Posted by C. R. Mudgeon, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Mar 12, 2013 at 11:56 am
This does seem like a ridiculous waste of $100 million. For one thing, that seems like a huge amount. But even if it was $10 million, it would seem like a waste of money to me.
It sounds like the main intent is to have a direct feeder to the HOV lanes that are in the middle of the freeway. Perhaps this leads to them being more expensive than reqular, "from the side" entry and exit ramps.
As stated above, what exactly is so difficult about using the existing Crow Canyon or Bollinger Canyon exits? And even with rush hour traffic (such as the Bollinger exit experiences from Bishop Ranch traffic, Chevron traffic, etc.), this seems like a solution in search of a problem.
My guess is that there are federal highway funds "available", and so Cal Trans and others are trying to figure out a way to glom onto them, whether really needed or not. Federal highway funds being largely "other peoples' money" (not totally, but in large part).
Even with that being the situation, surely there are better uses for the funds, to do something else that is interstate-related.
I can think of one thing immediately: on I-680 southbound out of Walnut Creek (and heading towards Alamo), the carpool lane starts up a bit too far south, so that traffic is already backed up by the loss of a regular lane, prior to the carpool lane starting up. There is actually already room in the middle to start the carpool lane earlier, while still retaining a center shoulder.
(Actually, I'd prefer that carpool lanes all be made regular lanes. but that's another story, and one that isn't too likely....)