The San Jose City Council selected a group of contractors and directed the municipality to enter a predevelopment agreement that moves forward with a unique transit connection between the Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport and San Jose Diridon Station.
The group of contractors selected, known as San Jose Connection Partners, seeks to build an innovative solution that utilizes autonomous vehicles and a fixed guideway. The technology is offered by Glydways, a South San Francisco-based startup.
In a press release issued by the City, Mayor Matt Mahan indicated that he is “hopeful that a public-private partnership will enable us to deliver a seamless connection cost-effectively for both riders and taxpayers.” Mahan also suggested that “Diridon Station is poised to become the most significant rail and bus hub on the West Coast in the decades ahead,” referring to the site’s role in the future California High Speed Rail system.
The Council’s decision to select San Jose Connection Partners was recommended by City staff. The press release mentions that their selection “was based on a combination of a strong team, an innovative and well-thought-out solution, and competitive costs.”
However, some opponents have shared concerns over the project’s cost. Monica Mallon, a transit advocate and columnist for San Jose Spotlight, indicated that the project would be “a lot more expensive than running a bus.”
Members of the San Jose Connection Partners team include:
- Plenary Americas (lead developer and equity provider)
- Glydways (transit technology provider)
- Webcor/Obayashi (lead design and construction contractors)
- HNTB (lead designer)
- ACI (operations and maintenance provider)
According to the City’s press release, the City Council’s decision marks the first portion of a multi-phase agreement to develop the project. The decision will result in a “Project Feasibility Validation Report” which will assist the City in technical, commercial, and financial analyses of San Jose Connection Partners’ proposed solution.