Train must pass test be­fore BART can reach San Jose

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Q

When in 2019 is the rib­bon cut­ting for BART to San Jose? — Gary M., San Jose

A

That is any­one’s guess. First, they need to test the trains on the new 10-mile ex­ten­sion.

Q

I’ve driven on Lundy and Mur­phy at least 100 times this year and not once have I seen any BART trains be­ing tested. I be­lieve BART is three to four years away from San Jose. The Ber­ryessa and Mil­pi­tas sta­tions were built with 2018 tech­nol­ogy, BART is based on 1970s and 1980s tech­nol­ogy. The sys­tems can­not com­mu­ni­cate. — Sid Bahuguna, San Jose

A

The test­ing of trains has been put on hold un­til the re­place­ment of the com­mu­ni­ca­tions sys­tems is com­pleted early next year. Then test­ing will re­sume but the VTA said the com­ing ex­ten­sion from Warm Springs to Ber­ryessa is un­likely to be haul­ing rid­ers un­til Oct. 1 at the ear­li­est.

At least it’s not three or four years away.

Q

I rode the SFO-An­ti­och BART train from SFO to 19th Street in Oak­land. For my en­tire ride there was no an­nounce­ment of the stops. Ei­ther the con­duc­tor was not an­nounc­ing them or the PA sys­tem was not work­ing. This is a se­ri­ous prob­lem for peo­ple who are not at a win­dow seat of have lim­ited vis­ual acu­ity, the only way to know where you are is to ei­ther count the stops or man­age to peer out a win­dow to see a sta­tion sign. Could you pass this on to BART? — Adele Ho, Rich­mond

A

It sounds like you were in a car that had a mal­func­tion­ing PA sys­tem. Let train op­er­a­tors know when you can’t hear an­nounce­ments by us­ing the call but­ton lo­cated at the end doors. Each car has its own sys­tem, so rid­ers can also move to other cars if they can’t hear the op­er­a­tor.

BART’s new cars that are be­ing rolled out have au­to­mated an­nounce­ments of which sta­tion is next. They also will have dig­i­tal screens in mul­ti­ple lo­ca­tions that show which sta­tion is next and a dig­i­tal map with a “you are here” mov­ing bub­ble.

And BART is in­stalling big bright sta­tion signs on the plat­forms, so it is eas­ier to glance out the win­dow and know what sta­tion you are pulling into.

Q

Why did they turn off the me­ter­ing lights from Bear Creek Road to High­way 17? It now slows traf­fic past Idlewild when I hit that part of the road around 6:50 a.m. — Steve Fuller

A

There have been prob­lems with the equip­ment and Cal­trans hopes to have a new con­troller sys­tem soon and have the me­ter work­ing for next week’s com­mute.

Q

On In­ter­state 680 be­tween Fre­mont and Sunol, crews are tear­ing down what ap­pears to be a fairly new con­crete cen­ter me­dian strip. Did they build this strip in the wrong lo­ca­tion? — Jim McDon­ald, Liver­more

A

No. Me­dian bar­ri­ers need to be taller for safety rea­sons and shifted to hold FasTrak equip­ment for when ex­press lanes open in a cou­ple of years.

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