SMART Board approves rail and pathway projects

April 27, 2021
More than $21 million in projects received the green light, including two rail projects and several pathway projects.

The Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) Board of Directors approved $21.4 million in rail and pathway projects last week. A move SMART Board Chair David Rabbitt credited to “tightening our belts and running a lean organization.”

SMART will advance all remaining shovel-ready pathway projects and make crossing safety enhancements to several existing pathway projects as part of the Sonoma County Gap Closure Project. SMART notes it envisioned its multi-use pathway network as a way for commuters to access the train and make connections to destinations without driving–creating a "green" alternative to commuting by car.

“The board has been actively listening to our community and gathering valuable feedback to help us make these complex funding decisions,” said SMART Board Director Eric Lucan. “We’re very pleased to commit these funds to create more connections for cyclists and pedestrians throughout the North Bay.”

Regarding rail projects, SMART will move forward with the Healdsburg Bridge over the Russian River, south of Healdsburg and investment $2 million for the Petaluma 2nd Station at Corona Road in North Petaluma.

SMART is working with the city of Petaluma, Petaluma Transit and housing developer Danco Communities to submit a joint application to the state's Affordable Housing Sustainable Communities Program to fund the Petaluma North Station at Corona Road in Petaluma.

“I am pleased that SMART has the ability to make such a significant investment in connecting our communities,” said SMART Board Director and Santa Rosa Mayor Chris Rogers. “As we open back up from the pandemic, SMART is providing the much-needed transit alternative to driving on Highway 101.”

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