SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) _ It’s good news for commuters who use the Golden Gate Bridge on a regular basis.

Work to replace Doyle Drive has now moved into the next phase as a groundbreaking ceremony was held on Wednesday for the beginning of work on the Battery Street Tunnel and temporary bypass.

“We’re here today celebrating this major milestone, getting the tunnel under construction,” said Dale Bonner, the state Secretary of the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency. “I just want to emphasize how important the entire project really is.”

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Bonner underscored the benefits of earthquake safety by replacing the 73-year-old Doyle Drive.

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom said the project will be a gift.

“This surface road will substantially be diminished and will be brought underground, a tunnel that will connect the Presidio and Crissy Field,” he said.

San Francisco Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi said the billion dollar project is a model of innovation that will benefit walkers, runners, cyclists and traffic.

“Reducing impacts on the spectacular views and most fundamentally, by finally allowing direct access into the Presidio,” said Mirkarimi.

The Doyle Drive replacement project is expected to be completed in 2013.


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