Downtown Berkeley station
Dpwntown Berkeley station platform in 2008
|Location||2160 Shattuck Avenue
|Platforms||1 island platform|
|Connections|| AC Transit: Routes 6, 7, 18, 51B, 52, 65, 67, 79, 88, 800, 851, F, FS
Bear Transit: C, H, P, R, RFS
|Opened||January 29, 1973 (44 years ago)|
|Previous names||Berkeley (1973-1995)|
|Passengers (FY 2016)||13,748 exits/day|
Downtown Berkeley is a Bay Area Rapid Transit station located in Berkeley, California, United States, one of three stations in the city. It is the second-busiest BART station in the East Bay and the sixth overall, with 13,748 exits each weekday, first being 12th St. Oakland City Center, with 14,403 weekday exits.
The Central Pacific Railroad opened its Berkeley Branch Railroad to the intersection of Shattuck and University Avenues on August 16, 1876. Early civic leader Francis K. Shattuck donated land for the railroad and its depot, and subsidized the initial construction. Berkeley was the terminus of the line until 1878, when it was extended northwest along Shattuck. The Central Pacific was leased by the Southern Pacific Railroad (SP) in 1885, then transferred to its Northern Railway subsidiary in 1888. The first Berkeley station was a small wooden building at the northwest corner of Center Street and Shattuck; it was replaced in the 1890s by a slightly larger by still modest station.
On October 26, 1903, the Key System began electric commuter rail operation from Berkeley to the San Francisco ferries - a direct threat to the SP's steam-hauled trains - on a line that paralleled the SP tracks on Shattuck. Around that time, Cal president Benjamin Ide Wheeler and other prominent Berkeley academics lobbied SP president E. H. Harriman for an improved train station to complement John Galen Howard's emerging architectural style for the nearby University of California, Berkeley. Finally, the devastating 1906 earthquake and subsequent rebuilding "served as a powerful incentive to expedite the project".
Surveying work began in June 1906; that September, SP management announced their intentions to convert their suburban lines to a frequent electric service to compete with the Key System. The new station, an elegant red brick structure with buff terracotta trim, red tile roof, and a colonnade, opened on April 9, 1908. It was officially designed by SP architect Daniel J. Patterson in a similar style to Émile Bénard's original plans for the university, though the high quality of its design and circumstantial evidence led some historians to believe it was actually designed by Howard. The SP lines were fully electrified in 1911.
Downtown Berkeley opened on January 29, 1973, as part of an extension from MacArthur to Richmond, with service southward to Fremont until the opening of the Transbay Tube and subsequent service to San Francisco later that year. The station was designed by Maher & Martens of San Francisco in collaboration with Parsons Brinckerhoff, Tudor Construction, and Bechtel.
In 1995, BART changed the name of the station from "Berkeley" to "Downtown Berkeley" in an effort to minimize confusion between this station and North Berkeley.
Removal of rotunda
A station and plaza renovation project began construction on August 29, 2016. The project scope includes new lighting, landscaping, drainage, paving, and bus shelters in the overground plaza of the station. The main rotunda entrance has been removed and is being replaced by a glass entrance structure similar to those found in Downtown Oakland. The $11.2 million project is funded primarily by BART, with additional funding from the City of Berkeley, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, and Alameda County. Work is expected to conclude in winter 2017. A further project to renovate the underground station interior is in the planning stages.
Like most underground BART stations, Downtown Berkeley has two levels: a mezzanine containing the faregates and an island platform with two tracks. Access to the station is provided by five street-level entrances on Shattuck Avenue, with two at Addison Street and Allston Way each and one at the southwest corner of Shattuck Avenue and Center Street. The escalators at the latter were topped by an 24-sided rotunda featuring artwork of the UCB Botanical Garden.
- Bay Area Rapid Transit District. "Monthly Ridership Reports". Retrieved 6 February 2017.
- Robertson, Donald B. (1986). Encyclopedia of Western Railroad History: California. Caxton Press. p. 77. ISBN 9780870043857 – via Google Books.
- Thompson, Daniella (August 18, 2008). "Berkeley Square: from transport hub to urban core". Berkeley Architectural History Association.
- "Berkeley, Alameda Co., Cal". Charles A. Bailey. 1890 – via Online Archive of California.
- "A pictorial history of public transportation in the East Bay, commemorating the achievements of the last century - from the beginning of the first train and ferry service in 1863 to the vast transportation network of today operated by the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District" (PDF). Transit Times. Vol. 6 no. 5. Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District. September 1963. p. 17, 26.
- "BART CHRONOLOGY" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-10-13.
- Cerny, Susan (2007). An Architectural Guidebook to San Francisco and the Bay Area. Gibbs Smith. p. 502. ISBN 978-1-58685-432-4.
- Pao, Roann (30 August 2016). "Construction begins on Downtown Berkeley BART station plaza". The Daily Californian. Retrieved 8 February 2017.
- Bay Area Rapid Transit District. "Downtown Berkeley BART Plaza and Transit Area Improvement Project". Retrieved 8 February 2017.
- Bay Area Rapid Transit District. "Downtown Berkeley Station Modernization". Retrieved 8 February 2017.
- "Downtown Berkeley Station map". San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District. Archived from the original on October 8, 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Downtown Berkeley station.|