BART found a win-win as far as cleanliness and costliness: vinyl seats. They will retain fewer germs than the present wool covers; they'll be easier to maintain, as well. Now, are they comfy?
One hundred train cars are being fitted with the new look, with the installation completed by July.
BART has been trying out seating options at public functions for most of this year. They will continue to collect opinions from riders about these new chairs, as well. If the feedback is positive BART will add 100 more cars next year. The system has 669 train cars.
One car's seating runs about $9,000, according to the SF Examiner. The wool seats would have cost about $15,500. Another plus: the vinyl seats will last for 10 years, whereas wool lasts about three.