Lack of funds may dead-end transit projects

A package of transit projects are slated to coincide with the proposed development of up to 15,000 new housing units in The City’s southeast sector, but funding shortfalls could limit the number of travel options in the region, transportation officials said Wednesday.

Plans for the area would augment the Bayshore Caltrain station so it would link up with an extended Muni T-Third line, which currently ends about a quarter of a mile away at Sunnydale Avenue. It would also be a connection point for a rapid-transit bus line.

Additionally, the proposal establishes transit centers in the new developments in Hunters Point and Candlestick Point, said Chester Fung, a planner with the San Francisco County Transportation Authority who is leading a bicounty study on the region.

According to SFCTA Deputy Planning Director Tilly Chang, the heart of the regional plan is the proposal to rebuild Harney Way and extend Geneva Avenue, allowing the two arteries to meet at an interchange at U.S. Highway 101 in the northeastcorner of San Mateo County.

The proposal would allow for a possible rapid-transit bus line on Geneva, which would run on a designated lane unimpeded by vehicle traffic, Chang said.

The packet of projects should receive “hundreds of millions of dollars” from local, state and federal sources, Fung said, but even that is unlikely to cover all the costs for the region’s infrastructure needs.

With three cities — Brisbane, Daly City and San Francisco — two counties — San Francisco and San Mateo — and a dozen transportation and development agencies involved, the planning process is extremely complex, Fung said.

The SFCTA is conducting public outreach for the transportation proposals and working toward creating a budget outline by spring, which would serve as a blueprint when the organization begins identifying potential funding sources later in the process, Fung said.

The proposed southeast development plan — which includes Candlestick Point as well as the site of the former Hunters Point shipyard, also includes a possible stadium for the San Francisco 49ers, who have told The City that among the reasons they are in negotiations to move the NFL team to Santa Clara are transportation concerns about how fans would get in and out of the area on game days.

wreisman@examiner.com

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