Overview: As the NEC traverses Elizabeth, NJ, the main line narrows from six tracks down to just four and follows a sharp reverse curve alignment through the downtown area. Currently, this stretch of track is at capacity, serving two NJ TRANSIT lines and all Amtrak NEC trains between New York and Philadelphia. It is one of the busiest portions of the NEC and, without additional capacity, no agency can add trains during peak hours.
A set of coordinated improvements to upgrade this section of the NEC through Elizabeth are under development. Proposed investments include a fifth NEC main line track and improvements to track alignment and interlockings. In addition, NJ TRANSIT plans to fund the construction of a new Elizabeth station facility that will dramatically upgrade passenger amenities and facilitate the future installation of a fifth NEC track. These investments would reduce delays and enable Amtrak and NJ TRANSIT to increase service.