BART to OAK System Goes Live
Monday, November 24, 2014
Last week’s rain subsided just in time for the public preview of the brand-new BART to OAK link to Oakland International Airport. The event turned out droves of community members and dignitaries for a day packed with elated speeches, raffled goodies, live performances and the climactic test-ride on the new cars. The train-to-plane service opened to the public the following day, Saturday, Nov. 22, providing relief for Thanksgiving travelers who no longer have to worry about traffic and timing. Instead, they can opt to be shuttled directly from the Coliseum BART station practically to the doors of the terminal in eight minutes. The four new driverless cars are quiet, lightweight and reminiscent of their BART contemporaries — just smaller and cable-run. Longtime lawmakers and transportation officials in the audience recalled what a lengthy yet rewarding journey it was to get to the grand opening. MTC Chair Amy Worth thanked voters for supporting transit, and recalled the trades workers who filled the MTC auditorium advocating for the project, which created countless jobs. “As an East Bay resident and a BART rider I know how much easier, how much more convenient and how much more reliable transportation will be from BART to the Oakland airport,” she said. MTC contributed $179 million ($146.2 million in bridge toll funds plus $32.8 million in state bond funds) to the $484 million project, which was built in four years and opened on time.