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File #: 20-311    Name:
Type: Staff Report Status: Public Hearing
File created: 5/7/2020 In control: Planning Commission
On agenda: 5/21/2020 Final action:
Title: Report regarding a resolution to update the City of South San Francisco's transportation impact analysis thresholds, as required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), to comply with state-mandated change from level of service (LOS) to vehicle miles traveled (VMT), pursuant to Senate Bill 743 (2013) and new 2019 CEQA Guidelines. (Chris Espiritu, Senior Planner and Billy Gross, Senior Planner)
Attachments: 1. VMT Memo by Fehr & Peers, dated May 11, 2020, 2. CA OPR SB 743 Technical Advisory (December 2018)
Related files: 20-312
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Title
Report regarding a resolution to update the City of South San Francisco's transportation impact analysis thresholds, as required by the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), to comply with state-mandated change from level of service (LOS) to vehicle miles traveled (VMT), pursuant to Senate Bill 743 (2013) and new 2019 CEQA Guidelines. (Chris Espiritu, Senior Planner and Billy Gross, Senior Planner)

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RECOMMENDATION
Recommendation
Staff recommends that the Planning Commission adopt a resolution recommending that the City Council update the City of South San Francisco's transportation impact analysis thresholds to comply with state-mandated change from level of service (LOS) to vehicle miles traveled (VMT), pursuant to Senate Bill 743 and new 2019 California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) Guidelines.

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Senate Bill (SB) 743 requires changes be made to the method by which agencies analyze transportation impacts under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). It modifies the environmental review process by removing automobile delay (as described by Level of Service (LOS)) or similar measures of vehicular capacity or traffic congestion, as a significant impact on the environment pursuant to CEQA. Instead of LOS, SB 743 requires that CEQA assessments completed after July 1, 2020 be based on Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT), a measure of how much driving is generated by a project, to better align with state greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals. In keeping with SB 743, staff is recommending appropriate VMT thresholds to allow the City of South San Francisco to transition to the VMT metric to assess environmental impacts.

BACKGROUND
The State of California has adopted several bills over the last decade in an effort to reduce GHG emissions and the effects of climate change. The transportation sector (including private automobiles) is one of the largest producers of GHG emissions. Targets for GHG emission reductions have b...

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