Why New Cars
BART began service over 40 years ago, and the original cars are still in use today. They were rehabilitated in the ‘90s to extend their use, but are now near the end of their useful lives and need to be replaced.
Since 1972, BART’s train cars have been safely and reliably carrying riders around the Bay Area. When the system first opened, Ronald Reagan was governor, The Godfather was in theaters and Atari was releasing its seminal video game Pong.
The majority of train cars in the BART fleet have been in use since BART service began. The fleet includes three types of train cars that were purchased and put in service at different times.
|Model||Supplier||Number of Vehicles||Year in Service||Typical Useful Life Span||Year of Rehab||Typical End of Useful Life|
In the late ‘90s the oldest train cars were successfully rehabilitated, adding 15 years to their life and increasing their reliability to some of the best levels in the fleet. Both the rehabilitated cars and their newer counterparts will reach the end of their useful life within the next 10 years.
At an average age of over 30 years old, BART is currently running the oldest fleet in the United States.
The technology in these old cars has become outdated as significant improvements in propulsion, communications and failure monitoring have developed. Many of the older systems are no longer produced, making it difficult and costly to find parts for repair and maintenance.
In order to prevent delays caused by worn-out parts and unreliable trains, new train cars will be phased-in to the existing fleet over 15-20 years beginning in 2017. In doing so, BART will control maintenance costs and provide more reliable service to BART customers.
In the four decades since BART started service, annual ridership has steadily increased.