Paving, parking lot first phase of project
A groundbreaking ceremony was held Monday for the first phase of Newark’s long-awaited train station.
“This project represents an important part of our efforts to support the rebirth of the former Chrysler plant property. Having a modern rail facility in Newark is another great incentive for growing companies to choose the STAR Campus,” said Gov. John Carney.
“The Newark Regional Transportation Center is a result of numerous parties – DelDOT, Gov. Carney, our Congressional Delegation, the University of Delaware, Amtrak, and SEPTA – listening to the needs of our residents and business communities about how we can improve mass transit along the Northeast Corridor,” said state Secretary of Transportation Jennifer Cohan.
The station handles both SEPTA and Amtrak trains. The boarding areas are old, potentially dangerous and do not adequately accommodate the disabled. Parking spaces have also become more of an issue as more commuters take SEPTA trains that are subsidized by the State of Delaware.
There has also been speculation that Maryland MARC commuter trains could come to the station, although officials in that state have resisted efforts to run trains beyond Perryville in western Cecil County.
Other than the stretch of line between Perryville and Newark, commuter trains are available in the corridor between Washington, D.C., and Boston.
The improved station will provide an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant high-level platform, expand parking, and provide significantly improved passenger amenities including a station building with bathrooms. This project will be built by multiple construction contracts. This first construction project will build the expanded surface parking lot, access road, and related improvements.
“Breaking ground on this project has been a long time coming,” said U.S. Senator Thomas Carper, who helped secure a $10 million TIGER IV grant for the transportation center in 2012. “When it’s finished, this federal investment will make our local transportation system more efficient, while also making it safer for drivers and passengers alike. The Newark Regional Transportation Center will breathe new life into this once bustling corridor, and this tremendous step forward would’ve been impossible without the commitment from all levels of government and our private partners to work together and deliver results to the people of the First State.”
“This project is another exciting step in the journey of the STAR Campus. The Newark Regional Transportation Center will increase the number of transportation options for Delawareans and helps improve the quality of life for residents up and down our state,” said U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester. “Partners from all sectors came together to make this project possible in a way that is truly unique to Delaware. I look forward to seeing the Newark Regional Transportation Center when it is completed as a part of this thriving campus.”
The project is partially funded by a $10 million TIGER IV Grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). Other funding sources include the TTF, federal funds, the University of Delaware, City of Newark, WILMAPCO, and New Castle County.
Future construction projects will consist of a station building, platform, track modifications, and pedestrian overpass.
The contractor for the parking lot and access road is Greggo and Ferrara Inc. of New Castle. The contractor submitted a bid of $4,816,345.60, the lowest of five bids received.