In the weekly feature called "e-views," we invite readers to answer a question via email.
Last week's question:
If a commuter ferry came to Antioch, would you use it? Why or why not?
YES, I WOULD use it. It would be enjoyable for two reasons: Chance to avoid traffic congestion, and the other for the beauty of the water channel trip to San Francisco. I'm sure they would be safe and regulated. I'm sure it would be used and enjoyed by many people on a daily basis. It is long overdue.
YES, I WOULD use it. I sometimes drive to Vallejo to catch the ferry. It would also vitalize the dead and rundown downtown.
PROBABLY. DEPENDS ON where it goes, when and how much?
WE WOULD LOVE to use the ferry if the parking area had good security. We have stopped using the Pittsburg BART station because of the problems and lack of security at the station.
I WOULD NOT. To make room for the ferry service, many homes and areas in the downtown would be forcefully taken over and torn down in favor of high-density units, all to accommodate and make the ferry's owners and investors richer.
The ferry will initially be said to pay its own way. It won't, and then the taxpayers will have to tax themselves to keep it afloat (pardon the related pun) -- just like BART and the bus services.
The ferry service is being promoted as an alternative to commuting on the crowded freeway. All the cities have to do is stop building more homes, which over the years have just brought more people, defeating the road improvements. The Delta river too is unpredictable and has dangerous aspects. The ferry's real use will also be limited by weather and circumstances. This ferry service is but another get rich propaganda like the other transportation schemes, pushed by politicians, consultants, ferry service owners, etc.
The public has to really look into all of those who are involved starting with Antioch, East County cities and the county's politicians. The fat cats and carpetbaggers should take their ferryboat proposals elsewhere. We're already burned by the millions lost on a former ferryboat proposal that rooked us out here.
Ralph A. Hernandez
YES, I WOULD definitely use the ferry from Antioch.
I was very disappointed that the project has stalled and wholeheartedly support the completion of this water route. In 2008, it was reported plans were moving along at a good clip -- wow, that is already five years ago! Those of us who live in far East County, with the congestion on Highway 4 continuing for the foreseeable future, would love to take a ferry to Martinez and San Francisco. It would also serve to revitalize Antioch's Rivertown Business District, support emergency preparedness, and could be an efficient and enjoyable mode of transport. Let's tap into all available resources and grants, and get it done!
This week's question:
Should cities pass so-called "social host" ordinances that can result in parents being fined or charged with a misdemeanor in cases where underage drinking takes place in the family home?
Email your response to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please limit responses to a few sentences, and be sure to include your full name and city of residence. Not all responses will be published. Note: Please respond before Monday.