BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

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BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby lpetrich » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:14 pm

BART board member wants to extend service north along I-80 corridor - ContraCostaTimes.com
BART's new District 7 director says it's high time to revive an idea that has been kicking around for decades: Bringing BART north along the Interstate 80 corridor -- to San Pablo, Richmond Hilltop and Pinole, and perhaps Hercules and beyond.

In west Contra Costa County, BART currently ends well to the west of I-80, in a station in Richmond shared with Amtrak.
How to extend BART farther north had been a matter of debate. One proposed alignment would have run north from the present Richmond BART station along the Union Pacific Railroad corridor on the San Pablo Bay shore.

"There were objections to just about every route, until BART said we'll spend our money elsewhere," Meehan said.

So how might it work?

Will the extension continue onward from the existing Richmond station? Will it instead continue in I-80 from El Cerrito del Norte?
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby MCHammer » Sat Mar 30, 2013 3:03 pm

I can already see money being flushed down the toilet because of this. BART needs to focus on more urban areas rather than continuing the endless expansion into suburbia. Those areas would be better served by all-day frequent rail service like S-Bahn in Germany. 3rd rail metro does not need to be extended further than it already has been.
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby Amtrak7 » Sun Mar 31, 2013 12:14 pm

MCHammer wrote:I can already see money being flushed down the toilet because of this. BART needs to focus on more urban areas rather than continuing the endless expansion into suburbia. Those areas would be better served by all-day frequent rail service like S-Bahn in Germany. 3rd rail metro does not need to be extended further than it already has been.


Commuter rail is so expensive that an S-Bahn or Overground-like system wouldn't work here. Just look at some of the more frequent commuter rail services in the Northeast and how expensive their per-passenger costs and fares are.
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby MCHammer » Sun Mar 31, 2013 1:27 pm

If it less than $150 million per mile then it is not more expensive. Currently, Skytrain Vancouver carries as much as BART does with only 1/3rd the track mileage. I see a problem with this and it shows me that BART is not as efficient as it could be. The challenger is generating midday travel to fill the off-peak hours versus the peaks. How could that be accomplished? In-fill development near current park & ride stations.
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby tomj » Fri Jan 17, 2014 3:37 pm

BART shouldn't be extending its system into the suburban areas, it is a waste of money. BART needs to remodel the stations, buy new cars, repair the transbay tube, build another transbay tube, and maintain the existing infrastructure before another expansion should be considered. Extensions never pan out for BART, so another one shouldn't be planned. In fill stations are a better way to go because they can attract ridership along the existing route. That is a better plan than a new extension. Also, doesn't Vancouver have a higher population density that the Bay Area excluding San Francisco? I know they planned the inner portions of the city to have a high density.
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby NH2060 » Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:45 pm

At this point why don't they just try their luck with Marin County? Give the SMART train a run for it's money with a one seat ride over the Golden Gate Bridge vs a ferry/DMU two-seater ;-)

Kidding aside though with BART well established on the East Bay is it really that much of a waste to have an extension built to Martinez, etc. that would be tied into the rest of the BART network vs. a commuter rail along the Capitol Corridor that has no East Bay commuter rail connection(s) at the present time and would require a BART transfer anyway?
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby electricron » Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:39 am

I don't blame BART extending rail lines into the far suburbs when those suburbs have been supporting BART with tax revenues for almost 50 years. At some point, they're going to demand something for their taxes or they'll start a revolt to end their BART taxes. BART should never have collected taxes from them if BART never plans to provide them rail services.

I don't agree that heavy (metro) rail is the only rail solution - cheaper Commuters, DMUs, and light rail trains may be the best solution for them.
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Re: BART to Northwest Contra Costa County?

Postby BART2PV » Wed Sep 23, 2015 3:19 pm

This idea has had a fairly long history, with frequent rebirths in different iterations.

Extending down the I-80 corridor toward Pinole/Hercules services those in CC county who have been paying taxes with no direct BART service. Essentially when you extend outward, the users who drive in to El Cerrito del Norte on I-80 and park there will now be using their newly built "local" station; and inevitably will free up parking spots at El Cerrito del Norte. Buses from Solano County would probably shorten their route in order to connect "end of line" - as long as freeway access is easy. So yes, there is a definite benefit to those coming from beyond the present end of line; and there would be a benefit to those who use Del Norte and EC Plaza as parking spots would be freed for more locals to use.
The problem is Richmond. To get to the Richmond station the tracks leave the I-80 alignment and turn left. All transit planners want to continue along the I-80 alignment toward Hercules. They DO NOT want to start the extension from the Richmond Station; having to completely reconfigure and restructure the landlocked BART Richmond Yard, then follow the railroad right of way and curve back a long way to reach and re-align with I-80. This means that the extension would continue from Del Norte; with Richmond Station becoming a "stub line with yard access". This has been a POISON PILL with the politicians and citizenry of Richmond who vehemently oppose the "stub line" designation. You COULD say a similar "stub end" situation exists at Millbrae, which does not get FULL dedicated line service nights and weekends; EXCEPT that once the RED line stops, it is immediately taken over by an extension of the YELLOW line, and also it ALWAYS has DIRECT service to downtown San Francisco and the East Bay. You can safely bet that any extension of the red line will be pegged to the West Bay; leaving Richmond to only serve the East Bay. Let the arguments continue, perhaps it will diminish if the extension is done as a eBART using DMUs; with the major connection at Del Norte - or a NEW INFILL STATION. This leaves Richmond with service as is, but does nothing for the instant crowding to crush load that would take place at the transfer station.
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