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No North Bay traffic troubles despite Bay Bridge closure

  • Traffic slows in the morning commute over the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge during the shutdown of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge Thursday, Aug. 29, 2013, in San Rafael, Calif. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

It appears all the publicity and planning that preceded the current closure of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge paid off, at least as far as the first week-day commute was concerned.

“Outstanding,” was the way Marin County CHP Officer Andrew Barclay put it. “... We're not noticing any problems — anything out of the ordinary.”

The Bay Bridge was shut down Wednesday night and is expected to remain closed until 5 a.m. Tuesday so crews can finish work on transitions to the newly constructed eastbound bridge span.

New Bay Bridge Span


While the closure may have put extra traffic on the Richmond-San Rafael and Golden Gate bridges, as well as Highway 37 from San Rafael to Vallejo, there were no reports Thursday morning of the kinds of logjams feared in such situations.

The roads were merely packed, as usual.

“This morning's commute was as good as any other day,” said Golden Gate Bridge Manager Kary Witt, a Windsor resident who, thus, is affected by shifting traffic patterns both personally and professionally.

“Here at the (Golden Gate) Bridge, things have gone phenomenally well,” he said.”This is really kind of a non-event for us, which is really good news because we just didn't know what to expect.”

He cautioned, however, that it appears morning commuters may have spread their travel out over several - some leaving earlier than usual, others leaving later, contributing to relatively smooth traffic conditions.

Anyone living in the Bay Area would have been hard-pressed to escape the onslaught of news coverage and publicity over local media outlets, social media, freeway signs and the like, so some folks may have decided to work from home, take the day off or use alternate transportation, he and Barclay said.

But while the morning commute was somewhat staggered, the tendency is for everyone to “want to leave at the same time to go home at night,” Witt said.

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