Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Global Opportunities at Oakland

By Karen Robes Meeks

A pair of projects, under the Global Opportunities at the Port of Oakland (GoPort) Program, have received $187.4 million in 2018 Trade Corridor Enhancement Program Grants funded by Senate Bill 1, the California Transportation Commission announced Friday.

Roughly $175 million will be earmarked for the 7th Street Grade Separation, which seeks to bolster truck clearance, ease traffic congestion and feature a shared walkway/bike path by replacing the railroad underpass between I-880 and Maritime Street. The second grant of $12.4 million will pay for the Freight Intelligent Transportation System, technology geared to organizing truck arrivals, improving responses to incidents and linking to regional smart corridor systems.

“These projects will improve reliability of travel time and access throughout the Port of Oakland, increasing efficiency, while reducing congestion and air quality impacts on the local community and eliminating truck back-ups onto local streets,” says Alameda CTC Chair Supervisor Richard Valle. “They also support increased use of rail, which is a key part of the region's and county's goods movement strategy.”

The gas tax funds from Senate Bill 1 will be critical to reducing freight congestion on freeways and rail lines, reducing emissions and improving air quality and good jobs, noted Alameda CTC Executive Director Arthur L. Dao.

“While our local transportation sales tax measures got these projects underway, and serve as key leverage, we wouldn't be able to move forward into construction on these priority projects without the statewide gas tax funds,” he said.