Some LIRR Feasibility
There is another possible option, which would make the reopening of the Rockaway Beach Line on the LIRR feasible, and could be a significant economic growth and job-creation opportunity.
For the past two decades JFK has seen its first place position as the nation’s commercial air transport entrepôt, slip dramatically. This has been due primarily to the horrific highway congestion for truck traffic going to and from the airport, particularly on the Van Wyck “Expressway.”
This is a major disadvantage when transporting perishable items, for which JFK used to be a leader. All that business has migrated to the Midwest, presenting an economic loss to New York City, especially Queens.
Air transportation jobscommand relatively high-paying salaries in relation to other industries. A fast-moving rail link from Kennedy, connected to the reopened Rockaway Beach line, would present a viable solution to revitalizing the industry, the airport and result in the creation of hundreds of well paid jobs.
Owing to the nature of the type of perishable, high value goods being transported, the need for heavy freight cars would not be necessary.
Faster, “lighter” and quieter rail cars could be used for the purpose, which would swiftly bring cargo to the heart of Manhattan.
Most of this activity could be done in “off hours,” when commuter rail traffic is at a minimum. The resulting commercial revenue created would defray the expenses of the commuter line and hundreds of trucks would be removed from the overly congested highways throughout the city.
The economic stimulus and increase in the quality of life to the whole region would be dramatic.
I believe this is a viable proposal, which should be considered in reopening the Rockaway Beach line.