NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - A new plan to build an AirTrain to LaGuardia Airport has been given the green light and should be ready within four years.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the new measure approved last week by the New York State legislature advancing the AirTrain link project.
The Port Authority says a new AirTrain will link to the Long Island Rail Road and the subway system.
Air travelers could get from midtown Manhattan to the airport in 30 minutes.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo Talks Air Train, Other Transit Plans
"With no rail link, millions of passengers too frequently face inevitable congestion on the roadways and unpredictable delays in reaching the airport," said Rick Cotton, executive director of the Port Authority of NY & NJ. "They never know what the travel time to LaGuardia will be."
The bill authoritizes the Port Authority to conduct an environmental impact study this summer for the $1.5 billion project. The Air Train will run from Willets Point in Queens, making two stops at the airport; East Station and Central Hall.
The plan is to have the Long Island Rail Road run express trains from both Penn Station and Grand Central to Willets Point, where there will be a seamless transfer.
"Having a direct connection is essential right now," transportation expert Mitchell Moss said. "Right now it takes longer to get from LaGuardia to Manhattan than to get from LaGuardia to Chicago."
Construction could begin in 2020 and is expected to be completed by 2022.
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