The Bay Bridge Celebration is officially on and a critical component of getting there is connecting the Bay Trail to Gateway Park and to the Bay Bridge multi-use pathway (and ultimately, Treasure Island … and hopefully, one day, SF!). Construction is already underway in the southwestern section of the IKEA parking lot on the “east fork” connector that will take bicyclists and pedestrians underneath the Shellmound/4oth bridge and “The Maze” and converge with the west fork path into Oakland.
Bicycling Enthusiasts led by the East Bay Bicycle Coalition fought hard to preserve the connection when Caltrans (shortsighted as always) sought to remove it from the plan. The EBBC found an ally in E’ville’s Public Works Director Maurice Kaufman (who is also spearheading the E’ville Skate Spot) who with the support of the Emeryville Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Committee (BPAC), the Bay Trail Project and the Bay Conservation and Development Commission were able to preserve the vital link. The contaminated soil needed to be remediated (something Emeryville has become quite adept at) and additional local funding procured.
The EBBC has kept close tabs on the project and made recommendations to make the pathway as inviting as possible to bicyclists including adequate lighting, bicycle right-of-way and encouraging designs that will maximize safety and create an inviting experience for all pathway users. A more complete log of their 12 year campaign can be read on EBBC Program Director Dave Campbell’s blog section of the EBBC website dedicated to news related to the Bay Bridge Bike Path.
Construction is expected to be completed on-time for the Labor Day Grand opening shindig. More can be read on the site dedicated to the construction of the Gateway park at baybridgegatewaypark.org
Gateway park simulation on YouTube:
[youtube id=”xb13sKU9lcw” width=”620″ height=”360″]
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Thanks for highlighting this important project, and please note that the schematic image shown above does not reflect the final path alignment. As stated in your post the path will circle under the 40th St bridge, so cyclists and pedestrians coming west from Oakland on 40th will not have to cross over Shellmound in the crosswalk. Another hard fought improvement, but one which will make access to the bridge path smoother and more enjoyable!
Thanks Robert, if you know where I can find a more recent schematic, please refer me to it and I will update this post. I really appreciate all the work the EBBC does for our city (and I finally become a member!).
It’s not pretty but the new alignment can be found at the link below (warning, big pdf), as the “Exhibit A”:
It’s not very clear but the path goes under the 40th St bridge and the hwy, not over them.
[…] closure project amongst its priority items for 2013. These two projects combined with the pending East Fork Bay Bridge bike connector have Emeryville poised to become a major hub of bicycle connectivity in the East Bay … now if […]