Portal North Bridge Project

In January 2021, NJ TRANSIT and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) signed a Full Funding Grant Agreement that paves the way for procurement and construction to begin on the roughly $1.8 billion project.

NJ TRANSIT and Amtrak are replacing the century-old Portal Bridge over the Hackensack River in New Jersey with a higher bridge that will not have to open and close for river traffic.

The existing, century-old Portal Bridge was built by the Pennsylvania Railroad and entered revenue service in November 1910. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the bridge carried more than 450 daily Amtrak and NJ TRANSIT trains and 200,000 daily passengers over the Hackensack River — a critical link in the congested territory between Newark, NJ and New York - Penn Station. The two-track, moveable span is a major bottleneck and source of delay, particularly when the aging bridge malfunctions during opening and closing for maritime traffic.

A two-track replacement bridge — Portal North — will replace this outdated relic with a modern, high-level fixed span that does not open or close, eliminating the movable components and risk of malfunction. The new bridge will rise more than 50-feet over the river and, including the approaches, span nearly 2.5 miles of the Northeast Corridor. Portal North Bridge is an important element of the broader Gateway Program to double rail capacity between Newark and New York.

Project Status

Construction

Benefits

  • Eliminate movable span
  • Remove conflicts with maritime traffic
  • Improve reliability, safety
  • Increase train speeds
  • Modest capacity increase

Partners

  • Amtrak
  • NJ TRANSIT
  • U.S. DOT Federal Railroad Administration
  • U.S. DOT Federal Transit Administration