Regional Measure 1

When it comes to transportation funding, even a few cents can make a big difference. Regional Measure 1 (RM 1) financed major bridge and roadway improvements all around the Bay Area.

Image
Credit
Karl Nielsen

Regional Measure 1 (RM 1) — approved by voters in 1988 — established a uniform $1 base toll on the Bay Area’s seven state-owned toll bridges. The cost of these tolls varied widely before the RM 1 increase took effect on Jan. 1, 1989.

The Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) used the new revenue to support bond issues to finance:

  • Richmond Parkway construction — 2001
  • New westbound Carquinez Bridge — 2003
  • San Mateo-Hayward Bridge widening — 2003
  • State Route 84-Bayfront Expressway widening — 2004
  • Richmond-San Rafael Bridge rehab — 2006
  • New northbound Benicia-Martinez Bridge — 2007
  • Southbound Benicia-Martinez Bridge rehab — 2008
  • Interstate 880/State Route 92 interchange replacement — 2011

While all RM 1 projects are now complete, BATA continues to tap the RM 1 revenue stream to service the debt used to finance the program.

Life Before BATA

The California Department of Transportation completed two RM1 projects before the state Legislature established the Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) in 1998:

  • Widening of the original 1962 Benicia-Martinez Bridge
  • West Grand Avenue connector to Bay Bridge
What it Cost in 1988

Tolls at the Bay Area’s state-owned toll bridges varied widely before the RM1 increase took effect on Jan. 1, 1989:

  • Antioch — 50 cents
  • Benicia-Martinez — 40 cents
  • Carquinez — 40 cents
  • Dumbarton — 75 cents
  • Richmond-San Rafael — $1
  • San Francisco-Oakland Bay — 75 cents
  • San Mateo-Hayward — 75 cents