East Contra Costa County | 511 Contra Costa

In Progress: State Route 4 Widening and eBART (2013)

Back in October two major construction projects broke ground– State Route 4 widening and the eBART extension to eastern Contra Costa County. Because eBART will operate down the median of State Route 4, the two projects are being implemented in tandem with construction projected to be completed in Fall 2016. Let’s take a closer look at the projects.
Firstly, despite any present delays, it should be acknowledged these projects come at a crucial time. Eastern Contra Costa County’s rapid growth in the past two decades has resulted in one of the slowest commutes in the region.
That’s why these projects are so important. Once completed, the 10-mile eBART extension into Antioch is projected to remove 4,000 cars off the road per day (the equivalent of one freeway lane). Meanwhile, the widening of State Route 4 will feature carpool lanes and auxiliary lanes between on/off-ramps to encourage more efficient traffic movement.
A rendition of eBART– what a sleek looking train! Image via: BART
This new eBART extension will represent a first for Bay Area Rapid Transit– the introduction of eBART, a smaller model train than the ones we’re used to seeing. This extension will operate with what are known as DMU (diesel multiple-unit) trains, already widely used in Europe. The DMU model train was selected to bring quality rail service to East Contra Costa County at a lower cost than conventional BART. In fact, the $462 million eBART project is 60% less expensive than conventional BART.
The only catch is that DMU trains have a lower carrying capacity than conventional BART trains and will require riders transfer at the Pittsburg/Bay Point station to continue west into the Bay Area. However, being able to whisk riders to the Pittsburg/Bay Point station in an estimated 10-minutes,  a transfer doesn’t seem that bad, especially during rush hour.
It’s been 40 years since BART first transformed rapid transit in the region and with continued innovation the region can look forward to greater mobility options.
For additional details, be sure to check out the video below or head over to BART.

This Week’s Headlines in Transportation & Transit: Jul 3-9, 2010

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BART's Looking for Your Input on the East Contra Costa Extension

Construction on BART’s eastward extension, which will span 10 miles from the Pittsburg/Bay Point BART station towards Hillcrest Avenue, is set to begin this fall. The extension will fulfill the first phase of the eBart project, which aims to bring BART into East County. It should be completed by 2015.
BART will be providing a project overview and gathering feedback about fares, station access, and hours of operation at three venues next week. Be sure to stop by one of the meetings to give your input!
The first meeting will take place at Antioch’s Nick Rodriguez Community Center in the Multi-Use Room on Monday July 12 from 6:30pm-8:00pm, the second will be at the Brentwood Senior Center on Thursday July 15 from 6:30pm-8:00pm, and the third will be at the Pittsburg Senior Center on Saturday July 17 from 10:00am-11:30am.