Posted on

NJ Transit Moves to Maximize Rental Revenue

Ridgewood Train Station

photo by ArtChick

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, NJ TRANSIT continues its efforts to maximize non-farebox revenue by leveraging prime retail locations at its train stations. NJ TRANSIT is pleased to announce a new retail lease agreement in Newark Penn Station. The new tenant, Top Shelf Wine and Liquor, is located in the Main Concourse of Newark Penn Station between tracks 2 and 3. The ten-year agreement is anticipated to generate more than $2.1 million in non-farebox rent revenue over the span of the lease term.

“Maximizing this non-farebox revenue is a win-win for customers and NJ TRANSIT and it’s consistent with recommendations coming out of the recent independent assessment by The North Highland Company,” said Executive Director Kevin Corbett.  “It provides customers with conveniences and amenities at our stations while also delivering critical funding resources which we can reinvest in our transportation network.”

The store’s design blends the contemporary and historical elements of the station, enhancing the aesthetics of the Main Concourse of Newark Penn Station. Top Shelf Wine and Liquor is owned and operated by Stephen Penn and Kunal Kapoor, who bring more than 30 years of experience in the retail and beverage industries.

In August 2018, NJ TRANSIT’s Board of Directors approved the lease of more than 1,000 square feet of retail space in Newark Penn Station to Starbucks Corporation.  The agreement will provide more than $1.6 million in non-farebox revenue to NJ TRANSIT over the 10-year lease.  Starbucks will also make approximately $750,000 in leasehold improvements.  While providing an additional revenue stream to NJ TRANSIT, customers will enjoy convenience of the nationally recognized brand in Newark Penn Station.

In Fiscal Year 2018, which ended June 30th, 2018, expanded retail leasing opportunities increased annual revenue by more than $800,000.  This included leases at Metropark Station and Secaucus Junction, with tenants performing significant capital improvements at both locations. 

In Fiscal Year 2019, which began July 1st, NJ TRANSIT estimates that property leases will generate more than $8.5 million in revenue.  Overall, NJ TRANSIT’s Real Estate Department estimates that it will generate nearly $50 million in non-farebox revenue in FY19 through property leases, advertising, parking fees and property permits.

Posted on

NJ TRANSIT BOARD SELECTS NEW HEAD OF RAIL OPERATIONS, RAYMOND P. KENNY

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, NJ TRANSIT’s Board of Directors today approved Raymond P. Kenny as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Rail Operations at today’s special Board of Director’s meeting.
“Ray is a national expert in the railroad industry and his knowledge of the complexities of the rail system in our region is unmatched,” said New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti.  “His leadership and management skills will be invaluable as we move NJ TRANSIT forward.”
“Ray has a long and accomplished railroad career and we look forward to tapping his wealth of industry knowledge as we continue to transform NJ TRANSIT into a national leader,” said Executive Director Kevin Corbett.  “Ray understands railroading from every angle, having started as a ticket clerk at LIRR and rising through the ranks to eventually lead LIRR as the busiest railroad in the country.”

Kenny has nearly 50 years of railroad industry experience including serving as former acting President of the MTA Long Island Railroad (LIRR).  He has an extensive background in managing large teams in both transportation operations and capital improvements.  

Most recently, Kenny has served with WSP as a consultant for operations and planning for agencies across the nation including the Gateway project, the Northeast Corridor Future project, business processes at Metro-North and emergency management plans at Metrolink in Los Angeles.

He began his transportation career in 1970 as a ticket clerk at LIRR. In 1975, he entered railroad dispatching for LIRR before rising through the ranks at LIRR with positions in personnel training and capital construction prior to leading the Transportation department.

Prior to NJ TRANSIT, Kenny served with WSP as a consultant where his experience included helping to improve Metro-North’s business processes including train crew availability, assisting Metrolink in Los Angeles with emergency management plans, a subject matter expert on the NEC Future project, which is a comprehensive planning effort to define, evaluate and prioritize future investments in the NEC, a subject matter expert for the Gateway project in the design of a new Penn Station New York and staging of train operations to facilitate construction.  Most recently, Kenny was assigned to the Hartford, CT rail project as a commissioning agent, ensuring project schedule compliance on the start of a new rail line.

Posted on

NJ Transit Service For New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day

Times Square

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, On New Year’s Eve, Monday, December 31, trains will operate on a modified weekday schedule (same as December 24, 26, 27 and 28) until 6 p.m. There will be no getaway service. In the evening, extra North Jersey Coast and Morris & Essex Lines trains will operate to New York .Special printable schedules that cover the period from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 6 a.m. on New Year’s morning will be available at njtransit.com by Friday, December 21. Rail travel information for New Year’s Eve will also be available via the Trip Planner and Station-to-Station features on njtransit.com.

Buses will operate on a modified weekday or holiday schedule with “early getaway” service from Port Authority Bus Terminal and the Jersey City waterfront. There will also be early evening service inbound and extra outbound from PABT after midnight on select routes. Customers are advised to consult timetables or visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for more details. 

Hudson-Bergen and Newark Light Rail, and the River Line will operate on a regular weekday schedule. River LINE will run extended service every 30 minutes. The last River LINE train out of Camden due to the Philadelphia fireworks will be approximately 12:45am, the train will run as far north as necessary. Specific trip information will be available on njtransit.com.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  NJ TRANSIT is prohibiting all beverages on all of its trains, light rail vehicles and buses on Monday, December 31, 2018, and the early morning hours of Tuesday, January 1, 2018. This policy will be strictly enforced.

After midnight (early January 1), additional late-night trains will operate on all lines until approximately 5 a.m. Some trains that normally depart New York/Hoboken/Newark between 11:30 p.m and 1:30 a.m. are cancelled and will be replaced with later trains.  After 5 a.m., trains will operate on a weekend/major holiday schedule after. Customers should visit njtransit.com for details, including special printable schedules that cover the period from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 6 a.m. on New Year’s morning (which will be available by December 21). Expanded bus service will be provided from the Port Authority Bus Terminal (PABT) until approximately 2 a.m. Some routes will be departing from alternate areas within the PABT. Visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for specific schedule details and departure gate assignments.

On New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1, after 5 a.m., trains will operate on a weekend/major holiday schedule.  Bus service will vary by route. River LINE will operate on a Sunday schedule. Newark Light Rail will operate on a Saturday schedule. Hudson-Bergen Light Rail will operate on a weekend schedule.  Bus service will vary by route. Customers are advised to visit njtransit.com for details. 

Posted on

Reader suggests ways to improve the Ridgewood Commute

photo courtesy of RH

First – add the damn spaces at the train station right away. What is the delay???

Next – cancel the garage. Repave that lot and re-stripe it, reduce the access~egress curb cuts to just one or two. This will add a ton of spaces.

Next – reduce the cost of commuter parking passes. It is ridiculously high now (but not as high as Voigt had suggested when he laughingly said it should be $1500 because the people in Ridgewood could afford it).

Next – put parking at the lot behind Ben and Jerry’s where that old garage was. Plenty of space there and only a two block walk to the train station.

Next – make the meters stop at 6 PM once again. 8 PM is way too late. Also, please have FREE parking on Saturdays throughout the year.

Posted on

Reader says , “It’s tough for Ridgewood to compete with Midtown Direct Service”

Ridgewood_Train_station_train-_is_coming_theridgewoodblog

The Midtown Direct train ride through certain Essex County towns straight into Penn Station (34th street) in Manhattan remains the gold standard for NJ residents. It’s tough for Ridgewood to compete with that, even though we do enjoy the most convenient (i.e., combination of short and frequent trips from one train station) train service yo and from the Secaucus Transfer station of any town in Bergen County. Now that the inbound Lincoln Tunnel has been hobbled due to desperately needed road work, the permanent lane shutdown from this road work creates an unavoidable bottleneck that hurts the efficiency of the many Coach USA buses that carry commuters from the Ridgewood Park-n-Ride to Port Authority Bus Terminal (42nd street) in NYC midtown. Hopefully that road work will be completed soon. Also hopefully, all of the West Bergen, Weehawken, Hoboken and Secaucus mayors are very polite to Governor Murphey and his political enforcers during this period of cross-Hudson traffic “difficulties”. Or is that just a republican problem (LOL).

Posted on

Reader says changes in parking are to the detriment of Commuters

Ridgewood Trainstation_theridgewoodblog

Reader responds to , ” overpriced Commuter parking is a Ridgewood quality of life Issue ” http://theridgewoodblog.net/reader-says-overpriced-commuter-parking-is-a-ridgewood-quality-of-life-issue/

“Amazing that this blog actually is from a year . . . and another $300 hike in the yearly fee ago . . . and nothing has changed. Actually, there HAVE been changes, but they have all been to the detriment of commuters. The new passes are $1300 per year. Want a pass for the Hudson Street lot? That will get you a parking spot until the construction begins, and the pleasure of depending on Uber to get to the station to catch your morning ride to work after construction starts. Oh, and forget about parking anywhere on the weekend, because, of course, who works on Saturday or Sunday?

Want a pass for other lots? Well, don’t count on parking in the train station unless you have a compact car. The planned renovations add spots, but they are only for compact vehicles. Because, after all, almost everyone in Ridgewood drives a compact. Unable to find a spot at the station, maybe because you aren’t there before 6:30 in the morning? Enjoy a healthy hike from across town. Hopefully, the snow and rain won’t be a problem this winter.

This is just PATHETIC. This is a real problem for anyone trying to sell their home – NO ONE in their right mind would consider moving here who works in NYC. I know we certainly would not have moved here, even without knowing the truth about the fraud underlying the reputation enjoyed by Ridgewood’s school system. The only thing worse than the stress of uncertainty about finding a parking spot is the sanctimonious disingenuousness of residents and council members who insist that protecting the access of “diners and shoppers” to parking is key to Ridgewood’s welfare.”

Posted on

NJ TRANSIT OFFERS EXTRA SERVICE AND SAVINGS FOR HOLIDAY WEEK

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ,  NJ TRANSIT is offering extra service during the holiday season to give customers more travel options and flexibility for attending special events, family gatherings and New Year’s Eve festivities.

In addition, NJ TRANSIT is giving customers almost two weeks of continuous savings through a special extension of the Family SuperSaver Fare, which allows up to two children 11-years-old and younger to travel free with each fare-paying customer. The Family SuperSaver Fare will be in effect for the entire holiday period, starting at 7 p.m. Friday, December 21 until 6 a.m. Wednesday, January 2, on all trains, buses and light rail lines.

For complete schedule and fare information, download our app, visit njtransit.com or call 973-275-5555.

Saturday, December 22

NJ TRANSIT trains will operate on a weekend schedule. Bus routes will operate on a Saturday schedule. Newark Light Rail and River LINE will operate on a Saturday schedule. HBLR will operate on a weekend schedule. Customers should consult their timetable for the holiday schedule or visit njtransit.com for details.

Sunday, December 23

NJ TRANSIT trains will operate on a weekend schedule. Meadowlands service will operate for the Jets vs. Green Bay Packers game at 1pm.

Christmas Eve, Monday, December 24

NJ TRANSIT trains will operate on a modified weekday schedule, with select morning peak period trains cancelled and additional late morning trains operating on the Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast lines. Rail customers are encouraged to visit njtransit.com and check rail timetables for details and travel before 9 a.m. on these days, if possible, when ridership is lighter.  Newark Light Rail, HBLR, and River LINE will operate on a regular weekday schedule. Most buses will operate on a weekday or holiday schedule with “early getaway” service from Port Authority Bus Terminal. Customers are advised to consult their timetable for the holiday schedule or visit njtransit.com for details.

Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25

NJ TRANSIT trains will operate on a weekend/major holiday schedule on all lines, including substitute bus service on the Gladstone Branch. Hudson-Bergen Light Rail will operate on a weekend schedule.  Bus schedules vary by route. Customers can check timetables online at www.njtransit.com.  Select bus routes will operate fewer trips during the traditional morning and evening peak periods. Customers are advised to consult their timetable for holiday schedules or visit njtransit.com for more details.

On Wednesday, December 26, Thursday, December 27, Friday, December 28, trains will operate on a modified weekday schedule with certain morning peak period trains cancelled and additional mid-to-late morning trains operating on the Northeast Corridor and North Jersey Coast lines. Rail customers are encouraged to visit njtransit.com and check rail timetables for details and travel before 9 a.m. on these days, if possible, when ridership is lighter.  Buses and light rail lines will operate on a weekday schedule. Selected PABT bus routes will have more frequent service operating inbound to PABT on some lines during the late morning hours and outbound from PABT during the early and late evening hours. Consult timetable or visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for details.

On Saturday, December 29, trains will operate on a weekend schedule. Buses will operate on a regular Saturday schedule. Consult timetable or visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for details. Newark Light Rail and River LINE will operate on a Saturday schedule. HBLR will operate on a weekend schedule.  Consult njtransit.com for more information.

On Sunday, December 30, trains will operate on a weekend schedule. Meadowlands service will operate for the Giants vs. Dallas Cowboys game at 1 p.m

On New Year’s Eve, Monday, December 31, trains will operate on a modified weekday schedule (same as December 24, 26, 27 and 28) until 6 p.m. There will be no getaway service. In the evening, extra North Jersey Coast and Morris & Essex Lines trains will operate to New York .Special printable schedules that cover the period from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 6 a.m. on New Year’s morning will be available at njtransit.com by Friday, December 21. Rail travel information for New Year’s Eve will also be available via the Trip Planner and Station-to-Station features on njtransit.com.

Buses will operate on a modified weekday or holiday schedule with “early getaway” service from Port Authority Bus Terminal and the Jersey City waterfront. There will also be early evening service inbound and extra outbound from PABT after midnight on select routes. Customers are advised to consult timetables or visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for more details.

Hudson-Bergen and Newark Light Rail, and the River Line will operate on a regular weekday schedule. River LINE will run extended service every 30 minutes. The last River LINE train out of Camden due to the Philadelphia fireworks will be approximately 12:45am, the train will run as far north as necessary. Specific trip information will be available on njtransit.com.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  NJ TRANSIT is prohibiting all beverages on all of its trains, light rail vehicles and buses on Monday, December 31, 2018, and the early morning hours of Tuesday, January 1, 2018. This policy will be strictly enforced.

After midnight (early January 1), additional late-night trains will operate on all lines until approximately 5 a.m. Some trains that normally depart New York/Hoboken/Newark between 11:30 p.m and 1:30 a.m. are cancelled and will be replaced with later trains.  After 5 a.m., trains will operate on a weekend/major holiday schedule after. Customers should visit njtransit.com for details, including special printable schedules that cover the period from 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 6 a.m. on New Year’s morning (which will be available by December 21). Expanded bus service will be provided from the Port Authority Bus Terminal (PABT) until approximately 2 a.m. Some routes will be departing from alternate areas within the PABT. Visit njtransit.com/Bus Holiday Service Guide for specific schedule details and departure gate assignments.

On New Year’s Day, Tuesday, January 1, after 5 a.m., trains will operate on a weekend/major holiday schedule.  Bus service will vary by route. River LINE will operate on a Sunday schedule. Newark Light Rail will operate on a Saturday schedule. Hudson-Bergen Light Rail will operate on a weekend schedule.  Bus service will vary by route. Customers are advised to visit njtransit.com for details.

As always , check Schedules in Advance:  Plan your trip online to take advantage of extra trains and buses.
Travel Early:  On December 24, 26-28, and 31 NJ TRANSIT rail lines will operate on a modified weekday schedule.  Avoid the crowds by traveling during the traditional peak-period (6-9 a.m.) when ridership is light.  
Allow Extra Travel Time:  Traffic congestion during the holidays may affect bus travel times to and from New York City, so customers should plan accordingly.
Ticketing:  Purchase round-trip tickets at the start of your trip to speed your return and use the NJ TRANSIT mobile app, which is available for free download on any web-enabled iOS or Android device, to make the purchase even easier. To make a purchase, customers simply install the app and then create an account, which will securely save a customer’s profile information and purchase history for ease of use. Customers can also use ticket vending machines or see a ticket agent, if available, to avoid possible surcharges.  Reminder: Bus customers departing Port Authority Bus Terminal must purchase tickets before boarding.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
Luggage:  Travel as light as possible.  Passengers with luggage or packages should use the overhead racks or designated luggage spaces.  On multilevel trains, customers with large bags should use the mezzanine levels at the ends of each car.

Posted on

Railroad Crossing Safety

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The Borough of Glen Rock and Glen Rock Police Department would like to remind Residents and Visitors to safely cross Railroad Tracks, by following the recommendations below from NJ Transit:
•Cross Tracks Only at Designated Locations!
•Never go around crossing gates that are down, on foot or in a car!
•Stay alert, don’t rush.
•Trespassing: It’s Not Worth the Risk!
•Trains Can’t Stop Quickly!
•Trains Can’t Swerve!
•Stay Alert Near Tracks!
•Stay Away from Overhead Electrical Wires!
•Never Throw Items at Trains or onto Tracks!
•Watch the Gap between the train & the platforms

Residents with concerns regarding railroad crossing safety can contact NJ TRANSIT Police Department at (973) 378-6565 or, Tip line at 1-888-TIPS-NJT or, by text message to NJTPD (65873).

Posted on

NJ TRANSIT COMPLETES SAFETY MILESTONE

Ridgewood Train Station

photo by ArtChick 

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Ridgewood NJ,NJ TRANSIT today marked 100-percent completion of the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) 2018 year-end milestone for Positive Train Control (PTC).  Criteria for this requirement included installation of equipment on locomotives and cab control cars, installation of 326 miles of wayside equipment including radios, transponders and poles, as well as initiating PTC testing and employee training.  The achievement means NJ TRANSIT can apply for an alternative schedule to have PTC fully operational by the end of 2020.

“It’s a new day at NJ TRANSIT,” said Governor Phil Murphy.  “We promised the people of New Jersey that we would start making it right at
NJ TRANSIT and this achievement shows we are doing just that.  Make no mistake.  There’s still a lot of work left to do on PTC, but this is a major step forward as we continue to rebuild our mass transit system.”

“After years of being behind schedule, meeting the federal deadline for installing Positive Train Control technology along NJ TRANSIT rail lines shows transit passengers that safety is priority number one,” said Congressman Bill Pascrell, who worked to secure a federal grant for PTC installation in 2017. “I expect PTC can help prevent future accidents and start restoring New Jerseyans’ trust in our public transit. While there are miles to go to repair the damage from years of neglect, Governor Murphy deserves commendation for his focus on improving NJ TRANSIT. We must again have a mass transit system New Jerseyans deserve.”

“I want to congratulate Governor Murphy on meeting this important Positive Train Control (PTC) milestone and making this effort one of his highest priorities. This will enhance the safety of all rail commuters and prevent tragic train accidents such as train-to-train collisions and high-speed derailments from happening in the future,” said Congressman Albio Sires.

“On behalf of the board, I extend our thanks to the Governor for his unwavering commitment, and to the staff, for meeting such a critical deadline necessary to ensure continued service for our customers,” said New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner and NJ TRANSIT Chair Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti.

“Accomplishing this goal would not have been possible without the hard work and commitment of the men and women at NJ TRANSIT assigned to this project, along with our contractors, who completed four years of work in less than a year.” said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director Kevin Corbett.  “As our customers are at the heart of what we do, I also want to thank them for their patience and understanding in helping us reach this milestone.  This achievement is certainly something I’m proud of, but we still have another four years’ worth of work to accomplish in the next two years. While there is still much work to be done, I’m confident that our team will have PTC fully operational by December 31, 2020.”

Posted on

BEVERAGES NOT PERMITTED ON ANY NJ TRANSIT TRAIN, BUS OR LIGHT RAIL DURING HOBOKEN SANTACON

photo courtesy of RH

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Ridgewood NJ, NJ TRANSIT is prohibiting all beverages on its trains, light rail vehicles and buses on Saturday December 15th and the early morning hours of Sunday December 16th to coincide with the annual Hoboken SantaCon event.

No beverages of any kind, in any type of container, open or closed, will be permitted on board trains, buses or light rail vehicles during this time. This policy will be strictly enforced.

Reminder: All beverages, including alcohol, are not permitted on NJ TRANSIT buses at any time regardless of event.