Much of Silicon Valley developed in the time of the automobile, making it difficult to navigate by public transit, biking, walking, or even vanpool/shuttle options. The Leadership Group works to promote these alternatives to driving, as they are more environmentally sustainable, cheaper, and provide options for the growing number of people who prefer urban, car-free or -light environments.
This aligns with the direction the State laid out for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transportation. In 2008, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law SB 375, a companion to the landmark AB 32 global warming bill. SB 375 makes land use and transportation planning changes requiring the Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) to achieve a regional target set by the California Air Resources Board (CARB). For the Bay Area, the goal is a 7% reduction from 1990 levels by 2020 and 15% by 2035. The bill also includes the coordination of the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) with the Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) that will integrate and provide better connectivity of transportation and housing needs for regional sustainability.
The Silicon Valley Leadership Group advocates for the prioritization of regional funding for transportation that serves denser, urban living/working options through MTC’s One Bay Area (OBAG) program and the Sustainable Communities Strategy. Please visit One Bay Area for additional information. Also, check out this presentation from San Francisco Urban Planning & Research (SPUR) on the urban future of work to see why dense workplaces are critical to making transit work and lowering our impact on the environment.