Lawmaker wants to ensure California bridges stay toll-free for pedestrians, cyclists

A Bay Area lawmaker is proposing a new bill aimed at ensuring that bridges throughout the state remain toll-free for pedestrians and cyclists.

Assemblyman Phil Ting has introduced AB 2669 to guarantee that walking and biking across publicly owned California bridges, including the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, remains free of charge.

"We want to ensure that we have this right in perpetuity for cyclists and pedestrians to ensure that they can walk and bike across the bridge freely without being worried about paying a toll," said Ting.


Golden Gate Bridge suicide barrier completed

A system of nets beneath the Golden Gate Bridge to deter people from jumping to their death is now complete.

While there are no current plans to implement tolls for pedestrians or cyclists on the Golden Gate Bridge or other bridges, Ting's preemptive measure aims to solidify this accessibility for future generations.

The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District saidd it has not yet reviewed the legislation but confirmed it has no intentions to toll the sidewalks on the Golden Gate Bridge.

Charging pedestrians for bridge access isn't unprecedented, as from 1937 to 1970, pedestrians paid to cross the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District is, like many transit agencies, facing a budget crisis.

Assemblyman Ting said lawmakers need to work on a better long-term solution than tolls and eventually have voters decide how to pay for public transit and bridges.

"Going to the voters to close that gap," said Ting.

The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway And Transportation District said it was "grateful to Assemblymember Ting for his strong support of the Golden 
Gate Bridge and active transportation in the Bay Area."

The bill is headed to committee and could be on the governor's desk in September.