SOMERSET HILLS, NJ - New Jersey Transit (NJT) has cautioned its riders that the region faces a systemwide shutdown of rail travel if the transit union votes to go out on strike. NJT has published its contingency plan, but the plan does not appear to give serioius consideration to the hundreds of commuters who travel daily from the four Somerset Hills rail stations.
NJT plans to add capacity "to existing New York commuter bus routes in close proximity to rail stations, contracting with private carriers to operate bus service from key regional park-ride locations during weekday peak periods, increasing capacity on its three light rail systems, and maximizing use of the available capacity on PATH and ferry service," according to an NJT press release.
NJT's contingency plans include enhanced bus service on existing New York bus routes that run near train stations. None of those existing bus routes run near the Gladstone, Peapack, Far Hills or Bernardsville stations. The two bus routes that NJT proposes to expand at peak hours to serve the Morris and Essex train line are bus routes 107X (which runs from South Orange to New York) and 114X (which runs from Bridgewater Commons and the Somerville Train Station to New York).
NJT is also asking commuters to use the existing park and ride facilities.
Park and ride service will operate on a first come, first served basis from five key regional park-ride lots, weekdays only, during four-hour AM inbound (6 a.m. to 10 a.m.) and four-hour PM outbound (4 p.m. to 8 p.m.) peak periods.
NJT's park and ride facilities are at the follwoing locations:
- MetLife Stadium to Port Authority Bus Terminal, New York
- PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel to New York City (Academy)
- Hamilton Rail Station to Newark Penn Station PATH
- Metropark Rail Station to Harrison PATH Station
- Ramsey/Route 17 Rail Station to Lincoln Harbor Ferry, Weehawken