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 PATH TRAIN SLOWDOWN: Major Cuts in Service

 Thursday, May 13, 2004 Christian Adamkiewicz The Jersey Journal Staff Writer

Even longer waiting times for Hoboken weekend service changes are nixed

Starting the week of May 30, PATH trains traveling from Hoboken to the World Trade Center station will run every six minutes instead of five during rush hour and every 12 minutes instead of 10 during off-peak hours on weekdays.

In an effort to reduce spending, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which runs the system, also proposed eliminating direct service between Hoboken and 33rd St. and the World Trade Center stations on weekends.

But after calls of concern from Hoboken Mayor David Roberts, that proposal was thrown out and weekend service will remain the same.

"These eliminations were not in the interest of Hoboken," said Roberts, who called the Port Authority after he was contacted by The Jersey Journal on Tuesday and told of the proposed changes.

"I spent the better part of yesterday (Tuesday) with the leadership of New Jersey and the Port Authority to resolve this," Roberts said yesterday. "I'm very appreciative to the Port Authority for listening to my concerns and addressing my issues."

Roberts pointed how dependent many Hoboken residents are on PATH service to and from Manhattan. He said he was less concerned with the delays in weekday service and called it a scheduling decision that is up to the Port Authority.

As long as the direct routes from Hoboken are preserved, he said he felt satisfied.

Officials from the Port Authority did not return phone calls yesterday seeking an explanation for the longer rush-hour waiting times.

Raymond Arenas, chairman of United Transportation Union Local 1413, which represents PATH conductors, revealed the proposed weekend train service elimination in a letter sent this week to The Journal.

"I have to protect the public," said Arenas. "The public needs to know. We're happy that they (the PATH) are keeping the weekend service, but how do they justify the weekday delays?"

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