Eyes on the Street: Berkeley BART Makeover

The escalators leading down from the new canopies over the rebuilt downtown Berkeley BART station. All photos Streetsblog/Rudick unless indicated
The escalators leading down from the new canopies over the rebuilt downtown Berkeley BART station. All photos Streetsblog/Rudick unless indicated

Note: GJEL Accident Attorneys regularly sponsors coverage on Streetsblog San Francisco and Streetsblog California. Unless noted in the story, GJEL Accident Attorneys is not consulted for the content or editorial direction of the sponsored content.

New entrances and a new plaza opened late last week for the Downtown Berkeley’s BART station. The entrances were part of a two-year project that replaced the old brick rotunda, which was torn down, and includes a landscaped area at the surface level and glass canopies to let more natural light reach the station mezzanine below.

The new plaza above Berkeley BART
The new plaza above Berkeley BART

BART set up a time-lapse camera during the construction, so you can watch the old rotunda come down and the new canopies get built:

“The new main BART entrance is not only visually striking, it’s a major upgrade in terms of functionality,” said BART Director Rebecca Saltzman, in a prepared release. “The staircase improves pedestrian circulation and the new bus shelters and bus-only lane enhance BART and bus connections. The plaza exemplifies our efforts to ensure BART stations serve as integral parts of the communities we serve.”

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Rain gardens help deal with storm water

The new plaza also boasts LED lighting, new pavers, and on-site storm-water retention and landscaping.

The project was funded by State Prop 1B and local area grants including Measure F. The overall budget was $13 million.

And, according to BART, the project is within budget.

More pictures below.

More natural light now penetrates the mezzanine level
More natural light now penetrates the mezzanine level
The new main entrance where the rotund once stood
The new main entrance where the rotunda once stood
Thursday's Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. Photo: BART
Thursday’s Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. Photo: BART
Unfortunately, Berkeley BART still has the same old slow elevators
Unfortunately, Berkeley BART still has the same old slow elevators

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