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Mayor Lee visits tunnel launch site, meets tunneling machine Mom Chung

Community News - Fri, 05/10/2013 - 14:05

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San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee takes a look at tunnel boring machine Mom Chung in the excavation under 4th Street where tunneling will begin.

Yesterday, Mayor Edwin M. Lee paid a visit to the construction site where tunneling will begin and saw Mom Chung, the 350-foot-long tunnel boring machine currently being assembled underground.

Speaking to reporters in front of the digging cutter head of Mom Chung, Mayor Lee said he was excited about the Central Subway, calling the T Third Line extension “one of the most important projects for the future of San Francisco.”

SFMTA Board Chairman Tom Nolan, SFMTA Director of Transportation Edward D. Reiskin, Central Subway Program Director John Funghi, key city officials and members of Central Subway team accompanied Mayor Lee under 4th Street to show him the major excavation where tunneling will begin. Check out the photos below for more on the Mayor’s visit to this important construction site.

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The tour group heads down the ramp near 4th and Bryant and into the excavation beneath the roadway.

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The tour group makes its way through the excavation and toward Mom Chung. From left to right: Director Reiskin, Mayor Lee, John Funghi, tunnel contract Resident Engineer Sarah Wilson.

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Sarah Wilson, the engineer overseeing construction of the Central Subway tunnels, explains the details of the tunneling process to Mayor Lee. From left to right: SFPUC Assistant General Manager Emilio Cruz, SFPUC General Manager Harlan Kelly, Jr., Mayor Lee, the Mayor’s Chief of Staff Steve Kawa, John Funghi, Sarah Wilson.

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Mayor Lee responds to questions from reporters. From left to right: Director Reiskin, Chairman Nolan, Mayor Lee, John Funghi, SFMTA Board Vice Chairman Cheryl Brinkman, Sarah Wilson.

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The tour group gathers around the front of Mom Chung. Called the cutter head, this spinning excavator will dig through the earth under 4th Street, Stockton Street and Columbus Avenue.

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Representatives of tunnel construction contractor Barnard Impregilo Healy meet Mayor Lee and Director Reiskin. From left to right: Assistant Project Superintendent Andy Granger, Mayor Lee, Project Manager Ben Campbell, Director Reiskin.

Read more about the Mayor’s visit in today’s San Francisco Chronicle. Tunneling is slated to begin in June.

Categories: Community News

Construction Update | May 4-13

Construction Updates - Fri, 05/03/2013 - 16:09

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Crews are excavating a shaft on Ellis Street near where the Central Subway tunnels will pass beneath the existing BART and Muni tunnels. Crews will perform ground improvements here.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by May 13:

  • Construction impacts continuing at all sites.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until May 13:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant will be in effect some evenings and weekends while we lower parts of the tunnel boring machine into the excavation beneath the roadway. Two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block on at all other times. Please contact us at central.subway@sfmta.com if you have questions about the closure schedule. On Bryant Street at 5th Street, the left lane and several parking spaces will be closed for use as a staging area for tunnel boring machine installation.
  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): On 4th Street between Market and Stevenson, the sidewalk and two traffic lanes will remain closed on the eastern side of the street. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom.
  • Union Square: Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Photos: Installation of Mom Chung, our first tunnel boring machine

Featured News - Tue, 04/30/2013 - 13:34

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This 123-ton ring was the first part of tunnel boring machine Mom Chung to be installed underground. Installation began late Friday night and continued through Saturday morning.

Mom Chung has arrived — all 750 tons of her — and soon she’ll start building San Francisco’s newest subway tunnel, the first constructed in the city since the 1970s.

Mom Chung is one of two tunnel boring machines (TBMs) built specially for the Central Subway Project. The massive machines consist of a rotating cutter wheel (the cutter head), a cylindrical steel shell (the shield) and a 300-foot train of tunnel-building mechanisms (the trailing gear). Starting a few weeks from now, Mom Chung will excavate and construct the tunnel for southbound trains, digging at a rate of about 40 feet per day far beneath the surface of the city. Her twin sister, Big Alma, will begin building the tunnel for northbound trains about two months later.

You can follow both machines on Twitter, at @MomChungtheTBM and @BigAlmatheTBM, for updates as they dig their way north.

On Friday, crews worked through the night to lower the first part of Mom Chung into the major excavation beneath 4th Street where tunneling will begin. The part, one of three rings that make up the shield, is 20 feet in diameter and weighs about 123 tons. Of the 750-ton TBM, this was the heaviest part, and one of the most complicated to install.

Crews will assemble Mom Chung underground over the next four to six weeks. She will then begin tunneling in June, traveling north under 4th Street and Stockton Street through SoMa, Union Square, Chinatown and North Beach. Once she starts tunneling, you won’t hear, see or feel her — she’ll be too far underground and will pass below without a trace above ground.

The photos below show the installation of the first part of Mom Chung both above and beneath 4th Street, from the middle of Friday night until well past sunrise Saturday.

If you would like to see Mom Chung in person, stop by our staging area on Bryant Street at 5th Street. Trucks will deliver pieces of her during the next few weeks. We’ll store the parts on Bryant Street before installing them underground.

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After picking the ring up, the gantry crane maneuvered it into position over the opening of the excavation. The excavation is called a launch box.

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The ring was then lowered into the launch box.

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Now halfway down, here’s a view of the ring from the ramp entering the launch box.

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Crews look on as the 123-ton TBM segment descends underground.

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The crane turned the TBM segment to rest it on a cradle. The other two shield segments and the rotating, excavating cutter head will soon join this first part.

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This is the machinery of Mom Chung — a state-of-the-art assemblage of tunnel-building motors and wires.

For more information about Mom Chung, and to see photos of her before she was disassembled for transport to San Francisco, check out our project website.

Categories: News

Apple Store entrance to Powell Street Station to close for Central Subway construction

Featured News - Mon, 04/22/2013 - 15:12

BART entrance closure

While the Stockton and Ellis entrance is closed, customers may use one of seven other entrances to access the Powell Street Station.

Starting Wednesday, April 24, the entrance to the Powell Street Station located at Stockton and Ellis streets will close to accommodate Central Subway construction. The closure of this entrance, also known as the Apple Store entrance, will be in effect for approximately five years to facilitate construction of the Central Subway tunnel and Union Square/Market Street Station.

When the Central Subway opens in 2019, this entrance will provide convenient access to the T Third Line at the future Union Square/Market Street Station. An underground concourse connection will link the Union Square/Market Street and Powell Street stations, allowing customers to transfer easily between the T Third Line and the BART and Muni Metro lines operating in the Market Street tunnel.

To facilitate access to Powell Street Station while the Apple Store entrance is closed, signage will direct customers to the nearest alternate entrance at 4th and Market streets.

We appreciate your continued patience while construction is in progress.

Categories: News

Apple Store entrance to Powell Street Station to close for Central Subway construction

Press Releases - Mon, 04/22/2013 - 15:12

BART entrance closure

While the Stockton and Ellis entrance is closed, customers may use one of seven other entrances to access the Powell Street Station.

Starting Wednesday, April 24, the entrance to the Powell Street Station located at Stockton and Ellis streets will close to accommodate Central Subway construction. The closure of this entrance, also known as the Apple Store entrance, will be in effect for approximately five years to facilitate construction of the Central Subway tunnel and Union Square/Market Street Station.

When the Central Subway opens in 2019, this entrance will provide convenient access to the T Third Line at the future Union Square/Market Street Station. An underground concourse connection will link the Union Square/Market Street and Powell Street stations, allowing customers to transfer easily between the T Third Line and the BART and Muni Metro lines operating in the Market Street tunnel.

To facilitate access to Powell Street Station while the Apple Store entrance is closed, signage will direct customers to the nearest alternate entrance at 4th and Market streets.

We appreciate your continued patience while construction is in progress.

Categories: Press Releases

Construction Update | April 20-29

Construction Updates - Fri, 04/19/2013 - 17:23

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On Ellis Street, crews continue to excavate and stabilize a shaft that will be used to perform ground improvements.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square, and we will perform a soil boring in North Beach. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by April 29:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Starting Monday, April 20, full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant will be in effect some evenings and weekends while we install a gantry crane and lower a tunnel boring machine into the tunnel launch box. Two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block at all other times. Please contact us at central.subway@sfmta.com if you have questions about the closure schedule.
  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): On 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison, all lanes are planned to reopen to traffic on Friday, April 26. On 4th Street between Market and Stevenson, the sidewalk and two traffic lanes will remain closed on the eastern side of the street. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom.
  • North Beach: To facilitate a soil boring, the parking lane on Powell Street between Union and Columbus may be closed during construction hours (7 a.m. to 7 p.m.) from Monday, April 22, until Wednesday, April 24.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until April 29:

  • Union Square: Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Bids opened for major stations, track and systems contract (SFMTA Contract 1300)

Featured News - Fri, 04/19/2013 - 16:45

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These renderings show the designs of the Central Subway’s three subway stations and one surface-level station.

Yesterday at the headquarters of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), bids were opened for the contract to construct the Central Subway’s stations, track and systems. The three bids for the contract, SFMTA Contract No. 1300, were submitted by the following firms:

  • Tutor Perini
  • Amoroso, FCC, Southland JV
  • Skanska, Shimmick, Stacy & Witbeck JV

The apparent lowest bidder is Tudor Perini with a bid of $840 million. Although the bids are higher than estimated, they fall within the project budget of $1.6 billion. We will work with our policy board and funding partners to move forward with this major contract.

This contract is the final construction contract for completing the Central Subway. After the contract is awarded, construction of the Central Subway’s stations, tracks and systems will commence in SoMa, Union Square and Chinatown.

We’ll keep you updated as the review process proceeds and a contractor is selected. You can view a PDF of the bids here. You may also download the full bid packages at the following links:

To view more design renderings of the Central Subway’s three subway stations and one surface-level station, check out our Flickr page.

Categories: News

Bids opened for major stations, track and systems contract (SFMTA Contract 1300)

Contract News - Fri, 04/19/2013 - 16:45

station renderings

These renderings show the designs of the Central Subway’s three subway stations and one surface-level station.

Yesterday at the headquarters of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), bids were opened for the contract to construct the Central Subway’s stations, track and systems. The three bids for the contract, SFMTA Contract No. 1300, were submitted by the following firms:

  • Tutor Perini
  • Amoroso, FCC, Southland JV
  • Skanska, Shimmick, Stacy & Witbeck JV

The apparent lowest bidder is Tudor Perini with a bid of $840 million. Although the bids are higher than estimated, they fall within the project budget of $1.6 billion. We will work with our policy board and funding partners to move forward with this major contract.

This contract is the final construction contract for completing the Central Subway. After the contract is awarded, construction of the Central Subway’s stations, tracks and systems will commence in SoMa, Union Square and Chinatown.

We’ll keep you updated as the review process proceeds and a contractor is selected. You can view a PDF of the bids here. You may also download the full bid packages at the following links:

To view more design renderings of the Central Subway’s three subway stations and one surface-level station, check out our Flickr page.

Categories: Contract News

Central Subway awarded $142 million in federal New Starts funds

Featured News - Tue, 04/16/2013 - 13:49

T Third at 4th and King

The T Third Line, shown here at 4th and King streets, will travel underground through SoMa, Union Square and Chinatown once the Central Subway is complete.

Last week we received great news from our funding partners in Washington, D.C. As part of the federal budget for the current fiscal year, the Central Subway was awarded about $142 million through the Federal Transit Administration’s New Starts program.

In total, the FTA has committed $942.2 million in New Starts funds to construct the Central Subway, which will extend the Muni Metro T Third Line through SoMa, Union Square and Chinatown. The funds are awarded annually throughout the course of the project. Due to sequestration, this year’s award is about $8 million less than President Obama recommended; however, there is no change to the FTA’s total funding commitment.

For the upcoming fiscal year, President Obama’s budget, announced last Wednesday, recommends $150 million in New Starts funds for the project (see page 67 of this document).

Federal sources are providing about half of the funding for the entire Third Street Light Rail Transit Project, which includes the existing T Third Line and the Central Subway. The remaining half is from state and local sources. For more on funding for the Central Subway Project, visit our website.

We thank our federal funding partners for their continued support for the Central Subway, an essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: News

Construction Update | April 13-22

Construction Updates - Fri, 04/12/2013 - 18:19

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Construction of underground walls is in progress on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by April 22:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant will be in effect the weekend of April 13-14. Starting Wednesday, April 17, a gantry crane will be installed over 4th Street at the southern end of the block. 4th Street will be closed at night to install the crane. At all other times, two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block.
  • Union Square: Starting Saturday, April 13, Saturday work hours at this site will be from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until April 22:

  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): On 4th Street between Market and Stevenson, the sidewalk and two traffic lanes will remain closed on the eastern side of the street. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Construction Update | April 6-15

Construction Updates - Fri, 04/05/2013 - 17:04

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Beneath 4th Street, crews are pouring concrete to build the floor of the tunnel launch box between Harrison and Bryant.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by April 15:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant will be in effect the weekend of April 13-14 to accommodate sewer work. On weekdays and on the weekend of April 6-7, two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block. Launch box construction will continue. Starting Monday, April 15, a gantry crane will be installed over 4th Street at the southern end of the block. 4th Street may be closed at night to install the crane.
  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): The temporary taxi stand on 4th Street between Market and Stevenson has been removed due to safety and traffic flow concerns. On that block, the sidewalk and two traffic lanes will remain closed on the eastern side of the street. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.
  • Union Square: Starting next Saturday, April 13, Saturday work hours at this site will be from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until April 15:

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Check it out: Our spring 2013 project newsletter

Community News - Tue, 04/02/2013 - 12:15

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The Central Subway team helped welcome the Year of the Snake at the Chinese New Year Parade & Festival in Chinatown.

Hot off the presses: It’s the spring 2013 edition of the Central Subway newsletter. Download it in English or Chinese to read about the latest project news and to gain insight into construction progress, funding milestones and more.

In addition to the print version, you can view the online version of our newsletter here.

To subscribe to receive the e-newsletter via email, fill out this form and check the “Quarterly Project Newsletter” box. You can also subscribe to our weekly construction updates and to receive neighborhood-specific project information.

This edition of the quarterly project newsletter features:

Thank you for your continued interest in the Central Subway Project.

Categories: Community News

Construction Update | March 30-April 8

Construction Updates - Fri, 03/29/2013 - 17:02

Ellis Street jet grouting shaft

On Ellis Street, crews are excavating this shaft to perform ground improvements.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by April 8:

  • Construction impacts continuing at all sites.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until April 8:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): On 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant, launch box construction will continue. Two lanes of traffic will remain open. The on-ramp to westbound I-80 may be closed from 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. on weeknights and all day Saturday and Sunday.
  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): The sidewalk and three traffic lanes will be closed on the eastern side of 4th Street between Market and Stevenson streets, with a temporary pedestrian walkway around the construction zone and a temporary taxi stand next to the pedestrian walkway. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.
  • Union Square: Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Construction Update | March 23-April 1

Construction Updates - Fri, 03/22/2013 - 16:58

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At the site where tunneling will begin, crews have started to build a floor known as a mud slab on the bottom of the excavation.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by April 1:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant may be in effect the weekend of March 30-31 to accommodate sewer work (tentative). On weekdays and on the weekend of March 23-24, two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block. Launch box construction will continue.
  • Union Square: Starting Monday, March 25, weekday construction hours will be 6 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until April 1:

  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): The sidewalk and three traffic lanes will be closed on 4th Street between Market and Stevenson streets, with a temporary pedestrian walkway around the construction zone and a temporary taxi stand next to the pedestrian walkway. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Questions about construction in North Beach? Check out these FAQs.

Community News - Tue, 03/19/2013 - 14:11

The Central Subway tunnels will end here, at the Pagoda Palace in North Beach, under a plan to relocate the retrieval site for the project’s tunnel boring machines.

In response to community concerns about Central Subway construction in North Beach, SFMTA staff and multiple city agencies have worked for the past few months to relocate the retrieval site of the project’s tunnel boring machines (TBMs) from Columbus Avenue to the Pagoda Palace (1731-1741 Powell Street).

As we complete the administrative steps required to finalize the site change, we would like to clarify the details of the plan and respond to questions that have been raised about it. These FAQs, posted on our website, include information about the Pagoda Palace construction plan, construction impacts, the reasoning behind the change and the community’s involvement in the process.

In addition, we have prepared a memo for the SFMTA Board and our partner agencies that describes our construction plan, the lease terms for the Pagoda site, and our process in pursuing the change. You can read the memo online here.

Should you have any further questions about the Pagoda Palace plan, don’t hesitate to contact our team at central.subway@sfmta.com or 415-701-4371. Thank you for your continued participation as we work to improve public transit in San Francisco.

Categories: Community News

Questions about construction in North Beach? Check out these FAQs.

Featured News - Tue, 03/19/2013 - 14:11

The Central Subway tunnels will end here, at the Pagoda Palace in North Beach, under a plan to relocate the retrieval site for the project’s tunnel boring machines.

In response to community concerns about Central Subway construction in North Beach, SFMTA staff and multiple city agencies have worked for the past few months to relocate the retrieval site of the project’s tunnel boring machines (TBMs) from Columbus Avenue to the Pagoda Palace (1731-1741 Powell Street).

As we complete the administrative steps required to finalize the site change, we would like to clarify the details of the plan and respond to questions that have been raised about it. These FAQs, posted on our website, include information about the Pagoda Palace construction plan, construction impacts, the reasoning behind the change and the community’s involvement in the process.

In addition, we have prepared a memo for the SFMTA Board and our partner agencies that describes our construction plan, the lease terms for the Pagoda site, and our process in pursuing the change. You can read the memo online here.

Should you have any further questions about the Pagoda Palace plan, don’t hesitate to contact our team at central.subway@sfmta.com or 415-701-4371. Thank you for your continued participation as we work to improve public transit in San Francisco.

Categories: News

Construction update | March 16-25

Construction Updates - Fri, 03/15/2013 - 17:21

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At Union Square, the contractor is continuing to construct below-ground walls in preparation for tunneling.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by March 25:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant may be in effect the weekend of March 23-24 to accommodate sewer work (tentative). On weekdays and on the weekend of March 16-17, two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block. Launch box construction will continue.
  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): By Monday, March 25, the sidewalk and three traffic lanes will be closed on 4th Street between Market and Stevenson streets. A temporary pedestrian walkway will be in place around the construction zone when the sidewalk is closed. A temporary taxi stand will be established next to the pedestrian walkway, in the nearest traffic lane. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until March 25:

  • Union Square: Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Construction update | March 9-18

Construction Updates - Fri, 03/08/2013 - 17:03

Stockton Street covered walkway

A covered walkway has been installed on Stockton Street next to the site where crews are installing underground walls.

During the next 10 days, construction to prepare for tunneling will continue in SoMa and Union Square. No Central Subway construction is planned to occur in Chinatown or North Beach.

Descriptions of construction impacts in each neighborhood are available here or at the links below. We also post construction, traffic detour and Muni impact information on our project Google Map.

Construction impacts are planned to change at these locations by March 18:

  • Southern SoMa (Harrison to King/Berry): Full closure of 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant will be in effect from Friday, March 8, at 8 p.m. until Sunday, March 10. At all other times, two lanes of traffic will remain open on this block. Launch box construction will continue.
  • Union Square: Starting next week, the contractor will begin working extended hours (until 10 p.m.) on weekdays and during the day on Saturdays. Stockton Street between Geary and Ellis will remain closed to vehicle traffic. Ellis Street between Stockton and Powell will remain closed to westbound traffic.

At these locations, current construction impacts are planned to continue until March 18:

  • Northern SoMa (Market to Harrison): One lane will remain closed to traffic on 4th Street between Market and Stevenson. Two lanes of traffic will remain closed on 4th Street between Howard and Folsom. One lane will remain closed on 4th Street between Folsom and Harrison.
  • Chinatown: No construction planned
  • North Beach: No construction planned

We appreciate your patience and support while we build this essential upgrade to San Francisco’s public transportation system.

Categories: Construction Updates

Introducing Big Alma and Mom Chung, the Central Subway’s tunnel boring machines

Featured News - Thu, 03/07/2013 - 13:42

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Mom Chung, shown here, will construct the tunnel for southbound trains. More photos of both TBMs are available on our Flickr page. (Photo courtesy of The Robbins Company)

We are excited to introduce Big Alma and Mom Chung, the tunnel boring machines (TBMs) that will excavate and construct the Central Subway tunnels. Named Big Alma, after “Big Alma” de Bretteville Spreckels, and Mom Chung, after Dr. Margaret “Mom” Chung, the machines will begin tunneling later this year, starting in SoMa and heading north under 4th Street and Stockton Street through Union Square, Chinatown and North Beach. A press release about the TBMs is available online here.

The first of the machines, Mom Chung, is expected to arrive in San Francisco in April. The 300-foot-long machine will be assembled within an excavation on 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant streets and will start building the tunnel for southbound trains about two months later. Big Alma will arrive soon after Mom Chung to construct the northbound tunnel.

As tunneling proceeds, updates about the TBMs, including photos of the machines and the tunnels, will be posted on Twitter at the usernames @BigAlmatheTBM and @MomChungtheTBM. You can learn more about them on our website, at www.centralsubwaysf.com/tbm-name.

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The front of the TBM, called the cutter head, spins as it excavates. In this photo Mom Chung is being tested before being disassembled for transport to San Francisco. (Photo courtesy of Barnard Impregilo Healy)

The names were selected by the public in an online poll held in January. Participants could select up to two names, one for each TBM. Of the 1,453 responses, Big Alma was the top vote-getter at 682 votes. Mom Chung took second place with 487 votes, closely followed by Firebelle Lil (451 votes), Mary Ellen (437 votes) and Juana (148 votes).

In tunneling tradition, the custom of naming TBMs is believed to bring good luck to tunneling projects. The names will remain in official use by the SFMTA and the tunneling contractor throughout the duration of the project.

“Big Alma and Mom Chung will construct San Francisco’s first new subway tunnel in decades, bringing together neighborhoods of our city that have long been in need of improved public transit,” said SFMTA Director of Transportation Ed Reiskin. “We are happy to have included the public in this exciting part of tunneling tradition. We thank everyone who voted for contributing to this important project.”

big_alma

Big Alma, shown here, is still being assembled. She will arrive in San Francisco after Mom Chung to construct the northbound tunnel.

Each TBM consists of a rotating cutter wheel (the cutter head), a cylindrical steel shell (the shield) and a 300-foot train of tunnel-building mechanisms (the trailing gear). The TBMs will arrive in several parts, to be assembled at the site on 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant streets where tunneling will begin.

About the Winning Names:

“Big Alma” de Bretteville Spreckels (1881-1968): Known as “Big Alma” (she was 6 feet tall) and “The Great-Grandmother of San Francisco,” Alma de Bretteville Spreckels was a wealthy socialite and philanthropist who, among her many accomplishments, persuaded her first husband, sugar magnate Adolph B. Spreckels, to fund the design and construction of the California Palace of the Legion of Honor at Land’s End in San Francisco.  A model in her youth, Spreckels was the inspiration for the “Victory” statue atop the Dewey Monument in the center of Union Square.

Dr. Margaret “Mom” Chung (1889-1959) was the country’s first female Chinese-American physician, practicing in the heart of San Francisco’s Chinatown. During World War II she “adopted” more than a thousand “sons,” most of them American servicemen, mentoring them, sending them presents and sharing meals with them during and after the war. She was also one of the earliest supporters of women in the Navy. When one of her “sons” became a congressman, he filed the first legislation to create a female branch of the Navy in response to a phone call from “Mom Chung.”

Categories: News

Introducing Big Alma and Mom Chung, the Central Subway’s tunnel boring machines

Community News - Thu, 03/07/2013 - 13:42

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Mom Chung, shown here, will construct the tunnel for southbound trains. More photos of both TBMs are available on our Flickr page. (Photo courtesy of The Robbins Company)

We are excited to introduce Big Alma and Mom Chung, the tunnel boring machines (TBMs) that will excavate and construct the Central Subway tunnels. Named Big Alma, after “Big Alma” de Bretteville Spreckels, and Mom Chung, after Dr. Margaret “Mom” Chung, the machines will begin tunneling later this year, starting in SoMa and heading north under 4th Street and Stockton Street through Union Square, Chinatown and North Beach. A press release about the TBMs is available online here.

The first of the machines, Mom Chung, is expected to arrive in San Francisco in April. The 300-foot-long machine will be assembled within an excavation on 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant streets and will start building the tunnel for southbound trains about two months later. Big Alma will arrive soon after Mom Chung to construct the northbound tunnel.

As tunneling proceeds, updates about the TBMs, including photos of the machines and the tunnels, will be posted on Twitter at the usernames @BigAlmatheTBM and @MomChungtheTBM. You can learn more about them on our website, at www.centralsubwaysf.com/tbm-name.

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The front of the TBM, called the cutter head, spins as it excavates. In this photo Mom Chung is being tested before being disassembled for transport to San Francisco. (Photo courtesy of Barnard Impregilo Healy)

The names were selected by the public in an online poll held in January. Participants could select up to two names, one for each TBM. Of the 1,453 responses, Big Alma was the top vote-getter at 682 votes. Mom Chung took second place with 487 votes, closely followed by Firebelle Lil (451 votes), Mary Ellen (437 votes) and Juana (148 votes).

In tunneling tradition, the custom of naming TBMs is believed to bring good luck to tunneling projects. The names will remain in official use by the SFMTA and the tunneling contractor throughout the duration of the project.

“Big Alma and Mom Chung will construct San Francisco’s first new subway tunnel in decades, bringing together neighborhoods of our city that have long been in need of improved public transit,” said SFMTA Director of Transportation Ed Reiskin. “We are happy to have included the public in this exciting part of tunneling tradition. We thank everyone who voted for contributing to this important project.”

big_alma

Big Alma, shown here, is still being assembled. She will arrive in San Francisco after Mom Chung to construct the northbound tunnel.

Each TBM consists of a rotating cutter wheel (the cutter head), a cylindrical steel shell (the shield) and a 300-foot train of tunnel-building mechanisms (the trailing gear). The TBMs will arrive in several parts, to be assembled at the site on 4th Street between Harrison and Bryant streets where tunneling will begin.

About the Winning Names:

“Big Alma” de Bretteville Spreckels (1881-1968): Known as “Big Alma” (she was 6 feet tall) and “The Great-Grandmother of San Francisco,” Alma de Bretteville Spreckels was a wealthy socialite and philanthropist who, among her many accomplishments, persuaded her first husband, sugar magnate Adolph B. Spreckels, to fund the design and construction of the California Palace of the Legion of Honor at Land’s End in San Francisco.  A model in her youth, Spreckels was the inspiration for the “Victory” statue atop the Dewey Monument in the center of Union Square.

Dr. Margaret “Mom” Chung (1889-1959) was the country’s first female Chinese-American physician, practicing in the heart of San Francisco’s Chinatown. During World War II she “adopted” more than a thousand “sons,” most of them American servicemen, mentoring them, sending them presents and sharing meals with them during and after the war. She was also one of the earliest supporters of women in the Navy. When one of her “sons” became a congressman, he filed the first legislation to create a female branch of the Navy in response to a phone call from “Mom Chung.”

Categories: Community News

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