City Officials Ponder Measures To Address Freeway Collapse

Tuesday May 01, 2007

The City of Berkeley announced Monday that as the bridge approaches become heavily congested as a result of the MacArthur Maze collapse, traffic in and around Berkeley is expected to be impacted, even though none of the detours suggested by Caltrans and local officials routes traffic directly through Berkeley. 

On Monday morning, representatives from Berkeley’s Office of Emergency Services, the City Manager’s office, and the Finance, Fire, Police, Public Works, and Traffic departments met to discuss traffic mitigation and identify other potential problems and opportunities. 

Ciry officials said it may take several weeks to understand the real effects of the disaster. 

In the meantime: 

• Police and traffic officials identified the most likely spot of trouble as Ashby/Highway 13 to Tunnel Road. There are tow-away areas on Ashby from 4-6 p.m., and police will be increasing their enforcement at those times.  

• In coordination with Caltrans and Oakland, traffic may be directed away from Ashby and toward the Telegraph and 55th Street onramp to Highway 24 eastbound or the onramp for Highway 580 eastbound at 51st and Martin Luther King Junior. 

• City staff will monitor several likely trouble spots around town, including Ashby and San Pablo, but no changes will be made until there is a clearer picture of what the regular traffic load is likely to be. 

• The city, like other employers in the Berkeley area, will encourage employees who currently drive to work to begin taking public transit. The city already offers public transit incentives, and employees will be encouraged to take advantage of those programs. 

All residents, visitors and employees of local schools and businesses are encouraged to take public transit as much as possible. 

Traffic and commute information is available by calling 511 or going online 

to 511.org.  


Photograph: San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums examine the collapsed freeway section Sunday.