Mayor Ed Lee today announced the arrival of a "letter of non-prejudice" (whatever that is) from the Department of Transportation which he says is a "strong sign" that the $1 billion+ in federal grant money is on its way for San Francisco's Central Subway. So, yes, by the time today's toddlers are tweens, they may be able to get from CalTrain to Chinatown in just a couple stops.

The subway, as we've discussed, is a short little thing that will connect the T line down by Caltrain to Union Square, and terminate in Chinatown, forever eliminating the need for live chickens aboard the Dirty 30.

The first order of business in the line's construction will be the digging of a huge hole near the CalTrain station into which the tunnel-boring machine will be lowered, which looks like it can start very soon. The money, meanwhile, is expected to arrive in the City's coffers in a few months.

(The rendering above is of the nondescript Union Square entrance to the eventual subway, which is scheduled to be complete in 2019.)

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