Thursday, May 23, 2013

Caltrain moves to elevated grade separation in San Bruno

The Caltrain San Bruno Grade Separation Project has reached an important milestone. Beginning with the first southbound train on May 26, trains will travel on the new elevated grade separation. During construction trains have been operating on a "shoofly" or temporary tracks.

The grade separation is a $147-million project that is expected to dramatically improve safety in downtown San Bruno by elevating the train tracks over San Bruno, San Mateo and Angus avenues.

During the weekend transition, trains will operate on a single track through the area and the shoofly will be demolished next week.

Passengers will continue to use the temporary train station on Huntington Avenue until the project is finished at the end of the year. The project includes a new station on the elevated platform between San Bruno and San Mateo avenues.

In addition, there will be three pedestrian underpasses, one in the vicinity of Sylvan Avenue, one at the new station and another between Euclid Avenue and Walnut Street. A total of 201 parking spaces and a "kiss and ride" for dropping off and picking up passengers will serve the station at the site of the former San Bruno Lumber.

According to Caltrain's most recent ridership count, more than 400 people use the San Bruno station on an average weekday. Ridership at the station has increased seven percent since 2009.

The project is funded by $85.6 million in sales tax revenues from Measure A, a voter-approved half-cent sales tax for transit and transportation projects in San Mateo County. Those Measure A dollars were leveraged to attract $54.8 million in state funds and $6.6 million in federal funds. Fifteen percent of all the funds collected under the reauthorized measure (approved by voters in 2004) are allocated to Caltrain grade separation projects.

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