The Bay Area Council on Tuesday (Aug. 18) applauded San Rafael Assemblymember Marc Levine for introducing new legislation (AB 9-1X) that would help unsnarl growing North Bay traffic by speeding the reopening of an existing third lane on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge connecting Marin and Contra Costa counties. The Council has worked closely with Levine and regional and North Bay transportation leaders for months to craft a solution for overcoming a variety of obstacles to reopening the eastbound lane, which has sat unused for years.

“What better, faster way to beautify the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge than to get rid of ugly traffic,” said Jim Wunderman, President and CEO of the Bay Area Council. “We applaud Assemblymember Marc Levine for his dogged effort to speed the reopening of the span’s existing, unused third lane. Traffic on this critical east-west commuter link is causing horrendous backups on the bridge, local streets and nearby Highway 101, not to mention the increased carbon pollution from idling cars. Levine’s sensible legislation will move this project forward quickly and provide badly needed traffic relief for the North Bay and thousands of commuters.”

State and regional transportation authorities have said the lane would be reopened in 2018 as part of a larger project. Levine’s legislation would open the lane on September 30, 2015 on a temporary basis while planning on the larger project progresses. The bridge has become a choke point as evening eastbound traffic snakes for miles on local roads and causes huge back-ups on Highway 101, Marin County’s major commute corridor. To engage in the Council’s transportation policy work, contact Senior Vice President Michael Cunningham.


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