Santa Clara Has a Long Way to Go

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority’s (VTA’s) 81 mile long, light rail system is widely regarded as the most ill-conceived in the entire country. According to the National Transit Database, in 2013 the VTA’s 56 light rail cars carried just slightly over 35,000 riders a day. The reasons for this exceptionally low ridership are not hard to find.

First, much of the area traversed is low-density sprawl, incapable of generating enough ridership to justify the high cost of passenger rail service. To the South the density ranges from low-density, single family to miles of empty land bereft of virtually any potential riders. To the north the rail system meanders its way through Silicon Valley, passing sprawled out hi-tech “campuses”, each surrounded by acres of beautifully-landscaped free parking.

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City Hall Undermines DTX, SF’s Most Significant Transportation Improvement In 50 Years

CityHallUnderminesDTXUnder the Lee Administration transportation in San Francisco is heading toward a cliff. For starters City Hall is neglecting, if not actively impeding, the downtown extension of Caltrain (DTX), a project that would connect Caltrain to 6 Muni rail lines, 4 BART lines and over 40 bus lines at one spacious location in the middle of San Francisco’s 340,000 person employment center.

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Does the Transportation Mentality of the 1950’s still Prevail in San Mateo County?

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. Continue reading

BATWG’s Proposed Improvements for AC Transit

Updated June 20, 2015

During last Fall’s Measure BB campaign, BATWG pointed out the fallacy of handing almost $2 billion in Measure BB funds over to AC Transit without requiring any operational improvements in return. Here is a summary of what we had in mind:

1.) AC Transit’s transbay operation should be overhauled. The objective should be to increase transbay ridership from today’s dismally low 15,000 riders a day to at least 60,000 riders a day. This can be done but it will take a reorganization of AC’s 29 separate transbay bus lines.

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