This morning, I had the pleasure of attending a luxury sales market-watch meeting on the 55th floor of San Francisco’s Millennium Tower. From our location in residence 55A (on the northwest corner of the building), I had a phenomenal view of the wrecking ball taking its first bites out of the Transbay Terminal. The Transbay terminal was originally built in the 1930’s (from one depression era project we lurch to another, but I digress…), and after the demolition is complete a new Transbay terminal will rise from the ashes.
There has been much talk about the Transbay Tower that is expected to be constructed along with the new terminal after demolition is complete. And when the economy and real estate were roaring along, plans were approved for a tower with a height of roughly 1,000 feet to be constructed. But then the bottom fell out of the world, and what will actually be built remains to be seen.
Construction plans at the transbay tower and terminal have also shifted a bit. Originally, the plan was to construct the newÂ terminal and then dig beneath it to make a home for high speed rail. However, thanks to the infusion of $400 million in stimulus funds (therefore (hopefully)Â eliminatingÂ all tea-partiers from ever using the high speed rail terminal) the really big hole in the ground for trains will be built now, which means once they finish tearing down the existing transbay structure they will spend about two years digging a very large hole in the ground.
Whether or not high-speed rail ever makes it to the transbay terminal (or any other terminus) in San Francisco after demolition is complete remains to be seen. As of this writing, it appears that the first high speed rail link to be built in California will go from Corcoran to Fresno. As a quick aside, we can understand completely why someone would want to flee Corcoran or Fresno as fast as transit will allow them, but we don’t reallyÂ understandÂ the point of trading one god-forsaken hellhole for another. Corcoran –> Anywhere but Fresno or Fresno –> Anywhere but Corcoran makes a whole heck of a lot more sense to use than Corcoran <–> Fresno. But hey, maybe some day, in a future far far away, you’ll be able to flee from either of those central valley spots to the transbay terminal of San Francisco.