WSP joined the TCCCP effort in 2014 – shortly after the enactment of MAP-21 – meeting with BART officials to discuss the newly created Core Capacity funding opportunity.
“BART had performed several planning studies to assess future operating scenarios and their capital requirements,” Emerson said. “Based on their prior studies, they asked WSP to help identify a package of projects that would meet Core Capacity eligibility requirements and successfully compete for funding.”
After evaluating several potential packages, BART selected a package consisting of four elements – a new communications-based train control (CBTC) system, additional rail cars, an expanded rail car storage yard and additional traction power substations – to increase train frequency and length.
With FTA’s 2015 approval into project development, the process was just beginning. WSP supported BART throughout the project development phase to advance a proposal that could successfully achieve FTA approval into engineering.
Initially, each element of the program had its own independent project team. It was soon apparent that integration of the four elements into one initiative was necessary if the grant request was going to be successful. WSP assumed the responsibility of “integrator” to tie the four elements together.
WSP worked with each of the project teams to develop an integrated cost estimate and schedule, financial plan, categorical exclusion, risk assessment and a set of project management plans and subplans.
“BART had not advanced a project for CIG funding in more than 20 years,” Emerson said. “WSP, with considerable experience in the process, ‘coached’ the BART team through the FTA’s requirements for CIG projects.”