Wednesday Rally to Support Funding the Downtown Extension

Jun 23rd, 2015 | Posted by

Friends of Caltrain is mobilizing to push for completion of the Downtown Extension tunnel, which would connect Caltrain and high speed rail to the new Transbay Terminal. They’re holding a rally on Wednesday to demand a solution to the funding challenges that have delayed the DTX for years.

The rally will take place at San Francisco City Hall at 11:00 AM on Wednesday, June 24. More information is available at a Facebook event page set up for the rally.

Here’s how Friends of Caltrain explains the reasons for the rally:

The “Downtown Extension to Transbay” will connect Caltrain to downtown SF with 3x the amount of jobs as the rest of the line combined. But the plan to fund this critical project is still up in the air. At 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday June 24th there will be a pro-DTX rally on the steps of the SF City Hall. Come encourage San Francisco and regional leaders to move forward getting Caltrain extended into downtown San Francisco.

Time to get this project moving.

  1. Jerry
    Jun 23rd, 2015 at 15:35
    #1

    Alternative 3, the East Route, would be great if it would tie in with a new BART tunnel to the East Bay.

    Sierrajeff Reply:

    I presume you’re talking about Mayor Lee’s pie-in-the-sky plans to re-route Caltrain through Mission Bay, as part of his plan to tear down 280. That’s not the issue here; this is for the actually planned and researched route that Caltrain actually wants to build.

    Clem Reply:

    Is it? This rally seems to support the idea of connecting Caltrain to the basement of the TTC, regardless of how it’s done.

    jimsf Reply:

    several buildings were already removed at the west end of the tbt to make room for the approach.

    Does the est end of the tbt now dead end up against an existing office building basement?

  2. Travis D
    Jun 23rd, 2015 at 16:16
    #2

    Do they even know where the tunnel will go at this point?

    Robert Reply:

    Yes, the route has been planned for years. If I recall correctly building foundations for the infinity building were even put so as not to interfere with the route. Anyone proposing alternative routes is wishful thinking that will probably add years to the delay.

    Clem Reply:

    The alternatives could raise large amounts of funding that the current design lacks. It may be equally wishful thinking to believe the DTX can be funded as currently planned. Years of delay are practically a given, either way.

    J. Wong Reply:

    “Years of delay are practically a given, either way.”

    Which also means 4th & King lives on for those years, too.

    synonymouse Reply:

    That was Quentin Kopp’s plan.

    Where is he now?

    Roland Reply:

    The environmentally-cleared 2nd Street (AKA “East”) alignment effectively died in 2009 after the TJPA were told to redesign their curved platforms as a condition of the $400M ARRA grant for the train box: “The current design required the use of train platforms that are on a curve to accommodate the length of the high-speed trains. CHSRA has requested that the platforms accommodating its trains be a minimum straight dimension of 1,312 feet.” http://www.mtc.ca.gov/planning/rail/HSR_PeninsulaInvest_broch-final.pdf (page 13).

    The TJPA’s “solution” to delete the tail tracks and extend the train box across Main Street conflicts with Streets & Highways code section 30914(22) and could result in a loss in excess of $1/2B in RM2 funds: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/cacode/SHC/1/d17/4/s30914

    Roland Reply:

    The second street (AKA “East”) alignment effectively died in 2009 after the TJPA were told to straighten their curved platforms as a condition of the $400M ARRA grant for the train box: “The current design required the use of train platforms that are on a curve to accommodate the length of the high-speed trains. CHSRA has requested that the platforms accommodating its trains be a minimum straight dimension of 1,312 feet.” http://www.mtc.ca.gov/planning/rail/HSR_PeninsulaInvest_broch-final.pdf (page 13)

    The TJPA’s “solution” to extend the train box under Main Street conflicts with Streets and Highways Code Section 30914(22) and could result in a loss in excess of $500M in RM2 funds: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/cacode/SHC/1/d17/4/s30914

    Jon Reply:

    The East alignment was proposed long after the change to the train box was made. There’s no reason why the longer platforms should preclude a new approach alignment.

    What it does preclude is a loop track, but even that could be achieved by revising the design before construction. The additional platform length has not yet been excavated, and won’t be until the DTX is funded.

  3. Michael Allen
    Jun 23rd, 2015 at 22:10
    #3

    Nice new video of the construction on the Fresno River Viaduct!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akXU7vgk1dg&feature=youtu.be

    Lewellan Reply:

    “Look Jimmy. Big yellow tractors moving dirt! And those guys sure know how to read good.”

  4. Donk
    Jun 23rd, 2015 at 23:14
    #4

    They should fund it by creating a tax on SF software engineers who don’t have kids.

    Miles Bader Reply:

    Or better, a tax on SUVs… should have it funded in about 34 minutes.

  5. Roland
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 06:10
    #5

    “The plan to fund this critical project is still up in the air”. The issue is with the project itself, not the funding (DTX has been fully-funded for a while).

    Clem Reply:

    In the same sense that HSR has been fully funded for a while?

    J. Wong Reply:

    DTX has been “funded” but none of the approaches, whatever they may be, have any funding.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Shift the funding to BART to Sac. Where are you – Brown Bros., Quentin Kopp, Hemie?

  6. Jerry
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 10:13
    #6

    At a time when LA Union Station is working for run-through tracks, San Francisco is working for tracks to dead end.

    TomA Reply:

    Isnt that just about their geography?

    synonymouse Reply:

    The TBT tunnel should was to be done in the early nineties but the money was diverted by local politicians and MTC to BART.

  7. J. Wong
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 13:01
    #7
  8. Reality Check
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 15:34
    #8

    O/T: Ominous new cracks found on Bay Bridge rods

    Tiny cracks found on some of the rods on the new Bay Bridge tower potentially endanger the rest of the more than 400 remaining fasteners that secure the tower to the foundation in an earthquake, Caltrans officials said Tuesday.

    […]

    Lisa Fulton, a Berkeley engineer and corrosion expert who has studied the problem on the bridge project, said the discovery “means that there doesn’t have to be a lot of force on those rods for them to break.”

    “That could indicate that we don’t need an earthquake for them to snap, that they are unreliable in the service loads that they are under now,” she said. “The micro-cracking is a sure sign of hydrogen attack. It’s a portent of catastrophe.”

    […]

    Patrick Pizzo, a metallurgical failure expert and retired San Jose State University professor, said the results are ominous. He scoffed at Caltrans’ statements that all but a handful of the bolts passed pull tests to determine their strength. It can take years for water to cause hydrogen embrittlement in steel, he said.

    “That’s one failed rod already in two years,” he said. “But what about tomorrow? What about 10 years? Fifty years? How many would be left in 150 years

    […]

    les Reply:

    Wrap em duct tape.

    Richard Mlynarik Reply:

    It’s 1999, and a mafia organization with a “legitimate” “engineering” front is concerned that the Bay Bridge East Span project will be billions of dollars too cheap.

    Who you gonna call to get that fixed? Why, current MTC executive-director-for-life, then MTC “government liaison” executive-director-in-waiting Steve Heminger. Of course!

    It’s 1999, and a mafia organization with a “legitimate” “engineering” front is concerned that the approved High Speed Rail route from the Bay Area into the Central Valley will be billions of dollars too cheap.

    Who you gonna call to get that fixed? Why, current MTC executive-director-for-life, then “government liaison” MTC executive-director-in-waiting Steve Heminger. Of course!

    joe Reply:

    Salt water corrosion will embrittle steel and derail HSR.

    jimsf Reply:

    its salt water corruption!
    Americans sit back and let the governement and big business be corrpupt just like mexicans sit back and let their government and big business be corrupt as do so many people in so many countires. And since infrastructure isn’t sexy there wont be any riots or revolution over it.
    There’s no coccupy the bay bridge movement.

    synonymouse Reply:

    Dedicate the Bridge to Jerry Brown as his Legacy.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    Why would you want to occupy a structurally unsound bridge?

    (Sorry.)

  9. Eric M
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 20:28
    #9

    The private sector is finally getting a seat on the bullet train

    The California High-Speed Rail Authority, taking a step industry peers have been expecting for years, on Monday sent out a “request for expressions of interest” to U.S. and international companies it hopes will respond by Sept. 14 with suggestions on how to build the system quicker, cheaper and with less risk to taxpayers.

    jimsf Reply:

    the people get screwed by the corporate globalists all the time and I don’t understand this worship of the very private sector that screws up just as badly as local governemtns do. At least with governement the people have a say.

    les Reply:

    Bernie Sanders for president!

    Paul Dyson Reply:

    Agreed, vote for Bernie!

    Eric Reply:

    He’s got my vote over Hillary. She’s to “in bed” with the banking lobby if you ask me.

    Alon Levy Reply:

    That’s unfair to the bankers; she’s in bed with about every lobby that’s ever contributed to Democrats.

  10. IKB
    Jun 24th, 2015 at 21:44
    #10

    guess what, budgets really do count; please keep that in mind or this project won’t happen

    http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jun/24/network-rail-funding-gap-scuppers-five-year-investment-plan

    Lewellan Reply:

    THE GUARDIAN! Ohhhhhhh….
    Let us ALL hear what it is the GUARDIAN says A B O U T
    WHATEVER it ‘IS’ they MOST enjoy expressing opinion
    A B O U T ….. …. … .. .
    Jelly kingfish?, anyone?
    Right so! Jolly!

    IKB Reply:

    I think it common knowledge that Network Rail won’t deliver on Midland Mainline Electrification, or Manchester to Leeds/Sheffield. Of course no-one outside of those corridors care. Those that do question HS2. But as our team cheerfully express opinions on E1, E2, E3 etc, please understand there comes a cost where HSR won’t make sense (v airlines, v cars, unifying the state, or pick your reason). They’re close to nudging that line; $30bn+ to get from LA to the Central Valley, and easily the same SF to SJ will cross the line with or without or even trains stops in the central valley

  11. Jerry
    Jun 25th, 2015 at 13:21
    #11

    Anyone know how many people attended the “rally”??
    A detailed article about the rally was in the San Mateo Daily Journal at:
    http://www.smdailyjournal.com/articles/lnews/2015-06-25/proponents-push-for-caltrain-extension-voter-approved-measure-calls-for-train-to-end-at-transbay-terminal/1776425145645.html

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