The board of state-owned public transportation system New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ TRANSIT) has approved the purchase of 25 multilevel III rail cars.

These additional multilevel III cars will be purchased by exercising the option on the original contract signed with Alstom in December 2018, which included supply of 113 new multilevel III rail cars.

The additional rail cars will include 17 multilevel trailer cars, five multilevel cab cars, and three multilevel trailer cars with restrooms.

They will be funded as part of the Portal North Bridge Project, which aims to boost peak-hour peak-direction customer capacity.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said: “The purchase of these rail cars reflects the commitment that we made to New Jersey commuters and is one of many steps that we are taking to provide NJ TRANSIT customers with an improved and more reliable experience on the rails.

“These cars will also be an important element of the new Portal North Bridge, enabling NJ TRANSIT to utilise the bridge to its fullest potential.”

Replacing NJ Transit’s Arrow III single-level cars, the new multilevel III cars are electric multiple units (EMUs) comprising self-propelled, electric-powered cars.

With maximum speeds of 110mph, the new cars will have enhanced two-by-two seating, unlike the three-person bench seats that are currently on the Arrow III cars.

Other features of the new rail cars include USB charging ports and new, onboard information displays.

NJ TRANSIT president and CEO Kevin Corbett said: “These new rail cars are a critical component of the Portal North Bridge project, which will allow us to meet our established goals for increased capacity.

“Equally important are the benefits they will offer customers through improved reliability, comfort, and onboard amenities, including USB charging ports and state-of-the-art video infotainment systems.”

In October 2021, work started on the Portal North Bridge project in New Jersey, US.