With a similar agreement with the city of San Leandro already in place, AC Transit and the city of Oakland have come to terms on the agency’s Bus Rapid Transit Project (BRT), eliminating the last major obstacle between concept and construction.
After weeks of discussion, the parties endorsed the East Bay Bus Rapid Transit Operations and Maintenance Agreement (O&M) which outlines specific responsibilities for the project’s viability once the BRT service begins.
The BRT will cruise the 9.5-mile stretch from downtown Oakland to San Leandro BART via East 14th Street, International Boulevard and Telegraph Avenue. The project will make bus transit more efficient and cleaner with dedicated bus lanes, improved street lighting and crosswalks, artistic landscaping, signal priority, elevated boarding stations and more.
Along with bringing a new look to the corridor, the BRT will create more than 1,000 jobs during its construction phase and help stimulate businesses along the street for years to come. The new bus service will provide one of the busiest traffic corridors in the country with a fast, economical and environmentally-friendly transportation system.
“As partners, the District and the City of Oakland have worked hand-in-hand toward building and operating these new transit stations and the host of amenities that will improve the look and safety along this corridor,” said AC Transit General Manager David Armijo.
The BRT project will invest more than $100 million in traffic improvements, parking and other beautification efforts to dramatically enhance the densely-populated, well-worn corridor.
“AC Transit’s approval of the operations and maintenance agreement is a huge milestone for the BRT project which will be one of the largest investments we have ever seen in East Oakland,” said Oakland City Councilman Noel Gallo who represents much of the area and helped shape the agreement. “The City of Oakland looks forward to expanding our working relationship with AC Transit for the benefit of the residents of Oakland. We look forward to the positive transformation that the BRT will bring to International Blvd.”
BRT construction will begin this year. The service will be fully implemented in 2017.