|Carries||6 lanes of SR 84, bike/pedestrian|
|Crosses||San Francisco Bay|
|Locale||Menlo Park, California and Fremont, California|
|Owner||State of California|
|Maintained by||California Department of Transportation and the Bay Area Toll Authority|
|Design||Twin girder bridge|
|Total length||2,621.28 meters (8,600.0 feet), 1.63 miles|
|Longest span||103.63 meters (340.0 feet)|
|Clearance below||25.91 meters (85.0 feet) (main span)|
|Daily traffic||70,000+ (auto)|
118 (bike & pedestrian)
|Toll||Cars (westbound only) |
$6.00, $3.00 (carpool rush hours)
The Dumbarton Bridge is the southernmost of the highway bridges across San Francisco Bay in California. Carrying over 70,000 vehicles 1.63 miles (8,600 ft; 2,620 m). Its eastern end is in Fremont, near Newark in the San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge, and its western end is in Menlo Park. Bridging State Route 84 across the bay, it has three lanes each way and a separated bike/pedestrian lane along its south side. Like the San Mateo Bridge to the north, power lines parallel the bridge.and about 118 pedestrian and bicycle crossings daily (384 on weekends ), it is the shortest bridge across San Francisco Bay at
The bridge has never been officially named, but its commonly used name comes from Dumbarton Point, named in 1876 after Dumbarton, Scotland. Built originally to provide a shortcut for traffic originating in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, the bridge served industrial and residential areas on both sides. The earlier bridge opened on January 17, 1927,and was the first vehicular bridge to cross San Francisco Bay. A portion of this old drawbridge remains as a fishing pier on the east side of the Bay. The original bridge was built with private capital and then purchased by the state for $2.5 million in 1951.
Its age, and the two-lane undivided roadway and lift-span, led to a replacement bridge being built to the north. This bridge opened in October 1982 as a four-lane, high-level structure. The structure was re-striped to accommodate six lanes on October 18, 1989, in response to the temporary closing of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge due to the Loma Prieta earthquake, and the permanent widening of the approaches was completed by July 2003. 340 ft (104 m) center span provides 85 ft (26 m) of vertical clearance for shipping. The approach spans on both sides of the Bay are of pre-stressed lightweight concrete girders supporting a lightweight concrete deck. The center spans are twin steel trapezoidal girders which also support a lightweight concrete deck.The cost of the complete replacement project was $200 million. The current bridge includes a two-way bicycle and separate pedestrian path on the south-facing side. A
The center span of the original bridge was demolished in a controlled explosion in September 1984.
The bridge is part of State Route 84, and is directly connected to Interstate 880 by a freeway segment north of the Fremont end. There is no freeway connection between U.S. 101 and the southwest end of the Dumbarton Bridge. Motorists must traverse one of three at-grade routes to connect from the Bayshore Freeway to the bridge. These are (from northwest to southeast):
The Willow Road and University Avenue junctions with Bayfront Expressway are at-grade intersections controlled by traffic lights; there are two additional controlled intersections at Chilco Road and Marsh Road, and the Marsh Road interchange on U.S. 101 is a parclo. The result is that Bayfront Expressway is frequently congested, and when not congested is often the site of high-speed car crashes. In 2007, prominent author David Halberstam was killed in one such crash at the Willow Road intersection.
Access to I-280 is available via State Route 84 to Woodside Road (as signed) or other arterial routes. There are no cross-Peninsula freeway connections between State Routes 92 and 85. In addition, there are no direct cross-Peninsula arterial routes between State Route 84 and Page Mill Road, a five-mile gap.
Although the present situation has resulted in severe traffic problems on the bridge itself and in Menlo Park and East Palo Alto, Caltrans has been unable to upgrade the relevant portion of Highway 84 to freeway standards for several decades, due to opposition from the cities of Menlo Park, Atherton and Palo Alto. Freeway opponents fear that upgrading Highway 84 will encourage more people to live in southern Alameda County (where housing is more affordable) and commute to jobs in the mid-Peninsula area (where businesses wish to be located in order to be close to Silicon Valley), thus increasing traffic in their neighborhoods to the south and west of U.S. 101 and even along State Routes 85 and 237.
Bus service across the bridge is provided by the Dumbarton Express, run by a consortium of local transit agencies (SamTrans, AC Transit, VTA and others) which connects to BART at Union City and Caltrain at Palo Alto and California Avenue. AC Transit also runs Transbay buses U (Fremont BART and Amtrak to Stanford) and DA (Ardenwood to Oracle and Facebook headquarters) across the bridge. The free Stanford Marguerite Shuttle also runs buses AE-F and EB across the bridge.
When the current bridge was planned in the 1970s, Caltrans conducted extensive environmental research on the aquatic and terrestrial environment. Principal concerns of the public were air pollution and noise pollution impacts, particularly in some residential areas of Menlo Park and East Palo Alto. Studies were conducted to produce contour maps of projected sound levels and carbon monoxide concentrations throughout the western approaches, for each alternative connection scheme.
The area around the bridge is an important ecological area, hosting many species of birds, fish and mammals. The endangered species California clapper rail is known to be present in the western bridge terminus area.
Near the bridge on the Peninsula are Menlo Park's Bayfront Park, East Palo Alto's Ravenswood Open Space Preserve, and the Palo Alto Baylands Nature Preserve. An accessible portion of the San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge lies immediately north of the western bridge terminus, where the Ravenswood trail runs.
On both sides of the east end of the bridge are large salt ponds and levee trails belonging to the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The headquarters and visitor center for the refuge is on a hill south of the bridge approach. North of the east end of the bridge is Coyote Hills Regional Park, with its network of trails running over tall hills. North of that is the Alameda Creek Regional Trail from the Bay to Niles Canyon. East of Coyote Hills is Ardenwood Historic Farm, a restored working farm that preserves and displays turn-of-the-century farming methods
Tolls are only collected from westbound traffic at the toll plaza on the east side of the bay. Since July 2019, the toll rate for passenger cars is $6. During peak traffic hours, carpool vehicles carrying two or more people or motorcycles pay a discounted toll of $3.00. All-electronic tolling has been in effect since 2020, and drivers may either pay using the FasTrak electronic toll collection device, using the license plate tolling program, or via a one time payment online.
Prior to 1969, tolls on the Dumbarton Bridge were collected in both directions. When it opened, the original 1927 span had a toll of $0.40 per car plus $0.05 per passenger. In 1959, tolls were set to $0.35 per car. It was raised to $0.70 in 1969, then $0.75 in 1976. The toll per car remained at $0.75 when the replacement bridge opened in the 1980s.
The basic toll (for automobiles) on the seven state-owned bridges, including the Dumbarton Bridge, was raised to $1 by Regional Measure 1, approved by Bay Area voters in 1988.A $1 seismic retrofit surcharge was added in 1998 by the state legislature, originally for eight years, but since then extended to December 2037 (AB1171, October 2001). On March 2, 2004, voters approved Regional Measure 2, raising the toll by another dollar to a total of $3. An additional dollar was added to the toll starting January 1, 2007, to cover cost overruns concerning the replacement of the eastern span.
The Metropolitan Transportation Commission, a regional transportation agency, in its capacity as the Bay Area Toll Authority, administers RM1 and RM2 funds, a significant portion of which are allocated to public transit capital improvements and operating subsidies in the transportation corridors served by the bridges. Caltrans administers the "second dollar" seismic surcharge, and receives some of the MTC-administered funds to perform other maintenance work on the bridges. The Bay Area Toll Authority is made up of appointed officials put in place by various city and county governments, and is not subject to direct voter oversight.
Due to further funding shortages for seismic retrofit projects, the Bay Area Toll Authority again raised tolls on all seven of the state-owned bridges in July 2010. The toll rate for autos on the Dumbarton Bridge was thus increased to $5.
In June 2018, Bay Area voters approved Regional Measure 3 to further raise the tolls on all seven of the state-owned bridges to fund $4.5 billion worth of transportation improvements in the area.Under the passed measure, the toll rate for autos on the Dumbarton Bridge will be increased to $6 on January 1, 2019; to $7 on January 1, 2022; and then to $8 on January 1, 2025.
In September 2019, the MTC approved a plan to eliminate toll takers and convert all seven of the state-owned bridges to all-electronic tolling, citing that 75 percent of drivers are now using Fastrak and the change would improve traffic flow.On March 20, 2020, at midnight, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all-electronic tolling was temporarily placed in effect for all seven state-owned toll bridges, and as of December 10, 2020, all of the state-owned toll bridges are now permanently cashless.
Just to the south of the car bridge lies the Dumbarton Rail Bridge. Built in 1910, the rail bridge has been unused since 1982 and its western approach collapsed in a fire in 1998.When the bridge was in use, boaters would signal the operator, who would start a diesel engine and rotate the bridge to the open position on a large gear. The bridge is now left in the open position as shown. There are plans for a new rail bridge and rehabilitation of the rail line to serve a commuter rail service to connect Union City, Fremont, and Newark to various Peninsula destinations. A successful March 2004 regional transportation ballot measure included funding to rehabilitate the rail bridge for the commuter rail service, but in October 2008 the Metropolitan Transportation Commission transferred $91 million from this project to the BART Warm Springs extension in Fremont.
Between the Dumbarton Bridge and the Dumbarton Rail Bridge is the Bay crossing of the Hetch Hetchy Aqueduct. The aqueduct rises above ground in Newark at the east side of the Bay, falls below the water's surface at a pump station in Fremont, re-emerges in the middle of the Bay and then continues above water until it reaches the west side of the Bay at Menlo Park.
A scene of the 1970 movie Harold and Maude was filmed at the original toll plaza and showed Maude speeding and disobeying a police officer.
The San Francisco Peninsula is a peninsula in the San Francisco Bay Area that separates San Francisco Bay from the Pacific Ocean. On its northern tip is the City and County of San Francisco. Its southern base is in northern Santa Clara County, including the cities of Sunnyvale, Palo Alto, Mountain View, and Los Altos. Most of the Peninsula is occupied by San Mateo County, between San Francisco and Santa Clara counties, and including the cities and towns of Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Colma, Daly City, East Palo Alto, El Granada, Foster City, Hillsborough, Half Moon Bay, La Honda, Loma Mar, Los Altos, Menlo Park, Millbrae, Mountain View, Pacifica, Palo Alto, Pescadero, Portola Valley, Redwood City, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Mateo, South San Francisco, Sunnyvale, and Woodside.
The San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge, known locally as the Bay Bridge, is a complex of bridges spanning San Francisco Bay in California. As part of Interstate 80 and the direct road between San Francisco and Oakland, it carries about 260,000 vehicles a day on its two decks. It has one of the longest spans in the United States.
Interstate 880 (I-880) is a north–south auxiliary Interstate Highway in the San Francisco Bay Area of Northern California. It runs from I-280 and State Route 17 (SR 17) in San Jose to I-80 and I-580 in Oakland, running parallel to the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay. For most of its route, I-880 is officially known as the Nimitz Freeway, after World War II fleet admiral Chester Nimitz, who retired to the Bay Area. The northernmost five miles is also commonly referred to as the Cypress Freeway, after the former alignment of the freeway, and its subsequent replacement.
The Bayshore Freeway is a part of U.S. Route 101 in the San Francisco Bay Area of the U.S. state of California. It runs along the west shore of the San Francisco Bay, connecting San Jose with San Francisco. Within the city of San Francisco, the freeway is also known as James Lick Freeway, named after the California philanthropist. The road was originally built as a surface road, the Bayshore Highway, and later upgraded to freeway standards. Before 1964, it was mostly marked as U.S. Route 101 Bypass, with US 101 using the present State Route 82.
State Route 82 is a state highway in the U.S. state of California that runs from Interstate 880 (I-880) in San Jose to I-280 in San Francisco following the San Francisco Peninsula. It is the spinal arterial road of the peninsula and runs parallel to the nearby Caltrain line along much of the route. For much of its length, the highway is named El Camino Real and formed part of the historic El Camino Real mission trail. It passes through and near the historic downtowns of many Peninsula cities, including Burlingame, San Mateo, Redwood City, Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Mountain View, and Sunnyvale, and through some of the most walkable and transit-oriented neighborhoods in the region.
The Richmond–San Rafael Bridge is the northernmost of the east–west crossings of the San Francisco Bay in California, USA. Officially named after California State Senator John F. McCarthy, it bridges Interstate 580 from Richmond on the east to San Rafael on the west. It opened in 1956, replacing ferry service by the Richmond–San Rafael Ferry Company.
State Route 84 is a state highway in the U.S. state of California that consists of two unconnected segments, one in the San Francisco Bay Area and the other primarily in the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta area.
The Carquinez Bridge is a pair of parallel bridges spanning the Carquinez Strait at the northeastern end of San Francisco Bay. They form the part of Interstate 80 between Crockett and Vallejo, California.
The Benicia–Martinez Bridge refers to three parallel bridges which cross the Carquinez Strait just west of Suisun Bay; the spans link Benicia, California on the north side with Martinez, California on the south.
The Antioch Bridge is an automobile, bicycle, and pedestrian bridge in the western United States. Located in northern California, it crosses the San Joaquin River-Stockton Deepwater Shipping Channel, linking Antioch in Contra Costa County with Sherman Island in southern Sacramento County, near Rio Vista.
The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is the government agency responsible for regional transportation planning and financing in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was created in 1970 by the State of California, with support from the Bay Area Council, to coordinate transportation services in the Bay Area's nine counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma. The MTC is fourth most populous metropolitan planning organization in the United States.
Dumbarton Express is a regional public transit service in the San Francisco Bay Area connecting Alameda, San Mateo, and Santa Clara Counties via the Dumbarton Bridge. The Transbay bus service is provided under a consortium of five transit operators. Dumbarton Express is administered by AC Transit. It was also operated by AC Transit through 16 December 2011; MV Transportation assumed operations effective 19 December 2011.
State Route 114, better known by its street name Willow Road, is a short, unsigned state highway in the U.S. state of California. It runs in San Mateo County from U.S. Route 101 in East Palo Alto to State Route 84 in Menlo Park west of the Dumbarton Bridge.
State Route 109 is a short, unsigned state highway in the U.S. state of California. It forms part of University Avenue in San Mateo County between U.S. Route 101 in East Palo Alto and State Route 84 in Menlo Park just west of the Dumbarton Bridge. Although the route is unsigned, it may be noted on some online maps.
California's transportation system is complex and dynamic. Although known for its car culture and extensive network of freeways and roads, the state also has a vast array of rail, sea, and air transport. Several subway, light rail, and commuter rail networks are found in many of the state's largest population centers. In addition, with the state's location on the West Coast of the United States, several important ports in California handle freight shipments from the Pacific Rim and beyond. A number of airports are also spread out across the state, ranging from small general aviation airports to large international hubs like Los Angeles International Airport and San Francisco International Airport.
The Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) was created by the California State Legislature in 1997 to administer the auto tolls on the San Francisco Bay Area's seven state-owned toll bridges. On January 1, 1998, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) — the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county region — began operations as BATA. In August 2005, the California Legislature expanded BATA's responsibilities to include administration of all toll revenue and joint oversight of the toll bridge construction program with Caltrans and the California Transportation Commission.
The San Mateo–Hayward Bridge is a bridge crossing the American state of California's San Francisco Bay, linking the San Francisco Peninsula with the East Bay. The bridge's western end is in Foster City, a suburb on the eastern edge of San Mateo. The eastern end of the bridge is in Hayward. It is the longest bridge in California and the 25th longest in the world by length. The bridge is owned by the state of California, and is maintained by California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), the state highway agency. Further oversight is provided by the Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA).
The Southern Crossing is a proposed highway structure that would span San Francisco Bay in California, somewhere south of the San Francisco–Oakland Bay Bridge and north of the San Mateo–Hayward Bridge. Several proposals have been made since 1947, varying in design and specific location, but none of them have ever been implemented because of cost, environmental and other concerns.
The Dumbarton Rail Bridge lies just to the south of the Dumbarton road bridge. Built in 1910, the rail bridge was the first structure to span San Francisco Bay, shortening the rail route between Oakland and San Francisco by 26 miles (42 km). The last freight train traveled over the bridge in 1982, and it has been proposed since 1991 to reactivate passenger train service to relieve traffic on the road bridges, though this would entail a complete replacement of the existing bridge. Part of the western timber trestle approach collapsed in a suspected arson fire in 1998.
The Dumbarton Rail Corridor is a proposed transbay passenger rail line which would reuse the right-of-way that was initially constructed from 1907–1910 as the Dumbarton Cut-off. The Dumbarton Cut-off includes the first structure to span San Francisco Bay, the 1910 Dumbarton Rail Bridge, although the vintage Cut-off bridges would likely be replaced prior to activating new passenger service. Dumbarton Rail Corridor would provide service between Union City in the East Bay and Menlo Park on the Peninsula, with train service continuing to both San Francisco and San José along the existing Caltrain tracks. It has been in the planning stages since 1988, and would be the first above-ground transbay rail line since Key System electric trains stopped running on the lower deck of the Bay Bridge in 1958, and the first new transbay crossing of any kind since the completion of the Transbay Tube in 1974.