexibility to choose a time that was convenient for us, and not change our schedule based on crowded NJ transit trains.
--Mr. Robert Gowin, Edison, NJ
I have a one and half hour commute, each way, to work in NYC. That is when everything is running smoothly. When things do not go smoothly then I miss meetings at work in the morning, get home late, often missing dinner, and still have to get up really early to make it in the next day. It is exhausting and makes life miserable.
Part of my commute is waiting, in the train, to transfer from the NJ Transit line to the Amtrak line so we can get through the tunnel. If we had another tunnel that wait would be eliminated.
I urge you to support the NJ-NY tunnel. It would also provide much-needed jobs here and now.
--Anonymous, Madison, NJ
More stories will be available online later today at www.njpirg.org