Elizabeth - Today, Senator Robert Menendez announced the delivery of up to $88 million in federal funding for the Liberty Corridor projects - critical economic development projects that will improve the flow of freight and provide more efficient delivery of goods and services. The Federal Highway Administration has made immediately available $48 million and plans to deliver up to another $40 million by Fiscal Year 2009 to fund 10 the projects that comprise Phase 1 of Liberty Corridor.

"These funds are more than about asphalt and railroads - when these projects are completed they will help move the goods and services that mean so much to New Jersey consumers and businesses," said Senator Menendez. "We have waited 10 years for this funding and I am proud that we can finally begin to improve the area's transportation and infrastructure. Once completed, these projects will streamline the distribution of goods and services, utilize brownfields and more importantly, begin to expand economic development in the region to create new and permanent jobs and economic growth."

Liberty Project is a multifaceted economic development strategy championed by Senator Menendez that combines road and rail improvements that will help move freight around the region. The projects include harbor and terminal improvements that will keep Port Elizabeth and Port Newark as the top seaport on the east coast. New freight improvement strategies will ease congestion on our roadways and improve the quality or our air. The projects will also allow for the redevelopment of area brownfields, putting industrial properties to more productive use.

"Senator Menendez's vision for the Liberty Corridor has created a corridor that will be an engine of growth for New Jersey in the 21st Century" said Commissioner Kolluri. "The Liberty Corridor's funding harnesses resources from the private sector and federal and state government, enabling New Jersey to fund crucial transportation projects."

Liberty Corridor Press Release

January 15, 2008

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"Liberty Corridor will be an incredible enhancement to Maher Terminals, paving the way to facilitate transportation needs around the state and to and from the Port of NY/NJ," said Sam Crane, Senior Vice President - External Affairs, Maher Terminals. "This increased and more efficient access will be good for business, good for the consumer, and good for the State of New Jersey."

Phase 1 Projects, funded by the Federal Highway Administration Grant include:

Whittpenn Bridge replacement
North Jersey Doublestack Clearance/National Docks
Port Reading Junction
Tremley Point Connector Road
North Avenue Corridor Project - Phase 1
Route 35/36 Eatontown
Route 1, section 6V, North of Ryders Lane to South of Milltown Road
Route 18 / Interstate 287 Connection

Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage, who also joined Senator Menendez during the announcement, seemed pleased that the project was moving forward. "This important funding brings smart growth and much needed improvements to congested roadways," stated Mayor Bollwage. "I commend Senator Menendez for delivering an initiative that provides more than just physical improvements; it provides a better quality of life for residents."

"These funds will allow a wide range of projects to move forward - projects that will improve goods movement in our state and ultimately contribute to economic growth and job creation in Union County and the region," said Union County Freeholder Daniel Sullivan of Elizabeth, who is also the Chairman of New Jersey Transportation Planning Authority, which granted local authorization to the federal funding for the projects.

Two of the projects being funded, the Tremley Point Access Connector Road, and the North Avenue Corridor Improvement Project are Union County Economic Development projects under Freeholder Sullivan's review.