The new eastern span of the Bay Bridge was always supposed to be bike and pedestrian-friendly. But three and a half years after its original opening, the ballyhooed bike lane is still only open during daylight hours on weekends and holidays.
But that’s scheduled to change on May 5, 2017, according to a recent tweet from the official Twitter account of the Bay Bridge. As of that day, the Bay Bridge bicycle and pedestrian path will be open and accessible seven days a week from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. On May 26, the path will start staying open until 9 p.m.
We should note that you still cannot walk or bike all the way across the Bay Bridge between Oakland and San Francisco. The Bay Bridge bicycle and pedestrian path only covers the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge that opened in 2013, not the whole entire Bay Bridge. But bikers and walkers can use the path to walk or ride between Oakland and Yerba Buena island.
The path has been open only for limited hours, but not because it wasn’t completed. Caltrans has insisted on keeping the lanes closed on weekdays because the smoke and toxic fumes from the destruction of the old Bay Bridge posed a health hazard to riders and pedestrians.
Caltrans notes that the May 5 date is still tentative, and contingent on the completion of a vista point on Yerba Buena Island. The vista point is expected to offer restrooms, bike racks and water fountains.