New Jersey Transit announced December 13 that it had hired THE CM Consortium of Newark to provide construction management services for its new trans-Hudson tunnel and related projects. THE CM Consortium is a tri-venture of Tishman Construction, Parsons and ARUP, and supporting firms. Together, the group brings extensive experience in managing other large railroad construction and tunnel projects, including The Channel Tunnel Rail Link in Great Britain. In addition to providing design oversight, the construction manager will make independent cost estimates to validate those made by the engineering team; develop a master project schedule for the engineering, permitting and construction phases; create a quality control plan; and coordinate outreach programs to ensure opportunities for participation of women- and minority-owned businesses in both New Jersey and New York. The Access to the Region's Core (ARC) program includes two new single-track railroad tunnels between New Jersey and New York, a new rail station under 34th Street in Manhattan adjacent to Penn Station, and signal and track improvements along and adjacent to the Northeast Corridor. The proposed new multilevel station under 34th Street will provide underground connections to New York City subway lines and PATH trains, as well as provide pedestrian connections to New York Penn Station. The project is projected to cost $7.2 billion in inflation-adjusted dollars. Construction is expected to start in 2009. During the construction phase, the project is expected to produce 6,000 jobs.