July 29, 2010

Golden Gate Bridge Carpool Use Down Since New Toll Rate Went into Effect July 1, 2010

 

On July 1, 2010, the carpool toll on the Golden Gate Bridge (GGB) was increased from $0 to $3. During the transition period, Thursday, July 1 to Friday, July 16, 2010, cash was accepted as payment for the $3 carpool toll in lieu of carpoolers who did not yet have a valid FasTrak account and tag. Beginning Monday, July 19, 2010, only carpool customers with a valid FasTrak account and tag were eligible for the $3 carpool toll, and cash was no longer accepted.

The number of carpools crossing the GGB during carpool hours (5 am to 9 am and 4 pm to 6 pm, weekdays except seven observed holidays) is down by 68% for the period of July 1 to July 28, 2010. It is too early to say there that there is a trend and staff is undertaking a more extensive evaluation of what is occurring and will know more in several months. The possible reasons that the carpool crossing are down are multifaceted:

  1. Summer traffic patterns are highly variable and summer vacation patterns are moving into July as more schools return to session by mid-August.
  2. Carpoolers are typically daily commuters, many of whom take vacations in the summer while schools are out of session. For this reason, vacation season has a greater impact on carpools than on other types of traffic. Also, carpools are composed of students traveling to school. With school out of session, summer carpool numbers are typically lower than at other times of year.
  3. Some people could be going through a FasTrak only lane and paying the full FasTrak toll ($5) instead of going through a staffed lane and paying the carpool toll ($3 FasTrak). Total traffic during the carpool hours is nearly the same as last year; we have not experienced a dip in overall traffic.
  4. Some carpoolers may be very likely be shifting to transit. See 2nd chart below.

 

Summary of Carpool Traffic & Carpool Hour Traffic on Golden Gate Bridge

Date 2010
Total Carpools
(am and pm commutes)
2010
Date 2009
Total Carpools
(am and pm commutes)
2009
Change from 2009 to 2010
% change 2009 to 2010
Total Southbound Traffic during CARPOOL HOURS 2009
Total Southbound Traffic During CARPOOL HOURS 2010
Thursday, July 1
959
Thursday, July 2
1,978
-1069
-51.5%
20,481
20,369
Friday, July 2
1,058
Friday, July 3
2,624
-1566
-59.7%
13,411
17,421
Tuesday, July 6
762
Tuesday, July 7
1,949
-1187
-60.9%
22,138
21,226
Wednesday, July 7
862
Wednesday, July 8
1,914
-1052
-55.0%
21,471
21,492
Thursday, July 8
629
Thursday, July 9
2,093
-1464
-69.9%
22,334
19,716
Friday, July 9
702
Friday, July 10
2,085
-1383
-66.3%
20,115
20,636
Monday, July 12
630
Monday, July 13
2,016
-1386
-68.8%
21,471
21,120
Tuesday, July 13
656
Tuesday, July 14
1,987
-1331
-67.0%
22,381
21,582
Wednesday, July 14
652
Wednesday, July 15
1,955
-1303
-66.6%
22,156
21,670
Thursday, July 15
702
Thursday, July 16
2,075
-1373
-66.2%
22,196
21,995
Friday, July 16
673
Friday, July 17
2,104
-1431
-68.0%
20,824
20,245
Monday, July 19
545
Monday, July 20
2,001
-1466
-73.3%
21,590
21,812
Tuesday, July 20
566
Tuesday, July 21
2,082
-1516
-72.8%
22,088
22,009
Wednesday, July 21
533
Wednesday, July 22
2,001
-1468
-73.4%
21,958
21,343
Thursday, July 22
544
Thursday, July 23
2,093
-1549
-74.0%
22,254
21,358
Friday, July 23
498
Friday, July 24
2,258
-1760
-77.9%
20,556
19,333
Monday, July 26
558
Monday, July 27
2,151
-1593
-74.1%
21,991
21,224
Tuesday, July 27
531
Tuesday, July 28
2,230
-1699
-76.2%
22,443
21,138
Wednesday, July 28
584
Wednesday, July 29
2,030
-1446
-71.2%
22,150
21,744

To receive the carpool toll rate of $3, carpoolers must do ALL of the following:

  • Have a FasTrak account in good standing and a valid FasTrak tag. The FasTrak tag must be mounted in the vehicle per instructions.
  • GGB DOES NOT HAVE a dedicated CARPOOL roadway lane or tollbooth lane. Carpooler must stop at a staffed lane so that the toll collector may validate the vehicle as a carpool.
  • NOT use a FasTrak ONLY toll lane (you will be assessed the full $5 FasTrak toll if you use a FasTrak ONLY toll lane).

 

To Open a FasTrak Account

  • Call: (877) BAY-TOLL (1-877-229-8655)
  • Online: www.bayareafastrak.org
  • In Person: FasTrak Customer Service Center, 475 The Embarcadero (at Broadway); extended summer hours: 8:30 am – 5:30 pm, daily.
  • In Person: Purchase a FasTrak tag at select Walgreens, Safeway, and Costco locations and register the tag online or over the phone.

 

Carpool Eligible Vehicles & Carpool Hours

Eligible Carpool Vehicles:

  1. Vehicles with three or more persons
  2. Motorcycles, as defined and designated by the California Dept. of Motor Vehicles, and includes three-wheeled motorcycles
  3. Buses
  4. Two-seat vehicles and vehicles with rear axle dual tires do not qualify as a carpool on the Golden Gate Bridge

Carpool Hours: 5 am to 9 am and 4 pm to 6 pm, weekdays except seven observed holidays – New Year's Day, Presidents' Day (third Monday in February), Memorial Day (last Monday in May), Independence Day (July 4), Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

 

Golden Gate Larkspur Ferry Ridership

Date 2010
Daily Ridership on Larkspur
2010
Date 2009
Daily Ridership on Larkspur
2009
Change from 2009 to 2010
Thursday, July 1
5,079
Thursday, July 2
4,689
+390
Friday, July 2
--
Friday, July 3 (holiday)
--
--
Tuesday, July 6
4,845
Tuesday, July 7
4,804
+41
Wednesday, July 7
5,112
Wednesday, July 8
6,256
-1,144
Thursday, July 8
5,236
Thursday, July 9
4,969
+267
Friday, July 9
4,932
Friday, July 10
4,746
+186
Monday, July 12
5,128
Monday, July 13
4,913
+215
Tuesday, July 13
5,181
Tuesday, July 14
5,415
-234
Wednesday, July 14
5,567
Wednesday, July 15
5,235
+332
Thursday, July 15
5,614
Thursday, July 16
5,185
+429
Friday, July 16
5,347
Friday, July 17
4,964
+383
Monday, July 19
5,368
Monday, July 20
5,066
+302
Tuesday, July 20
5,208
Tuesday, July 21
5,032
+176
Wednesday, July 21
5,419
Wednesday, July 22
4,731
+688
Thursday, July 22
5,377
Thursday, July 23
5,174
+203
Friday, July 23
5,191
Friday, July 24
4,808
+383
Monday, July 26
5,177
Monday, July 27
5,233
-56
Tuesday, July 27
5,352
Tuesday, July 28
5,271
+81
Wednesday, July 28
5,684
Wednesday, July 29
6,088
-404