Significant Support for Trenton Light Rail Transit Expansion (LA PARKER COLUMN) – Trentonian

Ride the River Line Light Rail from Trenton to Camden and many scenarios unfold.

The NJ Transit hybrid rail system features 21 stations and travels along the Delaware River while window seats offer views of the natural surroundings.

A 34-mile drive from Trenton to Camden takes approximately one hour and five minutes. Around 9,000 passengers board or alight daily, while annual ridership approaches three million.

The River Line stops at the Broadway Station of the PATCO Speedline, also known as the Walter Rand Transportation Center, and the Pennsauken Transit Center of the NJ Transit Atlantic City Line, offering fast connections to Philadelphia.

Opened in March 2004, the railway line winds its way impressively through the waterfront area of ​​Camden town centre, including the town’s aquarium and other entertainment venues.

New Jersey Transit proposed extensions and potential stations to improve River Line services, arteries that would make sense, increase ridership and drive smart growth.

An extension to the New Jersey Statehouse was discussed early on in the River Line. Currently, many state workers make the 0.8 ride from the Transit Center to West State St. on foot or access bus service.

Trenton, which lags miserably in the development occurring in Camden thanks to Cooper Hospital, Rutgers University and a satellite campus of Rowan University, could see immediate commercial development with the extension of the rail line downtown.

Imagine a railway line that carries passengers to the planetarium, the state museum, the old barracks, etc. Trenton’s story could come to life.

Timely conversations include dreams about a rail line that connects to Trenton-Mercer Airport.

Mercer County has won approval for a major expansion at the Trenton-Mercer Airport in Ewing Township. The development will increase the size of the current terminal by almost five times and allow for more flights from the facility.

The county began a design phase last summer and expects to begin construction in late 2023, according to published remarks from Mercer County communications director Julie Willmot. Once started, construction of the expansion is expected to take place over a period of 26 months.

Imagine a rail line that transports passengers from today’s cities and stations to the Frontier Airlines terminal in one fell swoop along the Delaware River or through the streets of Trenton.

The new terminal will include four passenger aircraft parking bays with boarding and waiting areas and improvements on the terminal apron to facilitate the boarding and disembarking of aircraft. It will also include 10 counters, three TSA screening lanes, extensive baggage preparation and retrieval facilities, passenger waiting areas, concession areas, passenger circulation and building support spaces.

In other words, with the Trenton-Mercer airport project about to start, and please don’t remove Trenton from the airport name, a railroad extension should be included .

With improved leadership and skilled government officials who understand that education sparked by early reading success ensures positive change and learning skills, Trenton will benefit from revitalization.

Trenton’s growth must be wise, streamlined and requires residents to guide most decisions. A warning tip for the Township of Hamilton. — slow down or deal with some major growth problems.

Of course, transportation expansion and urban redevelopment mean gentrification as people who left places like Trenton, Camden and Newark return. Moderate gentrification in Trenton looks wonderful, though the faces at the table where decisions happen must include diversity in color and circumstance.

And, the gentrification of segregation means a reboot of past failed socialization projects. The creation of economically prosperous, predominantly white neighborhoods after the displacement of entire communities only restarts the cycle of eventual urban decay.

About 20 years have passed since a man named John Bergan held court at the city’s Marriott hotel.

Bergan, an urban planner, preached an expansion of the light rail line in downtown Trenton and the airport.

Of course, the hotel closed and Trenton’s development slowed. Still, it turned out that Bergan was on the right track.

LA Parker is a Trentonian columnist. Find him on Twitter @LAParker6 or email him at [email protected]

Jose P. Rogers