A San Francisco Chronicle editorial warns that San Francisco must find funds, intended to come from the state's ambitious rail project, to extend the Caltrain commuter rail line to the SalesForce Transit Center.
Transportation advocates have been patiently waiting since Nov. 6 for the results of a half-cent, 30-year county sales tax measure, 50 percent of which would benefit Samtrans bus and Caltrain needs and 5% bike/ped. It needs 66.67% of votes to pass.
To great fanfare, the Salesforce Transit Center opened on Saturday to thousands of visitors anxious to see the huge facility. Sunday was quieter, with the first AC Transit buses arriving on the third-floor bus deck. Train arrivals: TBD.
Brisbane, a city of about 4,700 on the southern border of San Francisco, will vote on a controversial ballot measure in November to approve or reject a mixed-use development including up to 2,200 residential units on a 660-acre vacant brownfield.
For the second time at the same railroad crossing in Atherton, California, a motorist followed his GPS navigation onto Caltrain tracks. In both cases, the motorists fled their vehicles before being hit by an oncoming train.
A 51-year-old bicyclist became the second fatality in the first week of revenue service. It was the fourth fatality since the summer for the diesel train, which operates from West Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale.
It is now up to the Bay Area's transportation planning agency to determine when to ask voters to hike tolls on seven Bay Area bridges, by how much, and whether to phase the increase. A bill to allow voters to fund Caltrain was also signed.
The California Legislature approved bills to allow voters to decide on hiking sales taxes and tolls for regional transportation. Gov. Jerry Brown already signed a bill to allow San Mateo County voters to hike sales taxes for transportation.
Gov. Jerry Brown, Peninsula congresswomen, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and state legislative leaders gathered in Millbrae with shovels-in hands to mark the beginning of a four-year construction project to electrify Caltrain.
In 1995, planners forecasted that the Millbrae BART Station in San Mateo County, where riders can transfer to/from Caltrain, would attract 16,500 weekday riders. Fourteen years after it opened, ridership is 7,000. Planners were off by 58 percent.
The oldest commuter rail line west of the Mississippi is also unique in another way—it lacks a dedicated source of operating revenue. Legislation has been introduced to allow Peninsula counties to vote to increase sales taxes by 0.125 percent.
Nothing comes easy for high-speed rail, or anything connected to it, as the agency that runs Caltrain learned in February. But now that a $647 million federal grant has been approved, $713 million in state bond funds will be directed to the project.