With a little less than a month to go before the Chase Center officially opens its doors, San Francisco and Golden State Warriors’ officials cut the ribbon Tuesday morning at the new UCSF/Chase Center Muni platform for the T-Third rail line.

The 320-foot long by 17-foot wide platform will accommodate up to 700 Muni riders at a time with four two-car trains, two on each side of the new platform, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency officials said.

Ching Wong/SFBay A passenger boards on a Muni train at the SFMTA’s new Golden State Warriors’ Chase Center Muni platform in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, August 6, 2019. (Ching Wong/SFBay)

The design, and option to run all four trains back to the downtown area when necessary, is intended to alleviate transit headaches during the rush after events at the new venue, which boasts a 18,064-seat capacity.

Construction of the new platform required widening of the tracks and installation of new overhead wires. Additionally, crews updated utility lines, streetlights and traffic signals.

Mayor London Breed thanked the Warriors organization for their efforts to encourage fans and guests to use public transportation. Rick Welts, Warriors president and chief operating officer, announced two weeks ago that Warriors will pay Muni fares for riders heading to and from the Chase Center on the day of their ticketed event.

Breed said:

“This platform is just one of their many commitments in supporting transportation to Chase arena for the over 220 events that they plan to host every single year.”

Ching Wong/SFBay Golden State Warriors president Rick Welts, right, talks with San Francisco Mayor London Breed, and UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood, center, during the opening of SFMTA’s new Golden State Warriors’ Chase Center Muni platform in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, August 6, 2019. (Ching Wong/SFBay)

The mayor understands some residents are concerned with added congestion in Mission Bay neighborhood once the Chase Center opens, but said The City is providing a number of transit options for event-goers.

Breed said:

“We got bike share. We got plans with Muni. We have so many incredible opportunities for people to choose a ferry service and transit options first.”

In addition to the T-Third, the SFMTA will run two bus shuttle services — the 78X-16th Street Express bus and 79X-Van Ness Arena Express bus. Shuttle service will begin approximately two and a half hours before events and will continue for 30 minutes after.

Muni bus service on 22-Fillmore, 48-Quintara/24th Street and 55-16th Street will also make stops near the venue.

Welts said:

“I think it’s going to bring a lot of people to Muni who have never tried it before because of the guests from outside the Bay Area, outside from San Francisco, who now will have an experience with Muni that hopefully they’ll repeat over and over again.”

Assemblyman David Chiu, D-San Francisco, said that he shared congestion concerns when he worked on the Chase Center project as the Board of Supervisors president.

Ching Wong/SFBay A Muni train enters the SFMTA’s new Golden State Warriors’ Chase Center Muni platform in San Francisco, Calif., on Tuesday, August 6, 2019. (Ching Wong/SFBay)

Chiu said:

“Today, we unveiled part of the solution to that blue and gold question.”

University of California, San Francisco, which just sits across the street from the event center, also played a role in the transportation planning process.

UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood said the first priority is preserving the ability of patients, students and staff to safely get in and out of the Mission Bay area and preserving access to the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital. As part of the traffic plan, specific streets around UCSF will be closed to public and only used by staff and emergency vehicles.

Metallica and the San Francisco Symphony will be the first to take the Chase Center stage Sept. 6.

Jerold Chinn
Jerold Chinn covers transportation and City Hall in San Francisco for SF Bay. Email: jerold@sfbay.ca. Twitter: @Jerold_Chinn. Instagram: jeroldwashere.

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