Transportation

Alameda’s ferry commuters will soon have more Main Street departures to choose from.

Managers of Alameda’s Harbor Bay and Main Street ferry services and city officials are hosting a pair of public hearings this month to gauge riders’ interest in increasing service and to collect the community’s thoughts on ways to improve access to both terminals.

The city will likely soon be seeking a firm to build a long-desired Shore Line Drive bikeway that staffers say will offer a safer route and bay views to cyclists traversing a 1.8-mile stretch of the Island.

The City Council is scheduled on Tuesday to consider approving plans for the project and authorizing a call for bids to build it. Construction is expected to begin in July and take 60 working days.

The city will pay about a half million dollars toward the $971,800 project, with most of the rest of the tab to be covered by a federal grant. Money from the regional Metropolitan Transportation Commission will cover the remaining $46,400 of the project’s cost.

Alameda’s Transportation Commission gave its blessing to a list of changes meant to improve service along AC Transit’s Line 51A route but withheld it for controversial proposed stops in front of a Santa Clara Avenue church, a hair salon and also, Maya Lin School.

Monday’s fact-finding hearing on a threatened AC Transit strike offered a stark contrast between the East Bay bus system’s labor dispute and the one that has raged between BART workers and the regional rail line’s managers.

Caltrans is preparing to make some fixes to the Posey Tube that could make commuting it a little easier for pedestrians and cyclists. But cyclists here said the work is only a small start on what needs to be done.

“Honestly, there is pretty much nothing they can do to the tube that will entice me, personally, to ride or walk through it again on a regular basis,” cyclist Cyndy Johnsen said.

Johnsen said she used to ride her bike through the tube from Oakland every day to get to a job in Marina Village. But Johnsen, now an Alameda resident, said the noise and poor air there are “just too much.”

Photo from the BART blog.

Alameda could someday be home to its own BART station, the Island’s BART representative has said, which would be a boon for city leaders seeking ways to blunt the traffic impacts of development being considered at Alameda Point and elsewhere.

But the director, Robert Raburn, said new stations won’t be built until fixes to the BART system’s existing core are addressed – and that the Island could face some stiff competition for one.

The BART board will get an update on the transit agency’s plan for the future of BART at its meeting Thursday.

Photo from the BART blog.

A BART strike Monday could send hundreds of thousands of Bay Area commuters scrambling for another ride to work. But Alameda’s commuters – especially those headed to Oakland and San Francisco – have other options. Here are some alternate commute options for BART riders and drivers seeking to avoid congestion on the Bay Bridge.

Editor's note: The Alamedan wishes to acknowledge the team at Alameda Point Info for providing source documents for this story.

One of the primary challenges facing city leaders seeking to revitalize Alameda Point is how to manage all of the traffic that new homes and businesses will generate.

The 51A bus traverses Alameda on the way to and from the Rockridge and Fruitvale BART stations. Bus map from AC Transit's website.

City planners and AC Transit representatives proposed what they believe are improvements to the Route 51A bus line running through Alameda and Oakland at a community workshop Tuesday, but the reception from residents and businesses located in the path of the bus line was far from favorable.