Murphy has 5-year, 10-year plans for NJ Transit
As the New Jersey reopening and recovery continues, Gov. Murphy and New Jersey Transit president Kevin Corbett have unveiled a 10-year strategic plan for the embattled agency they're calling "NJT2030," as well as a five-year capital plan.
Both depend the state getting the loans and federal assistance it seeks related to the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic, which has ravaged the state's finances.
During Murphy's daily coronavirus update Monday, he the NJT2030 plan will serve as a vision to transform the agency into an innovative, world-class public transit provider that meets the needs of every customer, while helping to lead the Garden State to economic recovery.
More than once in the briefing, he said he'd been left by his predecessor with a troubled agency that saw fares increase and service falter.
Murphy said the goals of the ten-year strategic plan include: ensuring the reliability and continued safety of the system, delivering a high-quality experience for customers, providing a stronger and fairer economy for all communities, promoting a more sustainable future for the planet, and building an accountable organization.
“New Jersey’s road back also rides along NJ Transit’s trains, buses and light rail,” Murphy said. “NJ Transit is going to be even more a part of our restart as New Jerseyans begin to get back to work.”
The governor did not specify how much the plans will wind up costing but he did say “we know that we will need to work cooperatively, both within state government and with our federal partners to meet NJ Transit’s identified short-term and long term capital needs.”
He suggested NJ Transit will needs significant financial support from the state “and then even more importantly we need the direct federal cash assistance. There’s just no way around that.”
Murphy's been pushing for months for an infusion of federal funds related to the pandemic. It remains to be seen whether they'll come.
Murphy said he did not expect any possible fare hikes until at least a year from now.
NJ Transit president Kevin Corbett said through these plans “we’ll continue to build on the progress of the last few years with a well defined roadmap for the next 10, despite current challenges I have never been more optimistic about the future of NJ Transit.”
The five-year capital plan focuses on five so called “project values” that will look to keep equipment in good repair, enhance the customer experience, promote safety, ensure resiliency and deliver performance.
Murphy said the reliability and performance of NJ Transit had been improving before the pandemic began, and “now we must make sure this progress not only continues but must be safeguarded.”
You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com