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Rail News: Passenger Rail

BART 10-year outlook anticipates financial shortfall in operating, capital needs


Bay Area Rapid Transit's (BART) operating financial outlook shows a $6 million shortfall in fiscal-year 2016 that increases to $80 million in FY2024, according to a new draft of the agency's FY2015-2024 Short Range Transit Plan and Capital Improvement Program.

The plan shows that, because BART's future operating projection takes funding availability into consideration in the design of the service plan, the cumulative $500 million operating shortfall represents only 5 percent of the total projected operating needs projected over the next 10 years — with no more than 7 percent shortfall in any given year, according to a BART press release.

The plan provides an overview of BART's operating and capital financial outlook, as required by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission. The document features an executive summary that aims to help riders and the public to better understand the BART system, its history, current and future challenges; and a traditional plan that addresses the commission's technical requirements.

The capital improvement program (CIP), which projects BART's future capital needs regardless of funding availability, shows a more significant shortfall than the operating outlook: For the 10-year period, fully funding the CIP would require $9.6 billion. Previously, the agency identified $320 million in capital funding, while staff has identified an additional $4.5 billion in assumed future funding, BART officials said. Under those circumstances, the capital need shortfall would be $4.8 billion over the next 10 years, they added.

BART's board is expected to adopt the plan on Oct. 9. The public can provide comments on the draft up to that date.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 8/27/2014