Buying groceries is a huge ordeal for Rachel Breithwaite, who has to take three buses and a taxi between her home at Midway Village in the Bayshore neighborhood of Daly City and the nearest Safeway, located on Mission Street in San Francisco.
“We need [a] bus around here because we have a lot of elderly people. … It would be very helpful,” said Breithwaite, 75.
The low-income neighborhood located near San Bruno Mountain and the Cow Palace has been complaining about lack of transit options since a regular bus line was canceled a decade ago due to a lack of ridership. Bayshore has two options: a Caltrain station and the Muni T-Third line that ends at Bayshore Boulevard and Sunnydale Avenue, about one mile from the neighborhood.
The lack of options, residents say,makes it difficult to buy groceries, go to work or visit local hospitals.
To help Bayshore residents, SamTrans, the county’s transit agency, recently concluded a study that identifies several possible solutions, such as regular shuttle service, an extended bus route through the neighborhood, new transit amenities and better information on transportation options.
SamTrans’ study identified that new transit amenities, such as a bus shelter at Bayshore Boulevard and Geneva Avenue, would need to be built to help residents who have been huddling from wind, sun and rain under the entrance of the nearby 7 Mile House.
Owner Vanessa Villacarlos said a bus shelter would help riders feel safer and more comfortable as well as improve the look of the neighborhood and give her customers a more inviting public transit option.
“It will help this area to be uplifted with something that looks like a real bus stop,” she said.
With about 4,000 residents and 851 households in the area at or below the poverty line, about 7 percent use public transit, said Corinne Goodrich, SamTrans manager of strategic development.
The study says the residents need a new shuttle with a fixed schedule that would go to western Daly City, BART and Caltrain or an extended route of a current SamTrans bus line that better covers Bayshore.
“Everyone has to travel out of Bayshore to get anywhere for services,” said Phyllis Rizzi, 70, who gave up on taking public transit after a few attempts in the early 1990s. “We would like to be connected with the rest of Daly City.”
SamTrans will present its findings later this month and will draft the final plan by summer.