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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

BART hires firm to oversee Transbay Tube retrofitting

Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) recently awarded a five-year, $8 million construction management contract to Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. to oversee the seismic retrofit of the Transbay Tube between Oakland and San Francisco.

The firm will manage construction contractors and provide engineering and inspection services, a constructability analysis and safety certification, materials testing, and noise and vibration monitoring.

The seismic retrofit is part of a $1.3 billion project to strengthen the Transbay Tube and other BART infrastructure to withstand a massive earthquake. Nearly half of BART’s 325,000 passengers each day ride trains through the tube, which is entrenched in the San Francisco Bay floor and connects the East Bay with downtown San Francisco.

The U.S. Geological Survey has reported there is a 62 percent chance one or more earthquakes rating 6.7 or higher on the Richter Scale will hit the bay area before 2030. A survey has determined that the tube, as well as many BART stations and elevated tracks, would be damaged during a powerful earthquake and could shut down the agency’s system for more than two years.

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More News from 2/13/2007