Part of the Bay Area News Group

A chance to chime in before bridge tolls are raised

By dcuff
Tuesday, October 27th, 2009 at 1:52 pm in Bay Bridge, Bridges, Caltrans, driving, Retrofitting, tolls.

Bay Area bridge operators have scheduled three public hearings on a proposed toll increase on seven state bridges. While bridge operators appear determined to raise tolls, they have many details to figure out.

Members of the Bay Area Toll Authority are wrestling with how to revamp tolls to do two new things: collecting tolls from car pools during rush hour periods on all seven bridges, and structuring Bay Bridge tolls so drivers pay more during peak periods, and less during in off-peak times.

The affected toll bridges are all in the region except the Golden Gate.

The proposal increase would be would increase from $4 to $5 per car except on the Bay Bridge, where the proposal gets more complicated because of the plan to use congestion pricing to encourage more people to avoid the bridge during the rush hour.

Here’s the details on the three hearings:

– 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 4 at Joseph P. Bort MetroCenter, Lawrence D. Dahms Auditorium, (across from the Lake Merritt BART Station) 101 Eighth St., Oakland

– 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 17 at San Mateo City Hall City Council Chambers, 330 West 20th Ave., San Mateo

– 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 3 at Concord Senior Center, Wisteria Room (in John F. Baldwin Park) 2727 Parkside Circle, Concord.

The main reason to raise bridge tolls is the $750 million needed to do seismic retrofits on the Dumbarton and Antioch Bridges, Toll Authority administrators say.

Click on BATA report about toll increase to view the agency’s case for higher tolls   

Written comments will be accepted until Dec. 21 at BATA Public Information Office, 101 Eighth Street, Oakland, CA, 94607-4700; or the comments can be sent via e-mail to

The seven bridges proposed for the increase are: Bay, Richmond-San Rafael, Carquinez, Benicia-Martinez, Antioch, San Mateo and Dumbarton.



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