LaGuardia airport (Photo: PANYNJ)

USA: The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey has drafted 14 options for enhanced public transport access to New York’s LaGuardia airport which could offer an alternative to the now-aborted peoplemover link promoted by former state governor Andrew Cuomo.

Upon taking office, Cuomo’s successor Kathy Hochul asked PANYNJ to come up with alternatives to the $2∙1bn peoplemover, and the authority has now published its list.

The first five options call for new bus routes supplementing the existing services, which some local transport advocates argue would be a low-cost and effective way to get people to the airport that could be implemented far quicker than building rail lines. The bus routes would run to and from various nearby Subway stations, and one proposal features running in a dedicated bus lane.

Options six to 10 would involve building light rail lines that would run above and below ground from Woodside, Jamaica Station, Astoria and Jackson Heights, and one that would connect to the Mets-Willets Point LIRR and Subway station along a similar alignment to Cuomo’s original AirTrain proposal.

Option 11 calls for extending the NYC Ferry system via a service from Wall Street to the airport via E-34th Street and E-90th Street.

Options 12 and 13 would involve extending the N/W Subway line from 30th Street Station or Astoria-Ditmars Boulevard Station to LaGuardia, although PANYNJ notes that these might prove to be very costly.

Finally, the authority did not rule out the possibility of choosing ‘as yet unproven technologies’, such as ‘narrow road tunnels with electric vehicles’ or a fixed guideway with shuttle pods.

PANYNJ will hold two public consultations in mid-March to evaluate the 14 options.