Alec Berger – 511 Contra Costa

Labor Day 2020 Transit Service (Sept. 7)

On Monday, September 7, transit will run on adjusted schedules throughout Contra Costa. We’ve collected schedule information below for all agencies serving the County.

Click any link for additional information

Labor Day (Monday, September 7)

Independence Day 2020 Transit Service (July 3 & 4)

On Saturday, July 4, all Contra Costa transit agencies will run on holiday schedules. On Friday, July 3, only some agencies will run on adjusted schedules. Below, you’ll find schedule information for all agencies serving Contra Costa County.

Click any link for additional information

Friday, July 3 (Independence Day Observed)

Saturday, July 4 (Independence Day)

The Richmond Ferry Is a Great Way to Commute

If you live near Richmond and your workplace is in San Francisco, here’s a good question:

The Richmond ferry is back in service, and if your workplace is San Francisco it’s a great way to get to there. Regular riders talk about the comfort, convenience, and calming atmosphere of the ferry, so we took a trip on the recently reopened Richmond ferry. Below we share our experience, including photos from the trip:

Safe, Clean, and Plenty of Space

Health and safety are a key concern for commuters right now, and the Richmond ferry definitely feels safe and clean. The effects of their six-point Passenger and Crew Safety Plan were obvious when looking around the ship. All passengers and crew had masks, alternate rows of seats were taped off to ensure social distancing, hand sanitizer stations were available to passengers, and we saw surfaces being sanitized during our trip.

Photos courtesy San Francisco Bay Ferry

Quick, Pleasant Trip and Cheaper with Clipper

The trip between San Francisico and Richmond took 35 minutes from gate to gate, and it was nice to have both legroom and the ability to get up and walk around (as well as free WiFi). We didn’t visit the snack bar, but we could see the benefit of being able to grab a morning cup of coffee or evening snack.

We used our Clipper cards to pay for our trip, which meant we didn’t have to buy a ticket in advance and automatically received the Adult Clipper card fare ($7) which is a substantial savings over the cash fare ($9.30).

Getting to the Richmond Ferry Terminal

The Richmond Ferry Terminal is on the Bay Trail (1453 Harbour Way South), so you can get there easily by bike or scooter. If you don’t want to bring your bike on the ferry, there are 20 BikeLink electronic lockers available in addition to bike racks. AC Transit Line 74 can also get you to the ferry, connecting from central Richmond and the Richmond BART station.

Free parking is available for ferry customers, with 362 spaces, and spots are available on a first come, first served basis. The lot is unattended and there’s no way to find out in advance if the lot is full or near full, so keep that in mind.

Image courtesy San Francisco Bay Ferry

Bring Your Bike, Board, or Scooter with You

We didn’t bring a bike on board this time, but it’s a great option to have. Covering that first mile/last mile between the ferry terminal and your destination is snap when you have your bike, e-bike, scooter, or e-scooter with you (which are all allowed on board). We were told that space may be limited on some departures for these vehicles, so just be sure to arrive early.

More Information

We loved taking the Richmond ferry and we think you will too. If you need more information, check out SF Bay Ferry’s Rider Quick Start Guide or visit the schedule page for the Richmond Ferry.

Your Local Transit Agencies: Keeping You Safe

Thanks to the efforts of people throughout the Bay Area, we’ve been able to flatten the curve. Those people include public transit operators and riders.

Our local transit agencies implemented cleaning, boarding, and social distancing protocols to keep drivers and passengers safe, and transit users wore masks, looked out for their drivers, and limited their travel to essential trips.

Now that shelter-in-place restrictions are being relaxed, people will be making more trips. The good news is that transit is ready to get you where you need to go.

The stepped-up cleaning and disinfecting procedures transit agencies have been using will remain in effect. This way, when you return to using public transportation, you can be confident everything possible is being done to protect your health, and that of the drivers and other passengers.

We’re happy to help you plan your trip, learn about commuter incentives, and even set you up with a pre-loaded Clipper card for pledging to try transit. For more information, visit our Public Transportation page.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFPp6nFpMtM

Memorial Day 2020 Transit Service (Monday, May 25)

On Memorial Day (Monday, May 25), all Contra Costa transit agencies will run on holiday schedules. We’ve collected service information for all transit providers for easy reference.

Click any link below for additional information.

Sustain the Improved Air Quality We’re Enjoying

If the sky seems a little bluer these days, it’s not your imagination. With significantly fewer vehicles on the road, Bay Area air quality is better now than it was two months ago. If you’re enjoying the change in the air, there are many simple things you can do to help preserve our air quality gains, even after shelter-in-place restrictions are lifted and more cars return to the road.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) estimates there’s been a 70% drop in bridge traffic, which would correlate with a 26% drop in carbon dioxide emissions and a 20% reduction in fine particulates (PM2.5). The result? Cleaner air and clearer skies.

Similar air quality improvements have been seen in cities around the world. Los Angeles, famous for its smog, enjoyed its longest run of good air quality days since 1995. The Northeastern US experienced a 30% drop in air pollution in late March while China saw pollution levels fall nearly 40% between January and February. In Delhi, India, the persistent cloud of pollution (which can normally be seen from space) cleared away to be replaced by fresh air and blue skies.

Nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) measurements from the European Space Agency’s Sentinel-5P satellite
Delhi, India, before and after the national lockdown

Although much of the Bay Area’s improved air quality can be attributed to eliminated commute trips, some of it is due to changes in local travel. Multiple vehicle trips are frequently being combined into single trips, and for short trips, many people have switched to walking or biking.

The uptick in cycling is so dramatic that bike shops nationwide are reporting record bike sales, and bike manufacturers are running out of inventory. In response to the increased numbers of walkers and cyclists, some cities—including San Francisco, Oakland and Alameda—have implemented Slow Streets programs, which limit vehicle through traffic on designated residential streets so people can travel easily while maintaining six feet of social distance.

A map of San Francisco’s Slow Streets program

As shelter-in-place restrictions are removed and people return to their commutes, some increase in tailpipe emissions is inevitable, but there are actions you can take on the road, at home, and at work to help preserve our improved air quality. The California Air Resources Board’s list of Simple Solutions to Reduce Air Pollution is a good resource for getting started. It includes many actions you can take, like working from home, limiting the amount of time your vehicle idles, and turning off lights when leaving a room.

Another easy way to start making air-sparing changes is by joining the Cleaner Contra Costa Challenge. With actions divided into categories like Transportation, Renter Friendly, and Easy, you’ll find things you can do which fit your lifestyle and budget. For additional encouragement, be sure to join the 511 Contra Costa Community Group after creating your Cleaner Contra Costa Challenge profile.

For more ways to contribute to cleaner air and bluer skies, explore these resources:

The 2020 Summer Bike Challenge is Here

Looking for free summer activities that are fun for the whole family? Check out 511CC’s Summer Bike Challenge.

Available in Antioch, Clayton, Concord, Martinez, Pleasant Hill, Walnut Creek, Pittsburg, Oakley, and Brentwood, the Challenge offers healthy fun for all ages, and the best part: it’s completely free. Participating is easy: Download a printable Challenge Card, hop on a bike, and explore your hometown. Bike to each destination and cross off squares as you go.

For safety and social distancing, we’re suspending our popular “Free Stuff!” pop-up events this summer. Instead, send us a selfie from your favorite Challenge Square destination to win a Free Stuff prize by email. Learn more.

Ready to roll? Get started here.

Participate at Home: Daily Activities for Earth Week 2020

This year marks the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day. In 1969, U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson came up with the idea of a day focused on environmental awareness after witnessing the destruction caused by a massive oil spill in Santa Barbara. On April 22, 1970, fed largely by student activism, 20 million Americans demonstrated for a healthy, sustainable environment with coast-to-coast rallies.

Join us in celebrating Earth Day all week long with our list of daily activities:

Monday, April 20: Earth Day Crafts from Recycled Materials

Create seed bombs, make a quilt from old clothes, construct a hanging garden, or choose a different craft project using recycled materials in honor of Earth Day. Select from 30 different projects, or come up with one of your own.

Tuesday, April 21: Earth Facts – Test Your Knowledge

Discover how much you know about our planet with quizzes on a variety of subjects. Test your knowledge on climate change, our oceans, the environment, and clean energy. Select your quiz.

Wednesday, April 22 (Earth Day): Join the Cleaner Contra Costa Challenge 

Happy Earth Day! Today is the perfect day sign up for the Cleaner Contra Costa Challenge. Through it, you’ll find earth friendly, money-saving actions you can take to create a cleaner and healthier environment, including 29 activities you can do right at home.

To participate, visit CleanerContraCosta.org to create a profile, then join the 511 Contra Costa Community Group. Begin designing your action plan today so you can prepare to reduce your vehicle emissions when it’s time to get back to commuting. Also consider talking to your employer about continuing to work from home, finding a carpool partner, or mapping out the best route for biking to work.

Thursday, April 23: Earth Day Books for Kids

Celebrate Earth Week with the kids! Browse Contra Costa County Library’s online recommendations for getting young people excited about our protecting our planet and improving our environment.

Friday, April 24: Natural Soundscapes

Happy Friday! Experience the sounds of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, courtesy of the U.S. National Park Service.

Here’s just a sample of what you’ll find on the full Sound Tour:


Transit Service Changes: Status as of March 26

For additional information, click the name of any transit agency name to visit their service updates page.
For transit service updates for the larger Bay Area, visit 511.org.

BART: Reduced Service
BART is providing service Monday-Friday from 5am-9pm. Regular weekday train frequency will remain the same. All riders must be in the system by 8:45pm to have a guaranteed ride to their destination. Starting Saturday March 28, Saturday and Sunday service will be from 8am-9pm (currently Saturday service is 6am-midnight and Sunday is 8am-midnight). Current weekend train frequency will remain the same.

AC Transit: Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
AC Transit has implemented rear-door boarding on buses with multiple doors. Fare payment is not required until further notice. Passengers requiring ADA ramps, utilizing mobility devices or need priority seating may continue to use the front door for boarding. Wheelchair riders may be allowed onboard without securements by bus operators.

County Connection: No Fare Collection
County Connection has temporarily suspended fare collection on all routes including paratransit.

WestCAT: Reduced Service, Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
WestCAT isn’t collecting fares on any service until further notice and is suspending all mail orders. The JX Route has been suspended. WestCAT Lynx will operate on a holiday schedule only. The Early Bird Express will continue to operate. All passengers able to board & exit through the rear door should do so.

Tri Delta Transit: Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
Passengers will board fixed-route buses through the rear door unless they require the wheelchair ramp. Additionally, no fares will be collected on any Tri Delta Transit buses.

Richmond Ferry: Suspended Service
The Richmond Ferry will not operate until further notice.

Capitol Corridor: Reduced Service
Train frequency has been reduced to five round trips daily between Sacramento and Oakland, with four of these round trips continuing to San Jose. This schedule will be the same all seven days of the week, meaning no weekend/holiday schedule differences.

Wheels Bus: Reduced Service, Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
Fare collection has been suspended and passengers without disabilities are to use the rear door for boarding and exiting. Service frequencies have been reduced on Rapid Routes 10R and 30R. Operation of Routes 2, 20X, and 580X has been suspended. Dial-a-Ride Paratransit, Para-taxi and GoDublin are still available.

Altamont Corridor Express: Reduced Service, Ticketing Changes
Until further notice, ACE has suspended Saturday service as well as the ACE 07 and ACE 10, and will be running shorter trains. ACE has suspended in-person ticket sales at the Lathrop/Manteca and Tracy stations and is encouraging passengers to use mobile ticketing when boarding. In-person ticket sales will still be available during mornings at the Pleasanton station.

Golden Gate Transit: Reduced Service
Service adjustments have been made, including the cancellation of some southbound and northbound commute trips until further notice. Additional cancellations may be necessary on a daily basis.

Fairfield and Suisun Transit: Reduced Service, Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
FAST local service and SolanoExpress commuter service have been reduced. Details of changes are available on FAST’s Service Advisory page. No fares are being collected and passengers are being asked to board and exit through the rear door if able to.

Solano Transit: Reduced Service, Boarding Changes, No Fare Collection
SolTrans Local, SolanoExpress, and Paratransit service are operating on a Saturday service schedule on weekdays until further notice. Passengers should board using the center doors. Those who need assistance from the ramp may board at the front doors. If possible, the use of Token Transit is recommended for easy visual fare adherence boarding (so that money does not need to be handled). SolTrans will not collect fares on Local, SolanoExpress and Paratransit service.

Presidents’ Day 2020 Transit Service (Feb. 17)

american flagOn Presidents’ Day (Monday, February 17), some Contra Costa transit agencies will offer regular weekday service while others will run on holiday schedules. We’ve collected service information for all transit providers below for easy reference.

Click any link below for additional information.