Re: I'm with CPRR- But, the crazy is very entertaining....
The lane on the Richmond Bridge was taken decades ago for a water pipe (emergency connection between EBMUD and Marin water during one of the droughts that emptied most of Marin's lakes). It wasn't done specifically for the bike lane. Not sure if the pipe is still there.
The bridge is barely wide enough for 3 driving lanes with no shoulders. Is that safe any more? When (not if) somebody has a problem there's no place for them to pull off. Much like the GG Bridge (which, btw, has tried to charge tolls for peds & bikes before, and will again; politics prevented it before).
If you want to add a deck outside of the structure for a bike/ped lane, bring money. $20m was just for cleaning up, striping, and providing a barrier. It's chump change compared to what real structural work would require. Check on the progress (?) being made on adding a bike lane to the W. span of the Bay Bridge
for some ideas. At a first glance, I'd add at least one, possibly 2 zeroes to the price.
Replacing the entire bridge, with or without train tracks (I'd agree that a bridge replacement should include them) would probably make the Bay Bridge E. span look like a discount-store job - add at least 3 zeroes. Unfortunately for budgets, it'll probably be needed sooner than later due to sea level rise. The western part on the low-level concrete trestle spans already has problems due to waves and spray hitting the bridge during storms, and at some point the clearance of the high-level spans will shrink enough to limit the size of ships that can pass through.
Should we bring back the Richmond-San Rafael ferry?