BART Disruption Shows Regional Dependence on Transit

The June 14 shut down of BART's Transbay Tube that transports 110,000 daily East Bay/SF riders on four of the five BART lines resulted in one of the worst commuter nightmares the region has seen, showing how indispensable BART is to the Bay Area.
June 18, 2012, 9am PDT | Irvin Dawid
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With BART service halted, Bay Bridge traffic for the most part came to a standstill, a clear illustration of how motorists depend on Bay Area Rapid Transit to keep cars off the bridge on a normal day. Michael Cabanatuan and additional San Francisco Chronicle reporters contributed to the "commuter nightmare" front-page article.

Help came from throughout the region.

However, transportation officials admitted that "there is no replacement for BART'S Transbay Tube." As Metropolitan Transportation Commission spokesman Randy Rentschler put it, "You just can't replace that kind of capacity".

"During the morning commute, he said, BART carries roughly the same number of passengers as a six-lane freeway. A 10-car standing-room-only BART train can carry as many as 1,200 people."

The San Francisco Chronicle editorial summed it up well. "The ensuing traffic jams, overcrowded ferries and lost productivity should be an important reminder to everyone about the importance of mass transit for keeping this region moving."

Thanks to MTC Library

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Published on Friday, June 15, 2012 in San Francisco Chronicle
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