That idea of congestion pricing in San Francisco, meaning charging people to drive in certain places around the city, has moved from crazy pipe dream stage to crazy pipe dream planning stage. Recently, the city was awarded $180 million to study the idea and there are already two potential places being mapped out by the people mapping it out. Instead of charging cars to go downtown, the idea would be to take it to the bridge as it were. The first place would be on Doyle Drive, one of the roads that takes you to the Golden Gate Bridge . In fact, one of the conditions of all this money is that the city would just have to do such a thing. Another spot being considered is right outside of Treasure Island. They're thinking up the idea of maybe charging $1 or $2 a car and it could work by having people use the FastTrak system, or at least we hope so as being from the East Coast, having to stop constantly for tolls gets kind of tedious. Also a bad place to be if you've just started a mob war against the Tattaglia and Sollozzo families.
The reason for the idea of congestion pricing is two-fold. The first is a way to hopefully stop congestion by giving people one more reason to say screw driving and take public transportation. This has become an even bigger issue in light of recent studies saying we're the #2 area for bad traffic, although we're currently ranked #3 on the AP poll. Another reason is to raise money to help with the expected crunch of new riders of public transportation. It's currently being used in all those un-American socialist countries in Europe, you know, the one's with state-run health care and generous benefits, and is now an idea being bandied about by other cities, including New York and D.C.
Another $1 million has been given to the city to look into the idea of driving fees on any major road in the city.