PA approves $364M Holland Tunnel upgrade

JERSEY CITY — The Port Authority Board of New York and New Jersey approved a major rehabilitation and resiliency project for the Holland Tunnel to repair and restore critical mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems caused by Superstorm Sandy, and to install protective measures to mitigate future flooding in the facility.
The $364.2 million project includes repairs and replacement of systems damaged by latent salt resulting from the October 29, 2012 storm, which filled the tunnel with 30 million gallons of water and resulted in flooding up to 9 feet above the North Tube roadway.
As part of the project, repair and replacement will be done to the tunnel’s power cables, fire detection system, voice communication system, lighting, pump room equipment, and repairs to concrete, drum rings, curbs, ceilings and wall tiles. The project includes improved lighting to enhance driver visibility in the tunnel. Approximately 84 percent of the project cost is projected to be reimbursed by federal funds.
In addition to repairs to tunnel systems, the project also includes resiliency measures to increase the stop log height at the doorways of the ventilation buildings in New York and New Jersey to meet current FEMA design flood elevation standards.
Work on the project is expected to begin in the second quarter of 2019 and take approximately five years to complete. The work must be staged during limited overnight hours to minimize disruption to travelers. Full single-tube closings are expected for 48 months. It is anticipated that one tube will be closed at a time, with traffic diverted to the Lincoln Tunnel during the closure.
The Port Authority will work with communities that may be impacted by the project to insure that all planning for traffic mitigation and diversions are sensible and do not create any unintended impacts. In the coming months, staff will meet with the elected officials from the surrounding communities.