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96% of Voters in the Bay Area: Want to Fix Pesky Potholes Coming a Close Second is Finding Solutions to Snarled Traffic

For Immediate Release
February 9th, 2018

SAN JOSE, CA – When potential voters were asked what they would support as a top priority for the Bay Area those pesky, costly potholes reined at the top of the list with 96 percent saying they strongly support or support putting potholes in their rearview mirror. Interestingly enough running a close second at 92 percent was breaking folks out of gridlock by easing congestion. However, when it comes to what people are personally willing to do the data makes a slight U-turn.

“This year we took a unique approach to our annual Silicon Valley poll and joined forces with the Bay Area Newsgroup and Facebook to hear from 900 registered voters in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Santa Clara and San Francisco Counties.” said CEO & President of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group Carl Guardino, who is also a California Transportation Commissioner. “Across the Bay Area we found attitudes attuned to my own – while people hate taxes, they hate traffic even more and want to see initiatives that address congestion and the conditions of our roads.”

According to the poll conducted from December 27th to January 9th the top two priorities were road repair and congestion. However, when asked what would prompt commuters to reduce their personal driving habits, people pumped the brakes with only 34 percent saying a company allowing them to telecommute would greatly change their behavior and 29 percent saying more transit options would sway them to abandon their cars.

If – (a) -, would you reduce driving your car a great deal, somewhat or very little?

A1. Your company allowed you to telecommute – Great Deal 34, Some 19, Very Little 21, No Opinion 26
A2. There were more transit options available to you – Great Deal 29, Some 34, Very Little 30, No Opinion 7
A3. Your company subsidized the cost of transit or other non-automobile commuting – Great Deal 27, Some 24, Very Little 28, No Opinion 21
A4. Traffic Gets Worse – Great Deal 21, Some 30, Very Little 39, No Opinion 10
A5. The cost of gas increases by 12 cents a gallon – Great Deal  10, Some 25, Very Little 56, No Opinion 9
A6. The cost of parking increases –  Great Deal 12, Some 25, Very Little 51, No Opinion 12

The question then becomes why do 60 percent of polled voters say they seldom ride public transit if congestion has them at a standstill? We asked that question.

Do you think people don’t use public transit because_ (a)_?

A1. It doesn’t go where they want it to go – Yes 79, No 16, No Opinion 5
A2. Poor Schedule –  Yes 53, No 38,  No Opinion 9
A3. It’s too slow – Yes 48, No 45, No Opinion 7
A4. It’s Dirty – Yes 46, No 48, No Opinion 6
A5. It’s too crowded – Yes 43, No 50, No Opinion 7
A6. It’s unsafe – Yes 39, No 56, No Opinion 5
A7. It’s too expensive – Yes 27, N0 65, No Opinion 8

“It doesn’t surprise us that 79 percent of people say public transit doesn’t go where they want it to go,” said Guardino. “We want to make sure it does. That’s why we have been continuing the critical work to extend BART through San Jose all the way to the Santa Clara Caltrain station and are focused this year on Regional Measure 3, a nine county measure to provide transit improvements around the Bay Area including improvements on the Dumbarton Bridge, the Highway 101/92 interchange and BART to San Jose. “ There are solutions to the dilemma; coming soon is data on Caltrain. Meanwhile, look for the latest attitudes on housing coming in the next few days.

The poll of 900 registered voters in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Santa Clara and San Francisco counties was conducted by J. Moore Methods Inc. Public Opinion Research for Silicon Valley Leadership Group and the Bay Area News Group. Silicon Valley Leadership Group provided funding for the poll with significant financial support from Facebook. The poll, conducted from Dec. 27th to Jan. 9th, has a margin of error of +/- 3.3 percent.


About Silicon Valley Leadership Group
The Silicon Valley Leadership Group, founded in 1978 by David Packard of Hewlett-Packard, represents nearly 375 of Silicon Valley’s most respected employers on issues, programs and campaigns that affect the economic health and quality of life in Silicon Valley including energy, transportation, education, housing, health care, tax policies, economic vitality and the environment. The Leadership Group members collectively provide nearly one of every three private sector jobs in Silicon Valley and generate more than $3 trillion in annual revenue.

Kimberly Ellis, SVP Communications and Marketing
[email protected]/(408) 501-7853
Nancy Sanchez, Sr. Dir. of Communications
[email protected]/ (408) 501-7879

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