PATH Plan to Update Infrastructure and Meet Increased Demand
Steve Adubato goes One-on-One with Clarelle DeGraffe, General Manager of PATH, to discuss the ways that PATH plans to meet the challenges posed by increased ridership and replacing and rebuilding infrastructure damaged during Superstorm Sandy.
"We are joined by Clarelle DeGraffe, who is General Manager of PATH, otherwise known... well it's Port Authority Trans-Hudson, right? Correct. Everyone knows the PATH. Everyone knows and loves PATH Yeah. Tell folks why... run by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Tell why PATH is so important. PATH is important because it's a critical link to the Trans-Hudson network, that includes our tunnels, bridges. PATH serves approximately 280,000 passengers on weekdays. We move... that's how many people we move. We're the second densest transit facility, second only to New York City Transit. So we move a lot of people. People depend on us to traverse the Hudson River and it's a short, boutique ride you know, across that river to get them to work, to get them to their loved ones, to get them to where they need to be. I took the PATH everyday from Newark, New Jersey, where I was born and raised, over to the World Trade Center, where I worked for the Port Authority back in the 80s. And it was a 20 minute ride. Yeah. And some others went uptown. And reliable and solid. Mm hmm. But here's my question. Mm hmm. With the ridership expanding so rapidly... Mm hmm. ...from 100,000 when it started, to where you are now, almost 300,000? Right. How much harder is it to stay on time? Yeah. Keep things moving? Yeah. Go ahead. Steve you're hitting the nail on the head. You're on point. It's not easy. It's hard. You're talking about a facility that's actually 111 years old. Even though PATH was created in 1962, the facilities actually have been in existence since 1908. So you're talking about an 111 year old system that we are utilizing, that's been upgraded and maintained to be able to move close to 300,000 people a day on a weekday. So it's not easy. But we've got a great team, and dedicated and committed people, professionals... Sure. ...that really put everything they can into making sure that that system works every day, and making it reliable. You know, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is a supporter of what we do. And we've had many conversations with them offline. But obviously very important online, right here on the air, about infrastructure issues. How honest a conversation are we having, Clarelle, about how aging... how old our infrastructure is, what it costs to keep our infrastructure where and what it needs to be in order for us to have safe and reliable transportation? Is that a real conversation? Mm hmm. It is a real conversation. No no. Are we having it to the degree we need to? Is my point. Mm hmm. I believe we are. Our executive director and chairman... that's why we implemented the..."