The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which manages transportation in the city, including the Municipal Railway (Muni), received federal approval to proceed with a key component of the Central Subway Project.
The approval, a letter of no prejudice (LONP) from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), allows the SFMTA to commence work that will prepare the 1.7-mile project alignment for tunneling and station construction.
Issuance of the LONP provided the newest indication that the full commitment of federal funding through the FTA's New Starts program may be forthcoming. The SFMTA submitted an application for the Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA), the formal agreement of federal financial assistance, for the Central Subway Project in September 2011. A decision on whether the project will attain the FFGA is expected this spring.
The LONP will allow the Central Subway Project to complete the following work:
- Excavation of the tunnel portal and mobilization and setup of the tunnel staging area at 4th Street between Bryant and Harrison streets.
- Construction of a steel and concrete deck structure at the tunnel staging site to carry traffic over the excavation site.
- Installation of below-ground structural supports at three locations: the tunnel staging site, the Moscone Station site at 4th Street between Howard and Folsom streets and another site within the project alignment at 4th and Jessie streets. The structural supports will act as watertight barriers and stabilize the construction sites.
This is the second of two LONPs the FTA has issued to the SFMTA for the Central Subway Project. The first allowed the Project to install overhead trolley wires to reroute electric trolley coaches around construction sites north of Market Street.