According to the Peninsula Daily Journal (June 18, 2015), San Mateo County officials are responding to Highway 101 freeway congestion by adopting the time-honored Caltrans approach of expanding roadways. Ever since its inception in 1958 Caltrans has responded to freeway congestion by building more freeway. Given the level of today’s freeway backups this has clearly not worked? But Caltrans keeps plugging away. It appears that some San Mateo County politicians agree Under consideration are adding HOT lanes and carpool lanes. Whatever the moniker, an expanded freeway is an expanded freeway. After decades of watching expanded freeways return to their old level of congestion in a relatively short amount of time, you’d think they’d learn. If one is trapped in a hole, digging it deeper and deeper doesn’t really help very much.
Are there better options available? Of course. For starters there’s Caltrain. It needs to be beefed up, electrified and extended into downtown San Francisco. The privately-operated Hi-Tech buses were put into operation by various hi-tech companies to compensate for the grossly inadequate public transit services available to their employees. All parts of the Region including the Peninsula should take a lesson from this. The freeway building should stop. Instead more should be done to extend Caltrain, connect transit services and render Samtrans buses more useful to more people.