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    PATH bigs tell peeved riders: It's only $1.50

Friday, October 19, 2007 By KEENAN STEINER JOURNAL STAFF WRITER
 
P{ATH Trains Hudson Tubes Hudson & Manhattan RR  
At a "transportation symposium" Wednesday night in the cafeteria of Newport Tower on the Jersey City waterfront, residents griped about late-night and weekend PATH service, crowding on trains, the lack of restrooms in stations, and the efficiency - or lack thereof - of NY Waterway ferries' engines.

 

For those who were curious, the ferries run on the most efficient diesel on the market, said Donald Liloia, vice president of the company.

 

Although officials from NJ Transit and NY Waterway attended, most of the complaints were directed at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which runs the PATH.
The barrage of comments started before the event got underway, when Debora Brodsky, who recently moved to Newport from New York but works in the Big Apple, complained about the 33rd Street line stopping in Hoboken on weekends and late nights.
"What is this thing about going to Hoboken on weekends?" she said.
In response, Port Authority Deputy Chief of Staff Arthur Cifelli asked: "Where else can you ride for $1.50?"

 

He then got on his knees, held Brodsky's hand and repeated "$1.50" a couple of times.
As for late-night and weekend trains, Cifelli said trains only come every 30 minutes for economic reasons and because a lot of the construction work on the World Trade Center station.

 

But City Councilman Steve Fulop, who represents the Downtown area, thinks "people would pay a premium for expanded service."

 

Cifelli did not promise specific changes, but said that many of the crowd's suggestions were being looked at as part of PATH's "station modernization" plan. This week, the Port Authority announced it will increase capacity on the PATH by 20 percent by 2014, with a new signal system and new trains.

 

Some residents also asked for nighttime routes from the Newport marina, but Liloia pointed out that, unlike NJ Transit and the Port Authority, his company is not subsidized by the government, so it can't sustain a route unless there is enough ridership.

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