San Francisco’s $2.2 Billion ‘Grand Central’ Is Finally Open
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San Francisco’s $2 billion transit terminal is finally open after nearly a decade of construction. The Bay Area is calling this monster transit center the “Grand Central of the West.” It spans more than three city blocks and is equipped with a rooftop park with an outdoor amphitheater, kiosks with board games, a playground, a reading area and more.
Opened on Aug. 12, the new Salesforce Transit Center is located near the heart of downtown and is expected to accommodate 100,000 passengers each weekday and up to 45 million people a year. New York’s Grand Central Station sees 750,000 visitors daily. One San Francisco native told the AP that this center was long overdue and hopes the new bus bridge that provides direct access to the Bay Bridge will alleviate traffic after the Transbay terminal was demolished in 2010.
The five-level terminal includes a bus deck and a lofty sky-lit entrance hall. The $2.2 billion project is financed by land sales, federal stimulus grants, district fees and taxes, bridge tolls and federal and state funds. Salesforce, an online business software company, opened an adjacent 61-story Salesforce Tower three months ago and bought the naming rights to the transit center in 2017 as part of a 25-year, $110 million sponsorship agreement.
Another San Francisco resident compared the new terminal the NYC’s Highline in Chelsea, the AP reported. The center will eventually be home to restaurants, retail shops and a gondola. Additionally, there are plans for a three-platform underground train station and connections to a high-speed rail line that’s under construction in California’s Central Valley.
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