Transbay Transit Center and Caltrain Downtown Extension

Transbay Transit Center construction photo

Transbay Transit Center and tower visualization

The Transbay Transit Center/Caltrain Downtown Extension (TTC/DTX) project is the critical centerpiece of a long-range visionary transportation plan that will transform downtown San Francisco and regional transportation well into this century. The project consists of three interconnected elements: 1) replacing the outmoded terminal with a modern terminal; 2) extending Caltrain 1.3 miles from Fourth and King streets to the new TTC at First and Mission streets, with accommodations for future high-speed rail; and 3) creating a new transit-friendly neighborhood with 3,000 new homes (35 percent of which will be affordable) and mixed-use commercial development.

The total program budget is currently estimated at $4.5 billion in year-of-expenditure dollars. In May 2010 the Transbay Joint Powers Authority (TJPA) Board adopted a $1.6 billion budget for Phase 1 (TTC, pedestrian ramps, and the train box, which is the subterranean portion of the TTC building that will house the Caltrain and high-speed rail station). On July 11, 2013, the TJPA Board adopted a revised budget of $1.9 billion, a $310.4 million increase over the baseline. The increase is mostly due to changed market conditions, modifications necessitated by an earlier terrorism-related Risk and Vulnerability Assessment, and resetting contingencies and program reserve at prudent levels.

This is the largest project in the Prop K Expenditure Plan, which designates up to $270 million (in 2003 dollars) for this purpose. The Expenditure Plan specifies that the downtown rail extension and the terminal, known as the Transit Center Building, are to be built as a single integrated project. To date, the Authority has allocated $151.5 million in Prop K funds to the project, in addition to state Regional Improvement Program (RIP) funds.

TJPA has worked to offset the $310.4 million Phase I cost increase through value engineering, phasing, identification of funding and financing strategies, and reducing costs by re-bidding the steel superstructure. In 2013, the Transportation Authority approved programming of $41 million in additional Prop K funds to the project. These funds became available as a result of significantly reduced financing costs in the 2013 Strategic Plan baseline adopted by the Transportation Authority Board in July 2013. In June 2013, the Authority Board also programmed $6 million in OneBayArea Grant funds to bicycle and pedestrian elements of the project.

The Transportation Authority continues to work closely with TJPA, the City, and other funding partners to support delivery of Phase 1, and to advance strategies to close the funding gaps for both Phase 1 and Phase 2. The funding situation for DTX calls for the TJPA and its funding partners to take a fresh look at the project to develop a strategy to move the project forward, including but not limited to looking at compatibility with current land use plans, project cost, project delivery methods, and funding strategies so that Caltrain can be extended to the new TTC.

Transbay Transit Center (TTC)

During calendar year 2013, the Transbay Joint Powers Authority (TJPA) continued its efforts on program management/program controls, design and engineering for the TTC, on-call coordination and engineering for the DTX, survey and environmental consulting work, and right-of-way acquisitions. Design efforts continued on the Transit Center Building, where the final design (100%) package was issued for final review in October. It will be issued for bids in early April 2014. With preliminary engineering complete for the DTX, Parsons Transportation Group continued coordination with Caltrain and the California High-Speed Rail Authority (CHSRA).

Transbay Transit Center and the developing San Francisco animation from steelblue on Vimeo.

The $187 million contact with Balfour Beatty for the construction of the buttress, excavation, and shoring of the new TTC building reached 90% in 2013, and is expected to be complete in Spring 2014. In October 2012, TJPA awarded a $122 million contract to Shimmick Construction for the construction of the below-grade structure. They continue work on geothermal system installation, waterproofing of the mud slab and walls, placing rebar for the mat slab, and placing concrete for the five-foot thick mat slab. In July 2013, TJPA gave Notice to Proceed on the Steel Superstructures contract. By the end of 2013, Phase I of the TTC reached 43% of completion. Construction of the TTC is expected to be complete in late 2016. Bus operations are scheduled to commence in late 2017. Meanwhile, bus operations continue at the new temporary terminal.

Since 2004, TJPA has awarded over $203 million in contracts and subcontracts to DBEs and SBEs, resulting in over $125 million in payments to those DBEs and SBEs through September 2013. In Federal Fiscal Years 2011-13, the TJPA’s DBE/SBE participation goal was 8.3%. That goal was exceeded; 19% of all contract awards were to DBEs/SBEs, who received payments totaling over $83 million.

Downtown Extension (DTX)

The DTX is scheduled for completion in 2019; however, work is on hold due to the funding gap. The current estimate for Phase 2 (DTX) is $2.6 billion.


Download the most recent Transbay Transit Center fact sheet.

Project Schedule

TIMEFRAMEspacer image
April 2009   Transit Center Final Design begins
August 2010   Operations begin at Temporary Terminal
August 2010   Demolition of old terminal begins
December 2010   Shoring Wall and Buttress construction begins
February 2013   Sub-surface construction begins
April 2014   Superstructure construction begins
April 2015   Exterior Enclosure construction begins
April 2015   Interior Finishes begin
October 2017   Bus Operations begin