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ACEC California named the Pedestrian Underpass Extension at the Santa Clara Caltrain Station as its 2018 Golden State Award Winner for its innovative design features that significantly expanded pedestrian and cyclist access. Biggs Cardosa Associates, Inc. served as the prime consultant and structural engineer to the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority project. The Golden State Award is the highest honor ACEC California bestows as part of its Engineering Excellence Awards program.

“This year’s Golden State Award winner is a unique example of the future of California’s smarter, cleaner transportation infrastructure. The project expands both pedestrian and cyclist access via an efficient open-air ramp and improves the ability for community members to use regional rail lines,” said Brad Diede, Executive Director of ACEC California. “We congratulate Biggs Cardosa Associates, Inc. and commend Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority for its forward-thinking approach to its local transportation systems.”

Opened in June 2017, the underpass gives pedestrians and cyclists a safe, direct way to cross from the station on the west side of the Caltrain and Union Pacific Railroad tracks to Brokaw Road via a new open-air ramp. Previously, pedestrians and cyclists had to either cross the tracks illegally or journey 1.5 miles, navigating a busy overpass with minimal sidewalks and no bike lanes. A study indicated that up to 1,200 bicyclists and pedestrians would use a safe, legal crossing if available. The underpass will link directly to the future Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) station planned for the east side of the tracks.

The 2018 Golden State Award was selected out of 55 projects and announced at the Engineering Excellence Awards banquet on February 8, 2018. The awards banquet is also a fundraiser for the ACEC California Scholarship Foundation 501(c)3, which provides scholarship awards to accomplished graduate and undergraduate students working towards a degree in engineering or land surveying. Both the Golden State Award winner and Honor Award winners are eligible to enter the national level Engineering Excellence Awards competition and will be displayed on photographic panels outside the Governor’s office in the State Capitol to promote National Engineers Week from February 18-24th.

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