The battle over the proposed $1.6 billion San Francisco subway project has been subjected to tremendous opposition. But the Muni chief may have found a solution to move the project forward – make the line longer.

The current plan would transverse part of the city, ending in a neighborhood called North Beach. Original plans called for portions of the roads in North Beach to be torn up so the drilling equipment could be removed. That led to fights and lawsuits from local residents and businesses.

Now, the Muni Chief has proposed two options. The first would extend the tunnels to the site of an abandoned theater. That structure could be demolished, the ground dug up, and the digging equipment removed. The location could then serve as a terminus station for the subway line, connecting another neighborhood into the new service without more substantial disruption to daily life. It would also enable the city to take care of the theater that has become an eye sore.

Should the plan to extend the tunnel fall short, the Muni Chief has also expressed an interest in potentially leaving the drilling equipment underground.

Read the full story at the San Francisco Chronicle.