Mobility, Access and Pricing Study
In 2006, San Francisco authorities began a feasibility study to evaluate how congestion pricing fits to resolve the city's problems. This study was financed with a US$1 million grant from the Federal Highway Administration's Value Pricing Program, with matching funds from local sources. The study is called the Mobility, Access and Pricing Study (MAPS). The San Francisco Mayor, Gavin Newsom, has endorsed the concept, and he said in early 2008 that "a sensible congestion pricing plan is the single greatest step we can take to protect our environment and improve our quality of life."
The first results from the study showed that the pricing scheme is feasible from an economical, administrative and technical point of view. From the beginning, the mobility study was designed to have input from San Francisco's residents, businesses, travelers, and other stakeholders during the entire process, and the study team has been guided by several advisory committees at different stages of the development of the plan. As public participation is considered crucial, several public workshops are planned to share information and gather input from the public. The results of the two-year study were first presented to SFCTA Board of Supervisors on November 2008, and then the various pricing scenarios considered in the MAPS and other plan details were presented in two public meetings and another one online held in December 2008.
The next step is to present the revised plan to the Board of Supervisors by February 2009 in order to decide if the 11 member Board recommend to continue with the congestion pricing plan. The plan will need approval at the local and state legislative levels, and possibly some non-objection at the federal level. Still has not been decided if San Francisco residents will vote to approved the plan's implementation. Final study results are expected for late 2009, and SFCTA staff estimates that if the proposal moves forward in 2009, implementation will still take several years, as at least two to three years would be spent doing the environmental studies required by law.
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