BART loses millions of dollars each and every year. It is subsidized by CA taxpayers (mostly) but there is also a lot of federal money thrown in to keep it afloat. While BART service is generally good it is horribly underpriced thus the subsidies. Take it private and several things would happen; 1. the prices would increase and so would the level and frequency of service. 2. the unions would be thrown out in a heartbeat thus making it competitive in labor costs. 3. the system would expand into densly populated areas rather than the suburban enclaves with lower ridership. 4. it would be profitable in less than five years - which is against the law in CA so none of the above will ever happen.