Public review of Plan Bay Area Action Plan – housing+transportation affordability and megacommutes

There are upcoming public meetings to give feedback on the newest PlanBayArea, including new proposals to address major challenges with regional housing+transportation affordability and lengthening megacommutes (see list of meetings in the Caltrain corridor below.)

Plan Bay Area is the region’s initiative to coordinate land use and transportation in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with California state policy. Before PlanBayArea, the region planned its transportation and housing/land use separately,  even though transportation needs are closely tied to land use.   This is the second go-round of regional planning – the first PlanBayArea passed in 2013.   

The PlanBayArea process is managed by the regional planning agencies, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission and the Association of Bay Area Governments, which are in the process of merging.

The strategy is to focus growth in core areas especially areas served by transit, and to focus investment primarily on maintaining and fixing, and secondarily on expanding transportation.

PlanBayArea has goals to improve on a range of metrics, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving access to jobs, providing housing,  preventing displacement, and protecting open space.


After reviewing a variety of scenarios, the regional plan was stuck with results that showed low-income households paying over 2/3 of their incomes on housing and transportation (!), and showed mega-commutes getting even worse.


h+t costs escalatingTo remedy these two big deficiencies, the new “action plan” that will be reviewed at the upcoming meeting proposes strategies including

  • conditioning even more transportation funds on local planning and production of housing
  • studying a larger geography for major transportation capital investments
  • investigating methods for reducing transportation costs for low-wage workers.

Regional group Greenbelt Alliance, which focuses on sustainable land use, has more analysis here.

To learn about the plan, and the proposals to do a better job on housing+transportation costs and reducing megacommutes, you can come to one of these meetings.

San Mateo County Open House

Sequoia High School – Multi-Purpose Room
1201 Brewster Avenue, Redwood City
Thursday, May 4, 2017 – 6:30 p.m.

Public Hearing at Joint MTC Planning with the ABAG Administrative Committee

Bay Area Metro Center – Board Room
Friday, May 12, 2017 – 9:40 a.m.

Public Hearing in San Jose

Martin Luther King Library
150 E. San Fernando Street, San Jose
Tuesday, May 16, 2017 – 6 p.m.

San Francisco Open House

Bay Area Metro Center – Yerba Buena, First Floor
Wednesday, May 17, 2017 – 6:30 p.m.

Santa Clara County Open House

Marriott Hotel – San Jose Ballroom IV-VI
301 South Market Street, San Jose
Monday, May 22, 2017 – 6:30 p.m.