stations at Exchange Place in Jersey City and at
Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan will reopen in June and
December, respectively, according to officials from
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
The facilities, closed since the Sept. 11, 2001
terrorist attacks, are being refurbished under a
roughly $2 billion project that eventually will tie in
with a $5 billion plan to build a new transit hub in
Lower Manhattan. That facility would link the PATH,
myriad subway lines and ferry service for the first
time downtown as a way to spur economic growth and
"This would become in spirit the Grand Central
of Lower Manhattan," said Robert Davidson, the
Port Authority's chief architect, updating the status
of the transit projects for the New York at its
A downtown hub is one of the few rebuilding issues
on which the multitude of interest groups agree.
The PATH station below the destroyed World Trade
Center, which handled some 66,000 riders every work
day, also was wrecked in the attack. The devastation
caused flooding in the two PATH tunnels connecting
Lower Manhattan and Jersey City, ruining electrical
equipment and track.
Closure of the tunnels forced the shuttering of the
Exchange Place station, which has been undergoing
previously needed renovations. Among the improvements
will be a lengthening of platforms to accommodate
Davidson said the rebuilt PATH station at Ground
Zero "is minimalist in design in terms of public
space" because officials wanted to get it open as
quickly as possible.
The refurbished station eventually would become
part of the transit hub, which is to be located at or
near the Broadway/Fulton Street intersection and
slated for completion by 2009.
Plans for the hub call for an airy design,
providing natural light to the concourses and offering
numerous entrances and exits so the facility does not
cut people off from shops, restaurants and parks at
street level, said Davidson. The PATH concourse would
be three levels below the street.
Among the subway lines linked to PATH would be the
1&9 and the N, R, A, C and E. The hub also is
designed to accommodate bus traffic and would serve
commuters as well as visitors to the planned memorial
at Ground Zero.
"Seventy-five percent of people will access
the memorial by foot or public transportation,"
Federal officials last year committed $4.55 billion
to the transit hub from the $21.5 billion slated for
Lower Manhattan's rebuilding. In December, New York
Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed that billions more be
spent on direct rail links between downtown Manhattan
and Newark Liberty International Airport and John F.
Kennedy International Airport in Queens.