100 Days and Counting: The Salesforce Transit Center shutdown continues

ByKate G Eby KGO logo
Friday, January 4, 2019
Timeline of Salesforce Transit Center closure in SF
EMBED <>More Videos

100 Days and Counting: The Salesforce Transit Center shutdown continues

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Once praised as the crown jewel of public transportation in San Francisco, the Salesforce Transit Center quickly turned into a disappointment, then developed into a debacle that has lasted for 100 days and counting.

Following eight years of construction, the $2.2 billion project served bus passengers from half a dozen different agencies for a mere 44 days before workers discovered a crack in a load-bearing steel beam and shut down the Transit Center. It has remained closed ever since.

Here's a look at the milestone moments throughout the past 100 days.

For a complete timeline, go here.

Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2018

Around 10 a.m., while workers were installing ceiling panels, a crack was discovered in a load-bearing steel beam above the bus deck beneath the rooftop park. The beam is on the eastern side of the third level of the transit center, near Fremont Street.

Around 4:30 p.m., the entire center was closed and evacuated. Fremont Street was closed for one block between Mission Street and Howard Street. Bus service was relocated to the Temporary Transbay Terminal, one block away, at Main and Folsom Streets.

Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2018

A second cracked beam is announced.

Monday, Oct. 15, 2018

Fremont Street reopens to vehicle traffic after being closed for almost three weeks while crews installed a temporary shoring system to help stabilize the Transit Center.

Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2018

The Bay Area Metropolitan Transportation Commission said the Transit Center will be closed indefinitely.

Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018

The Transit Center has now been closed for as long as it was open - 44 days. On this day the Transbay Joint Powers Authority Board said they hope to get test results back in the month of November, after sending samples of the steel beams to a specialized lab in New York. If engineers can figure out why the beams cracked, they can work on a repair plan. Ongoing inspections of the Transit Center have not revealed any other structural problems.

Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018

On this day the Transbay Joint Powers Authority Board of Directors heard from LPI, the independent New York firm which tested the steel samples, and from Thornton Tomasetti, the engineering firm involved in building the Center.

Weld access holes that were made during fabrication may be to blame for the cracks in the steel beams. These holes give crews access to perform welding. They are typically made with a drill. In the Transit Center, a thermal torch was used, creating high heat which eventually resulted in microcracks. Either stress from construction or the use of the building then contributed to the larger cracks which led to the closure of the Center. The final report on the cause of the cracks is due next month.

The Transit Center will be fixed using a sandwich of steel panels which will be bolted in place, not welded. There is no ETA for reopening the Center.

Check out more stories about the Salesforce Transit Center.