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Celebrating 900+ signatures and counting!

This station project has had so much happen since we last posted, we can barely fit it all in this blog post. But here goes!


Last month, we set a goal to get 400 petition signatures. Now with over 900 signatures and growing, it's clear the San Antonio Station project resonates with the community. This station will be a game-changer for East Oakland, providing much-needed access to BART and regional rail.



We've been busy connecting with key stakeholders in the transit planning sphere, including staff at BART, the Alameda County Transportation Commission, the Oakland Department of Transportation, and other local transportation advocates at Transport Oakland’s happy hour. (Apparently, it doesn’t take much for our fellow activists to start developing a do-it-in-five-weekends San Antonio Station construction plan!)




Interview: Meet Victor Flores, BART Board D7 Candidate


On a cool April day, we met up with Victor Flores, a candidate for our district’s BART Board seat, in San Antonio Park. Victor has been a vocal and engaged supporter of San Antonio Station, and we thought it would be great to hear his vision for what BART and San Antonio Station could be.


As a climate resilience manager with Greenbelt Alliance, he knows how important transit is to building a green, sustainable community. He says: “Land use and housing are also interconnected. You can't build high-density housing or create walkable and bikeable communities without a robust transit system.”


Growing up in Fruitvale and working extensively in San Antonio Park in his early career, Victor knows the crucial importance transit access has for this community. As Lateefah Simon, current BART District 7 Director runs for Congress, Victor talks about his bid for her seat. After looking around in political and advocacy circles he says, “I couldn't find folks who were interested or considering running. So I decided to talk to some people and see if it made sense for me to do it.”

Halloween block party, 11th Ave


Victor believes that riders deserve frequent, clean, and safe transit in order for people to be motivated to use it, and for BART to recover from its current fare box deficit. His vision involves making stations into community hubs: “I think we need to diversify what our rider looks like, and that means looking outside that nine to five segment. So how can we attract people to either come after work or use it for recreation?” 


In his view, expensive stations with a large footprint should be destinations in and of themselves. He says “...the idea of turning these places into community hubs where we have active programming, where you can open opportunities for entrepreneurs to start their businesses with pop-ups, and potentially modular commercial space within the stations, I think will provide so many benefits. We could have activities that make it naturally safer.”


"My vision for BART is for it to become more than just a transportation system. I want stations to be destinations in themselves, places where families can recreate, aspiring entrepreneurs can launch businesses, and the surrounding communities benefit from the increased activity."

San Antonio Station is a project Victor says is vital to building better transit: “Without the community buy-in, there's no way that such a large infrastructure would get built– and it does take a community. It takes time. I've seen it through all my work in the public sector: that the majority of these kinds of projects begin on the ground…even though it'll be the BART directors and city council members' names on a plaque. The reality is the people who are building that foundation right now are the community members.” 


Thanks for talking with SASA, Victor. Your vision for the future of San Antonio and all transit communities is inspiring! 



Read more of this interview, where Victor talks about providing resources for unhoused people, his inspirations, and memories of transit growing up in the Bay Area.






Or watch the full interview on this playlist .


 

Thanks. This momentum wouldn't be possible without a phenomenal group of supporters on social media (seriously, that viral tweet by data analyst Darrell Owens was amazing!), our friendly advisors, and our champions, like Transbay Coalition, East Bay for Everyone, Friends of Bella Vista, and Trybe



How you can help:


  • Spread the word: Share our petition in any of your networks, both in person and online, (and let us know if you did, we love hearing from you)

  • Help fund us: Consider donating for supplies (flyers, booth supplies, website hosting fees, etc.)

  • Get involved: We have a lot of fun canvassing, showing up at meetings, and reaching out to groups, and popping in at a transit community happy hour or two. Take our volunteer intake survey. We look forward to seeing you!


Last but not least: Urge your Congress members to support transit service funding: 

Our friends at Transbay Coalition are on a mission we support: SB1031 (Wiener/Wahab), the “Connect Bay Area Act.” It would authorize putting a critically important regional public transportation measure on the 2026 ballot that would enable voters to provide the funding needed to stop service cuts to Caltrain, BART, AC Transit, and fund service improvements in VTA's visionary network as well as all 27 Bay Area transit agencies. Sign the petition here for a bill which will provide over $1 billion annually in transit operations funding that will improve the quality of transit in the Bay Area and for communities across the country.


Again, thank you to our friends and supporters, and feel free to reach out to us if you have any comments or questions!



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