3 issues significantly missing from
1. The 1st request
is to project future Freeway Traffic levels even
before any EIR on St Vincents. And do this before wasting
time on anything else.
There is a precedent here:-
Across the freeway from St Vincents. In 1996 a development application was
approved to Lucas with the following statement :
“The Proposed Project would meet the intent of traffic policies that
call for a Level of Service D or better for peak-hour traffic along Highway 101
and at all intersections”
Now level of service D is
“ traffic nears an unstable flow, short queues develop and cars may have to
wait during short peaks. “
(Skipping level of service E) Level of service F is
“ unsatisfactory stop-and-go traffic characterized by “traffic jams” and
stoppages of long duration. Traffic may be blocked by the long queues.
During peak periods and even Sunday evenings we are at level of service F
right now. That is, Hwy 101 is “blocked by the long queues” every morning
I respectfully request the Environmental Impact Review Commission to go
measure Hwy 101’s CURRENT Level of Service BEFORE even thinking about
developing St Vincents.
I request that the Board please halt any further Review until current and future
freeway traffic is properly estimated.
We are at an unacceptable Level of Service right now.
That is level of service F:- “traffic jams and stoppages of long duration”
We need to return to a level of service which is significantly better than it is
now, BEFORE even touching St Vincents.
And the GAP project (plan to have a movable divider on HWY101 between San Pedro
and Larkspur by 2005) would result in a Level of Service of E at best. Still a
So any development that increases traffic, no matter how small, 6 % or 4%
or 2% or even 1/1000th of a percent must not even be contemplated until our
Freeway can be shown to cope.
Whatever deal that was made back in the 70’s General Plan to develop St
Vincents and Silveira is null-and-void now that we have the traffic problems
that we DID NOT have then.
2. The 2nd
request is for the EIR to exclude any influence a railway
system might have on this development. It should NOT be within the scope
of this review to include the remote possibility that a rail system might exist
in Marin and a rail station might exist on Silveira land.
These days, Rail Transit’s low ridership, huge expense and limited
reach, even in high density Metropolitan areas, is hard to justify. Especially
as it takes away funding from vastly more effective roadway expansion. More
effective at reducing congestion that is. One freeway lane
addition (one in each direction) would accommodate 3 to 5 times the
passenger-miles per route mile of a rail system and cost less per passenger-mile
than “SMART” RAIL. (excluding the "Narrows")
NATIONAL Transit Experts know that Marin’s low density and SMART rail’s
projected ridership would make little difference to road congestion here.
Scoping should not relate justification of St Vincents development to the
unlikely possibility that SMART rail be allowed here.
When the County and voters are properly advised by National Transit Experts,
SMART Rail will be voted OUT. (Not advised by the local misguided consultants
the county is using now) Induced Traffic Myth
3. 3rd request is
for Affordable Housing Options at the Countywide level to
be considered before justifying St Vincent on the 200 “affordable”
For affordable housing we need to subsidize monthly rental from around
$1,500 to around $700 per month. For 1000 homes that's $800 x 12 x 1000 = $9.6
million PER YEAR!!!
There IS a bus service, just introduced, from San Rafael to Richmond BART
and then El Cerrito, every half hour. But only every other bus stops at Richmond
Bart, ( that's every hour). We need to make this every 5 mins at peak periods.
This would accommodate 1000 East Bay commuters during
a 1 1/2 hour peak period. We must advertise this service and provide many
incentives for workers to commute here. (Already
100,000's Affordable houses a mere 7 - 12 miles away)
Please, Let San Rafael meet their mandated housing quota with Smart
Infill and not Environmentally Destructive “Outfill”.