I am also wondering how many tracks the potential span would bear. However, the article mentions that the design work is done. Does anyone know what was designed in terms of number of tracks?
I have no idea why Clift would take the view, effectively, that Portal is the enemy of Gateway. If he is taking the view that no capital spending shoudl occur unless it's for the tunnels, then literally every bit of rolling stock purchased by NJT was in vain, the storm resiliency yard work makes no sense, and why even do track work. The cost of Portal is a drop in the bucket compared with the cost of Gateway, and the speed increase and reliability improvements make the bridge a key project that can stand on its own in any event. I would be very disappointed if a new bridge couldn't at least accommodate 3 tracks.