Contra Costa County Public Works Department will perform work on Marsh Creek Road from Deer Valley Road to the Clayton City limits, from September 5 through October 5, 2017. The work will occur Monday through Thursday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to shape slopes, repair shoulders and erosion along the road edge. The work may be rescheduled based on weather conditions. Electronic message boards will alert drivers of the scheduled work. There will be traffic control through the work area and drivers can expect delays of 10-15 minutes.
Construction of the Byron Highway and Camino Diablo Intersection Improvement Project is underway. The project will widen roadway pavement, install a traffic signal, sidewalk and upgrade the Union Pacific Railroad crossing on Camino Diablo. Camino Diablo, from Main Street to Byron Highway, will be closed for the construction of the upgrades to the railroad crossing effective 3:00pm August 29th until 7:00 am September 28th.
Traffic will be detoured to Holway Drive for access to Camino Diablo and Byron Highway. Drivers can expect delays. The project is funded by Federal Highway Safety Improvement Funds, Traffic Mitigation Funds, and Local Road Funds. Project completion is expected by the end of November. For project updates, visit the Public Works website at: http://www.cccounty.us/pwdmap.
Main focus is on transportation and land-use; also focuses on economic development
The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), on Wednesday, July 26 adopted Plan Bay Area 2040 and its associated Environmental Impact Report (EIR). The nearly unanimous vote – with 41 of the 43 officials from the two bodies voting in the affirmative on the Plan and 39 for the EIR – caps a three-year process of plan development and intensive public outreach.
The second such regional housing and transportation plan adopted by MTC and ABAG, Plan Bay Area 2040 is a long-range blueprint to guide transportation investments and land-use decisions through 2040, while meeting the requirements of California’s landmark 2008 Senate Bill 375, which calls on each of the state’s 18 metropolitan areas to develop a Sustainable Communities Strategy to accommodate future population growth and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from cars and light trucks.
The Plan shines a spotlight on the region’s housing crisis – in terms of housing availability and affordability – and calls on citizens to join with business, government, academia and the non-profit sector to solve it. The Bay Area must “pursue a multi-pronged strategy that emphasizes the construction of new homes for residents of all incomes, the protection of the region’s most vulnerable households, and the need to advocate for more financial resources to pursue local and regional solutions,” the Plan notes.
The Plan points to two recent developments that will improve the region’s ability to address its chronic housing and affordability challenges. The recent integration of MTC’s and ABAG’s staff into a unified team will lead to more effective long-range planning and strengthen the region’s housing policy resources. And the newly created CASA initiative – the blue-ribbon Committee to House the Bay Area – is bringing together diverse interests to develop a bold new strategy for housing production and preservation.
The Action Plan portion of Plan Bay Area 2040 also focuses on economic development, particularly improving transportation access to jobs, increasing middle-wage job creation and maintaining the region’s infrastructure. Another focus of the Action element is resilience in terms of enhancing climate protection and adaptation efforts, strengthening open space protections, creating healthy and safe communities, and protecting communities against natural hazards.
Leaders of ABAG and MTC applauded the Plan’s adoption.
“The ABAG Executive Board’s and MTC’s passage of Plan Bay Area 2040 recognizes the changes that have occurred to our region’s cities and counties and adjusts the actions we need to take to meet our shared challenges,” commented ABAG President and Clayton Councilmember Julie Pierce. “This successful second round of Plan Bay Area also highlights the good work that the agencies have done together in conjunction with the cities and counties.”
“The updated Plan charts a smart course by identifying the strategic investments and policy directions necessary to keep the Bay Area economy growing while maintaining a high quality of life,” stated MTC Chair and Rohnert Park Mayor Jake Mackenzie.
The draft Plan and approved revisions can be viewed at 2040.planbayarea.org/reports. The final report integrating the comments will be available in the coming weeks at the same location. MTC is the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area. ABAG is the council of governments and official regional planning agency for the 101 cities and towns, and nine counties of the Bay Area.
Phase I of the Balfour Road Shoulder Widening Project is underway. Phase I includes widening the pavement for wider lane and shoulders from Byron Highway to Bixler Road. Eastbound traffic will be detoured via local streets. Westbound traffic will stay on Balfour Road.
The detour will be in effect from Monday July 31st through mid-September. Drivers can expect traffic delays due to construction. The contractor will start Phase II after Phase I work is completed. The project is funded by the Discovery Bay West Traffic Mitigation funds.
For project updates visit the Public Works website at: http://www.cccounty.us/pwdmap.
Contra Costa County Public Works Department will perform work on Marsh Creek Road from Deer Valley Road to the Clayton City limits from July 10 through July 20, 2017. The work will occur Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to shape slopes and shoulders along the road edge where mudslides occurred during the winter storms.
The work may be rescheduled based on weather conditions. Electronic message boards will alert drivers of the scheduled work. There will be traffic control through the work area and drivers can expect delays of 10-15 minutes.
Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy Final Environmental Impact Report
The Final Environmental Impact Report (Final EIR) (SCH# 2016052041) for Plan Bay Area (PBA) 2040, the Regional Transportation Plan (RTP)/Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS) (proposed Plan) for the San Francisco Bay Area is available for review as of July 10, 2017. Additional information and notice of public meetings is provided below.
The proposed Plan is a regional strategy for accommodating household and employment growth projected to occur in the Bay Area region through 2040, and a transportation strategy for the region based on expected revenues. The primary objective of the proposed Plan is to achieve mandated reductions of greenhouse (GHG) emissions and to provide adequate housing for the projected 2040 regional population level pursuant to The Sustainable Communities and Climate Protection Act of 2008 (Senate Bill (SB) 375, Statutes of 2008). The proposed Plan sets forth a transportation and land use blueprint for how the Bay Area can address transportation mobility and accessibility needs, regional housing responsibilities, economic conditions and forecasts, environmental concerns, and GHG emissions reduction requirements through the year 2040.
The region includes nine counties (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma) totaling approximately 4.4 million acres (7,000 square miles). In 2015, the region had 4.01 million jobs, 2.76 million households, and 7.57 million people. The proposed Plan would accommodate projected growth for an additional 688,000 jobs, 666,000 households, and 2.06 million people by 2040 with a transportation investment strategy of $303 billion. MTC is required under State and Federal law to update the RTP/SCS every four years.
The Final EIR includes the Draft EIR, a copy of each comment on the Draft EIR received by MTC/ABAG during the public comment period, responses to comments on environmental issues raised in those comments, and corrections and clarifications to the Draft EIR.
The Final EIR is now available for public review online at the web link listed below or a free electronic copy may be obtained by contacting MTC at the contact information provided below.
MTC Public Information
375 Beale Street, Suite 800
San Francisco, CA, 94105
415.778.6757 office / 415.536.9800 fax
The document will also be available for public review in at least one library in each of the nine member counties. A list of library locations is available at the website listed below:
MTC/ABAG will be conducting two public meetings to consider certification of the Final EIR and adoption of the proposed Plan. All interested agencies, organizations, and individuals are welcome to participate in these public meetings for the Final EIR. Oral comments will be accepted during these meetings.
July 14, 2017
Joint MTC Planning Committee with the ABAG Administrative Committee (9:30 a.m.) at the Bay Area Metro Center – Board Room, First Floor, 375 Beale Street, San Francisco, CA 94105. At this meeting, the decision-makers will make a recommendation to the MTC Commission/ABAG Executive Board regarding certification of the Final EIR and adoption of the proposed Plan.
July 26, 2017
MTC Commission/ABAG Executive Board (7:00 p.m.) at the Bay Area Metro Center – Board Room, First Floor, 375 Beale Street, San Francisco, CA 94105. At this meeting, a final action will be taken regarding certification of the Final EIR and adoption of the proposed Plan.
The following statement is required to be included in this notice: Pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15087(c)(6), the nine county Bay Area region contains hazardous waste sites as enumerated under California Government Code Section 65962.5.
Do you need an interpreter or any other assistance in order to participate? Please call us at 415.778.6757. We require three days’ notice in order to provide reasonable accommodation.
¿Necesitas un intérprete o cualquier otra asistencia para participar? Comunícate al 415.778.6757. Necesitamos aviso con tres días de anticipación para proporcionar asistencia razonable.
Contra Costa County Public Works Director awarded a contract to Flatiron West, Inc. to repair the section of Alhambra Valley Road near Castro Ranch Road and Pinole Valley Road intersection that was washed out during the 2017 winter storms. The work will start on June 12 and is anticipated to be completed by the end of September. The work includes installation of a 60-foot long bridge that will have shoulders for bicycles and pedestrians.
The new bridge over Pinole Creek replaces the 1930’s era 9-foot steel pipe culvert and will allow for unimpeded fish passage, specifically steelhead, in consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service.
For project updates visit the Public Works website at: http://www.cccounty.us/pwdmap.
Culvert work on Morgan Territory Road is scheduled for June 14th through June 16th between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. The work will occur approximately 8 miles south of the Morgan Territory Road temporary signal. Drivers can expect 30 minute delays and are encouraged to use an alternate route during this time. Signage will be placed in advance of the culvert work to alert drivers of the work and anticipated delays.
The BART Board of Directors, at their May 11th meeting, approved a resolution of support for the proposed Brentwood Transit Center and Mokelumne Trail Bridge. If built, the transit center could initially be served by Tri Delta Transit buses and could eventually become a station for a future eBART extension.
“This resolution from the BART Board is an important step in showing the strong regional support for building the Brentwood Transit Center,” said BART Director Joel Keller. “The transit center would remove approximately 1,000 cars from Highway 4 for more than four miles past the Antioch eBART Station by providing parking for customers taking Tri Delta Transit to BART.”
The resolution calls on BART to work with the city of Brentwood, Tri Delta Transit and the Contra Costa Transportation Authority to explore the idea of the Brentwood Transit Center. This would include working with Brentwood on the Specific Plan being initiated now.
The decision by the BART Board comes after the Brentwood City Council in March voted unanimously to explore building a transit center near the intersection of the Mokelumne Multi-use Trail and State Highway 4. The Brentwood City Council is also supporting the construction of a pedestrian and bicycle bridge over Highway 4 to improve access to the site.
In 2014, BART conducted a next segment study to look at possible stops for a future eBART extension. Six locations were studied and it was determined that the site near Highway 4 and the Mokelumne Trail was the preferred terminus of a future eBART extension beyond Antioch. The transit center proposal is also on the list of projects for Plan Bay Area 2040 with partial funding.
The BART Board’s support for the transit center comes as construction is underway on the eBART line into eastern Contra Costa County. That 10-mile extension will run from the Pittsburg/Bay Point Station in the median of Highway 4 and includes stops at the new Pittsburg Center Station and the Antioch Station near Hillcrest Avenue. The eBART project will use independently propelled railcars known as Diesel Multiple Units (DMUs) that will operate on standard gauge rail.
It is anticipated that eBART service will launch in May of 2018.
By Dave Roberts
The Antioch City Council on Tuesday joined the city councils in Oakley and Brentwood in endorsing an innovative rail transit system that could extend the East County eBART line through far East County at significantly less cost.
The ultra-light rail transit (ULRT) system by a private company, CyberTran International (whose investors include a company partially owned by Contra Costa Herald publisher Allen Payton), is seeking funding to demonstrate the viability of the system on a track in Richmond, and then to roll out the above ground line possibly in East County connecting the Hillcrest eBART Station to stations in Oakley, Brentwood, Discovery Bay and the Byron Airport.
The eBART line now under construction from the Bay Point BART Station with stations at Railroad Avenue in Pittsburg and Hillcrest in Antioch costs $56 million per mile, CyberTran President Dexter Vizinau told the council. His ULRT system would cost about $30 million per mile and have the advantages of providing more stations, perhaps at shopping centers, and provide cars that would go nonstop from any station along the line.
“The problem is that [traditional] transit is too costly to build, operate and maintain,” Vizinau said. “There is a $78 billion backlog in transit maintenance in the country. The only way to pay is to raise taxes. Something has to change and it has to be innovative. We believe we solve that problem.”
Vizinau cited the support of U.C. Berkeley, and the three national labs, in the development of the CyberTran system. He also held up a letter from the U.S. Department of Transportation stating the system was further along technologically than any other innovative transit system in the country.
Mayor Sean Wright noted that few Antioch residents are likely to use the system. “It doesn’t affect Antioch – we’re done and through,” he said. But it does have the potential of reducing traffic from far East County residents on Highway 4 through Antioch, which pleased Council Member Lori Ogorchock. “Anything to reduce traffic and congestion,” she said.
Vizinau said his company has been working on the project for 23 years and is ready to break ground. The main challenge is finding the funding. A 10-mile ULRT line from Hillcrest Station to Brentwood would cost about $300 million.
The company was set to receive $42.9 million from the county’s Measure X half-cent sales tax hike that fell three percentage points short of passing in November, he said. Another tax-hike attempt could be made in two years, he said.
The council unanimously voted to support the project and the company’s efforts to obtain funding, which was a bit of déjà vu as the Antioch Council passed a similar resolution of support seven years ago for the project. That effort was successful in obtaining $15 million in federal funds for innovative transit in the U.S. But, President Obama failed to release the funds before he left office in January, Vizinau said.
The Oakley City Council unanimously approved a similar resolution at their meeting on February 14, and the Brentwood Council did the same at their March 14th meeting. Previously, the Richmond and San Pablo City Councils approved similar resolutions for a CyberTran system in West County, as well.