Improving transportation and ending gridlock on the freeway is one of the biggest challenges we face. While the final solutions must be devised on a regional level, there is much we can do and are doing locally to support that regional effort.
First, I supported the passage of Measure A, passed by the voters in 2004 to devote a half-cent of sales tax revenue for buses, roads, bike and pedestrian improvements and building a car pool and bus lane on Highway 101 through Novato to Petaluma. As a current alternate and former Board Member of the Transportation Authority of Marin, I worked to ensure that these improvements benefited Novato and the county of Marin.
Second, as a leader with the Novato Safe Routes to School Program, I have worked to help make it safer for our youth to walk and/or bike to schools. I was instrumental in getting more speed feedback signs around some of schools to remind drivers how fast they are going in comparison to the speed limit, expanding the number of schools participating in our efforts and in helping to develop grant applications for improvements around our Novato schools. Recently, we were successful in competing for grants to install the flashing pedestrian lights along Ignacio and Novato Blvds which have made a huge difference for those walking across the four lane roads. In this new fiscal year, we received additional grant funds to install flashing pedestrian lights across DeLong near Sherman; across Diablo near George Street; and, across Redwood Blvd near Rush Creek Landing! More will be coming!
Third, I support public transit. During my career with the US Environmental Protection Agency, I used Golden Gate Transit to commute back and forth to San Francisco for over three decades. We need to continue to advocate for improvements to our bus system and be more responsive to the community's needs.
Lastly, I proposed and the City Council has agreed to discuss our position on reconstruction of Hwy 37. I believe we need to accelerate the planning and construction of an elevated causeway along the current alignment of Hwy 37. This elevated causeway will enable timely flood risk and congestion management, along with wetland restoration along this corridor. I do not believe that the interim project proposed by CALTRANS should be advanced since it would cost almost $500M and most likely eliminate the proposed elevated causeway. This area could be the largest wetland renovation project west of the Mississippi! I have been attending and involved in hundreds of meetings over the last decade and only minor improvements have been made. Rising sea level is a reality and has already affected Hwy 37 with as many as 28 consecutive days of closure due to flooding. An elevated causeway from Hwy 101 to Hwy 80 will allow for a buffer for rising sea level and flooding through the next century and beyond.