Former Vice President Joe Biden cited Friday morning's subway mess as an example of the region's failing infrastructure while speaking at a Regional Plan Association conference. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
Not only did it snarl the commutes of everyday New Yorkers, Friday's subway troubles also caught the attention of a visiting VIP.
"This morning, I get up in the hotel room, I'm shaving. The subway, the young man who's doing advance for me, he's an hour and a half stuck in the subway," said former Vice President Joe Biden.
The incident comes on the heels of derailments in Hoboken and Brooklyn that left one dead and hundreds injured.
Just this week, the 7 train shut down just before a Mets game.
And two recent derailments at Penn Station caused chaos and countless cancellations and delays, highlighting that station's particular vulnerability.
"It's totally at capacity for much of the day, doing things that it was never designed to do. And it doesn't take much of anything to happen to start to create issues," said Amtrak President and CEO Wick Moorman.
"This is a national disgrace," Biden said.
Biden spoke at a Regional Plan Association conference Friday that, coincidentally, focused on infrastructure. Experts say the transit system is antiquated, maxed-out and in dire need of repairs.
The Hudson River tubes are a case in point. Biden knocked New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for pulling the plug on new tunnels, though there is a new effort to revive the so-called Gateway project. And Biden had high praise for Governor Andrew Cuomo, who's prioritized LaGuardia Airport, the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement and the Second Avenue Subway.
"Other states would kill to have Cuomo as governor, providing these solutions. He lays out plans, he starts executing, he sees big," Biden said.
Biden left local leaders with a plea to make their voices heard in Washington.
"Holler, man. Holler. Holler. Because I tell you what. Five more years of delay like this, we're gonna see some catastrophic consequences," he said.
While Biden didn't have any overt criticism of the Trump administration, some of the White House's proposed budget cuts could have a devastating effect on local projects, including the Gateway Tunnel and the next phase of the Second Avenue Subway.