Lafayette track rebuilding project update and time-lapse construction video


Lafayette track rebuilding project update and time-lapse construction video


Work resumes this weekend on a critical track rebuilding project near the Lafayette Station.  There will be a track shutdown between the Orinda and Walnut Creek stations on Saturday, September 28 and Sunday, September 29.  Free buses will replace trains between those stations and riders should anticipate delays of 40 minutes or more. Also, the two left lanes of eastbound Highway 24 at Oak Hill Road will be closed starting at 11 pm Friday, September 27 until 7 am Monday, September 30 to allow space for construction equipment.  Caltrans and BART will monitor backups in real time and will work together to reduce the number of lanes closed from two to one if driving delays approach 30 minutes.

Workers have been active around-the-clock during two previous shutdown weekends to replace nearly 50-year-old track components that have outlived their useful lives.  Watch our crews in action in this time-lapse video from the worksite.  The track rebuilding project is funded by voter-approved Measure RR.

The workers’ progress allowed BART to cancel a weekend track shutdown that had been scheduled for October 12-13. That will allow BART to offer regular service that weekend for Fleet Week. BART also cancelled plans to offer only single-track service between Orinda and Walnut Creek Saturday, September 21 and replaced another scheduled track closure with single-track service on the weekend of September 14-15.

After this weekend the only remaining scheduled track shutdown for the rebuilding project is October 26-27.  That shutdown is expected to include eastbound Highway 24 lane closures that are similar to the ones scheduled this coming weekend.

Single tracking will occur on Saturday, October 19. BART riders should expect delays of up to 30 minutes between Orinda and Walnut Creek on October 19 since service will operate on only one track.  The two left eastbound lanes of Highway 24 will be closed during overnight hours on the weekend of October 19.  Those closures will be from 11 pm Friday, October 18 – 7 am Saturday, October 19 and from 11 pm Saturday, October 19 – 9 am Sunday, October 20. 

Progress benchmarks

The work team has been making the most of their time in the trackway.  Here are some examples of the progress made so far:

*Replaced three of six track switches.  These are large track components that can measure up to 200 feet in length and are instrumental in allowing BART trains to move from line to line.

*Installed 3,000 feet of 5,000 feet of new rail.

*Halfway done with removing and replacing about 2.8 million pounds of rock ballast, which is essential for stabilizing the rail.

Additionally, workers are in the process of replacing 10,000 feet of train control cable, 3,200 feet of third rail, 320 electrical insulators, and 300 feet of traction power cable.  Workers are also using the time to replace platform tiles at the Lafayette Station.

Once the work is complete the noise level of trains will decrease, and passengers will experience a smoother, safer, and more reliable ride.  The Antioch-to-Millbrae line that extends through Contra Costa County into San Francisco is the busiest in the BART system.  These track improvements will benefit tens of thousands of riders every day for decades to come.

RR at work

BART District voters prioritized rebuilding BART when they approved Measure RR in 2016.  The measure provides $3.5 billion in bonds to replace outdated infrastructure across the BART system.

RR-funded projects like this one are having a real impact on the daily riding experience.  BART has already successfully completed track rebuilding projects between the Pleasant Hill/Contra Costa Centre and Concord stations as well as between the West Oakland and 12th Street/Oakland City Center stations.  Replacing aging track equipment that in some cases dates back to the beginning of service in 1972 is one reason BART’s on-time reliability rate has reached 92%.