S. Berliner, III's sbiii.com New York Harbor Tunnel Page keywords = tunnel trunnel cross harbor New York Jersey Long Island rail road way Nassau auto truck train freight passenger terminal terminus

Updated:   16 Aug 2012, 16:50  ET
[Page created 04 Jun 2003; converted 16 Aug 2012
    original AT&T Worldnet Website begun 30 May 1996.]

URL:  http://sbiii.com/trunnel.html
[was at "home.att.net/~Berliner-Ultrasonics/trunnel.html"]

S. Berliner, III
Consultant in Ultrasonic Processing
"changing materials with high-intensity sound"

[consultation is on a fee basis]

Technical and Historical Writer, Oral Historian
Popularizer of Science and Technology
Rail, Auto, Air, Ordnance, and Model Enthusiast
Light-weight Linguist, Lay Minister, and Putative Philosopher

note - The vast bulk of my massive Web presence (over 485 pages) had been hosted by AT&T's WorldNet service since 30 May 1996; they dropped WorldNet effective 31 Mar 2010 and I have been scrambling to transfer everything.  Everything's saved but all the links have to be changed, mostly by hand.  See my sbiii.com Transfer Page for any updates on this tedious process.

S. Berliner, III's


New York Harbor
Tunnel Page

This page is unindexed (so far); please scroll away.

The New York Harbor
(Cross Harbor)

"The Trunnel"

(also known as the Cross-Harbor Rail Freight Tunnel
and the Cross Harbor Freight Movement Project.

[I choose to call this project the "TRUNNEL" because all good projects
need a catch-phrase and "CHRUNNEL", a perfectly logical acronym,
is to all intents unpronounceable.]

In the 04 June 2003 issue of NEWSDAY (Long Island's première newspaper), on the first page (A44) iof the Business Section, Staff Writer Jamie Herzlich, in "New Call For NY Harbor Rail Tunnel", reports on the revived idea of building a tunnel from the Greenville Yards in Jersey City, New Jersey, to the Bay Ridge Yard in Sunset Park, Brooklyn (Long Island), New York.

A general map of the area and proposed right-of-way follows:

(05 Jun 2003 map by and © 2003 S. Berliner, III - all rights reserved)

In line with my pages supporting the idea of a Cross-Long-Island-Sound tunnel from Oyster Bay, Long Island, to Norwalk, Connecticut (the Connyl) and one across the Bering Straits (the Strunnel), and in light of the current Ted Williams Tunnel project doubling Boston's cross-harbor tunnel capacity (the Big Dig), I can but applaud the initiative and support it in any way possible.

The article puts forth an initiative called MoveNY (I can find no further reference to any such but I'm hot on the trail), calling for the immediate construction of a rail tunnel under the inner harbor; unfortunately, the co-chairman of the group is quoted as saying that the need for a tunnel is highlighted by terrorist activities.  That argument is simply ridiculous; a rail tunnel would be one of the easiest targets for sabotage but that is no reason not to proceed.

The plan is also supported by many regional planning organizations and is promoted primarily by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), which calls it the Cross Harbor Freight Movement Project.  The EDC has a comprehensive review of this project on its site and is moving forward with an Environmental Impact Stataement (EIS).

The TRUNNEL would be restricted to rail traffic (like the Chunnel, which is dedicated solely to rail traffic); however, rail links between the LIRR and the Northeast Corridor line could be incorporated as well.

The Trunnel concept is primarily focused on relieving autotruck traffic into and out of Manhattan and the southwest corner of Long Island (the Brooklyn-Manhattan-Williamsburgh bridges and Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel* (I-478) tunnel bottleneck), both for the benefit of that area and for the motorist facing interminable delays transiting NYC.  It is an easy engineering feat (vis-à-vis the Chunnel).

* - on Steve Anderson's fantastic NYCRoads site (to which I commend you).

The Trunnel would directly link two economically powerful areas of two major states - the New York City metropolitan area, and northeastern New Jersey; there would be a great enhancement of employment and commerce and existing (and significant) commutation would be greatly eased.

This is an old idea, not at all unique to me, the Pennsylvania Railroad proposed it in 1893 and again in 1903, and it resurfaced in the 1920s and again in late 1941.

This is a project whose time has come and which would show vision and practicality.  Goods which now take all day to get around the Manhattan bottleneck would arrive in minutes.  Let's all get behnd it (all obviously would not include the New York Cross Harbor Railroad, the rail-float operations of which would instantly cease on the opening of the tunnel, unless they acquired the operating rights, a move that would probably be hotly contested by the New York & Atlantic Railway, which runs all freight on Long Island on trackage leased from the LIRR.

To further develop the concept, oil and natural gas pipelines might be incorporated in the project, allowing direct transfer of these resources between northern New Jersey, a major refinery and storage area, and Long Island, a major consumer.

MoveNY claims the Trunnel would take nearly 15 million tons of freight from area roads and bridges annually.

Perhaps it should be explained that modern TOFC (trailer on flat car) and high-cube cars and stack trains can not fit through the old, existing rail tunnels from the Pennsylvania Railroad portals in North Bergen, New Jersey, under the North (so-called Hudson) River, under Manhattan and through Pennsylvania Station, under the East River, and into Sunnyside Yard in Sunnyside (Long Island City), Queens, on Long Island.  The LIRR Bay Ridge Branch (on the RoW of the former New York Connecting Railroad and now operated by the New York & Atlantic) runs from the 65th Street Yard in Bay Ridge up across Brooklyn and Queens, to Fresh Pond Junction, where it interchanges with the LIRR and CSX, Providence & Worcester, and Canadian Pacific, and into Sunnyside Yard (another LIRR, and Amtrak, interchange) and also up across the Hell Gate Bridge to Oak Point Yard in the Bronx, the latter service operated by the former Conrail as CSX and CP and also interchanging with the Delaware & Hudson.

{preliminary - to be continued}

For examples of the latest in tunnelling equipment, methods, and projects, visit the site of the Herrenknecht companies.

(This is a referral only; not a recommendation.)


  What happens to all this when I DIE or (heaven forfend!) lose interest?  See LEGACY.


See Copyright Notice on primary home page.

U.S.Flag U.S.Flag


THUMBS UP!  -  Support your local police, fire, and emergency personnel!

Contact S. Berliner, III

(Junk and unsigned e-mail and blind telephone messages will NOT be answered)

© Copyright S. Berliner, III - 2001, 2002, 2003, 2012  - all rights reserved.

Return to Top of Page