Frequently Asked Questions
What is the East Bay Greenway: Lake Merritt BART to South Hayward BART project?
The East Bay Greenway is a 36.6-mile regional trail (bicycle and pedestrian facility) in the Alameda Countywide Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan that connects north to the Ohlone Greenway in Berkeley and Albany, and to the south along the UPRR right-of way to Fremont. This project is a 16-mile section of the trail that runs along the BART alignment connecting seven stations (Lake Merritt, Fruitvale, Coliseum, San Leandro, Bay Fair, Hayward, and South Hayward, in Oakland, San Leandro, Ashland, Cherryland, and Hayward. The project goals include:
Who is responsible for the project?
Alameda CTC is the project sponsor and lead agency for state environmental clearance pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) clearance. Caltrans is the lead agency for federal environmental clearance pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Other project partners include: the City of Oakland; the City of San Leandro; the City of Hayward; Alameda County; BART; and the East Bay Regional Park District.
What is the status and schedule for the project?
The project is currently in the preliminary engineering and environmental analysis phase. On October 23rd, 2017, Alameda CTC published a CEQA Initial Study and Proposed Mitigated Negative Declaration (IS/MND). The public comment period will last for 30 days, from October 23rd, 2017 to November 21st, 2017. Following this period, a Final IS/MND will be certified in March 2018. A NEPA Categorical Exclusion is in progress and will be completed by Fall 2018.
What is the purpose of the Project Information Meetings?
The meetings will share project information and provide opportunity for input on the project. Participants will have the opportunity to review displays, watch a multimedia presentation, and speak with team members. Comments can be submitted via comment cards.
When will construction begin?
The project corridor has been segmented to allow design, and eventual project construction, to proceed once constraints, such as right-of-way availability, jurisdictional readiness, and funding are resolved. Design and construction for major transportation projects can take several years, but these activities can occur in phases, so that some segments can be opened to the public in the near-term.
How is the project related to the segment of trail near the Coliseum BART station?
An initial segment of the East Bay Greenway was constructed from 75th Avenue to 85th Avenue near the Coliseum BART station in Oakland to take advantage of a federal grant obtained by the East Bay Regional Park District. The current Project will connect this half-mile segment to the overall 16-mile corridor.
Does the project require property acquisition?
Most of the project falls within existing pubic property or UPRR right of way with varying acquisition needs along the corridor. A clear understanding of the property impacts will be identified following the conclusion of the discussions with UPRR and a design option is moved forward.
What design options are under consideration?
Two design options to bookend potential impacts are under consideration for environmental analysis purposes. The design options are differentiated by the degree to which they encroach into UPRR right-of-way, and both require some railroad right-of-way. The final trail alignment will fit within the envelope of the two design options and will be based on right-of-way availability, funding, schedule, engineering feasibility, and the ability to generate larger regional benefits.
A Rail-with-Trail option would construct a trail adjacent to the rail line while preserving rail operations. The trail would comply with minimum setback requirements and fencing would be provided to separate users from the active rail line. A Rail-to-Trail option would involve abandonment of the rail line and conversion to a trail facility.
The final trail alignment will be based on many considerations including right-of-way availability, cost, schedule, engineering feasibility, quality of facility, and ability to generate larger regional benefits.
How will the project ensure safety for users?
All trail designs and street crossing treatments will meet adopted engineering standards. The trail will also include safety and security features such as lighting, barriers, and fencing to ensure the safety of both trail users and adjacent properties.
What are the impacts from the trail?
Because the project is not expected to result in significant or unmitigable environmental impacts, Alameda CTC is pursuing an IS/MND for CEQA and a Categorical Exclusion for NEPA.
The Project does not result in any unmitigated significant impacts. Environmental categories that are reduced to less than significant with mitigation include: Aesthetics, Mandatory Findings of Significance, Hazards and Hazardous Materials, Biological Resources, Cultural Resources, Noise, and Air Quality.
The Project does not result in significant impacts to traffic operations along the Project corridor and would implement improvements to roadway lane geometries, intersection signal timings, and lane width reductions. The Project has no impact on parking supply and demand. Parking displaced from the corridor can be relocated to other available curb spaces in the immediate area.
How will the trail be maintained and operated?
Alameda CTC is working with project partners to determine the most appropriate arrangement for maintaining and operating the trail that will be finalized once a design option is selected.
How much will the proposed project cost?
The project cost (including design, construction and contingencies) is estimated at $161 million for the 16-mile project corridor. The right-of-way cost could range from $14 million to $228 million and is subject to discussions with UPRR.
How is the project funded?
The environmental phase activities are fully funded by an Active Transportation Program Cycle 1 federal grant, which has been supplemented by Measure B and Measure BB local transportation sales tax funds. For future phases of the project, Alameda CTC will leverage Measure BB funds to pursue grants at the regional, state (i.e. Senate Bill 1) and federal levels.
Will there be contracting opportunities or jobs on the project?
Depending on the availability of funding, contracting opportunities will be available for the corridor as a whole or by segments after the environmental process is concluded. Those opportunities will be subject to the US DOT’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program or Alameda CTC’s Small and Local Business Contracting Equity program depending on the specific funding sources and may include professional services and construction work.
How can the public provide input and stay informed on project updates?
We welcome your comments on the Draft IS/MND from October 23rd, 2017 to November 21st, 2017. Comments received to the Draft IS/MND will be summarized and reported to the Alameda CTC Board in March 2018.
You can also sign up for electronic updates via the project website, alamedactc.org/eastbaygreenway. The project team will seek public input on details associated with the final alignment during in future design phases and will advertise these opportunities as they are developed.
In addition, the project team provides updates to the Alameda CTC Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee and Programs and Projects Committee in an open forum as project development progresses.