Dumbarton Rail money could go toward Warm Springs BART extension

MTC is proposing to use $91m of the funds originally slated for Dumbarton, Rail for the BART extension to Warm Springs. Dumbarton Rail, which is about $300 million short of funds, would get its funding restored in later years. Meanwhile the BART project, which is just about funded and scheduled to get underway next year, would get a $91 million cash infusion.

The proposal is part of a strategic plan that the MTC is scheduled to vote on next month.

The time frame for restoring the $91 million to Dumbarton Rail is 2019 – 2027. Makes you think Dumbarton Rail is a long way off, if it happens at all.

The cash transfer would make for some happy Fremont officials. They don’t support Dumbarton Rail, which would link the Union City Bart Station with the Redwood City Caltrain Station.

Matt Artz


  1. This is a big disappointment. Correct me, but the Dumbarton Rail project was one of the selling points of a $1 bridge toll increase in 2004/05. In essence, it was a diversion and a smoke screen to infuse money into BART projects. The voters were hoodwinked, again. I support the BART extension, but I don’t expect bridge commuters to pay for it. The loophole of “fee” branded taxes is borderline criminal in my opinion.

  2. The bridge toll measure was about one thing, the ferry system project. Because the ferry system did not serve anyone south of the San Mateo/Hayward bridge, they had to add things to garner votes from us, including WS BART and Dumbarton Rail. Dumbarton Rail is an idea which has never been adequately studied and evaluated. The capital costs are much higher than anyone ever thought and they still have not found a source of operating funds to supplement the fare box recovery. I am surprised it took this long for MTC to take notice.

  3. I can tell you there are a lot of Niles folks that are really happy to hear this!!!!

  4. The only reason I voted for RM 2 — voting to tax myself $1/crossing, as I’m a bridge commuter — was because of the Dumbarton Rail project. That project has a much better cost/new rider figure than BART boondoggles.

    It astounds me just how anti-conventional-rail so many people are, but they foam at the mouth over BART.

  5. This makes to much sense!
    Has anyone checked the route of the Dumbarton Express. It is not very handy, for commuters, once you get across the bay.

  6. Coyote Bill: Do you mean the existing Dumbarton Express bus service (misnamed IMO) between Union City and Palo Alto, or the proposed Dumbarton Rail service, which would run trains between Union City and Fremont over to the Peninsula, where some would turn south along the existing Caltrain line toward San Jose and others would turn north toward San Francisco.

    The existing bus isn’t much good, especially as it’s obliged to wander around making local stops near its end points and doesn’t connect that well to rail services (too much waiting around), but a viable rail connection between UC-Fremont and points along the Peninsula would be a great thing.

  7. The Dumbarton Express Train Route, sorry I did not make myself clear.
    Check the train route, it is not commuter friendly.

  8. Coyote Bill:

    Not commuter friendly? Good grief, what do you mean by that? I’d ride it every day if it was there — catch a train from Fremont/Centerville, ride it to San Mateo, and a (short) bus shuttle to my office in the San Mateo hills.

  9. The big push is to get BART to San Jose! I sure would like to see BART services extended to Livermore before that happens though. The tax-payers deserve it and the I-580 commuters need it.

    In Livermore, at the foot of the Altamont there is plenty of room for parking. Commuters from the Central Valley would park and ride increasing the daily ridership beyond expectations.

    LPC would also benefit greatly from a BART extension to Livermore. Not to mention, the Airport, the labs, Ace Train commuters and Livermore residents.

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