The first two-thirds of the Bay Bridge bike path from Emeryville & Oakland opened to the public back on September 3rd, 2013. Since then, bicyclists and pedestrians have been eagerly awaiting the completion that would allow them to complete the 2.2 mile trip to Yerba Buena and ultimately Treasure Island. Originally forecasted to be completed about two years after the vehicle bridge opened, the final segment has been delayed for a second time.
The first delay was announced earlier this year when the opening was pushed back to Winter of 2015. SF Gate anticipated at least an additional couple months delay back in November noting “issues with the design, manufacture and shipping of the steel deck pieces for the path”.
CalTrans Bay Bridge spokesperson Leah Robinson-Leach confirmed through email that this delay would be at least another six months. “The pedestrian/bike path is now scheduled to open the summer of 2016. This is a result of fabrication and anticipated weather that is likely to cause delays. These factors have been built into the schedule resulting in the summer opening.” This information and update was originally announced at the December 17th Toll Bridge Program Oversight Committee public meeting.
* UPDATE: CalTrans spokesperson Leah Robinson-Leach confirmed through KQED recently that this would be delayed yet again until September 2016. *
Considering the track record of the bridge, this isn’t much of a surprise to most. The dismantling of the 78-year-old eastern span of the old Bay Bridge and its $271 million budget has encountered complications including the inability to convince families of cormorant birds to vacate their dwellings (at an additional cost of $550,000). The work is said to be on schedule though and slated to be complete in 2018 although two of the three required contracts have yet to be awarded.
The time-lapse shows the progress of the demolition and outlines plans for its completion:
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The implosion of the old E3 pier is about the only thing that’s gone off without a hitch.
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When completed, the path will provide a vital link with the East Bay and Treasure Island’s estimated 2,000 residents. A massive and contentious Development proposal includes plans to build as many as 8,000 additional housing units that could see bring the population to as many as 19,000. The transportation plan will also include ferry service, new bus routes and revamped vehicle on-ramps.
There has been much resistance and criticisms over the development plan that has been in the works for 15 years mostly based on environmental concerns amid rising sea levels. Much of this resistance has been tempered by the inclusion of 25% affordable units and $50 million in public art. The joint venture between Lennar Corporation (also partnering on the forthcoming Sherwin-Williams development) and Kenwood Investments is expected to cost US$1.5 billion and break ground by 2017.
Further Reading & Resources
Inside Treasure Island’s transportation transformation | SF Gate
Cost of Bay Bridge demolition rises amid complication | Contra Costa Times
Navy’s move speeds up 8,000 units in Treasure Island pipeline | SF Business Times
Will Treasure Island megaproject up the ante on affordable housing? | SF Business Times
Court shuns opponents of big Treasure Island development | SF Gate
Major S.F. Bayfront Developments Advance Despite Sea Rise Warnings | KQED News