Investments include new roof at Newark Penn Station, bridge replacements along Raritan Valley Line

September 14, 2011

NEWARK, NJ — The NJ TRANSIT Board of Directors today supported the agency’s continued investment in infrastructure and equipment to maintain the system in a state of good repair by approving several contracts that will enhance both safety and reliability—including work to install a new roof at Newark Penn Station, inspections of undergrade rail bridges and a new rail vehicle to inspect the overhead power system.


“NJ TRANSIT’s continuous focus on critical infrastructure needs over the years has put the State’s public transit network in good shape going forward,” said Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Board Chairman James Simpson.  “Ongoing investments in our facilities, infrastructure and equipment allow us to maintain the system in a state of good repair, ensuring continued safe and reliable service for New Jersey residents.” 


“Our commitment to safety and reliability are key elements captured in our Scorecard initiative,” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director James Weinstein.  “NJ TRANSIT’s Fiscal Year 2012 capital program supports our Scorecard initiative with continued investment in infrastructure and equipment to maintain the system’s state of good repair.”


Among the projects approved today, the Board authorized a $3 million contract with G & M Eastern Contracting, Inc. of Neptune City, NJ, for the installation of new roofing and drainage systems at Newark Penn Station, as well as associated masonry repairs over selected rail platforms.


Newark Penn Station opened in 1935 as one of the centerpieces of the former Pennsylvania Railroad’s train network.  Today, the historic station serves as a major transportation hub in the City of Newark, serving three NJ TRANSIT commuter rail lines, Newark Light Rail and numerous bus routes, as well as Greyhound, Amtrak and PATH.  Nearly 50,000 NJ TRANSIT customers use Newark Penn Station on a typical weekday for travel on the agency’s rail, bus and light rail system. 


“The historic Newark Penn Station can be likened to NJ TRANSIT’s own Grand Central Station, serving as a gateway to the City of Newark and beyond,” said Weinstein.  “As home to numerous retail facilities that serve employees of area business, Newark residents and visitors to the City, as well as our customers, we are making an investment in one of the most vital NJ TRANSIT assets in the State.” 


As part of its ongoing commitment to maintaining its facilities and infrastructure in a state of good repair, NJ TRANSIT has identified roof repairs at Newark Penn Station that are needed to ensure safe and reliable service.  Work will include removing all layers of roofing systems in several areas of the station down to the concrete deck.  A new membrane roofing system will be installed, and elements of the roof drainage system will be repaired and replaced as necessary. 


The project is expected to be completed early next year.


In addition to the Newark Penn Station re-roofing contract, the Board of Directors also authorized the following contracts at today’s regularly scheduled meeting:


Undergrade Railroad Bridge In-Depth Inspections


NJ TRANSIT is responsible for maintaining 659 undergrade bridges, which carry rail traffic over roads, waterways and other features.  These bridges are inspected annually by in-house staff, augmented by periodic in-depth structural inspections, including underwater inspections of bridge piers and foundations.  The results of these detailed inspections provide NJ TRANSIT with information to develop a repair and replacement program to maintain the infrastructure in a state of good repair. 


Today the Board authorized $2.07 million in three separate contracts for in-depth structural inspections of 15 undergrade bridges—thirteen moveable and two fixed— as follows:


  • $856,293 contract with HNTB Corporation of New York, NY
  • $566,287 contract with TranSystems of Paramus, NJ
  • $644,483 contract with  Hardesty & Hanover, LLP, of West Trenton, NJ


Replacement of Two Undergrade Bridges on the Raritan Valley Line


The Board also authorized a $975,000 contract with HNTB Corporation for design, engineering and construction assistance for the replacement of two undergrade bridges on the Raritan Valley Line in the City of Plainfield.  Constructed in 1908, the bridges span Watchung Avenue and Park Avenue. 


 A subsequent construction contract will replace the bridges, repair the masonry abutments and increase the bridges’ vertical clearance.  Replacing the bridges will ensure continued safe and reliable service and continues NJ TRANSIT’s long-term commitment to the City of Plainfield to rehabilitate or replace all thirteen railroad bridges in the City, bringing the total completed to nine. 


Purchase of an Overhead Catenary Inspection Vehicle


The Board authorized a $1.95 million contract with ARVA Industries, Inc. of St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada, for the purchase of a catenary inspection vehicle to replace an aging vehicle.  NJ TRANSIT currently owns two of these vehicles, which are used to inspect, maintain, and repair more than 95 miles of overhead wire that supply power to electric trains.  These vehicles are used for both emergency repairs as well as scheduled maintenance, and ensure that personnel have quick and easy access to the overhead wire and support system. 

The new vehicle will replace the older of the two vehicles NJ TRANSIT owns, which is more cost-effective than rehabilitation.  The parts from the older vehicle will be used to refurbish the other existing car.  The new vehicle is expected to be delivered late next year.




NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 895,000 weekday trips on 240 bus routes, three light rail lines and 12 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 164 rail stations, 60 light rail stations and more than 19,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.