Hudson-Bergen Light Rail

From Academic Kids

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HBLR train on Hudson Street, near Exchange Place station in Jersey City
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HBLR train at 2nd Street station in Hoboken
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Harborside Financial Center station, Jersey City
Map of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail system (click to enlarge)
Map of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail system (click to enlarge)
The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail (HBLR) is a light rail system, owned by New Jersey Transit, that connects the communities of Bayonne, Jersey City, Hoboken, and Weehawken, New Jersey. While it presently only serves Hudson County, there are plans to extend the light rail line into neighboring Bergen County in the coming years. The eventual (planned) length of the line will be 20.6 miles (33.2 km).

With an eventual overall cost of approximately $2.2 billion, the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail is the largest public works project ever in New Jersey. The project is being funded by a mixture of state and federal funds.



A light rail system for this densely populated area had been on the drawing board for over 15 years. The design, construction, operation, and maintenance of the system was part of a public-private initiative.

It opened to the public in April 2000, with the initial operating segment connecting Bayonne (34th Street) and Jersey City (Exchange Place). Later that year, the service was extended northward to Pavonia/Newport. In 2002, service was extended out to Hoboken Terminal, which completed the first Minimum Operable Segment (MOS) of the project. MOS-2 of the project involves extending service south to 22nd Street in Bayonne (which was completed in 2003), west and north of Hoboken Terminal into Weehawken (which was completed in 2004), and to Tonnelle Avenue in North Bergen (which is expected to be complete in the fall of 2005). MOS-3 of the project will involve extending service south to West Fifth Street in Bayonne, extending the West Side line to the Route 440 Park-and-Ride, and extending service north from Tonnelle Avenue to the Vince Lombardi Park-and-Ride on the New Jersey Turnpike, in Ridgefield. A Federal Draft Environment Impact Statement (EIS) process is currently underway, to assess the possibility of an extension of the Light Rail into Bergen County, with a terminus in Tenafly.


The Light Rail operates on three different lines — a black line, a turquoise line and a grey line (as noted on NJ Transit maps) — with the Hoboken Terminal being the terminus for all three lines. The black line extends out to East 22nd Street in Bayonne, the turquoise line extends out to West Side Avenue in Jersey City, and the grey line extends out to Lincoln Harbor in Weehawken.

The service operates on an honor system. Passengers purchase tickets at NJ Transit ticket vending machines (TVMs) and validate their tickets at automated machines. Fare inspectors perform random ticket inspections on vehicles and at stations. The fine for fare evasion on the Light Rail is $100.

A one-way adult fare is $1.50, which will increase to $1.75 on July 1, 2005. Ten-trip tickets are $13. A monthly, unlimited pass is $53 ($93 with parking included). Holders of monthly passes can transfer to adjacent NJ Transit buses without an additional fare.

Trains operate from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily. They operate at 15-20 minute intervals.

Rolling stock

The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail system has 29 electrically-powered vehicles, built by Kinki Sharyo. The cars were assembled in Harrison, New Jersey. Each vehicle is 90 feet (27.4 m) long, and has four sets of double-opening doors on each side. The vehicles can seat 68 passengers each, with standing room for another 122 passengers. Hudson-Bergen Light Rail vehicles are all air-conditioned.


The Light Rail system uses a combination of old rail and new (private) rights-of-way for most of its length, with some grade separation in certain areas. It shares a lane with automobiles on a portion of Essex Street and Christopher Columbus Avenue in downtown Jersey City, but for the most part, does not run on streets.

The line from 22nd Street to Liberty State Park was once the main line of the Central Railroad of New Jersey; the CNJ's branch to Newark was used for the line west to West Side Avenue. From Liberty State Park to Hoboken Terminal, the line uses a brand-new right-of-way. From Hoboken to the curve south of 2nd Street, the line runs next to New Jersey Transit tracks, formerly the main line of the Lackawanna Railroad; north of the curve it uses what had been Conrail's River Line, and was originally the New Jersey Junction Railroad. The tunnel under the Palisades was originally the West Shore Railroad's main line.

In order to obtain the right-of-way for the line north from Hoboken, which had been part of Conrail's River Line, New Jersey Transit paid to upgrade Conrail's Northern Running Track, which trains that had used the River Line now use.


The system currently serves an average 14,000 customers per day, and is expected to expand more than 100,000 daily when the project is completed in 2010. Proponents of the system argue that the Light Rail has been a catalyst for both residential and commercial development along the route, and has played a significant role in the revitalization of New Jersey's Gold Coast.

After September 11, 2001, the PATH system's Exchange Place station was closed due to water damage in connection with the destruction of the World Trade Center. As a result, the Light Rail was the only means of rail transit to Exchange Place from points outside of Jersey City.

Station listing

There are currently 20 active Hudson-Bergen Light Rail stations:

City Station Services Opened Transfers and notes
Weehawken Lincoln Harbor Lincoln Harbor September 7, 2004 NJ Transit buses: 23, 156, 158, 159
Hoboken 9th Street-Congress Street Lincoln Harbor September 7, 2004 NJ Transit buses: 84, 85, 86, 87, 89
Coach USA buses: 99, 99S
Access to Congress Street provided by elevator
2nd Street Lincoln Harbor September 7, 2004 NJ Transit buses: 85, 87, 89
Hoboken Terminal Lincoln Harbor
West Side
September 29, 2002 NJ Transit trains: Main Line, Bergen County Line, Montclair-Boonton Line, North Jersey Coast Line, Raritan Valley Line, Pascack Valley Line
NJ Transit buses: 22, 23, 64, 68, 85, 87, 89, 126, 181
Academy Bus: Parkway Express
Coach USA: 122, 144
PATH, NY Waterway
Jersey City Pavonia-Newport West Side
November 18, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 64, 68, 86, 126
Coach USA buses: 4, 15, 16, 122, 144
PATH, NY Waterway
Harsimus Cove West Side
November 18, 2000  
Harborside Financial Center West Side
November 18, 2000 NY Waterway
Exchange Place West Side
April 22, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 1, 43, 64, 68, 80, 81, 82, 86
Academy Bus: Parkway Express
Coach USA buses: 4, 16, 122, 144
PATH, NY Waterway
Essex Street West Side
April 22, 2000  
Marin Boulevard West Side
April 22, 2000 NY Waterway
Jersey Avenue West Side
April 22, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 1, 81
Coach USA buses: 4, 11, 16
Liberty State Park West Side
April 22, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 305 (Park Shuttle) to Liberty State Park
Coach USA buses: 11, 231
Garfield Avenue West Side April 22, 2000 Coach USA bus: 3
Martin Luther King Drive West Side April 22, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 81, 87
Bergen Avenue Bus
Coach USA buses: 4, 99
West Side Avenue West Side April 22, 2000 NJ Transit buses: 80
Coach USA buses: 10, 99S
Montgomery and West Side Bus: MWS 440 Shopper
Richard Street Bayonne April 22, 2000 Coach USA buses: 3
Danforth Avenue Bayonne April 22, 2000 Coach USA buses: 3
Bayonne 45th Street Bayonne April 22, 2000 Broadway Bus
34th Street Bayonne April 22, 2000 Broadway Bus
22nd Street Bayonne November 15, 2003 Broadway Bus


  • April 15, 2000: The first section opens, from 34th Street to Exchange Place, with a branch to West Side Avenue.[1] (
  • November 18, 2000: The line is extended north to Pavonia/Newport.[2] (
  • September 29, 2002: The line is extended north to Hoboken Terminal.[3] (
  • November 15, 2003: The line is extended south to 22nd Street.[4] (
  • September 7, 2004: The line is extended north to Lincoln Harbor.[5] (

See also

External links

Template:New Jersey Transit


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