BART considers later start in morning, trains to run at 5 a.m.

- BART officials are tossing around the idea to start running trains at 5 a.m., instead of 4 a.m., starting later this year.

The transit agency had already been planning to change the start time in the fall of 2018, to accommodate the seismic retrofitting of the Transbay Tube, the San Francisco Chronicle first reported. 

BART spokeswoman Alicia Trost told KTVU on Wednesday morning that the board was worried about people who relied on the trains starting at 4 a.m. and wanted updates along the way.

Now, that voters passed Measure RR, a $3.5 million bond passed in November, crews may want the extra time to start renovating the 45-year-old system.

Some riders told KTVU on Wednesday that they didn't like the idea. "If they start it later, it's going to be like sardines," Ron Douglass said.

There was no vote in the issue, it's just come up recently as a matter of discussion, Trost said. The idea to possibly start at the 4 a.m. time earlier than previously planned came when board member Joel Keller mentioned during a subcommittee meeting that the agency might want to switch the time to accommodate the workers. But there has been no full discussion on that.

To take care of the estimated 2,400 commuters who ride BART during its first hour Monday through Friday, BART is discussing several plans to shuttle them in buses.

The Measure RR work might take as long as 10 years.

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