Report: Bay Area expanding to Megaregion

ANTIOCH, Calif. (KGO) -- The Bay Area is rapidly transforming into a Northern California Megaregion, according to a new study by the Bay Area Council. Linking up this complex network is key.

Carving the way into the future of our new Megaregion will be transportation links like BART electric diesel train cars that will extend BARTs reach 10 miles down the road to Antioch by 2018.

"The first foray into something a littledifferent was the Oakland Airport connector, and now this," said eBART group manager Ric Rattrey.

Thinking outside the box is important in what the Bay Area Council is calling a Megaregion. Not just the original nine county Bay Area. Now we have to include three other regions in our hub of homes and jobs, the Sacramento Valley, the northern San Joaquin Valley and Monterey Bay counties. Already, everyday tens of thousands of commuters stream into what was the original Bay Area, and more are coming.

"People here have the lifestyle they want in their home and they need to get to jobs so they can provide for their family's and that's how we have to connect everybody together," said Ross Chittenden of the Contra Costa Transportation Authority.

Connecting communities could essentially change them. Houses in Antioch could boomerang up.

"I strongly believe once Bart is up and running it's going to improve the market here. It's going to increase the value of the houses, it's going to open it up to many commuters, especially from the Central Valley," said Quintella Griffin of Ward's Realty.

"At the same time it opens up a door for a goods movement which gives us the opportunity for job creation within this region," said Contra Costa County supervisor Federal Glover.

The NorCal Megaregion is already home to one third of Californians, over 12 million people. Make room for two million more by 2030.
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