Marin North-South Greenway Gets $10 Million

The bicycle and pedestrian bridge over Sir Francis Drake Boulevard in Larkspur is part of the North-South Greenway funded by MTC.
Contact:
Mark Prado, MTC (415) 778-6783
John Goodwin, MTC, (415) 778-5262

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission awarded $10.6 million in regional toll dollars this week to Marin County’s North-South Greenway project.

The money will go to the Transportation Authority of Marin for work on the northern segment of the bicycle and pedestrian pathway.

“This is such a critical project for Marin bicyclists and pedestrians,” said Damon Connolly, a Marin supervisor who sits on MTC’s board. “It makes the route safer for all users and improves access to Golden Gate ferries at the Larkspur Ferry Terminal. It will do the same for Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit when the Larkspur train connection is completed next year.”

TAM proposes phasing the northern segment: The first phase would cross Corte Madera Creek next to Highway 101, the second would extend the path along Old Redwood Highway in Larkspur.

“The North-South Greenway has long been a top priority for MCBC,” said Jim Elias, executive director of the Marin County Bicycle Coalition. “It’s the primary ‘active transportation’ artery through Marin and Sonoma Counties.

“Each time we close a gap in the Greenway, we make it easier and safer for people to get out of their cars and onto their bikes, whether for transportation or recreation,” Elias said.

The funds come from the 2004 voter-approved Regional Measure 2, which increased tolls on state bridges by $1 for transportation projects.  In all, about $20 million in toll dollars will go to the greenway project.

In 2016, a $10 million bike and pedestrian bridge over Sir Francis Drake Boulevard that is part of the North-South Greenway was opened and funded with toll dollars. The Cal Park Hill Tunnel was funded with $25 million in RM2 dollars and opened in 2010 to get Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit trains to Larkspur. While primarily a rail project, it also serves bicyclists and pedestrians with a pathway.

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Uber and Lyft Don’t Reduce Cars. Transit Does.

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Uber and Lyft have long promised that their services would “free” people from private car ownership — but data show the opposite is happening.

Census statistics show that in the eight major cities where Uber and Lyft are most concentrated, total car ownership has risen in the last five years — a worrisome reversal of earlier trends, transportation consultant Bruce Schaller wrote this week in CityLab.

In many cities, there was an increase in car-free households and car-light households — households with fewer cars than workers — between 2012 and 2017. But those reductions were eclipsed by growth in “car-rich” households, as Schaller calls homes with more two or more vehicles.

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Bikes, trains and roundabouts suggested as Napa County congestion-easers

Napa County’s wine industry bring tourist by the carload.  A commuter/tourist train coupled with shuttles is one element of a comprehensive solution to Napa Valley’s traffic gridlock.  It is encouraging to see the County moving in the right direction albeit at glacial speed.

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The Napa County Planning Commission endorsed updates to the county’s General Plan circulation elements this month and passed its recommendations on to the county Board of Supervisors for consideration early next year.

“Most significantly, Napa County must find ways to maintain and improve access, address congestion and serve remote areas of the county while preserving the area’s rural character,” the draft transportation plan said.

But how? Only one person from the public spoke at the meeting, but people wrote letters.

“We are concerned about the direct and cumulative impacts from the expansion of the wine industry and related tourism sector, and without significant mitigative action, the county’s policy goals will not be reachable,” Caltrans District Branch Chief Patricia Maurice wrote to the county.

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Larkspur bike route upgrade cleared for $10.6M boost

By Matthew Pera

Bay Area transportation officials have allocated the needed $10.6 million for an overhaul of the bicycle and pedestrian path over Corte Madera Creek in Larkspur. The project is set to provide a safer travel route for cyclists and pedestrians through the central part of the county.

 

The money comes from Regional Measure 2 — approved by voters in 2004 — which increased tolls on state bridges by $1 to pay for transportation projects. The funds are managed by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, which oversees transportation planning and financing throughout the Bay Area.

The Transportation Authority of Marin, which is managing the project, also received a $280,000 grant from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District for the effort.

Construction is set to begin next spring. Workers will replace the 4-foot-wide sidewalk along Highway 101 over Corte Madera Creek with a 12-foot path and extend the path along a section of Old Redwood Highway in Larkspur.

“The existing sidewalk is just not wide enough to accommodate the heavy usage we’re seeing,” said Bill Whitney, a project manager for the transportation authority.

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Report: Marin among riskiest California counties for bicyclists, pedestrians

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Marin bicyclists and pedestrians, particularly walkers over 65, are more likely to be involved in a road accident than their counterparts in other California counties.

Those are some of the findings in a new five-year survey of road accidents that occurred throughout Marin County and its 11 municipalities.

The report, prepared with the help of public works directors throughout the county and paid for mostly by a $554,500 state grant, was presented to the Board of Supervisors last week. The jurisdictions chipped in to provide a required $55,000 in local matching funds.

“Each year 44 collisions where someone is killed or severely injured occur on local roads in the Marin County region,” Bob Goralka, the county’s principal civil engineer, told supervisors.

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