First comes the money, and now, the shovels.South Bay elected officials are congratulating each other after securing the "final installment" of "more than" $760 million in state money, part of the payment for BART's 10-mile extension to San Jose, according to reports.
The San Jose Mercury News reports that the $2.3 billion project has checks in hand from the state Traffi Congestion Relief Program as well as the California Transportation Comission. The rest of the cash came from the federal government and from local sales tax measures, the only way to cobble together such an enormous sum of money.
Building BART to San Jose is nothing short of a "miracle," according to San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed. Miraculous in that the state delivered on its promise to pony up the cash despite turmoil in Sacramento -- the project somehow survived Gray Davis's recall, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Gov. Jerry Brown's tendency towards penury.
Construction began in 2012. Crews are busy building raised BART tracks and will do so for another two and a half years before the station's opening in 2018.
After the connection to San Jose, local officials hope to go even further, digging a subway underneath San Jose to extend BART to Caltrain in Santa Clara, the newspaper reported. That will take even more money, none of which is on hand yet.