Traffic congestion in cities is a social issue that affects efficient movement of people from one place to another, mostly because of the large population experienced in cities. This essay focuses on the transportation issues in Davis city and is compared to the city of San Francisco. The choice of Davis city is informed by the comprehensive general transportation plans adopted by the city management to ensure that the residents have safe, convenient and economical and environmentally sustainable means of transport.
Transportation Plan for Davis City
Transport plan for the city of Davis is anchored on the objective safety, convenience, and environmental and economic sustainability of the adopted transportation system. The city has an established plan with different modes of transportation including; commercial and non-commercial vehicles, passenger rail, walking and bicycling (City of Davis General plan 14). To achieve the plan, the city has complete road network with streets that clearly demarcate pedestrian ways, bikeways to ensure no conflicts with cars and to ensure safety and convenience.
The use of bicycling and walking is implemented to minimize the amount of fuel consumed by motor vehicles in order to minimize air pollution from car exhaust fumes and to avoid more people being delayed in traffic jams. In most cities, there is consistent loss of economic time when workers stay long in traffic as a result of the congestions. Equally, traffic causes more consumption of fuel to maintain the longer hours running of car engines. This means that any effort to minimize overconsumption ensures sustainability of the transport system. The convenience of bicycling, especially because of flat terrain and mild climate is to discourage more city residents from using their cars or commercial vehicles (City of Davis General plan 5). In addition, the city has provided bicycle parking facilities all over the city in strategic locations, thus the convenience. The increased demand also encourages Davis to offer bicycle hiring points for visitors. Further, to enhance convenience the city parking management adopted the use of double floor high capacity buses with wider bus bays for safety purposes.
It is noted that 53% of the workers are non-Davis residents. This means that the majority of the workers in the city commute from other areas thus need transport system that can conveniently move longer distances. For this reason, the city implemented passenger rail, air travel through the UC Davis Airport and bus transport (City of Davis General plan 9). This plan is to give the residents a variety of transport options to choose based on their convenience. The plan is accessible through the link http://community-development.cityofdavis.org/Media/Default/Documents/PDF/CDD/Planning/Plans-Documents/GP/004-02-Transportation.pdf
Transportation Plan in San Francisco
I chose the city of San Francisco to compare its transportation plan with that of Davis because of its more outlined transport system. The main objective of the city is to ensure safe, convenient, and affordable travel for all residents and visitors within San Francisco and to link the city with other regions (San Francisco General Plan 1). The plan is accessible through the link http://www.sf-planning.org/ftp/general_plan/I4_Transportation.htm
There are significant policy similarities between these two cities, especially on implementation of their transportation plans. San Francisco has extensive road network for motor vehicles for commercial and non-commercial, and for bicycling. Bicycling and walking is encouraged in the city for being a quiet, clean and most energy-efficient in order to meet the policy of maintaining high quality living environment (San Francisco General Plan 1). The city equally has high-speed rail system to provide convenient transit services that links downtown San Francisco to major interstate. San Francisco safety policy majorly focuses on the bay areas, with a policy of ‘transit first’ to ensure people take the least time at the bays. This strategy was adopted after the Loma Prieta earthquakes in 1989 (San Francisco GeneralPlan1).
The main difference between the city of Davis San Francisco’s transport systems relates to parking management, where in San Francisco it is employer based while in Davis is provided by city transport management in downtown. Equally bicycling in Davis is more pronounced and embraced by more residents than in San Francisco. Bikeways are clearly demarcated in Davis than in San Francisco.
City of Davis General plan. General Plan Transportation Element.2013, Web 12 April 2015
San Francisco General plan, Transportation Element, 2010, Web 12 April 2015