Somerset County Freeholders Robinson and Sooy celebrate restoration of off-peak direct access to New York City but demand additional service

Freeholder Candidate Melonie Marano calls on New Jersey Transit to create peak one seat ride for commuters to Manhattan on the Raritan Valley Line

Somerset County Freeholders Shanel Robinson and Sara Sooy and  Freeholder Candidate Melonie Marano join Governor Murphy and other elected officials in the announcement of the restoration of direct off-peak service to Manhattan on the Raritan Valley train line. Service was previously discontinued due to a lack of tunnel space, needed repairs and insufficient engineers. “For far too long residents of Somerset County have been treated as Second class passengers by New Jersey Transit” stated Freeholder Candidate Melonie Marano. “I am glad today to stand with our Governor in returning off peak service to Somerset County commuters” added Freeholder Robinson. “But it still does not accomplish what is really needed for our Residents. Simply put I will continue to fight for increased peak services that are needed when the majority of our residents ride the trains.” stated Robinson.

“It’s time to demand equal treatment from New Jersey Transit. While other communities have direct service to NYC during peak commuting hours, Somerset residents have been left behind on the platform,” said Freeholder Sooy. The Raritan Valley Line serves more than 23,000 daily commuters in a corridor where 1 million people live. It’s also the only NJ Transit rail line without direct access to New York City in the morning and evening rush hours. The North Jersey Coast Line, with the about the same number of commuters, has 11 trains in the morning and 13 trains in the afternoon with direct access to Manhattan.

“The past failure of Governor Christie to support the ARC tunnel to Manhattan and President’s Trump’s failure to commit funding to the project has far reaching consequences for the health and viability of our communities in Somerset County and the entire state” stated Candidate Marano. Direct access to Manhattan has proven to be an economic boon to communities on the Morris and Essex transit lines. Accessibility is a major contributing factor to property values and quality of life in New Jersey. Both Freeholders and Marano lauded the improvements made by Governor Murphy in regard to fixing NJ Transit. Freeholder Robinson noted, “the hiring and training of additional engineers has added to the ability of NJ Transit being able to service their customers.”