Muni set to rewire 33-Ashbury along 18th Street

Overhead wiring and support poles that support Muni’s 33-Ashbury/18th electric trolley buses will soon get replaced.

The poles and the overhead contact system, which provides power to the eastern portion of for Muni’s 33 line, are more than 40 years old.

A staff report from the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency said the overhead contact system and poles need constant maintenance, which has been burden on the 33 line.

Board directors of the SFMTA on Tuesday approved a $5.3 million contract with Balfour Beatty Infrastructure Inc. for approximately nine months to complete the work. Construction will start around January 2017, said SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose.

The work will include replacing existing traffic signals, street light and trolley poles and the overhead contact system on 18th Street between Castro and Mission streets.

Accessibility improvements will also be part of the project that will bring curb ramps up to ADA standards at three locations, according to the SFMTA report.

Work on the project will include weekday, weeknight and weekends depending on the phase of the project, said Rose.

He said the transit agency will keep the community informed throughout the project’s construction.

All traffic lanes in the area will remain open during peak hours. During non peak hours, the contractor can use one lane of traffic.

Construction will also entail temporarily occupying parking spaces and sidewalk space to install curb ramps, street lights, said Rose.

When the contractor starts the work on replacing the overhead wiring system, Muni will run bio-diesel buses instead of trolley buses on the 33 line.

The total cost of the entire project is $7.4 million. Federal grants, SFMTA revenue bond and local sales tax (Proposition K) are funding the project.

The SFMTA is working collaboratively with the San Francisco Department of Public Works and San Francisco Public Utilities Commission who are working on the Potrero Avenue Roadway Improvement Project.