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8/15/2005



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Santa Clara VTA to obtain funds for BART extension engineering, land use study



Last week, Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) received funding commitments for a $4 billion Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) extension to the Silicon Valley.

In its version of the fiscal-year 2006 transportation appropriations bill, the Senate included $5 million to help fund preliminary engineering for the 16.3-mile line, which would extend BART service to Milipitas, San Jose and Santa Clara, Calif. The Safe, Accountable, Flexible and Efficient Transportation Equity Act of 2005: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU), signed by the president last week, includes funds for the project in the New Starts program.

In addition, the regional Metropolitan Transportation Commission approved a $600,000 grant to help fund a land use study. VTA plans to examine how the area surrounding the proposed BART station in Santa Clara can be transformed into an intermodal transportation center.

VTA, and Santa Clara and San Jose officials hope to attract housing, retail, office, entertainment, hotel and park development near the station, as well as increase public transit, pedestrian and bicycle access. The site currently houses a transportation center linking bus, Amtrak, Altamont Commuter Express, Caltrain and Capitol Corridor service. To be located across the tracks from the transportation center, the proposed BART station will feature a pedestrian walkway to connect the two facilities.


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