Transportation Projects Approved To Help Ease Traffic
Traffic relief, safer roads and better air quality are on the way. The Bay Area received great news from the California Transportation Commission (CTC) this month when it announced $660 million for thirteen projects in the region. Close to home, the funding includes improvements to Jefferson Street in San Francisco and the addition of express lanes on Highway 101 from SFO to Mountain View.
The new allocation approved by the CTC is on top of the $1.4 billion for public transit the agency awarded in April. Some of that money will purchase more rail cars for Muni, BART and CalTrain. SamTrans will also be able to pilot an express bus line up and down the Peninsula. These new investments are all made possible by the passage of SB1 last year, which raises much needed revenue to reduce congestion, fix potholes, repave roadways and improve public transit.
There's no question the state needs to address its crumbling infrastructure. California has neglected it for decades. According to TRIP, a national transportation research group, nearly 40% of our roads are in poor condition with the Bay Area scoring the worst among metro areas. Because of our rough roads, the average driver here shells out an additional $700 a year in extra maintenance costs.
The longer we wait, the higher the costs. The time is now. A good transportation system is vital to our economy. It's often referred to as the lifeline of our state and country. We need to be able to move goods, and people need to be able to get to and from work or school. These initial projects are only the beginning. SB1 brings in $5 billion a year over the next decade for infrastructure, which means we'll be able to fund more work, making progress on reducing congestion and improving access to public transportation systems.