The California State Legislature has cleared the way for single-occupancy drivers to use the carpool lanes on the 134 and 210 freeways during nights and weekends. If the bill is signed by Governor Jerry Brown, this would establish the only carpool lanes in Southern California that would not be enforced 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“Metro has looked at this. Our board has taken a support position on this bill,” said Doug Failing, Metro Highway Programs executive director. “If it’s something that helps reduce congestion here in Los Angeles, at Metro we’re always in favor of that.”
Assembly member Mike Gatto introduced the bill, AB 405, to ease traffic congestion by permitting single-occupancy vehicles to access the high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes — also known as carpool lanes — on certain freeways during non-peak hours.
“Carpool lanes were designed to reword those who pool their rides during the busiest rush hour,” Gatto said. “The Northern California freeways where this has been adopted, the carpool lane is a carpool lane only from 6 to 10 a.m. in the morning commute and then again from 4 and 7 p.m. in the evening commute, but any other time in the day or night solo drivers are free to access the carpool lane.”
The Senate passed the bill unanimously on Monday, and the Assembly voted 69-1 in favor of the bill on Tuesday. The governor must now sign the bill by October 13 for it to go into effect on July 1, 2014.
For everyone that lives in the Southern California area, this could be a major step towards reducing freeway congestion on other major freeways. Should the Governor pass this new bill into law? Let us know what you think about the bill in the comments section below.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Also, in another exception, previous legislation allowed single-occupancy cars to use the HOV lanes on the 14 Freeway in the Antelope Valley during non-peak hours. Special thank you to “Melissa” for bringing this to our attention!
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