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Posts Tagged ‘Altamont’

In February, the Altamont Alternatives Analysis report was released. And in case there was any doubt as to whether the Altamont Corridor project is a charade, the AA report confirms it.

Any new transit project would start off asking where travelers are going. Naturally, San Francisco is the top destination, but the Altamont project inexplicably terminates trains at San Jose.

Why?

Because the CHSRA believes bridging the mighty straights of Dumbarton is too dangerous. Never mind that Caltrain (a full HSR partner) is doing exactly that. What a strange state of affairs to have one agency describe a Dumbarton bridge as impossible, while another agency has already gotten voter-approved funding for such a project.

East of the Hills, things get more bizarre. The City of Pleasanton is absolutely opposed to oppose elevated tracks passing through the center of town. So guess which route Altamont trains would take?

An I580 route would bypass nimbys, exploit an existing median space, and hit all the big employment centers. But CHSRA took that route out of consideration for a dubious reason: to reserve ROW for a possible BART extension.

 

 

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BART has released its Draft EIR for a proposed Livermore extension.

  • Projected Cost: $1.1-$3.9 billion BART bucks 1
  • Projected Ridership: 20-30k new BART riders (2035 projection)

For 2008, Caltrans reports traffic volume on I580 is approximately 220k vehicles per day. 25 years from now, the volumes will be considerably greater.

Conclusion: the BART extension would capture negligible 10% mode share.

The majority of I580 traffic is regional, originating from points well beyond Livermore (Tracy and the greater Central Valley). The extension of BART tracks a mere 10 miles Eastward is not going to attract many customers in the corridor.

So once again, we see how plans by CHSRA to route high-speed rail through Pacheco instead of Altamont will utterly screw traffic in the East Bay for the next quarter century.

map2

1Conversion from BART Bucks to US currency varies from project to project, but is typically in the range of +50%.

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