Sustainable Transportation and Land Use

Overview of Objective

The transportation sector accounts for the largest source of emissions in the City of Richmond. In 2012, GHG emissions associated with transportation and land use patterns represented approximately 41 percent of the Community Inventory. The majority of transportation emissions were generated by vehicles traveling on state highways and city streets. The remainder was generated by vehicles engaged in off-road activities, like construction, agricultural production, and recreation.

Implementation Strategies

  • Encouraging the use of low-emission and renewable fuel vehicles by residents and businesses, schools, public agencies, and City government. 
  • Supporting and promoting enhanced and expanded public transit; walkability and bicycling; mixed-use urban streets; and creation of an urban landscape that reduces reliance on private automobiles. 
  • Promoting the safe and efficient movement of goods by truck, rail, and ship to support port operations and industrial uses.

Key Performance Indicators

Commute Mode

The Richmond Community Survey asked residents to identify their typical mode of transportation for commuting. The results show that 60% of residents drive alone to work, 18% carpool to work, and 14% use public transportation.
The CAP sets a 2030 performance goal of a 30 percent increase in transit network coverage, 30 percent increase in route frequency, and conversion of 50 percent of routes to bus rapid transit. Ferry service provides 400 commute trips daily. 

Commute Time

Residents reported the length of their commutes, and the average length was found for each commute mode. The shortest commute is an average of about 28 minutes for driving alone, and the longest is about 54 minutes for using public transit. The overall average commute time is just over 30 minutes. This is reflected in the information above, that 60% of Richmond residents commute to work by driving alone.
Local jobs creation and increased public transit options will improve commute times for Richmond residents, both within the City and outside the City.

Transportation - Ease of Use

Richmond encourages walking, biking, carpools, and the use of public transportation. 
The Richmond Community Survey asks residents to rate the ease of use for various transportation methods, including public transportation, car, bicycle, walking, and paths and walking trails. The chart shows the percentage of Richmond residents that rated the ease of transportation modes as good or excellent. 
Since 2007, all modes of transportation have seen an increased ease of use, except public transportation. 

Electric Vehicle Infrastructure

Zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) and charging stations are becoming increasingly common in the Bay Area. ZEVs include plug-in battery electric vehicles (EVs) and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs). 
The availability of new vehicle models, improved battery storage, increased availability of charging infrastructure and vehicle range coupled with incentives such as carpool lane access stickers, federal tax credits, and state and air district rebates have contributed to an expanding market for EVs. 
The figures below display the electric vehicles charging stations installed throughout the City and the years of installation.

Existing and Proposed Bikeways

Bikeway Classifications

Class I: An off-street path or trail separate from the roadway and used by pedestrians, bicyclists, and other mobility devices. Vehicles prohibited. Example: Richmond Greenway, Marina Bay Trail
Class II: Bike lane where bicycles are separated from cars by a stripe. Example: Barrett Ave.
Class III: Bicycles and vehicles share the lane. The “sharrow” pavement marking signifies where bicyclists should be in the roadway and lets vehicles know they must share the road with bicycles. Example: Amador St., Nevin Ave.

Existing Bikeways by Classification

Existing Bikeways Mileage

Proposed Bikeways Mileage

Number of Collisions: Bikes, Peds, Vehicles
Time of Day: Collisions with Bikes, Peds, Vehicles

Richmond Car Types

The CAP sets a 2030 performance goal that 17% of vehicles used by residents and businesses will be plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) or other zero emission vehicles (ZEVs). Richmond residents and businesses currently have 65,857 vehicles registered, of which 291 are electric vehicles. To reach the City's performance goal,  residents and businesses would need to register 11,195 electric vehicles by 2030.

Accessory Dwelling Units

Accessory dwelling units (ADUs) offer benefits that address common development barriers such as affordability and environmental quality. ADUs are an affordable type of home to construct in California because they do not require paying for land, major new infrastructure, structured parking, or elevators. ADUs are built with cost-effective one- or two-story wood frame construction, which is significantly less costly than homes in new multifamily infill buildings. ADUs can provide as much living space as the new apartments and condominiums being built in new infill buildings and serve very well for couples, small families, friends, young people, and seniors.

New Housing Units

The City uses smart growth strategies, which accompany a range of development and conservation strategies that support economic growth, environmental health, and GHG reductions. Smart growth is primarily a land-use strategy, which places higher density, mixed-use developments near or within existing development, and near transit services. Infill development, or the redevelopment of underutilized sites within existing developed areas, is a key smart growth approach that increases the land-use intensity and resulting social and economic activity within the existing urban footprint.