November 3, 2014

TransForm e-news: November 3, 2014
Your monthly pass to world-class public transportation and more wonderful, walkable communities. 

If you’re sick of pothole-ridden roads, BART breakdowns, unsafe sidewalks, lack of bike lanes and trails, and late buses, here’s a quick fix: tomorrow, head to the polls and vote! 

There’s a lot at stake in this election, and some incredible opportunities to make the East Bay –and the whole Bay Area – a healthier, better connected, and more affordable place to live. Here are our positions on some key measures: 

Most importantly, be sure to make your voice heard. Whether you’re dropping your mail-in ballot at the post office or you’re planning to go to the polls, THANK YOU for voting!

Onto the rest of the e-news:


Support a stronger law to make our communities (and our environment) healthier!

California is starting to make a huge change, and it’s going to improve the quality of the air we breathe, our health, and our community. The state is finally acknowledging that what’s bad for our communities (and the environment) isn’t just the amount of traffic – it’s how much we drive (aka Vehicle Miles Traveled).

Read Climate Plan’s blog for more on why we’re excited that Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) is here to stay, and take action to tell the State’s Office of Planning and Research  what is needed to ensure California creates a healthier, more sustainable future.

International Walk and Roll to School Day shakes up the morning commute 

This year over 130 schools in Alameda County participated in Walk and Roll to School Day, motivating more than 25,000 students to walk, stroll, roll, scooter, and bike to school. In addition to organizing the biggest Walk and Roll to School Day yet, our Safe Routes to Schools team pioneered new, creative ways to get kids engaged, including “Rock the Block, a Walk & Roll Musical” performed by the Bay Area Children’s Theatre.

Check out the fun photos and video from Walk and Roll to School Day – our favorite is the walking school bus from Oakland’s Achieve Academy!

TransForm shares California's best at Rail~Volution 2014

TransForm’s policy experts have become familiar faces at Rail~Volution in recent years, and 2014 was no different. Last month, six TransForm staff traveled to this year’s conference in Minneapolis to participate in panels on health and equity, parking policy, transit-oriented development, bus rapid transit, community collaboration, and more. 

Read our blog for the inside scoop on who presented what, photos, and more.

Cycling is good for everyone (even if you're not on a bike!)

When you ride a bike you’re not just making yourself happier and healthier – you’re making your community happier and healthier too! A new report commissioned by British Cycling finds that the benefits of cycling reach far beyond the person on the bike. In fact, cities and communities who invest in bicycling infrastructure reap benefits that touch everyone, including: a stronger economy, increased mobility, less traffic, reduced air pollution, and better health.

Read more on how cycling can improve your city with just two wheels!

Are you ready for the ride of your life?

Have you ever dreamed of pedaling down the gorgeous northern California coast?  Wouldn’t it be great if it could be with those fun TransForm staff and supporters?  And all to promote better bike lanes, more walkable streets, and more affordable options for you and your family to get around without a car? Then you'll want to join the TransForm Carbon Crushers team for Climate Ride 2015! It is not a race, cyclists of all stripes love it.  The California North Coast Climate Ride 2015 is a five-day, fully-supported bike tour from Eureka to San Francisco that supports TransForm’s work to connect Californians to opportunity, places, and each other.

Visit to learn more, and contact Sara Marcellino if you’re interested in joining TransForm’s team, the Carbon Crushers!  

What's still at stake for cap-and-trade in California

During the public workshops on cap-and-trade held in late October, one thing became clear. While California is well on its way to implementing one of the most progressive and comprehensive cap-and-trade programs in the world, there are still many important details to work out, especially when it comes to affordable housing and sustainable communities. Read our recap of what's still at stake.

San Francisco fireworks celebrate Senator Steinberg and Corinne Winter at LIVE

Our LIVE Awards + Benefit was an incredibly special evening. Over 150 supporters joined together in honoring Senator Darrell Steinberg and Corinne Winter for their great accomplishments in building affordable and sustainable communities for every Californian (and we even saw fireworks from the Giants victory!).

We raised over $13,000 – helping us advocate for more transportation choices and connect California so that we can all get around, no matter where we live, where we’re going, or how we get there. If you weren’t able to attend, but would still like to support TransForm with a much needed gift, please consider making a year-end gift.

The "Most Exciting City in America" deserves better transit

As Oakland’s reputation (and economic health) grows, it is critical that Oakland’s public transportation system improves to benefit all of its diverse communities so that no one - especially residents who don’t live in hip, higher-income neighborhoods – gets left behind.

That’s why we’re very invested in making sure Oakland’s new Bus Rapid Transit line planned for International Boulevard is a success, and can serve the 20,000 people who ride AC Transit’s 1/1R bus each day through East Oakland. Read our blog on why Oakland deserves BRT, and what you can do to help bring this revolutionary bus service to the East Bay.

In World Series, BART was another player to watch

You may have felt the excitement on TV or have experienced it in person, jammed in a BART car full of orange and black-clad fans. The Giants home games in the World Series were huge. Huge not only because of the Giants’ nail-biting victory, but because BART officials expect nearly 600,000 people to ride BART for Friday’s parade. These big numbers are expected to become a daily event for BART in the near future.

Unfortunately, BART has some critical work to do before it can reliably and safely take on more riders.    

Good express lanes will make commutes on the Peninsula faster and more fair

Sitting in car traffic on your daily commute doesn’t just waste your time, it’s bad for you. The Bay Area needs a solution to gridlock traffic that doesn’t involve costly and environmentally destructive highway expansion, and gives people of every income more transportation choices.  Express lanes could be that solution, but only if they’re done well.

Read our update on the great progress being made from San Francisco to San Jose to bring great express lanes to the Bay Area, and make commutes faster and more fair for everyone who uses the freeway.

New GreenTRIP certifications make life more affordable for Bay Area residents

As rent and transportation costs in California continue to rise, families across the Bay Area are finding it harder to afford to live in the place they call home. But thanks to GreenTRIP’s innovative certification program, the residents who will live in the three newly certified developments can expect to worry less about paying exorbitant prices for rent and transportation. GreenTRIP Certification saves developers and residents money by providing great, affordable ways to get around without owning a car.  

Learn more about the benefits of the new GreenTRIP Certified projects in Walnut Creek, North Richmond, and Berkeley.

Calendar of Events

Below are a few upcoming events in November 2014 and beyond. Visit TransForm’s events webpage frequently for details on transportation-related events in the Bay Area and beyond.

VTA’s BART – Silicon Valley Extension Community Meeting 
November 5, 6:30 p.m.
San Jose, CA

Come out to this meeting to learn about and get updates on VTA’s BART Silicon Valley Extension Phase II Project, a 16 mile BART extension from the future BART site in Fremont to Santa Clara. In the coming months, VTA will start the environmental clearance and community engagement process, and your voice matters to make this project great for the community.

SF Urban Film Festival 
November 6-9
San Francisco, CA

The SF Urban Film Fest is a four day festival of film, filmmaker/urban planner panels, and celebration of our hopes and dreams for dynamic cities. Buy your tickets online today.

“Can Housing in Mountain View Be Affordable” 
November 6, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Mountain View, CA
Hosted by the Mountain View Human Relations Commission, “Can Housing in Mountain View Be Affordable?” is a community conversation about the local impacts of the regional problem of rapidly increasing housing costs. Admission is free.

CicloSDias: San Diego’s open streets community event
November 9, 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
San Diego, CA

CicloSDias welcomes everyone in San Diego to walk, ride, stroll and enjoy our streets. Approximately 2.5 miles of city streets will be opened to families, pedestrians, cyclists, joggers, skateboarders, and anyone else interested in using this public space in a new way.

Oakland Public Works Committee Meeting 
November 12, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Oakland, CA

Bus Rapid Transit along International Blvd in Oakland will be on the agenda for the Oakland Public Works Committee meeting scheduled to happen as listed on the City Council Meetings general website. Come out to show your support for world-class bus transit in the East Bay.

How Will Millenials Transform Silicon Valley Transportation and Cities? 
November 18, 5:00 p.m.
Mountain View, CA

Come learn about the transportation and city design preferences of Millennials and envision how the world might look if they made the decisions. Chris Lepe of TransForm, Michele Beasley of Greenbelt Alliance, Adina Levin of Friends of Caltrain, will host a conversation about local decisions. The event is free - please RSVP to reserve your space here.

Solutions 2014: National Conference on State and Local Housing Policy
November 18, 7:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Oakland, CA

GreenTRIP Director Ann Cheng will present a panel on Equitable Transit-Oriented Development at the National Housing Conference. Learn the best practices that are helping communities across the U.S. meet affordable housing challenges, and connect with colleagues and peers from around the country. Register online today.

14 Annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference 
January 29, 2015 – early bird registration ends November 10!
Baltimore, MD

This year’s conference includes a dynamic mix of plenaries, breakouts, implementation workshops, focused training sessions, peer-to-peer learning opportunities, and coordinated networking activities. It will also feature exciting tours of local model projects in and around the greater Baltimore region. Register before November 10 to take advantage of early bird prices.

Planning and Conservation League Annual Symposium 2015: “Does Land Use Matter?” 
February 21, 2015 – register before January 1, 2015 for discount prices!
Davis, CA

The symposium will bring together about 200 of California’s environmental, business, community, agency and elected leaders to explore land use policy implications in a wide range of areas, including the new impacts of Cap & Trade funding on housing, transportation, and disadvantaged communities. Discounted tickets are available for members and attendees who register before January 1, 2015.