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Richmond-San Rafael Bridge bike lane

Old 11-09-23, 10:12 AM
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Richmond-San Rafael Bridge bike lane

Key quote: “Clearly the bike lane has not increased congestion,” said Amy Thompson of TransForm, a Bay Area transportation and housing equity group citing statistics that show westbound backups have not increased since the bike path opened.
https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/...g-18475251.php
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Old 11-09-23, 11:47 AM
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For some reason, no one in this article pointed out one of the reasons why congestion would not be reduced by eliminating the bike lane and doing other things on the east side -- there would still be a lane reduction on the west side, and congestion would just be moved west. It would take a lot of money to fix that problem.

The one argument that has some merit at this point is the lack of a breakdown lane. It isn't like there was a third lane for traffic before the bike lane (at least not since the water pipeline got put there in the 70's), but the space could be used in the event of a breakdown. But that's it, otherwise, there is no real argument that the bike lane causes more congestion, and the breakdowns don't happen all that often.
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Old 11-09-23, 11:50 AM
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Article is paywalled, can you perhaps summarize what the issue is? Cyclists making motorists feel threatened/distracted/guilty? (as if)
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Old 11-09-23, 11:51 AM
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Wish I could read it, but it won't let me unless I register.
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Old 11-09-23, 01:27 PM
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@Rick_D and @SW84, here's the Streetsblog SF article. It's just what you think.

Thanks, @RChung, I was just coming here to post about it! I hope you guys and reason win.
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Old 11-09-23, 01:48 PM
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Lived in the Bay area back in the late 70's and used that bridge. Glad I don't live there now.
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Old 11-09-23, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Korina
@Rick_D and @SW84, here's the Streetsblog SF article. It's just what you think.
Thanks, @RChung, I was just coming here to post about it! I hope you guys and reason win.
Got it, thanks! Nice work all around--hope it keeps going because it's a great amenity.
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Old 11-09-23, 04:55 PM
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Article opens fine for me without having to register.

Looking forward to the route staying open. It really opens up the riding from my house in Richmond.
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Old 11-10-23, 12:05 AM
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I’ve wanted to ride it for a long time, hopefully I can make it down Saturday for this;
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/4yr-ann...CfamVCmfrH5XcA
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Old 11-10-23, 07:08 PM
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That part I had missed out on until now is that this is a four year test program; I assumed it was a permanent thing. The timing of all of this becomes clearer, and the ultimate outcome more cloudy.
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Old 11-11-23, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by bikingshearer
That part I had missed out on until now is that this is a four year test program; I assumed it was a permanent thing. The timing of all of this becomes clearer, and the ultimate outcome more cloudy.
It's a four-year test, they didn't take away a travel lane, they just converted an unused maintenance/emergency lane into the bike lane, so it appears not to have had an effect on crossing time since the rate limiter is on the Marin side at Sir Francis Drake Blvd and the 101-North exchange.

I think the four-year test shows that what bothers drivers isn't that they lost a lane (cuz they didn't) it's that bike users got a lane.
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Old 11-11-23, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by RChung
It's a four-year test, they didn't take away a travel lane, they just converted an unused maintenance/emergency lane into the bike lane, so it appears not to have had an effect on crossing time since the rate limiter is on the Marin side at Sir Francis Drake Blvd and the 101-North exchange.

I think the four-year test shows that what bothers drivers isn't that they lost a lane (cuz they didn't) it's that bike users got a lane.
This. 100% correct.

According to Wikipedia (the font of all knowledge and wisdom), the westbound direction has been two lanes at all times since the emergency water main went in during the 1970s drought with the exception of when the Bay Bridge was down following the Loma Prieto earthquake in 1989; not long after the Bay Bridge was back up and running, back to two traffic lanes.

The third lane on the lower deck was added about the same time as the bike lane was put in. I'd be interested to see what traffic studies, if any, show that third lane has done to averaqe travel times. My guess: a little, but not much. But I confess, that is just a guess.
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Old 11-12-23, 01:24 AM
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Originally Posted by bikingshearer
This. 100% correct.

According to Wikipedia (the font of all knowledge and wisdom), the westbound direction has been two lanes at all times since the emergency water main went in during the 1970s drought with the exception of when the Bay Bridge was down following the Loma Prieto earthquake in 1989; not long after the Bay Bridge was back up and running, back to two traffic lanes.

The third lane on the lower deck was added about the same time as the bike lane was put in. I'd be interested to see what traffic studies, if any, show that third lane has done to averaqe travel times. My guess: a little, but not much. But I confess, that is just a guess.
My understanding is the main effect the 3rd lane has is that the tailback doesn’t go all the way into San Rafael.

The traffic studies’ main showing appears to be that a 3rd car lane wouldn’t change travel times because the main bottleneck is the lane design on the Marin side. Fixing that is a massively expensive project.

What it really needs is 1) more housing in Marin so people can live close to work instead of commuting via the bridge, 2) better public transport across the bridge, 3) better bike lane connections on the Marin side, 4) better connections onto the 101. The last thing the Bay needs is more car capacity.
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Old 11-14-23, 11:42 AM
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https://www.grandviewindependent.com...ent-newsletter
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Old 11-16-23, 03:17 PM
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The story includes a link to a petition to keep the lane.

https://sf.streetsblog.org/2023/11/1...rate-bike-path
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Old 11-16-23, 03:40 PM
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What a turnout--great job, everybody!
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Old 03-15-24, 02:21 PM
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I just saw a link and notice regarding a Twitter post about the RSR bike lane being restricted to Friday through Sunday. I didn't see any notes about what times of day the lane would be opened and closed. This isn't great as a Richmond resident I like being able to easily ride over. I can hit the Paradise loop, the Headlands, China Camp, etc.

"Well folks, it was good while it lasted.

MTC just told us that they're planning to take the multiuse path on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge down to just Friday-Sunday, starting as soon as possible."
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Old 03-15-24, 04:25 PM
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I was talking to some people who drive that commute and they were acting like it was a big victory. I told them good luck, until they expand it to three lanes in Marin they will be stuck on the bridge instead of in Richmond. Time to get a few more Richmond Ferry loops in before they close it down. Just too hard to cross the Golden Gate on the weekends.
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Old 03-15-24, 09:37 PM
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From the SF Chronicle (https://www.sfchronicle.com/bayarea/...y-19078284.php)
"But the new bike path has not exacerbated congestion that beset the Richmond-San Rafael corridor long before its installation. In reality, travel times have remained stable. [...] An analysis by California Partners for Advanced Transportation Technology — the UC Berkeley institute in charge of evaluating the bridge bike path — looked at peak morning commute times between 7 and 8 a.m. from Interstate 80 in Albany to the east end of the bridge. That trip took 27 minutes, on average, in 2017 and 2018. [The path opened in 2019] In 2019 and 2021 — two years after the bike path opened — the same trip took 21 minutes. [2020 was an anomaly because of the COVID shutdown]. "

That said, if people don't use data to make decisions, showing them data won't get them to change their minds.

Last edited by RChung; 03-15-24 at 10:10 PM.
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Old 03-16-24, 12:58 AM
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Originally Posted by RChung

I think the four-year test shows that what bothers drivers isn't that they lost a lane (cuz they didn't) it's that bike users got a lane.
110% true today. I still haven’t had a chance to ride the bloody thing.
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