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Schumer, Clinton Secure $100 Million For East Side Access Project And $2.5 Million For Second Avenue Subway

Funding included in the FY05 Omnibus Appropriations billSecond Ave Subway will alleviate crowds on East Side IRT - the most crowded subway line in America

East Side Access will help tens of thousands of Nassau, Suffolk and Queens commuters save up to three hours off their daily commutes

US Senators Charles E. Schumer and Hillary Rodham Clinton today announced that Congress will pass the FY2005 Omnibus Appropriations bill which included $100 million for the East Side Access Project and $2.5 million for the Second Avenue subway. The funding was included in the Transportation, Treasury, and Appropriations portion of the bill. The bill now heads to the President for his signature.

"The Second Avenue Subway and East Side Access slices the time and frustration of daily commutes for millions of Long Islanders and New York City residents, and relieving congestion in the area is key to the region's economic development." Senator Schumer said.

"The Second Avenue Subway will relieve the problem of overwhelming overcrowding, and improve the quality of life and the economy in New York City. East Side Access will have an impact on the daily lives of Queens and Long Island commuters and serve to further fuel New York's economic engine. As New York City and the surrounding areas continue to grow, we need to make sure we are making the right investments to meet our everincreasing infrastructure needs," Senator Clinton said.

The East Side Access Project, a joint federalstate effort, is a rail link from the Long Island Railroad via the 63rd Street Tunnel to Grand Central Station that will help tens of thousands of Nassau, Suffolk and Queens commuters save up to three hours off their daily commutes. The project will also free up much needed capacity in Penn Station, take thousands of cars off congested New York roads and help remove 800 tons of pollutants from the air.

In addition, East Side Access will significantly reduce the bottleneck on the City's subways and buses between Penn Station and Grand Central Station, particularly the 1,2,3,7,9, A, C, and E subway lines, as well as the shuttle trains between Grand Central and Time Square.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has concluded that the Lexington Avenue (4/5/6) subway line is at capacity and that no additional trains can run on that line. With only one subway line serving the East Side, the Lexington Avenue line is the most overcrowded subway in the country, carrying 600,000 people each day.

"New York's Lexington Avenue line is severely overcrowded. The Second Avenue subway line would provide desperately needed relief and is a key step in New York City's economic growth," said Schumer. "The East Side Access funds represent an important commitment by Congress to help meets transportation needs that existed before the terrorist attacks and have been ever since. These funds will help Long Island and New York City needed resources to speed transportation and spur economic growth."

"As New York City continues to grow, it is important that we provide the necessary funding for our public transportation infrastructure. It is true when they say "if you build it, they will come" New York's future depends on an integrated and efficient public transportation system," Senator Clinton said.