At their meeting of Thursday, Oct 17, 2013 the Emery Go Round Board decided to stop service to Watergate Residents. The main reason for the stoppage was the new sidewalks which were installed prohibit the buses from making a safe u-turn.
At the City Transportation Committee Meeting this morning, the Public Works Director, and the City Manager will be actively seeking to restore the service. However, the bus operator and the City have to agree on what is considered to be a safe u-turn. The City is remiss by installing new sidewalks which should have actually incorporated the bus stops. It’s inconceivable that could be overlooked.
The audio recording of the Oct 17th meeting of the Emery Go Round Board
is available below.
Although funding is an issue, it is not the reason why the service was stopped. The question of funding for the service is actually not very complicated. The present funding for the system, where commercial property owners are currently paying for the service won’t continue past 2016.
The Emery Go Round Asked the City to augment funding for the service, but the Council refused to provide additional funding while raising the amount of money property owners must pay. There is a group of property owners who object to the Watergate service, because as paying members they don’t receive the same benefits. For example all of the businesses in the North Hollis area don’t have weekend service, while people who aren’t paying have better service.
The only realistic funding for the future of the service would be to include the Emery-Go-Round project in the 2014 ballot measure to be put forward by the
Alameda Transportation Commission. The cost of operating the service could and should be included in that tax measure.