When originally built, the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge had a third lane. Given the horrendous traffic in the afternoon commute, it is time to reopen that third lane to traffic. Sounds easy, right? But it is not. With dozens of studies required by the state, and a need to reconfigure the access and egress to the bridge, Caltrans projected a three year time frame to complete the project. NBLC joined with other business groups to press for a faster completion, and called for a temporary fix to allow traffic to use the existing lane immediately.
We are pleased that some progress has been made. By agreeing to do the design and environmental review concurrently, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission and the Bay Area Toll Authority were able to cut one year off the completion date. Two years is better than three, but still seems way too long to provide a much needed traffic fix. NBLC appreciates the cooperation and the agencies working to expedite this project but with such an obvious solution in place, we can only hope that even speedier progress can be made.