The authority that operates New York’s airports and many of its bridges and tunnels is proposing fare and toll hikes across a broad swath of its facilities, some potentially taking effect as early as this fall, to keep pace with inflation and help fund more than $30 billion in capital projects over the next decade.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey laid out its plans Tuesday to raise tolls at its bridges and tunnels and hike fares on its PATH rail service and on trains to JFK and Newark Liberty International airports. It also will seek a $4 surcharge on app-based car services and taxis when they pick up fares at New York-area airports.
The increases are needed to keep up with inflation and bring fares and tolls in line with other transportation agencies, the Port Authority said Tuesday. For example, fares on the air trains to Newark and JFK airports haven’t risen in more than a dozen years. Fares on PATH trains haven’t risen in five years.
The plans announced Tuesday also call for roughly $5 billion to be added to the authority’s 10-year capital plan, for a total of about $37 billion. Most of the increase would go to replacing the Newark air train, which officials have estimated will be obsolete by 2022; the ongoing redevelopment of JFK Airport; and a new air train to LaGuardia Airport. The new capital plan also would dedicate $35 million for planning for a new Terminal B at Newark Liberty Airport, where construction already is underway to replace Terminal A.
Public hearings will be held next month. A board vote could happen as early as September.
Toll increases tied to inflation at the authority’s four bridges and two tunnels were authorized by the Port Authority board in 2008 and again in 2011. Tolls rose in four scheduled increases between 2012 and 2015. Based on inflation since then, a threshold will be reached in 2020 to require another hike, the Port Authority said.
Cash tolls would rise from $15 to $16, and E-ZPass rates would rise $1.25 for both peak and off-peak periods, by the beginning of 2020, under the proposal described Tuesday.
The air trains to JFK and Newark airports would rise from $5.00 at JFK and $5.50 at Newark to $7.75 at both. Single-ride PATH rail tickets would stay at $2.75 but discounts for multi-ride passes would be significantly reduced, beginning as early as November 1.
Taxis and app-based car services would be charged $4.00 for each fare picked up at one of the airports, and the app-based services would also be charged $4.00 for each drop-off. Those fees are the same as those charged at Los Angeles International Airport, and similar to fees charged at airports in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., according to the Port Authority.