The Bay Area Toll Bridge Authority (BATA) is slated to vote today to place Regional Measure 3 (RM3) on the June 2018 ballot. RM3 seeks to fund a number of traffic relief projects throughout the Bay Area, including BART’s expansion to San Jose, by increasing bridge tolls.
A coalition of the Bay Area’s major planning, transportation, labor and business organizations has formed in support of RM3. The group includes the Bay Area Council, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, and the San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR). All will campaign across the nine-county region in favor of RM3 as integral to the Bay Area’s transportation future.
RM3 seeks to gradually increase bridge tolls by $3 by 2025 for all Bay Area bridges except for the Golden Gate Bridge. The measure would raise $4.5 billion in investments that would “clear highway bottlenecks, expand and modernize BART, bus and ferry transit services, and dramatically improve connections between buses, trains and bikes,” said Jim Wunderman, President and CEO of the Bay Area Council.
The measure comes amid increasing gridlock on highways and city streets. Last fall, a report from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) stated traffic congestion in the Bay Area had gone up 80 percent since 2008. With two of this region’s 10 most congested freeways moving directly through Cupertino, the city is heavily impacted.
“For those who live, work or travel to and through the South Bay, RM3 buys us time with improvements on the Dumbarton Bridge, the Highway 101/92 interchange and BART to San Jose,” said Silicon Valley Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino.
Traffic relief projects in the South Bay that would be funded through the measure include:
- BART to San Jose
- BART expansion cars
- San Jose Diridon station
- Dumbarton Corridor improvements
- Highway 101/State Route 92 interchange
- Eastridge to BART regional connector
To see the full a list of projects the measure would fund, go here.