Monday, May 11th, 2009 at 4:24 pm in Misc. Transportation.
Bay Area commuters may soon be able to hop on BART in Pleasant Hill, jump aboard a Muni bus at the Embarcadero station, transfer to Caltrain and zoom to work in San Jose, all on the same prepaid card.
Well, maybe. BART announced Friday that the TransLink card passed lab and tests and is “expected” to be available to its riders by this summer. Up until now, only AC Transit, Golden Gate bus, Golden Gate ferry and Muni accepted the card.
This would seem to be great news – the most important component of Bay Area commuting finally becoming part of the TransLink network – but it could be a bit premature to start celebrating.
The project has suffered from delays since it first came under discussion in 1993. Back in early 2007, the revered founder of this blog, Erik Nelson, announced that the long-awaited TransLink card had finally made its debut in the Bay Area, on AC Transit and Golden Gate Transit.
The card was supposed to be available on all the Bay Area’s transit systems by 2001. Oakland resident Garlynn Woodsong gives an engaging account of why it has taken so long on his Underground Science blog.
Still, BART says the card should be available by this summer, which would presumably force them to make it happen by September. Well, readers, are you ready to run out and buy one of those green cards right away? If not, why not? And if you might be willing to share your thoughts with Reporter Janis Mara about the subject, her know either via a comment here or at firstname.lastname@example.org. She is writing a story about TransLink.
Photo: Metropolitan Transportation Commission.