Creating rapid north-south rail transit will bring quicker rides and safer, more efficient transit service from the core of the city to its fast-growing southeast neighborhoods. The Central Subway will reduce to 7 minutes what is now a 20-minute bus trip from Muni's station at Fourth and King Streets to Chinatown. Its two-car trains will be able to carry up to 250 passengers, as compared to the 60 or so carried on a 40-foot bus.
The Central Subway is also key to the economic revitalization of Chinatown, which was weakened economically after the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake closed the nearby Embarcadero Freeway. Upon opening, the projected ridership along the entire T Third Line will be 43,700 daily boarding, and by 2030, it is projected to reach 65,000 customers per day.
During the Central Subway’s preliminary engineering phase, WSP USA led the joint venture that provided:
- Evaluation of various tunnel construction methods;
- Relocation of underground utilities;
- Preliminary design of the four stations;
- and tie-in to the surface line at Fourth and King Streets.
- Preliminary engineering and Final Design
- Environmental Assessments
- Alignment Evaluations
- Tunnel and Station Construction Method Studies
- Portal and Station location evaluations
- Construction cost estimating and scheduling
- Tunnel lining design
- Soil Structure Interaction Analysis
- Cut-and-cover station design
- Seismic design
- Safety and security
- Fire/ Life safety and ventilation
The Central Subway Design Group joint venture, with WSP in the lead, is responsible for the final design and design support for the three underground stations now under construction at Yerba Buena/Moscone, Union Square/Market Street and Chinatown.
The joint venture provided engineering, cost estimating and environmental studies, which led to the issuance of a Record of Decision (ROD) from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). Also key to the project’s success was a strong public involvement program.