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Sat July 31 2021

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Green light for train to LaGuardia Airport

22 Jul The USA’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has backed construction of a rail system to LaGuardia Airport (LGA) following an environmental review.

Its record of decision allows the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey to proceed with its proposal to construct the AirTrain. The Port Authority, which committed to the project in 2019, will now be able to submit an application for funding under the Passenger Facility Charge programme.

The plan is to use the AirTrain to connect LGA to the New York City Transit Subway 7 Line and the Long Island Rail Road Port Washington Branch at Mets-Willets Point. There will also be passenger walkways connecting to the LGA Central Hall, parking, public transport and ground transport facilities.

New York governor Andrew Cuomo welcomed the decision. "The new LaGuardia Airport - the first new airport in the United States in over 25 years and the front door to New York - deserves a reliable, efficient, and affordable transit connector worthy of its destination,” he said. “With the Federal Aviation Administration's approval today of the LaGuardia AirTrain, that's exactly what New Yorkers will get. This is the culmination of years of advocacy by this administration and a key moment in our efforts to rebuild New York's infrastructure for the future.”

The FAA held two virtual public workshops and three virtual public hearings in September 2020 on the draft environmental review. The meetings had a combined viewership of over 18,000 people, and the public provided over 4,200 comments. The final environmental impact statement (FEIS) was released on March 19, 2021 and contained responses to the comments received.

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