Front cover image for BART : the dramatic history of the Bay Area Rapid Transit system

BART : the dramatic history of the Bay Area Rapid Transit system

Michael C. Healy (Author)
When BART opened in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1972, it became a catalyst for a renaissance in modern rail transit, both nationally and internationally. The concept as sold to Bay Area voters was gargantuan: by adopting aerospace technologies such as microchips for ground transportation, the new computer-operated rail system would bridge counties and curb urban sprawl amid a booming automobile culture. But it all came within a gnat's eyelash of not happening. The question raised by pundits and taxpayers alike was: would this space-age plan actually work, or be the biggest boondoggle in the country's history? In the first-ever history book about BART, longtime agency spokesman Michael C. Healy gives an insider's account of the rapid transit system's inception, hard-won approval, construction, and operations, ''warts and all.'' Written with a master storyteller's homey wit and sharp attention to detail, Healy recreates the politically fraught venture to bring a new kind of public transit to the West Coast. What emerges is a sense of the individuals who made (and make) BART happen. From tales of staying up until 3:00 a.m. with Bill Stokes and Jack Everson to hear the election results for the rapid transit vote or weathering scandals, strikes, and growing pains, this look behind the scenes of an iconic, seemingly monolithic structure reveals people at their most human-and determined to change the status quo
Print Book, English, 2016
Heyday, Berkeley, California, 2016
xvi, 365 pages : illustrations, maps ; 23 cm
9781597143707, 1597143707
Foreword / by John King
San Francisco, November 6, 1962
The birth of the San Francisco bay area
Seeking a way
The bartd board begins its work
The composite report
What the voters voted on
Beginning on a turbulent road
The 1960s : various issues plague the work
Rebellion in Berkeley
The ripple effect from Berkeley
Two of the most challenging structures : the tunnel and the tube
San Francisco subway construction presents new challenges
The contract for transit cars goes to an aerospace company
The bart board vs. stokes
The long knives
A critical decade ahead as atc challenges persist
The specter of bankruptcy
The 1970s : precarious times continue
1977 and 1978 see several improvements and added service
Close headways get the okay
The 1980s : a decade of progress and scandal
Loma Prieta becomes BART's finest hour
A rocky road to expansion during the 1990s
The 1990s are a bridge to the future
With the millennium come new challenges
About the author
Includes index