Adapted from a San Francisco County Transportation Authority press release.
Officials and bicycle advocates participated in a group bike ride across the East Span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge yesterday to mark the opening of the Vista Point visitor area on Yerba Buena Island, at the bike-ped path's western terminus. The project was spearheaded by San Francisco County Transportation Authority, in cooperation with MTC's Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA), Caltrans and Treasure Island Development Authority.
Vista Point is designed as a relaxation and rejuvenation area for visitors to Yerba Buena Island and users of the 2.2-mile East Span path. Featuring restrooms, benches, a hydration station and bike racks, Vista Point offers sweeping views of the East Span of the Bay Bridge and Oakland. A shuttle equipped to transport up to eight bicycles operates 15- to 20-minute service between Vista Point and the adjacent Treasure Island on Saturdays and Sundays.
The opening of Vista Point comes as Caltrans extends the hours of the Bay Bridge’s bike-pedestrian path to weekdays as well as weekends. The Vista Point will be open the same hours as the Bay Bridge bike-pedestrian path, which is named after the late East Bay Bicycle Coalition founder, Alex Zuckermann: Monday-Friday, 6 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 6 a.m.- 8 p.m. The path was able to open weekdays earlier than planned thanks to expedited work on the demolition of the adjacent old East Span.
Coordinating with the Treasure Island Development Authority, Caltrans and BATA, the Transportation Authority led construction of Vista Point under a lease agreement with the U.S. Coast Guard, which owns the site. The Transportation Authority and Bay Area Toll Authority each contributed $1 million to design, build and maintain the Vista Point facility.
“The opening of Vista Point highlights what is possible when our talented and committed regional transportation agencies unite behind a vision that aligns our goals for diverse transit, safety, infrastructure and the environment,” said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, who also serves as an MTC commissioner. “As Oakland this week welcomes Ryan Russo, our city’s first director of transportation, I am confident that our region will continue to make incredible progress on our path to create safer streets, improve transit, increase pedestrian and biking space, and spearhead more transformative projects like Vista Point.”
“In addition to being an outstanding regional connection and showcase of sustainable infrastructure, the East Span bike-ped path and Vista Point are another great way for the public to enjoy the beauty of our city and the Bay,” said Jane Kim, an MTC commissioner and supervisor for District 6, which encompasses both Yerba Buena Island and Treasure Island. “In coming years, Treasure Island and Yerba Buena Island will be home to thousands of new residents, and this is just one early example of the affordable and accessible transportation that we are preparing to support that growth.”
“Vista Point is a graceful amenity and gateway to San Francisco and our community on the Islands,” said Linda Fadeke Richardson of the Treasure Island Development Authority Board. “We appreciate the creativity and partnership of the multitude of agencies that worked together to design and fund this facility. The Bay Area region is extremely blessed to have these beautiful islands to visit, recreate and cherish.”
Bijan Sartipi, Caltrans District 4 director who also sits on MTC, said, “Caltrans is proud to partner with the Transportation Authority to enhance the Bay Bridge path with this Vista Point, providing bicyclists and pedestrians a gathering area for a wonderful view of the new bridge.”
Treasure Island and Yerba Buena Island are undergoing ongoing construction until 2020 to realize development plans that call for 8,000 new units of housing on the Islands. The construction — which will upgrade roads and add new bicycle infrastructure, including a bike lane on Macalla Road — means temporary road closures and detours. Currently there are no pedestrian facilities beyond Vista Point and it is recommended only experienced cyclists use local roads beyond Vista Point.
For more information:
Treasure Island Development Authority page on the Yerba Buena Island Vista Point: http://sftreasureisland.org/bicycle