Tony Bizjak

Back-seat Driver: RT hopes to expand bus bike racks

Published: Friday, Mar. 1, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 1B
Last Modified: Sunday, Mar. 3, 2013 - 2:52 pm

ASacramento Regional Transit bus pulls up to a stop. A rider with a bike is there, but the two-bike rack on the front bumper of the bus is filled, so the cyclist must wait for the next bus.

It happens daily, RT head Mike Wiley said. He knows. He's a bus and bike commuter. It's happened to him a half dozen times.

RT officials hope to change that. But it's not easy. They have grant money to buy racks that hold three bikes. Under state law, however, those racks make RT buses too long to legally drive the streets. Assemblyman Roger Dickinson, D-Sacramento, introduced legislation last week to make length allowances.

"We want to make our system more accessible, and encourage bike use," Wiley said.

Bay Bridge Walk

Back in 1987, on the Golden Gate Bridge's 50th birthday, cars were banned and people were allowed to walk the span. It didn't turn out well.

So many people showed up that walkers got jammed shoulder to shoulder, unable to move. The bridge's suspension section actually sagged. Engineers frantically calculated how much weight the bridge could hold. It held. But bridge people learned a lesson.

This Labor Day weekend, before the opening of the new Bay Bridge east span, officials will allow pedestrians to walk the bridge from Oakland to San Francisco.

This time, they'll sell tickets, limit walkers to 125,000, and send groups off in intervals. They haven't decided on the fee yet.

A redo of the Golden Gate sag saga is "exactly what we don't want to happen," the Bay Area Toll Authority's John Goodwin said.

Tower Bridge epicureans

Sacramento will host its own bridge bash that same month.

Convention and Visitors Bureau officials say they hope to close Tower Bridge on Sunday, Sept. 29, and set up family-style dinner tables from one end to the other for an alfresco dinner hosted by local chefs.

The dinner for 500 will cap the bureau's "Farm to Fork" celebration week.

Bureau officials say they haven't decided on the cost or the menu. Everyone, however, will get a seat with a view.

Crash epicenters

The Folsom Boulevard and Howe Avenue intersection had the most crashes of any intersection in the city of Sacramento last year, the annual police analysis shows.

It was followed by Franklin Boulevard/Mack Road and by North 12th and B streets. The top 10 all are major commute corridors.

Renaming the depot

The city has asked opinions on a possible new name for the downtown train depot. My favorite so far, from reader James Brown: "Sutter Station." It's simple, historical and alliterative.

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