BART crews will take a page out of NFL playbooks and try something new this coming weekend; they’re going to blitz the trackway around Daly City and the station itself to tackle a wide range of maintenance issues and make improvements.
The idea is to concentrate various necessary maintenance activities in one area while the track is out of service so that the number of times that customers are inconvenienced is held to a minimum.
“We are trying to leverage work at Daly City Station that requires two of the three platforms and tracks to be taken out of service by identifying all of the other maintenance and station work that can be done at the same time. During this single outage we will be doing work on the platforms, tracks and switches, third rail power systems, train control, vegetation control, escalators and elevators to name just a few. We call this ‘piggybacking’ and it is the wave of the future for BART. It is the only way we can hope to keep up with all of the maintenance work needed to keep our aging infrastructure safe and reliable.” said Paul Oversier, BART assistant general manager, operations. “The idea is to get in and out, in a safe, pre-planned way, with the maximum amount of maintenance resources. This will allow us to get as much work done, on as much equipment and infrastructure as possible while minimizing the number of times that BART customers are inconvenienced.”
The all-hands-on-deck approach will mean delays this weekend for passengers passing through the Daly City area. BART will be closing two of the three platforms at Daly City Station and trains will be “single-tracking” between Balboa Park and Colma stations.
On Saturday, because of single-tracking, there will be no direct Richmond to San Francisco service. Riders along the Richmond Line should utilize the Fremont train and transfer at MacArthur Station to a Pittsburg/SFO train.
Trains from Dublin and Fremont will only go as far as 24th Street. Passengers from Fremont and Dublin, needing to travel south of 24th Street, will need to transfer to the Pittsburg/SFO line at one of the downtown San Francisco or Mission Street stations and allow an extra 20-25 minutes to complete their trip.
The Pittsburg to San Francisco Airport line will follow its normal route but may be delayed 10 to 15 minutes through the single-tracking area.
On Saturday, there will be no direct Richmond or Fremont service to San Francisco, passengers will need to transfer at MacArthur Station; typically, this only occurs on Sundays. Dublin/Pleasanton trains will terminate at 24th Street Station and riders wishing to proceed south will need to transfer to a Pittsburg/SFO train. Dublin riders making this transfer should again allow an extra 20-25 minutes to transfer and go through the “single-tracking” area. Riders already on the Pittsburg/SFO line should allow an extra 10-15 minutes for “single-tracking”.
If all goes as planned, this new approach of taking chunks of the BART system out of service during non-peak times, while providing limited train service or a bus shuttle, will become more common. “With a total of 44 stations and 104 miles of track, the challenge of safely and efficiently maintaining the backbone of the Bay Area’s public transit system requires some creativity,” Oversier said.