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A view of the current Hudson River tunnels, which are in need of rehabilitation and life-extension work.

USA: The timescale for completion of the planned trans-Hudson Gateway tunnel between New York and New Jersey has slipped by three years, the Gateway Development Commission has confirmed.

The Gateway Programme encompasses plans to build 4 km of new twin-bore tunnels and 2∙2 km of new alignment under the Hudson River between Bergen Pallisades and an expanded New York Penn Station, while also encompassing bridge replacement work and other enhancements on the New Jersey side of the river.

Once the new bores are operational, the existing heavily-used Hudson Tubes would be closed for major rebuilding, including repairs to the long-term damage caused by the Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

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Bridge maintenance west of the Hudson between New York and Newark, New Jersey.

Speaking to local media on August 30, GDC Chief Executive Kris Kolluri said the new bores would not now open until 2035, three years later than envisaged. This would similarly delay the refit of the old tunnels, which is now expected to be completed by 2038. The cost of the programme has risen by approximately $2bn to $16∙1bn, largely driven by wider inflationary pressures and delays to the approval needed to launch construction.

While some elements of the programme are now in progress, notably the replacement of the unreliable Portal North Bridge over the Hackensack River at Kearny, formal civil works on the Gateway tunnels will not now begin until 2024, a year later than planned.

GDC is a special purpose vehicle established by the states of New York and New Jersey to take the project forward; additional grants are expected to come from the federal government via the bipartisan infrastructure bill passed into law last year. Local politicians had previously suggested that work on the Gateway programme had been held up because of a personal objection to the scheme held by former President Donald Trump.