By Denis Cuff
OAKLAND -- BART will charge $6 per ride for its new tram rail service between Oakland International Airport and the Coliseum train station, the BART board decided Thursday.
The board left open the door to consider a temporary, lower promotional fare at some later date.
The $484 million Oakland Airport Connector is scheduled to start service in the fall, shuttling passengers on an automated guide way system 3.2 miles between the Coliseum station and the airport.
The elevated tram will replace AirBART shuttle vans, which currently charge $3 for the same trip by bus. Under the new system, a BART rider traveling by rail from Walnut Creek to the Oakland airport would pay $3.70 to reach the Coliseum station, and then an additional $6 to reach the airport.
In comparison, a taxi ride from Walnut Creek to the airport costs about $73, and daily parking at the Oakland Airport costs between $16 and $22 per day, BART reported. Parking at satellite lots in Oakland is chepaer.
Officials at the Oakland airport had said they would oppose any fare higher than $4, but transit advocates said a $6 fare was warranted to reduce the big subsidy that BART will pay to operate the service