PANYNJ investing $430 million in PATH system upgrades

April 8, 2024
The 116-year-old PATH system will see upgrades to stations, tracks and other critical equipment to bring the system up to modern standards.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) will be investing $430 million to improve the 116-year-old PATH system. Upgrades include stations, tracks and other critical equipment. The two-year PATH Forward program focuses on improving reliability and modernizing stations on the fifth-busiest rapid transit system in the United States.  

Critical infrastructure throughout the system, including railcars, bridges, tracks and track switches, will be repaired or replaced. At four PATH stations, major renovation work through PATH Forward will upgrade floors, ceilings, stairways, electrical systems and more.  

Work is already underway at the Grove Street stop, where the first phase of station rehabilitation work was completed in March. The second phase began April 6, with eastbound trains bypassing the station on weekends to accommodate the ongoing work through approximately late June.  

PANYNJ says service impacts at stations undergoing rehabilitation are expected to be limited to weekends in 2024, with some anticipated impact to weekday service expected in 2025. To allow riders to plan ahead, PATH will provide at least five months’ notice ahead of anticipated service impacts.   

PATH will conduct robust outreach with riders, elected officials, community leaders and other stakeholders ahead of upcoming service changes or disruptions. PATH leadership is planning at least three sets of community information sessions in April, with additional sessions anticipated as work progresses.  

“PATH is critical to the entire region, not because it moves trains – but because it connects people with what matters most, like job and educational opportunities, friends and loved ones,” said PANYNJ Chairman Kevin O’Toole. “Through PATH Forward, we’re making investments to ensure that journey is as smooth and stress-free as possible, minimizing delays and maximizing dependability for thousands of daily riders.” 

“Some portions of the 116-year-old PATH system are showing their age,” said PANYNJ Executive Director Rick Cotton. “With PATH Forward, we’re fast-tracking our efforts to modernize the system and make sure riders have a smooth trip as we renew our infrastructure, refurbish our trains and refresh our stations.”  

PANYNJ notes alternate service options will be made available as appropriate for major disruptions, which may include cross-honoring by New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) and New York Waterway ferry service, as well as shuttle bus service.  

“This investment in our future is an investment in our customers,” said Clarelle DeGraffe, general manager and director of PATH. “No one likes service disruptions, which is why we’re committed to transparency and direct communication with riders throughout this initiative. At the end, it will mean a much improved, reliable and resilient PATH system.”  

Track, bridge and electrical work  

Replacing tracks and switches and upgrading bridges will make the system more reliable, minimize delays and speed rides: 

  • Hackensack Bridge: Track switches on both sides of the PATH Lift bridge over the Hackensack River will be entirely replaced and rebuilt. In addition, the lift control system for the movable bridge will be rehabilitated, improving reliability for a major point of failure that impacts the entire PATH system.  
  • Track stabilization: A variety of projects targeting the most critical, deteriorated segments of the track system will replace and rebuild track, improving reliability system-wide.  
  • Railcar rehabilitation: Key components of PATH rail cars will be replaced to reduce the time between mechanical breakdowns and failures, improving the reliability of the system.   
  • Hoboken track work: The existing track switching network outside Hoboken station will be rebuilt and improved.  


  • Grove Street: Rehabilitation is underway, with half of the 20-weekend project now complete. The remainder of the work began April 6, which will require World Trade Center-bound and Hoboken/33 St.-bound trains to bypass the Grove Street station on weekends through approximately June 30. Newark-bound trains will not bypass the station during this phase of work. The project includes replacing floor tiles, patching and repainting work, refinishing platform columns and installing LED lighting and electrical wiring. 
  • Hoboken: Rehabilitation will address lingering Superstorm Sandy damage from corrosive seawater. The work includes floor reconstruction, wall tiling, upgrades to LED lighting and other finishes, as well as waterproofing and installation of a new fire alarm system. Five entry stairwells and six platform-to-mezzanine stairs will be rebuilt or refurbished, one at a time. Mezzanine stairs will be wider and safer, with improved visibility to the platform below. PANYNJ says the Hoboken rehabilitation was coordinated with and approved by the New Jersey Historic Preservation Office to ensure it preserves the historic character of the station, including restoring the station to the earliest color scheme that could be identified. The Hoboken Historic Preservation Commission was also consulted during design.    
  • Exchange Place: Rehabilitation and reconstruction work will focus on the restoration of architectural, structural, electrical, and other support systems damaged by flood waters during Superstorm Sandy. 
  • Newport: Work such as track, station and platform reconstruction will address the impacts of damage by flood waters from Superstorm Sandy to architectural, structural, electrical and other support systems. The renovation will help prevent and mitigate persistent leakage issues at the station. 

 Accommodating regional transportation work 

PANYNJ says construction on other elements of the larger regional transportation network will affect PATH service as well. Through Amtrak and the Gateway Project, new power lines will be installed across PATH tracks, and the Sawtooth Bridge carrying Amtrak and NJ Transit trains between Newark and New York will be replaced adjacent to PATH tracks.  

Building towards PATH Forward 

In 2019, PANYNJ undertook the $1 billion PATH Improvement Plan, which addressed some of the most pressing issues facing PATH, including outdated signals, switch failures and outdated railcar equipment. The results of the plan allowed nine-car trains to debut on the Newark-World Trade Center line in March 2023. Additionally, PATH built a new accessible station house at the Harrison station that opened in February 2024. 

PATH launched its pilot of the TAPP tap-and-go fare payment system in December 2023. In March, the TAPP pilot expanded to select turnstiles at all terminal stations in the PATH system – Newark-Penn Station, Journal Square, Hoboken, 33 Street. and World Trade Center – as well as the Harrison stop, with more than 1 million passengers TAPPing into the new fare payment system.