It's usually a disparaging term, but why look down on people who want to come here?
13 December 1977, New York Times, Pg. 83:
"On the weekends, we get all the bridge and tunnel people who try to get in," he said.
Elizabeth Fondaras, a pillar of the city's conservative social scene, who has just told Mr. Rubell she had never tried to get into Studio 54 for fear of being rejected, asked who the bridge and tunnel people were.
"Those people from Queens and Staten Island and those places," he said.
22 April 1981, New York Times, pg. C1:
"One Saturday night we had 36 no-shows. It's because then you get the sort of people who don't go regularly to restaurants and don't know--the bridge and tunnel crowd."