Transportation

Our goal: Give people better ways to get where they need to go.

SPUR’s transportation agenda:

• Make our streets safe and inviting for pedestrians.
• Complete our bicycle networks.
• Increase capacity and speed on key bus and light-rail lines.
• Increase rail service in the region’s urban core.
• Build out the state’s plan for high-speed rail.
• Integrate the region’s many transit operators to make a seamless experience for riders.
• Control transit costs.
• Use pricing to manage traffic congestion.

Read more from SPUR’s Agenda for Change

The Bay Area

  • SPUR Report

    Seamless Transit

    Bay Area transit riders contend with more than two dozen different operators. By integrating our many transit services so they function more like one easy-to-use network, we can increase ridership and make better planning decisions.

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  • SPUR Report

    A Mid-Life Crisis for Regional Rail

    Fifty years after the visionary Rail Plan for the Bay Area, only part of the original vision has been realized. The region's top priority now should be expanding capacity in San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose.

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  • SPUR Report

    A Better Future for Bay Area Transit

    Capital and operating deficits are putting the viability of Bay Area transit at risk. MTC has launched the Transit Sustainability Project to identify policy solutions. SPUR recommends nine strategies to reach the project’s goals.

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  • SPUR Report

    Saving Caltrain for the Long Term

    Caltrain is one of the most important transit systems in the Bay Area, and yet recurring budget shortfalls and a complex three-county governing structure have made its future uncertain. SPUR looks at long-term solutions.

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San Francisco

  • SPUR Report

    Reversing Muni's Downward Spiral

    Muni faces an urgent financial crisis. SPUR proposes to boost revenues by increasing the speed of boarding, reducing waits at lights, improving transit stop spacing and favoring primary transit corridors.

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  • SPUR Report

    Taking Down a Freeway to Reconnect a Neighborhood

    Highway 280 and the Caltrain railyards create barriers between SoMa, Potrero Hill and Mission Bay. But San Francisco has the opportunity to advance bold new ideas that can enhance the transportation system and the public realm.

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  • White Paper

    Connecting San Francisco's Northeast Neighborhoods

    North Beach, Telegraph Hill, Russian Hill, Fisherman’s Wharf and northern Chinatown have high densities of residents, workers and tourists — yet no major plans to increase transit. How can transit better serve these neighborhoods?

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San Jose

  • SPUR Report

    Freedom to Move

    Santa Clara County grew up around the car. Now traffic is stalling economic growth, social equity and quality of life. How can we get the South Bay, its people and its economy moving in a more sustainable way?

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  • White Paper

    Improving Access for Santana Row and Valley Fair

    Two major San Jose destinations — Santana Row and Valley Fair — are both planning to expand. SPUR offers 20 ideas for improving access and circulation for this already-congested area.

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Oakland

  • SPUR Report

    A Downtown for Everyone

    Downtown Oakland, one of the most transit-accessible places in the Bay Area, is poised to take on a more important role in the region. But the future is not guaranteed. How can downtown grow while providing benefits to all?

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Advanced Search

  • Find more of SPUR's transportation research

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Updates and Events

Greening Paris

News December 1, 2009
Fall programming concluded November 18th with bikes, parks and policy in the City of Light. Writer and lecturer Marilyn Clemens illustrated current trends in Parisian roadway and park design, which follow the geometry of the classical era, while also redefining the purpose of public space. The Alliance Française generously sponsored the event. Clemens reported walking as the most popular method of circulation, and the city of Paris plans accordingly for its pedestrians. From small alleys to the Champs-Élysées, streets of all sizes have taken lanes away from cars and given to pedestrians. Cyclists are also a priority, with over 230 miles of new bikeways in the works. And while bicycle sharing has faced challenges , Vélib’ remains popular throughout France. A partnership of the planning department with the department of the environment prompted a new focus on sustainability in the parks, using educational programs and exhibitions to promote the message...

SF Battles the Yogi Berra Parking Problem

News October 23, 2009
Yogi Berra once posited about a restaurant suffering a perceived decline, "Nobody goes there anymore -- it's too crowded." San Francisco parking faces the same dilemma: high parking occupancy and low turnover make parking in San Francisco a headache as drivers are forced waste upwards of 45 minutes orbiting for a space, adding to traffic and burning gasoline. To combat this problem, the SFMTA is considering two proposals: SF Park , an initiative to use parking technology to make finding and paying for parking easier, and the recently unveiled the Extended Meter Hours Study (EMHS) , which would extend parking meter operations in a number of neighborhoods. Increasing turnover and making more spaces available should be quite welcome in a number of neighborhoods where parking is at 100% utilization (or more, when counting cars double-parked, left in illegal spots, or parked on the sidewalk). Implementing the EMHS would also raise...

Norwegian Highway Art

News July 13, 2009
Should you be driving on the highway in rural northwest Norway keep your eyes peeled for more than just the natural beauty. The Norwegian national road agency is in the midst of a $1.6 billion project that attempts to lure tourists to this often over-looked area by highlighting the landscape with architecture--in the shape of viewpoints, rest stops, benches, winding foot bridges and stairs leading you to the sea. It has already hired more than 45 architects, landscape architects and artists to create these eye-catchers. And you don't need a car to enjoy it! Some of the projects include resting shelters for bicyclists. A rest house for cyclists.

SPUR Urges the MTA to Adopt the San Francisco Bike Plan

Policy Letter June 24, 2009
These projects are critical to moving San Francisco's city-wide bicycle network towards completion. Better biking infrasturcture will encourage greater use, leading to improvements in mobility, health, livability and reduced emissions.

Board Fails to Reject SFMTA Budget

News May 27, 2009
Only five members of the Board of Supervisors today voted to reject the SFMTA budget, two short of the supermajority of seven needed to reject it. The supermajority requirement was put in the City Charter by Proposition A and Proposition E (both in part crafted by SPUR) to create a balance between the need to defend the SFMTA from political influence and give the city's elected leaders a chance to reject the budget if it seriously misrepresents their values. In the current budget debate , where the Supervisors were asked to approve a replacement 2009-2010 budget to deal with $129 million in cuts (fully 1/6 of the budget), it is no surprise the Supervisors came closer to rejecting the budget than they ever have since Proposition E passed. SPUR initially supported the motion to reject the budget. Some changes since that time improved the budget and SPUR sat out the...

The Alliance for Biking & Walking Works the Bike Caucus

News May 21, 2009
The Alliance for Biking & Walking, a national coalition of advocacy organizations, is working the Congressional Bike Caucus. The Caucus represents a majority of members who support an increased federal role in promoting bicycling as a solution to our nation's transportation crisis, not to mention our health and environmental crises. In the attached letter from the Bike Caucus Chair, Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Portland, OR), you'll see what the national bike movement is up to. The letter calls for four policies: 1. an increase in safe routes to school funding. (This will help us traffic-calm many SF streets) 2. a complete streets requirement (that all streets be designed for safe use by all, a policy already in place in San Francisco). 3. an "active transportation investment fund" to provide large grants for ambitious nonmotorized transportation plans, and 4. better data collection. All in all, if the bike caucus (which is comprised...

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