The AC Transit Board of Directors approved a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) plan that will make cleaner, more efficient bus service — reducing commute time and traffic — in Oakland and San Leandro.
The board certified the Final Environmental Impact Report (FEIR), moving the $153 million BRT project a step closer to design, construction, the creation of as many as 300 jobs over a two-year period, and the prompting of other local economic development.
"We are happy to embrace a project that improves bus service, creates employment opportunities and helps to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions,” said AC Transit Board President Elsa Ortiz. “But more than that, this BRT project will add beautiful streetscapes to the neighborhoods as it brings a new level of service reliability for our riders.”
Of all the transit projects in the nation, AC Transit’s BRT plan has the highest overall rating by the Federal Transit Administration. Aside from dramatically improving East Bay public transportation, the BRT project is certain to enhance the local economy, creating construction jobs and other employment indirectly related to the building effort.
“This is a major milestone,” said AC Transit General Manager David Armijo. “The Board’s vote means that our vision of improved bus service, reduced traffic and lower vehicle emissions along that corridor is a step closer to reality.”
With construction expected to begin in 2014, the system could be fully operational in 2016.
The Final EIR was available for a 45 day review from February 3, 2012 to March 19, 2012. Seven public meetings were held to receive input on the project on February 23, 27, and 29, and March 1, 5, 7, and 12. The FEIR was prepared as part of a joint Final Environmental Impact Statement to satisfy both federal National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and state California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) review requirements.
For more information about AC Transit’s BRT system, visit http://www.actransit.org/planning-focus/your-guide-to-bus-rapid-transit/.