Hitachi Rail awarded contract to upgrade BART’s digital train control

Oct. 2, 2020
The new CBTC solution will progress the district’s $3.5-billion Transbay Corridor Core Capacity Project.

The Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) awarded Hitachi Rail STS USA, Inc., (Hitachi Rail) a $798-million contract to design, build and install the latest generation of Communications-Based Train Control (CBTC) technology that will results in increased capacity and improved service.

Replacing the current train control system, which is more than 48-years old, with Hitachi’s new CBTC system allows BART to safely operate the trains on tighter schedules and at more closely spaced intervals, significantly increasing the Transbay throughput and passenger capacity. Hitachi’s CBTC System will enable BART to meet the projected demand of more than 30,000 Transbay passengers per hour at peak and includes options that could extend the system to Silicon Valley via the Berryessa extension and the Santa Clara extension. Overall, BART says it anticipates that the project will create about 500 new jobs, with nearly 8,800 potential direct and indirect jobs resulting from these infrastructure investments.

“Replacing and modernizing BART’s 50-year-old train control system will be a generational project that will benefit our riders for decades to come,” said Carl Holmes, BART assistant general manager for planning, development and construction. “CBTC will allow us to deliver world class service and meet the future needs of the San Francisco Bay Area.”

“Hitachi’s solution will help BART increase train frequency, adding capacity to the most heavily traveled sections of the rail system, which accounted for nearly 60 percent of all trips last year,” said Jason White, executive officer for the Americas, Hitachi Rail Group. “This infrastructure investment will improve the system’s overall reliability and maintainability, reduce costs and increase the frequency of BART trains. We value the trust BART has placed in Hitachi to deliver this critical project and look forward to creating a strong partnership with them.”

The company’s scope for BART includes design, manufacture, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of its CBTC solution, as well as the supply and commissioning support of vehicle-related car-borne equipment for BART’s rail cars. The contract also includes Wayside Signaling, Communications and the Automated Train Supervision systems.

BART also awarded Hitachi an $8.6-million contract for Train Control Performance Support Services for up to twenty years, representing an investment in the long-term training and expert support for BART’s maintenance personnel.

Given its size, scope and complexity, Hitachi says its CBTC project for BART will be one of the most extensive signaling projects in the United States and a key pillar of BART’s comprehensive $3.5 billion Transbay Corridor Core Capacity Project. When completed in 2029, BART will have the increased capacity to operate 30, 10-car trains per hour on the Core Corridor. The new CBTC System is designed to provide the highest level of safety in addition to increasing the frequency of trains and passenger capacity in the most heavily traveled rail sections of the BART System.