Phase II of VTA’s BART Silicon Valley Project Gets FTA Green Light3/11/2016 3:31 PM |
Milestone signifies federal support of next steps in advancing project development
The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has given VTA the green light to enter the six-mile BART Silicon Valley Phase II Extension into the Project Development phase of the Federal New Starts funding program. This milestone signifies that VTA has “pre-award authority” to incur costs to advance engineering and design activities to support the environmental review process.
“I have been proud to lead the fight to fund the BART Silicon Valley Project in Congress,” said U.S. Rep. Mike Honda (D-Silicon Valley). “Supporting VTA’s work to build Phase II of the BART extension is critical to our region. The support of Congress and the federal government is essential for us to make the investments we need to ease traffic congestion and provide another transportation option for commuters in the Valley. I’m happy to see this important step being taken, and will continue to champion the project as it moves through the New Starts process so we can make that happen.”
“This wonderful news from FTA means that we are continuing to make steady progress towards extending BART Silicon Valley through San Jose and Santa Clara,” said VTA Board Chair and Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez. “This opens the door to BART’s moving up the line for federal funding, as we continue through this pivotal year for advancements in transportation in the valley.”
Activities related to the Project Development phase are necessary to refine a cost estimate and financial plan for the project. VTA must complete a number of activities during this phase which include: clearly defining the project scope after performing an alternatives analysis, known as selecting a locally preferred alternative; identifying a funding plan which is necessary for the project to be included in the regional long range transportation plan; and completing the environmental review process.
Phase II of VTA’s BART Silicon Valley Project consists of four stations and a 5-mile tunnel through downtown San Jose, completing the 16-mile extension and vital transit solution to highly congested and constrained I-880 and I-680 corridors.
April 2016 marks four years of progress on VTA's BART Silicon Valley Berryessa Extension (Phase I). Just over eighty percent of the construction contract to build the line, track, stations and systems is complete. By spring next year, BART (operator) is expected to begin to test trains on the newly built 10-mile segment. The two station campuses at Milpitas and Berryessa have been visibly taking shape over the past year. A long list of completed milestones related to the eleven grade crossings in the corridor, part of the fully-grade separated $2.3 billion transportation investment, are also keeping the project months ahead of schedule and trending under budget. BART Phase I is expected to be carrying passengers by fall 2017.