Northern Branch Corridor Project > FAQs
Why are you preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Northern Branch Corridor?
While the areas of southeastern Bergen County and northeastern Hudson County have a substantial transit system, there is evidence that the system is not providing service for all of the markets that could be served. Thus, the purpose and need of the Northern Branch Corridor Project is to address the transportation needs of this area through the re-introduction of passenger rail transit service.

What is the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process? Where are we now?
The EIS process is mandated by the National Environment Policy Act of 1969. NEPA regulations govern the environmental review process for projects that may result in significant environmental impacts, to ensure that all significant issues are identified and the full range of alternatives and impacts of the proposed project are addressed. The EIS is part of a process that must be completed for a project to be eligible for federal capital funds. The EIS will identify significant environmental issues in the environmental review process, including thorough consultation with federal, state, and local agencies and from public input.

The EIS process begins with public and agency scoping after which the alternatives are evaluated in detail in the draft EIS (DEIS), which is subject to public comment. This is followed by a final EIS (FEIS), and a Record of Decision (ROD) to go forward with a project. The entire process and the resulting final document are overseen and must be approved by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the federal agency responsible for preparing the EIS.

What alternatives will the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) consider?
The range of preliminary alternatives identified in the Scoping Document include:

  • No Action Alternative
  • Diesel-Multiple-Unit (DMU) Vehicle Alternatives
    • Terminus at Hudson Avenue in Tenafly or
    • Terminus at NJ Route 4 in Englewood
  • Electric Light Rail Vehicle Alternatives
    • Terminus at Hudson Avenue in Tenafly or
    • Terminus at NJ Route 4 in Englewood

Although the DMU alternatives were identified in the Scoping Document they have subsequently been screened out and have not been studied in the DEIS.

What is the estimated cost of the Northern Branch Corridor Project?
The cost of the project will depend on the alternative selected in the EIS process and will be discussed in the EIS.

How will the public be involved in the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process?
The first formal opportunity for public involvement is the scoping process, where the public is encouraged to provide the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) with comments on issues related to the project that should be addressed in the draft EIS (DEIS). Following the scoping process, the public can continue to provide input throughout the EIS process. A Citizens Liaison Committee has been created to provide the opportunity for stakeholders to have input. Project information, including updates, will also be available to the public on this Web site and in periodic newsletters and press releases. Following completion and issuance of the DEIS, comments, suggestions and other information gathered at the public hearings will be addressed in the final EIS (FEIS).

What can I do to participate further in the Northern Branch Corridor project?
You can join the Citizens Liaison Committee or subscribe to our mailing list to stay informed of the latest project developments.

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