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Construction beginning on I-580 carpool lanes

Original post made on Sep 5, 2008

With cows grazing in a not-so-distant hillside and big rigs whizzing by, officials broke ground today on new carpool lanes that will be constructed along Interstate 580's often bottlenecked corridor through Livermore and Pleasanton.


Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, September 5, 2008, 4:04 PM

Comments (27)

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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 5, 2008 at 9:16 pm

I'm wondering what others thoughts are about HOV lanes. Do they work?

I personally don't think so.

I'm self-employed. In my 3rd decade of watching people pass by in them, I mostly see what common sense tells me are families and cheaters. It appears carpoolers are the minority in these lanes.


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Posted by Walt
a resident of Country Fair
on Sep 6, 2008 at 3:49 pm

All I see are cheaters, down with HOV lanes!


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Posted by Pro-Law
a resident of another community
on Sep 7, 2008 at 6:15 pm

What a waste of time and money. We don't need carpool lanes - we need an extra lane or two which we all can use. The other lanes are still going to have congestion issues.

If you ever drive 680 south of Walnut Creek right before and right after the carpool lane hours start / end - that is when traffic moves the best (albeit slow still).

Keep cheating cheaters. HOV lanes are a waste.


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Posted by rm
a resident of Harvest Park Middle School
on Sep 9, 2008 at 8:38 pm

Well I ride a motorcycle to work and have to put up with the cheaters every day.

CHP need to get more serious about the HOV lane or just turn it into a normal lane for everyone to use


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 9, 2008 at 9:24 pm

What this article fails to mention is that this will not only be a HOV lane, but a toll lane too. That means all you folks complaining about cheaters and how HOV lanes aren't used by carpoolers will now be able to pay with something like FasTrak and use the lane yourself.

Web Link


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Posted by unclehomerr..
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 9, 2008 at 9:36 pm


A soccer mom and 2 kids in carseats is NOT a commuter. The legislature missed the boat when they didn't require the occupants of a vehicle in a carpool lane to be licensed drivers.

If the point is taking other vehicles out of the jams.. what effect do kids have on relieving the congestion?

unclehomerr..


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Posted by newcomer
a resident of Del Prado
on Sep 10, 2008 at 8:13 am

because soccer mom's carpool with other people's kids


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 12, 2008 at 10:04 am

I highly doubt the mom with two kids in the back is carpooling with other people's kids in the morning or afternoon Monday thru Friday. They would be the minority. I think they're just using it as a "mommy lane".

Also, on Friday afternoon-evenings it looks more like a "family weekend getaway lane".

None of these uses help congestion or air quality.

States are just looking for federal funds, so they pretend these things work.

Meanwhile, we are supposed to extend Stoneridge Drive to relieve congestion on 580. Go figure.


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 12, 2008 at 12:27 pm

What this article fails to mention is that this will not only be a HOV lane, but a toll lane too. That means all you folks complaining about cheaters and how HOV lanes aren't used by carpoolers will now be able to pay with something like FasTrak and use the lane yourself.

Web Link
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood

***
That's a 2005 article. I don't think they're touting it as a HOT lane anymore. Here's the official site: Web Link

If you can still find it, I'd be interested in knowing. Thanks.


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Posted by stayhomedad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 12, 2008 at 12:51 pm

I'm confused, are you guys saying that a Mommy and two kids in car seats shouldn't be able to use the carpool lane? Can you tell me how it would help anyone else (or the environment) to make the "mommy" running errands drive in commuter traffic? Doesn't that just add MORE cars to the parking lot on 580?


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 12, 2008 at 12:58 pm

Here's a more recent article: Web Link

The 580 info website you sent doesn't have it listed as a project because it isn't fully approved yet.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 12, 2008 at 1:00 pm

And another one Web Link


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 12, 2008 at 2:48 pm

Thanks Stacey. I would be more for a toll lane than the traditional HOV ones that haven't work for decades.


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 12, 2008 at 2:48 pm

stayhomedad,

The carpool lanes were set up to reduce the number of cars on the freeway. Allowing the mommies to drive in the carpool lane does nothing to reduce the number. With your logic to allow mommies a pass, why not allow cheaters a pass as that also reduces the number of cars in the other lanes. That doesn't work.


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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Sep 13, 2008 at 1:37 am

This is too funny!!

A "mommie" pays a portion of the taxes that goes into building and maintaining HOV lanes yet she shouldn't use these lanes even though she's in compliance with the rules established for usage.

If I'm not mistaken, though the HOV concept may have been to get vehicles off the road, the sign doesn't say "2 or more commuters" - it says "2 or more persons", or words to that effect.

When the HOV concept was originally sold to the public wasn't another supposed benefit a reduction in time from point "A" to point "B" during commute hours. Could it be the "mommie's" time is just as important to her as a "commuter's" time is to the commuter.

By the way, don't we all pay a portion of the taxes used for the same purpose as the tax "mommie" paid even though we can't use the lane unless we have "2 or more persons". Now we learn the Alameda County Congestion Management Agency(another county bureaucracy)is willing to allow a single occupant to use this lane if he/she is willing to pay a "toll"(call it what you will, in my opinion, it's just another tax)to use the lane he/she has already paid a tax to help build. I agree with Pro-Law - HOV lanes are a waste(except when I have "2 or more persons" in my vehicle)....:)


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 13, 2008 at 8:00 pm

Jerry,

Of course it's legal, but a mom or dad driving children around in an HOV lane in no way helps lessen the number of cars on the road; to say they do is the funny part.


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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Sep 14, 2008 at 3:38 am

Pat S,

What do you have against mom or dad driving kids in the HOV lanes and
who said mom or dad driving kids around in an HOV lane helps lessen the number of cars on the road, not me. But I think reasoning would tell us if this vehicle is carrying someone elses kids along with mommie's kids to the same location, then yes, it would lessen the number of vehicles on the road at that time.

Until a law is passed to the contrary, anyone that's in compliance can use the HOV lane for whatever purpose they desire, be it commuting or simply going from point "A" to point "B". That's the way it is, like it or not....Everyone in the HOV lanes are traveling to where they want to be at that given time, for whatever reason.

I could be wrong but I'm assuming you're a commuter and don't like sitting in bumper to bumper and seeing "mommie and the kids" pass you in the HOV lane. Get yourself a passanger and join them. That will also lessen the number of cars. If your true purpose is to reduce the number of vehicles on the road - stay off yourself, or, if it's in your power, stop the development east of the Altamont. Drive east over the Altamont around 7am on a week day and see how far the westbound bumper to bumper extends. Then go a month later and observe again. If your true purpose is to reduce the number of vehicles passing through the Tri-Valley, if it's in your power, have a road cut from the San Jose area to the Ceres area in the Central Valley.


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2008 at 1:27 pm

Once again, I clearly understand that it is legal, just nonsense. Even you agree it doesn't reduce the number of cars on the road.

Speaking of funny, some of your suggestions belong in the funnies. Thanks for the laugh.


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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Sep 15, 2008 at 2:05 am

Hey Pat S.,

I'm thrilled I could provide you with a good laugh, you seem to need one.

After you've had your laugh, can you explain just what's nonsensical about "mommie" and her kids using the HOV lane(Yes, you understand it's legal). So far all you've done is rail against their use of the lane with no explanation except, apparently, they're a vehicle on the freeway, using the "mommie lane", you feel shouldn't be there during commute hours, thus a reduction of vehicles, but it's OK for your vehicle to be there. If keeping "mommie" off the freeway is your suggestion for reducing freeway conjestion, now that's also good for a laugh. Thanks!!!

Anyone else we should keep off the freeway to help reduce conjestion??? How about my golf buddies and I with a weekday 8am tee time? Yep, we use the HOV lane.....You may have seen us....:)


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2008 at 2:29 pm

Keep "mommie" off the freeway? You seem to like to just make stuff up.

You really should try Tommy T's open mic night. You're hilarious.

Why should a parent with his/her kid in the back have any more right to use the HOV lane than anyone else, other than commuters (two or more licensed drivers), driving down the freeway?


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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Sep 16, 2008 at 2:34 am

I'm glad you find me hilarious. That makes my day because no one else thinks I'm funny, not even my golf buddies listening to my jokes as we're traveling in the HOV lane at 7am on a weekday....:)

You ask - why should a parent with kids have more right to use the HOV lane than anyone else, other than commuters(two or more licensed drivers), driving down the freeway. I think you answered your own question - the parent is complying with the "2 or more persons" requirement(I hope you'll agree kids are "persons").

Where would one find the requirement that all commuters using the HOV lane must be licensed drivers("two or more licensed drivers" - now I didn't "just make stuff up here", those are your words). Now, using your apparent interpretation of HOV lane requirements - if my neighbors, golf buddies, or whomever aren't licensed drivers, I can't have them ride with me in the HOV lane unless I'm also carrying another passenger that's a licensed driver. I'm not to sure that's correct.

Anyway, see you at Tommy T's.........Have a good commute....


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Posted by Pat S
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 16, 2008 at 3:34 pm

Jerry,

You're talking in circles here. I thought we already established that you and I agree that it IS legal (check my first response to you), and therefore allowed, so that is not an issue in anyone's mind. I'm starting to think you're just putting me on.

Why SHOULD it be permitted, be legal, be allowed, etc.?

Try and give a straight answer this time.


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Posted by Pro-Law
a resident of another community
on Sep 16, 2008 at 8:03 pm

Let's not focus on the "Moms" here. Everyone should be able to drive in HOV lanes (aka: there should be no HOV lanes).

I hope they don't do what they do down south and put costly comeent barricades between the HOV lane and the other lanes. Have you guys seen that? It is pretty comical down there where they have thick cement barricades coupled with huge double (sometimes quadruple)yellow lines separating a free flowing HOV lane from the other congestion. No one had the smarts to look at that and think they had enough room to build an extra two - four lanes instead for everyone to use.

I could just imagine the CALTrans meeting... "Hmmm what should we do with all this space?" .. "I have an idea!"


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Posted by Jerry
a resident of Oak Hill
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:55 am

Pat S.

I think I've answered your question before but I'll try once again.

Why permitted, allowed - because there's 2 or more persons in the vehicle. That's all that's required to use the lane, pure and simple. Yes, as you've stated, when the HOV concept was sold to the public one of the benefits was to eliminate as many vehicles as possible during commute hours. Another announced benefit was to move a certain percentage of persons from point to point more rapidly thus reducing the amount of vehicles sitting bumper to bumper spewing smog causing gasses. In my opinion, this is why most people use 580/680 carpools these days rather than showing a concern and removing a vehicle. Gas prices also probably have something to do with it.

Why legal - how can you keep someone from using a roadway when they meet all the legal requirements. How can someone say a certain segment of society can't use a certain roadway at a given time(I believe it's called discrimination). Even if you could, you don't have enough law enforcement personnel for enforcement. How many "cheaters" do you see on the side of the road autographing a citation....

If my answers to why permitted, be legal, be allowed, doesn't satisfy, I guess we'll just agree to disagree...


Pro-law

I've also seem the barricades and all the striping around LA. They have a break in the barricades before off ramps to allow HOV vehicles to move across four lanes of bumper to bumper. Now that's scary...

In my opinion, this is another failed social engineering program to force us out of our cars. Won't work. We're a vehicle oriented society un-willing to abandon our cars, no matter the cost.

I like your description of the CALTrans meeting. Now that's funny...:)


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Posted by Jay Prabhu
a resident of Livermore
on Sep 19, 2008 at 11:06 am

If they just don't allow large trucks to get on 580 during the commute hours from 6AM to 9AM we should have minimal congestion problems. Make a nice truck stop in the altamont pass for truckers with food, rest areas etc. and they can take a break and rest for a few hours.


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Posted by Mark
a resident of another community
on Oct 22, 2008 at 11:37 am

The best alternative would've been to create a "Truck Only" lane or better yet a bypass. That would alleviate a large part of the traffic congestion because the flow would be so much better regardless of the amount of car traffic.


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Posted by Greg
a resident of Amador Estates
on Sep 4, 2010 at 7:44 pm

that freeway has already cost me dearly. Because a of poorly marked construction zone my motorcycle 'and nearly myself" were totaled out. cost to fix motorcycle $11514.63 me about
$240.00 in bandages and $ 700.00 in helmet - armored jacket and pants and gloves and a four hundred mile flatbed trip to get back home . while I was up against the center divider waiting for help another bike crashed, and then another. in a very short span of time three lives could have been lost -maybe some were I don't know

I hope for your sake of the People that travel I 580 eastbound past hacienda before sunrise that some one lights it up or at least marks it well for both bikes and cars.


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