CalSTA staff recently joined two sessions of a city and regional planning studio course at UC Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design that analyzed the path for a new Transbay crossing for the San Francisco Bay Area. Due to increasing economic and population growth, many organizations have done preliminary analysis on the need and utility of a “second crossing” to add rail and transit capacity in the region in addition to the Bay Bridge and the current BART tunnel. This course asked graduate students studying transportation planning, engineering, and public health to study this issue from multiple angles in studio.
Taught by Karen Trapenberg Frick, a former transportation planner at the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the course examines topics related to project delivery, governance, funding and costs, policy and planning issues related to land use and transit-oriented development, environmental issues, and system connectivity.
Throughout the semester, the course engaged with outside participants, including CalSTA Deputy Secretaries Kate White and Chad Edison, who provided expertise and feedback. Using these participants’ input and insight, and through regular consultation with dozens of stakeholders, students developed analyses and recommendations to deliver a final professional report on the alternatives that they presented this week.
The studio created a website to give the public access to their report for a larger discussion. The students utilized MTC’s travel demand model to estimate changes in travel patterns and UrbanSim to estimate the impact on land use to create their preliminary findings for each alternative.
This work could potentially set the foundation for a plan that stakeholders will use to move forward on one of these alternatives to address the continuing growth of the Bay Area region. You can explore an interactive map of the alternatives here: http://thirdcrossing.org/map.html and find out more about the project.