[IMAGE]TransbayRenderingPlatformFULL.jpg[/IMAGE] On Wednesday, federal, state and local officials joined together with the Transbay Joint Powers Authority (TJPA) to officially break ground on the Transbay Transit Center — the northern terminus for the California high-speed rail system and a multi-modal facility that will accommodate 11 transit operators and serve more than 45 million passengers a year.
“Today, in breaking ground on the Transbay Transit Center, we are opening a new chapter in that history of progress,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi said. “We are coming together to create jobs and revitalize our economy, and we are laying the first building blocks of a new ‘Grand Central Station of the West.’”
The project is estimated to create more than 48,000 jobs in its first phase of construction, which will last seven years. These jobs include the people who will design, build and operate the facility, the manufacturing jobs created by the materials being utilized in the facility and the businesses providing consumer goods and services to workers and the passengers utilizing the Transit Center.
"This is one of the most important and transformational public transportation projects in America. Once the dust has settled, San Francisco’s skyline will be transformed – as will transportation, housing, and employment choices for people across the Bay area and beyond,” said United States Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. "The U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Railroad Administration are proud to contribute to the first phase of this effort."
The full Phase 1 (Transit Center) and Phase 2 (Downtown Rail Extension) project and build out of the Redevelopment Plan will also increase the gross regional product in the Bay Area by $80 billion.
"This is a historic day for San Francisco and for the entire state," said Mayor Newsom. "History will write that high-speed rail and a new engine for job creation and economic growth in California began today, with the groundbreaking of this project. It is a culmination of decades of planning to fulfill our city's vision of leading the nation as a transit-first city and a hub of a modern high-speed rail system."
For more than 40 years, San Francisco has been planning for the replacement of the outdated and seismically deficient Transbay Terminal at First and Mission streets. The new one million square foot Transbay Transit Center will serve as San Francisco’s next landmark and will feature a 5.4-acre public park on the roof of the Transit Center.
The five-story Transit Center includes: one above-grade bus level, a ground floor entrance on Mission Street, concourse level, and two below-grade rail levels serving Caltrain and future California High-Speed Rail.
The $4.2 billion Transbay Transit Center Project is funded by various funding partners, including the Federal Government, the State of California, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the San Francisco County and San Mateo County Transportation Authorities and AC Transit, among others. The first phase of the program, which includes constructing the new Transit Center, is fully funded.
The new Transbay Transit Center is scheduled to open in August 2017.