The city of Menlo Park now has the funds to begin preliminary engineering work on a pedestrian and bicycle tunnel that would run under the Caltrain tracks in the vicinity of El Camino Real and Middle Avenue.
The board of directors of the San Mateo County Transportation Authority approved $490,000 in county transportation money for the project at its March 3 meeting, said Tasha Bartholomew, spokesperson for the authority.
That money, combined with $210,000 from the city, will allow the engineering work to begin.
The project, expected to cost a total of $11 million, is designed to improve connectivity on both sides of the tracks, including between the Civic Center and the downtown areas, for walkers and cyclists.
Funds for design and construction of the undercrossing "will need to be pursued in the future," the city said in a staff report.
The tunnel would be near the Middle Avenue plaza part of Stanford University's proposed project to develop its 8.4 acres along El Camino with offices, apartments and retail.
Stanford has said it will make a "substantial contribution" to fund the undercrossing, but has not been more specific.