Try not to fall asleep while reading the next sentence. The State’s Capital Plan Review Board has given the go-ahead to the MTA to proceed with a package of large regional transit improvements.
Yes. I know that sounds like bureaucratic gobbledygook – but, in fact, the right response to the news is not to snore; it’s to cheer . . . and loudly. Because contained within the MTA’s now-approved $27 billion long-term capital plan is new, direct service to Penn Station via Metro-North’s New Haven line.
That’s a huge deal for commuters along the Westchester Sound Shore and in Connecticut. And it’s an even huger (if that’s a word) deal for New Rochelle. Why? Because the split in the rail line leading either to Grand Central or Penn Station is located right around Webster Avenue in New Rochelle — meaning that when this new service is introduced, New Rochelle will have the closest station to New York City with direct access to both the east and west sides of Manhattan.
The City put this unique distinction front-and-center in our successful effort to attract a master developer for our downtown, and it continues to be a major talking point as we bring new investment to New Rochelle.
There is an important caveat. The connection won’t be completed until 2022 at the earliest. But that’s not so far away. And with this recent approval, the uncertainty surrounding the project is largely swept away. This is going to happen, and it’ll be a big boost for our city and region.