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State Confirms Grants to help Expand Muni Train Fleet

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which oversees all transportation in the city, including the Municipal Railway (Muni), today announced that the California State Transportation Agency will program $41 million in new cap and trade funds as part of the Transit and Intercity Rail Capacity Program (TIRCP) to allow for the growth of the current light rail vehicle fleet (LRV) by a total of 64 trains.

“I am grateful for the leadership of Governor Jerry Brown, California State Transportation Agency Secretary Brian Kelly and other State legislative leaders for investing in improvements that will have a direct impact on riders, who will see new light rail vehicles and a more reliable, safe and affordable experience on Muni,” said Mayor Ed Lee.

The SFMTA has awarded a contract to Siemens to manufacture Muni’s next generation of LRVs. The contract for $648 million includes 151 vehicles to replace the existing fleet, as well as multiple options for fleet expansion. Over time, this and planned future TIRCP funding will allow the agency to purchase 40 of its 64 expansion LRVs to help meet current and projected ridership demand. The first 24 out of the 64 expansion vehicles are fully funded. TIRCP funds are needed to fund the remaining 40 vehicles. State TIRCP funds will be matched with $166 million in SFMTA revenue bonds, SFMTA operating funds, local sales tax, One Bay Area Grant and Central Subway project funding sources that set aside funds for additional vehicles to support new service.

“These additional vehicles will bring a once-in-a-generation improvement for people riding Muni,” said Ed Reiskin, SFMTA Director of Transportation. “By the year 2040, it is estimated that Muni will carry over 1 million rides a day. These new vehicles will provide additional capacity to support 250,000 trips and increase transit connectivity for millions of people throughout the Bay Area.”

The first LRVs are set to be delivered by the end of 2016 and will be placed into service in 2017.

The new LRVs are being designed based on the feedback of more than 8,000 Muni riders collected last fall, including a new seat configuration, new interior color schemes, new exterior design and a host of other features. Compared to our current LRV fleet, these new vehicles will last 10 times longer going at least 25,000 miles before significant maintenance is required. New LRVs will also feature simplified door and step operations, which are the single biggest cause of delays on the system; operate more quietly on the street and improve service for hundreds of thousands of daily riders.  

For more information on new vehicles, see video: