By Robert Haugh
Last night, the Valley Transit Authority (VTA) staff did what they didn’t do a year ago. They clearly said how they were committed to building a Santa Clara BART station.
BART Silicon Valley business operations and communications director for VTA Bernice Alaniz cited Santa Clara News Online’s story from yesterday in her presentation.
She emphasized that the Phase II part of the project from Berryessa to Santa Clara is defined for federal funding as 6 miles and has 4 stations, including Santa Clara’s. Eliminating the Santa Clara Station would require a change to the project definition.
VTA tried to cut the Santa Clara Station and San Jose’s Little Portugal station in 2014. But the project has been redefined since then.
But some Councilmembers were unhappy with other info that VTA staff shared in their presentation.
“I believe the Santa Clara Station is kind of an afterthought,” said Councilman Suds Jain. “BART and VTA need the maintenance yard but we’re sort of getting shortchanged by the design and amenities.”
Other Councilmembers and Santa Clara residents raised issues about the impact a BART station will have on traffic on Brokaw and Costco. The station will have 500 parking spaces which is not considered much for an end-of-the-line station. Some complained that the design happened with little public input.
We’ll be hearing more about this in 2022. VTA staff said they will be looking to sign Cooperative Agreement #2 this year with the City. That will allow more work on design and construction.