Valley Link is a new 42-mile, passenger rail service connecting the over 105,000 Bay Area workers traveling daily over the Altamont Pass from their homes in the Northern San Joaquin Valley with fast, frequent, zero-emission service – providing a transit alternative to the highly congested Interstate 580 corridor and bringing new riders to the broader Bay Area transit system. The 22-mile initial operating phase between Dublin/Pleasanton and a new Mountain House Community station with additional stations at Isabel Avenue and Southfront Road will provide all-day, bi-directional service at 15-minute frequencies during peak commute periods with 45-minute frequencies at other times and is projected to carry 30,000 riders each day by 2040. Construction of the initial operating phase could start as early as 2025. Details regarding environmental review and design on this phase can be found at www.getvalleylinked.com.
Fig.1: Valley Link Alignment - LOCALLY PREFERRED ALTERNATIVE
SUMMARY OF PROJECT BENEFITS
Valley Link has been developed in partnership with its 15-member agencies to be responsive to the goals and objectives of the communities it will serve and meets an urgent need to:
Connect Housing, People and Jobs
Connects the Megaregion’s workforce to affordable housing. More than 105,000 Bay Area workers living in San Joaquin County commute daily through the Altamont in their cars.
Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 32,220 to 42,650 metric tons by 2040.
Serve Disadvantaged and Low-Income Communities and Households
Promotes equity by serving four stations within areas designated as disadvantaged or within or near low-income communities in Northern San Joaquin County.
Create New Jobs and Promote Economic Recovery
Provides an estimated 22,000 jobs during construction. When operational will support 400 jobs per year with labor income of over $19 million per year and $69 million in business sales annually.
Improve connectivity within the Northern California Megaregion: connecting housing, people, and jobs.
Rail connectivity between the San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District’s rapid transit system and the Altamont Corridor Express commuter service.
Project implementation that is fast, cost-effective and responsive to the goals and objectives of the communities it will serve.
Be a model of sustainability in the design, construction and operation of the system.
Support the vision of the California State Rail Plan to connect the Northern California Megaregion to the State rail system.
The Valley Link Rail Project is being implemented as a model of economic and environmental sustainability – one that could operate on its own created renewable energy, support transit-oriented land use development around station areas and promote innovation in station access while maximizing air quality, equity, health, and workforce benefits. The Board-adopted Sustainability Policy outlines key implementing strategies for achieving these goals.
TRANSIT ORIENTED DEVELOPMENT
The Board-adopted Transit Oriented Development Policy provides direction and guidance regarding the station area plans to be developed by local jurisdictions prior to completion of final design. These plans, in combination with a requirement to meet corridor level housing thresholds, are intended to facilitate pedestrian friendly station areas, seamless intermodal connections and the promotion of active transportation (bicycling and walking), and use of zero emission vehicles, and shared rides.
The Board has adopted policies and programs to ensure that all planning and decision-making for the project encourages public engagement and ensures a meaningful level of participation from disadvantaged communities and low- income communities and households. A Title VI Program and Public Participation and Language Assistance Plans (adopted March 10, 2021[CK3] ) guide these efforts. To further expand these efforts, the development of an Equity and Inclusion Plan is currently underway.
Federal, State, Regional & Private Sector Partners: The Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA), Caltrans, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the San Joaquin Council of Governments and the Alameda County Transportation Commission are all project partners along with the Authority’s 15 member agencies. The Authority is also working with private sector leadership including the Bay Area Council, San Joaquin Partnership, Innovation Tri-Valley and Chambers of Commerce throughout the project service area.
The 15-member Board of Directors is comprised of representatives from the cities of Dublin, Lathrop, Livermore, Manteca, Pleasanton, Stockton, Tracy, Danville, San Ramon, and the Mountain House Community Services District; the counties of Alameda and San Joaquin; and the Livermore Amador Valley Transit Authority (LAVTA), San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) and the San Joaquin Regional Rail Commission (SJRRC).