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2023 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Before the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) invests in bike lanes, upgrades its transit fleet or makes accessibility improvements, each project goes through a comprehensive capital planning process. This process starts with defining the SFMTA’s potential investments first by how they may support the Agency’s Strategic Plan values so that the SFMTA can make well-informed decisions when prioritizing future investments. That decision-making process starts with the SFMTA 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan.

Updated every two years, the Capital Plan is a comprehensive, financially unconstrained list and assessment of potential capital needs to help achieve the SFMTA’s Strategic Plan goals over the next 20 years. For this Capital Plan, the agency identified $32.3 billion in capital needs in estimated expenditure year dollars from FY 2025 to FY 2044. In addition, the SFMTA is working with regional partners to support $23.4 billion in regional needs that could be owned and operated by agencies outside of the SFMTA or the City. Identification of a capital need in the Capital Plan is a preliminary step in the project development lifecycle but does not commit the agency to fund or approve a specific project or program.

This document provides an update to the 2021 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan and highlights the SFMTA’s ambitious vision to support the Strategic Plan values of Equity, Economic Vitality, Environmental Stewardship and Trust. To accomplish that, the SFMTA updated its capital needs list to incorporate the latest information available, adjusting for inflation, updating the cost estimates, added previously unidentified needs, responded to regulations and developed new policy. With the completion of several major long-range planning efforts, the SFMTA expanded its visionary approach to long-range capital planning. The changes between the 2021 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan and the 2023 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan are primarily due to incorporating rail expansion recommendations from the City’s ConnectSF program and the City’s Climate Action Plan, increases in the costs associated with maintaining assets in a State of Good Repair and cost escalation based on recent projects and procurements. Analysis of the SFMTA’s long-range future will occur in the update to the SFMTA Transportation 2050 forecast, which presents broad possible futures and actions to address transportation needs and priorities in San Francisco, and decisions about specific capital projects happen in the SFMTA 5-Year Capital Improvement Program (CIP), which is the funding-constrained list of specific capital projects in the next five years.

The Capital Plan is organized in the following sections:

  1. “Capital Planning at the SFMTA” provides an overview of the 20-Year Unconstrained Capital Plan, how it informs the SFMTA 5-Year CIP and the SFMTA Transportation 2050 forecast and how each of the ten Capital Programs at the SFMTA help turn strategic goals into public benefit.
  2. “2023 Update to the Capital Plan” describes the methodology for updating the capital needs list and how staff used this as an opportunity to inform stakeholders on how plans become projects.
  3. “2023 Capital Needs Summary” summarizes the sources for added or expanded capital needs and updates to existing capital needs related to restoring, enhancing and expanding the transportation system in both the near-term and the long-term, and it analyzes how and why the capital plan changes over time.
  4. “Next Capital Plan” lists potential future planning efforts for future iterations of the Capital Plan.
  5. “2023 Capital Needs and Assessment” includes the updated Capital Needs Table and the Capital Needs Assessment highlighting which capital needs support which Strategic Plan values.
  6. “Appendix” lists out the major changes to capital needs from 2021 to 2023 and the cost estimate information methodology for each capital need.

The SFMTA looks forward to collaborating with the Mayor, the Board of Supervisors, its partner city agencies, advocacy organizations and the public to create safe, reliable and affordable transportation for all.