San Carlos, Calif. – The SamTrans Board of Directors approved an agreement with Facebook, headquartered in Menlo Park, Calif., to study transportation improvements along the Dumbarton corridor. The study area encompasses the corridor and adjacent land between Alameda and San Mateo counties, connected by the Dumbarton Bridge as well as an unused rail bridge spanning the San Francisco Bay.
The one million dollar study will include the corridor between Alameda and San Mateo counties, the adjacent communities Redwood City, Menlo Park, East Palo Alto, Newark, Union City and Fremont. The study will also look at the transportation connections to Palo Alto and other jurisdictions in Santa Clara County. It will focus on mainline improvements to State Route 84/Dumbarton Bridge and the Dumbarton rail corridor, as well as the arterial and highway networks that feed these areas on both sides of the Bay.
“When SamTrans and the Transportation Authority purchased the Dumbarton rail corridor more than 20 years ago, we recognized the important role this facility could play in the regional transportation network,” said San Mateo County Transit District General Manager/CEO Jim Hartnett. “This study represents an important public-private partnership that will provide lasting benefits for congestion relief across the region. We’re very proud of this agreement and we will continue to look for opportunities to partner with the private sector to enhance our region’s transportation systems.”
The San Mateo County Transportation Authority, for which administrative staff is provided by SamTrans, financed the purchase of the Dumbarton rail bridge in 1994. The TA, along with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the Alameda County Transportation Commission (ACTC) and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority funded an effort to complete an environmental review process to develop passenger rail service on the Dumbarton Bridge. However, this effort is currently on hold.
The Facebook funding provides the money to proceed instead with a study of transportation alternatives that can potentially be implemented in the short- and long-term.
" Facebook is committed to supporting initiatives that help reduce regional roadway congestion and is pleased to partner with SamTrans to explore ways of improving traffic and transit options on the Dumbarton corridor, " said Facebook Campus Facilities Director Fergus O’ Shea.
In light of the traffic congestion and continued growth in the corridor, there have been efforts to push for studying transportation alternatives and options to connect the two counties in the near- and long-term. The District and ACTC have embarked on an effort to secure transportation grant funds, and Facebook has offered to provide funding to help expedite the planning process.
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About SamTrans: SamTrans operates 76 fixed bus routes, shuttles and paratransit service throughout San Mateo County. Funded in part by a half-cent sales tax, the San Mateo County Transit District also provides administrative support for Caltrain and the San Mateo County Transportation Authority. SamTrans has provided bus service to San Mateo County customers since 1976 and paratransit service since the early 80’s.