You have to go back to the foundation – namely, the foundation for San Francisco’s “transit first” policy, that driving is a bad thing… always
Transit is “good,” therefore, the City should be doing everything it can to get people to shift from driving to transit.
The problem is, of course, is that it impossible to make transit work much better for the vast majority of trips, so, for transit to be more competitive (actually, somewhat less non-competitive) with driving, the only option (other than throwing ever-more incredible amounts of money at transit with both hands) is to make driving worse.
This has two major factors, cost and time – and, time IS a cost. For cost, increase the price of gasoline, mainly through higher taxes, but also by requiring every-“cleaner” fuels; high prices for parking, tolls, VMT charges replacing (or on top of) cents/gallon, etc. As to time, make sure that you never, never, never add any road capacity – in fact, take it away – reduce speed limits, advocate “complete streets” (which, by design, are much slower), and reducing parking, which will force longer walks.
There is pretty solid consensus that there are two things that could work – and HAVE worked – to reduce travel time and traffic congestion, and, interestingly enough, they can actually be used in a complementary manner, rather than either/or. One is various types of congestion charges and the other is really pushing remote work/education/shopping/social/etc. MTC is pushing hard on Express Lanes, which is a logical step towards total vehicle-miles traveled/congestion charging for all roads/all lanes, which I generally support, but, from long experience, I am VERY scared at how MTC and the other players could screw this up. I will give MTC staff credit, they worked very hard to put in a major requirement for remote work and were about to get the Commission to approve it – until two major power players got together to get the big city mayors to veto it. One anti- group was the big developers, because, it half the people who are now in offices don’t do that any more, the need for new huge buildings is going to take a hit. The other was the Bay Area transit agencies, who argued that the loss of riders would do them great harm.
Think about that last one – NOT do harm to people who need to make connections, who would sign on from home rather than drive or take a bus, train, or ferry, just stay at home. No hour or two a day in travel, no payment to do that travel, obviously reduce GHG and other emissions quite a bit, but harm to the transit agency. They’d have to lay off people, get rid of vehicles – my heavens, that could even lead to lower taxes!!!
(No, that would never happen, of course.)