Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Sandag should invest even more in bike lanes!

I-5 at Midtown.  Photo courtesy of Great Streets San Diego.

Great article yesterday on the judge's ruling against Sandag's regional transportation plan.  Why?  Because it really asks Sandag to re-address transportation in a more holistic sense.  We simply can't keep widening freeways as a means to addressing transport.  Widening a highway works temporarily to accommodate our cars, but within a few years as more cars use the road, we are back to square one and we've wasted money on infrastructure that isn't meeting our needs. Again.

If I worked for Sandag, I would look at all public transport options and simply increase them: more routes, increased schedules, more connectivity.  I would also add more bike lanes, and find ways to connect all public transport with biking.  If we really want to be a city of connected villages, we must integrate our public transport options into how we get around.  With Sandag's regional bike upgrade plan, they are doing a good job, but we could do even better by having more lanes, better lanes, and really promoting biking as a means of transport.

I would also reduce the daily fee to use our current public transport.  It used to be $5.00 to use any public transport for the entire day.  And this is a great option for tourists, or someone who doesn't get out much, but a friend was telling me it's now increased to $7.00.  The website still says $5.00 however.  Either way, I think this all day pass would see more traction if it was only $2-3.00.

If we have billions of dollars to widen freeways, we have billions of dollars to increase public transport, and get people out of their cars, which improves air quality, improves community, improves our health by exercising, and all which ultimately improves our lives.  San Diego simply can't lose by investing in more and better public transport.