Buses that come every 15 minutes? It’s one suggestion for South Richmond’s future

BART, AC Transit approve plan increasing late-night, weekend service between SF and Richmond

A draft plan to improve transportation in South Richmond in the near and distant future includes installing bus routes that would make stops every 15 minutes and would connect all BART stations in Richmond and El Cerrito to the planned Berkeley Global Campus at Richmond Bay and ferry terminal near Craneway Pavilion.

The suggestion is part of the 320-page South Richmond Transportation Connectivity Plan, a study of the area’s transportation infrastructure that includes a detailed list of recommendations to improve transit connections ahead of a development boom. The city wants the public to review the plan and send any comments to Senior Planner Lina Velasco by June 1 (see bottom of story for contact info).

One of the many near-term suggestions that peaked our interest was a proposal to establish a Primary Transit Corridor, which would provide bus service every 15 minutes between major transit centers and the Berkeley Global Campus at Richmond Bay. In the image below, the solid orange line is the proposed Primary Transit Corridor:

primary.5-6The corridor would include a combination of routes connecting to three BART stations — Richmond, El Cerrito Del Norte and El Cerrito Plaza — and the Richmond ferry terminal, which is expected to begin service to San Francisco in 2018.

To help fund the increased transit service, the draft plan suggests a “collaboration between transit agencies, the University of California (UC), and the City of Richmond.”

It is only one idea in the draft plan’s long list of recommendations for South Richmond — some near-term (2015-2024), others long-term (2030-plus). The proposals attempt to address a potentially crippling influx of traffic to both residential neighborhoods as well as the industrial area west of I-580, where cars share roadways with trains and big rigs and where safe access for pedestrians and bicyclists is limited.

Other near-term proposals include streetscape improvements prioritizing public transportation and increase safety for walkers and cyclists. The plan evaluates other solutions such as car and bicycle-sharing, public and private shuttles and taxi service.

We encourage our readers to look over the plans and send comments to Velasco via email  Lina_Velasco@ci.richmond.ca.us or by mail at Planning Division, 450 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, CA 94804.