Pleasanton Weekly

Opinion - August 2, 2013


Ban smoking at parks

Dear Editor,

I had the opportunity to attend a concert at the park this past Friday evening, and as we were leaving the park area toward our parked vehicle, there were two men sitting and smoking cigars.

Dug the entertainment, but is there an ordinance against smoking in public places such as the park? I have C.O.P.D. (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) -- do I have to avoid the outings because of smokers in the park? There were many children around the two smoker's area of sitting.

I find this to be a very serious problem. Can you help me with this?

Thomas D. Encinias

Connecting the Bay Area

Dear Editor,

The Bay Area's main rail and bus terminal belongs in Oakland at I-880/7th Street (near the Bay Bridge), where BART crosses over the UP/Amtrak rail line. BART trains run every few minutes from there to San Francisco, the Peninsula, and all of BART's East Bay stations. Call this station "San Francisco Bay Rail Hub" -- which it really could be.

Grade separate and multi-track the UP/Amtrak rail line -- should High Speed Rail survive -- north from Santa Clara via Mulford to this Hub station. ("Blended Rail" -- HSR on Caltrain tracks -- would be unsafe and prone to severe train delays, mocking the "Safe, Reliable" title of the 2008 ballot measure funding HSR.) Don't charge HSR for tunneling, a San Francisco station, Caltrain electrification, or a costly new trans-Bay tube. HSR this way won't need them.

Annex the Caltrain counties to BART. Plan a five-county ballot measure for BART around the Bay, to the Golden Gate and Carquinez bridges, to Brentwood, and to Livermore and beyond the Altamont, including cars and facilities.

Let the people vote, as they did for BART half a century ago.

Robert S. Allen, BART Director, District 5, 1974-88


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