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Thought you were the only one struggling to keep up with the high cost of living in the Bay Area? Well, looks like even BART is getting priced out by sky-high rent increases. With its current headquarters’ lease at the Kaiser Center complex in Oakland expiring in 2021, the transit agency is facing a rent increase by more than 60 percent, according to a report Friday from the San Francisco Chronicle.
Somewhat obviously, BART is considering relocating, specifically to the building across the street — 2150 Webster St. — for $140 million. Interior construction and additional costs would add another $87 million to the move.
The agency wants to limit costs, use space more efficiently, and stay close to a BART station (Lake Merritt) as part of a move, Sean Brooks, BART’s manager of real estate, told the Chronicle.
Meanwhile, BART has a $2.3 billion annual budget this year, but revenue is in the decline from falling ridership and fare evaders. To combat this, BART has approved an 18 percent fare increase over the next seven years.
The headquarters relocation would not further raise taxes or fares for riders — a 25-year sales tax bond would finance the deal instead.
“It doesn’t change the use of the funds,” Brooks told the Chronicle. “The money being used to purchase this is not taking away from any other capital projects.”
BART’s board of directors will vote on the deal on Sept. 12.
Read the full Chronicle story here.
Madeline Wells is an SFGate editorial assistant. Email: email@example.com | Twitter: @madwells22
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/BART-new-Oakland-headquarters-rent-hike-14419679.php.