After years of waiting and more than $1 billion spent, San Francisco’s new Central Subway officially opens Saturday with limited service.
The long-awaited project will take Muni riders to four new stations: 4th and Brannan, Yerba Buena/Moscone, Union Square/Market Street and Chinatown/Rose Pak.
Testing has been underway for some time. Special weekend service runs through the first week of January. It’s free until full service begins in January.
“Tomorrow gives our staff the opportunity to get trained with actual passengers in the tunnel and on our trains, and it gives community an opportunity to actually see what they have put up with 10 years of construction for and how it’s going to change San Francisco,” San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Director Jeffrey Tumlin said.
Planners said they expect a good crowd for this weekend’s launch. They will have workers out to help with any issues.
Daniel Luu, president of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, said seeing special weekend service begin on the Central Subway has been a long time coming.
“Through a lot of hardships, a lot of delays, we finally see this station open,” he said. “It’s really a light at the end of the tunnel, but this tunnel is going to be coming from the Rose Pak Station.”
He’s hopeful about what it might eventually do for the neighborhood, which struggled to deal with construction and impacts from the pandemic.
“It’s only an 8-minute ride from Yerba Buena to Chinatown,” he said. “We want this to be an alternative for conventioneers and also downtown businesses to come here for lunch or to come here for happy hour.”
Source: NBC Bay Area