A new Mercury News article by Gary Richards discusses the revised project option for bus rapid transit on El Camino Real. There are three points to clarify about the article:
1) The projected ridership numbers in the article need some explanation. Gary received an advance copy of the presentation that VTA’s Board of Directors will receive on Friday morning and neglected to note in the article that the ridership projection of 38,398 daily boardings in 2035 comes from a slide that discusses the optimal project, which featured dedicated lanes from Showers Drive to Lafayette. The optimal project was not politically feasible. As such, the Board will discuss four other project options at the upcoming workshop.
Since the optimal project ridership projection was released, VTA has received feedback from cities that 25-year projections are too distant and are difficult to grasp. At the cities’ request, we’ve begun discussing projected ridership for the year 2020. As such, the presentation to the Board of Directors will show 11,198 daily BRT boardings for the revised project in 2020. The 38,398 figure cited in the article is 15-years beyond the 2020 projection and is a corridor projection, which includes the Line 22 local bus.
2) The street configuration that Santa Clara chose features on-street parking as well as bicycle lanes, two travel lanes, two dedicated BRT lanes and a reduced width median. The graphic in the article leaves out on-street parking and shows the same width median.
3) The article states that Santa Clara and San Jose both “unanimously supported dedicated lanes on El Camino Real.” Santa Clara supported dedicated lanes unanimously. San Jose unanimously supported a mixed flow configuration on The Alameda.