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The Source for Public Transportation News and Analysis March 23, 2012
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Santa Clara VTA Receives FFGA for BART Extension

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) in San Jose, CA, recently received the largest grant in its history: a $900 million funding commitment from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) through the New Starts Funding Program for the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) Silicon Valley Berryessa Extension Project.

FTA Deputy Administrator Therese McMillan presented the $900 million Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) to VTA General Manager Michael Burns for signature.

More than 300 people attended the signing ceremony.

“President Obama understands that, even in austere times, building transportation for our nation is not a luxury but a necessity,” said McMillan. “Together, in the partnership that we are demonstrating today, we can put people back to work making an America built to last with a transportation system that is the envy of the world, and the BART Silicon Valley Project will be a part of that system.”

“For years, many doubted we could bring BART to the Silicon Valley,” Burns said. “They said it was too hard. They said it was too expensive. They said it would never happen. But we’re well on our way to delivering the impossible.”

The signed FFGA represents the last and final step in sealing the funding “deal.” After the signatures and handshakes, VTA also received its first $100 million allocation from the New Starts Funding Program.

This unprecedented public works project will break ground on April 12. Once completed, the 10-mile, two-station BART extension will help relieve congested freeway corridors and prepare Santa Clara County for future job and population growth expected in the next 25 years.


Participants in the signing event include, from left: seated, FTA Deputy Administrator Therese McMillan and VTA General Manager Michael Burns; standing, Carl Guardino, Silicon Valley Leadership Group president and CEO; San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed; Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Mike Honda (D-CA); and Santa Clara County Supervisor/VTA Board Chair Ken Yeager.


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