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Caltrain OK's 2025 plan, delays San Bruno grade separations

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  • 8/4 SF Examiner
    Published Friday, August 4, 2006, by the San Francisco Examiner Grade separations postponed to 2010 By Tara Ramroop tramroop@examiner.com Caltrain officials
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 4 8:55 AM
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      Published Friday, August 4, 2006, by the San Francisco Examiner

      Grade separations postponed to 2010

      By Tara Ramroop

      Caltrain officials Thursday released a tentative timetable for
      system-wide upgrades to the commuter-rail system through 2025,
      officially postponing long-awaited grade separations in some cities
      until 2010.

      The Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board readily endorsed the
      Project 2025 plan at yesterday's meeting, setting a rough timeline
      for the capital projects outlined in a 2004 strategic plan, San
      Mateo County Supervisor and JPB board member Jerry Hill said. The
      2004 plan estimated about $4.9 billion in capital projects through
      2023, Hill said.

      Construction on grade separations separating train tracks from
      streets at certain intersections in San Bruno and on South Linden
      Avenue in South San Francisco was scheduled to begin this year.

      Though the grade separations have been postponed, Caltrain does plan
      on making some grade crossing improvements at San Bruno and San
      Mateo Avenues in San Bruno within the next few years. This work
      would involve straightening out the streets at that intersection,
      so they don't curve at an angle and confuse drivers, SamTrans chief
      engineer Stephen Hill said.

      Higher priorities in the next five years will be repairing and
      replacing old infrastructure such as the nearly 100-year-old rail
      bridges up and down the line, said Robert Doty, SamTrans director
      of rail transportation, engineering and construction.

      So-called "quad gates," which would prevent people from driving
      around the lowered crossing arm, are also planned system-wide in the
      next five years as a precursor to the grade separations, Hill said.

      Police in June cited a man who survived after he drove under a
      crossing arm in Redwood City and was hit by a train.

      Last month, a Caltrain slammed into a car after its driver, who also
      survived, inadvertently drove around the crossing arm near San Bruno
      and San Mateo avenues, one of the intersections for which a grade
      separation is planned. City officials said then that the accident
      underscored the need for safety improvements at that intersection.

      San Bruno Mayor Larry Franzella told the board he understood the
      postponement but wanted significant safety improvements in the next
      five years. Councilman Ken Ibarra echoed these concerns, saying he
      hoped something would be done for safety at the rail crossings.

      SamTrans staff are scheduled to present a more solid plan to the
      board by the end of the year, which will include a funding analysis
      and timeline.

      [BATN: See also:

      Caltrain "Project 2025" to add system capacity, replace trains

      Caltrain hits car driving around crossing gate in San Bruno

      San Bruno fears Caltrain electrification will delay grade separations

      Caltrain may delay San Bruno grade separations up to 5 years
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/BATN/message/31132 ]
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