FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT WWW.QNS.COM JUNE 28, 2018 • THE QUEENS COURIER 11
Gov greenlights LGA AirTrain - but not everyone's happy
BY JENNA BAGCAL
The AirTrain project at LaGuardia
Airport will be moving forward, thanks
to legislation signed by Governor Andrew
Cuomo on Monday morning.
The governor’s legislation for the
LaGuardia AirTrain project will allow
multiple potential alignments to be considered
during an upcoming environmental
review led by the Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA) with required public
participation. According to the governor’s
office, only parcels of land owned by
the city or MTA will be used, and no private
property would be impacted.
The AirTrain is slated to run between
the airport and Willets Point, where riders
would connect to the Long Island Rail
Road and the 7 subway train at the Mets-
Willets Point stations.
“The new LaGuardia Airport will provide
an improved customer experience
with better access to airlines and public
transportation for all passengers —
essential to the airport’s transformation.
AirTrain LGA will set an example of comprehensive
transit infrastructure for the
rest of the nation, and will pay dividends
for decades by connecting riders to transit
hubs across the Metropolitan area, boosting
passenger growth across all airlines,
and providing a more efficient means of
travel for generations to come,” the governor
said in a statement.
The AirTrain is planned to supplement
the airport’s $8 billion redevelopment
plan that will create a new, unified
LaGuardia Airport. The plan will help to
build Terminals B and C, which broke
ground in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
The construction for the AirTrain project
is slated to begin in 2020 and end in
2022. When complete, commuters will be
able to take trips to and from Midtown
Manhattan in under 30 minutes and
access the entire LIRR Network and the
Local elected officials from Queens have
supported the AirTrain project, including
Congressman Joe Crowley, Borough
President Melinda Katz and Senator Jose
Peralta. The governor thanked Senator
Peralta and Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubry
for passing legislation supporting alternative
transportation routes that would
“lessen the potential impacts” of the
AirTrain while supporting LaGuardia’s
Despite the praise, some think that the
funding for the AirTrain would be of better
use in fixing the city’s subway system.
One AirTrain critic is Jessica Ramos, who
is running against Peralta in New York’s
12th Senate District.
Photo via Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office
“The subway is crumbling, our schools
are underfunded — and yet the legislative
session ended with no plan to
help our students or our straphangers.
Instead, Jose Peralta and Albany legislators
approved a plan to construct a
billion-dollar AirTrain to La Guardia,”
Ramos said. “Instead of building a new
train for tourists, Albany should fix the
broken subway system for Queens’ straphangers.
East Elmhurst is a historically
underserved community that desperately
needs stronger public transportation.
Building an AirTrain instead of delivering
for these residents is offensive.”
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