DUBLIN (BCN) – Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Castro Valley) announced Monday the $20 million he requested to connect BART to the Altamont Corridor Express commuter train will be included in this year’s house transportation spending bill.

The 42-mile, 7-station passenger rail project would connect the Dublin/Pleasanton BART Station to the approved Altamont Corridor Express North Lathrop Station in San Joaquin County.

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“The Valley Link project will fundamentally change the way we travel in the East Bay by reducing traffic congestion – particularly on Interstate 580 – and connecting our communities,” Swalwell said, in a statement. “Connecting BART to ACE has been among my top priorities since I came to Congress eight years ago, and I am pleased to finally see it included among our national transportation priorities. I’m looking forward to the spending bill’s swift passage so we can deliver on this transformative project.”

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee included Swalwell’s request in the Surface Reauthorization Act of 2021. It would help implement Valley Link’s sustainability blueprint, with a goal of making the project into a national model of environmental sustainability. Designers would find cost-effective ways to maximize reduction of greenhouse gas emissions into the system’s planning, design and operation.

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Per House of Representative rules, Swalwell certified neither he, his spouse, or anyone in his immediate family, has financial ties to the project.

Federal highway and public transportation programs are funded through multi-year surface transportation authorization acts. Under guidelines issued by the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, each member of Congress can ask for money for highway and transit projects in their districts. Projects are restricted to a limited number of federal funding streams and limited to surface transportation authorization legislation.

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