Transportation

SMW represents public entities and community groups working to ensure that transportation planning is carried out in a manner that protects the human and natural environment and is undertaken in accordance with state and federal law, including CEQA and NEPA. The firm helps local government implement innovative urban transportation programs. We also have extensive experience challenging ill-conceived highway and roadway expansion projects. Examples of SMW’s work in transportation matters include:

  • Transbay Terminal Project: SMW advises the San Francisco Transbay Joint Powers Authority on redevelopment, acquisition of real property, governmental relations, and environmental review for a $3.5 billion transit-oriented development project that includes a Transit Center, extension of Caltrain to the Transit Center and 2,600 housing units.
  • Foothill-South Toll Road: The firm represents a coalition of major environmental groups opposing this proposed six-lane toll road in Orange and San Diego Counties, which would run through San Onofre State Beach.
  • Hatton Canyon Freeway: On behalf of a coalition of environmental groups and public entities, the firm successfully challenged this proposed freeway near Carmel on the grounds that federal and state transportation agencies failed to adequately consider its environmental impacts (City of Carmel-by-the-Sea v. United States Department of Transportation, 123 F.3d 1142 (9th Cir. 1997)).
  • San Diego Association of Governments' (SANDAG) Regional Transportation Plan: On behalf of Save Our Forest and Ranchlands, the firm negotiated a complex settlement agreement with SANDAG, resolving the environmental group's challenge to SANDAG's 2007 Regional Transportation Plan and calling for SANDAG to increase transit opportunities in San Diego’s downtown and to strengthen its smart growth policies in the region.
  • BART Extension: Prior to joining the firm, an attorney now partner in the firm represented the City and County of San Francisco in BART’s eminent domain acquisition of 8 miles of right-of-way for the BART extension to San Francisco International Airport.
  • Save Our Somis: The firm brought a successful CEQA challenge to a Caltrans project near the Town of Somis that would have added six new traffic lanes at the intersection of State Routes 118 and 34.