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AC Transit To Consider Bus-Only Lane On Bay Bridge After Unanimous Vote

EMERYVILLE (KPIX 5) -- The Alameda-Contra Costa County Transit District revived a decades-old idea to implement a bus-only lane on the Bay Bridge. According to AC Transit, they're noticing a real need for a lane dedicated just for buses.

With a unanimous vote Wednesday night, the AC Transit board decided to consider the idea once again to have a lane just for buses in both directions of the Bay Bridge. This action by the board is a move just to start the conversation.

"Let's keep in mind a bus only lane is far more than re-striping. It will require a number of agencies working together," said Robert Lyles with AC Transit.

AC Transit says its noticed a 10% increase in ridership over the last year. Lyles added, "If these numbers continue, in less than two years, we can see an increase of at least 5,000 riders per weekday."

That will mean more buses on the Bay Bridge clogging up traffic. There are many that are hoping the bus lane will solve the commute nightmare.

"I think it's something we can do pretty quickly if we have the political will," said commuter Derek Sagehorn.

"We want to get people into buses not cars," said Kennard Plummer, a bus driver.

But taking one lane away out of the five already congested lanes on the Bay Bridge has met a lot of opposition in the past.

"The bridge, there are only so many lanes, do they really need one for the buses?" asked Chris Hume.

There are many community leaders on board with this idea, including the mayors of Oakland and Berkeley. Historically, Caltrans has been the biggest road block in the project.

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