Eyes on the Street: Church Street at Market Gets Three New Bike Racks

church_bike_rack_2.jpgPhotos by Bryan Goebel.

The SFMTA has installed three new bike racks on the southeast corner of Church Street at Market to help accommodate the throngs of bicycle riders who often park their bikes illegally on the Muni island rails. I snapped these photos of the new bike racks this afternoon and one thing rang clear: it’s not enough.

Damon Curtis, the Bike Plan implementation manager for the SFMTA, said the racks were installed based on requests from businesses. However, the area was a pressing priority for the SFMTA last January, when the agency asked for injunction relief to install bike racks on Church following complaints from disability rights advocates about the transit island bike parking.

"We know the demand continues to grow and as we move forward that could be an area we can look at for corrals and things like that," Curtis told Streetsblog.

Andy Thornley, the SFBC program director, hopes the SFMTA will install more bicycle parking in the area, and be sensitive to the concerns.

"Apart from the intrinsic demand of the businesses, the important thing to be aware is that there has been complaints and concerns voiced by folks in the disabled community about that Muni platform encroachment," said Thornley.

Curtis said the SFMTA has installed nearly 300 new bike racks since the partial lifting of the bicycle injunction, and had a backlog of 900 requests at the time. The agency is working as quickly as it can to meet the demand, he said.

church_street_bike_rack_3.jpgTwo new bike racks on Church St. near Market.
Market.jpgOn weekend nights, and even during the week, bicycles are a common sight on the Muni island because of the lack of adequate bicycle parking in the area. The area is home to many thriving restaurants and bars.
Church_bike_racks_1.jpgA new bike rack on Church in front of Chilango, which requested it. 

  • Nick

    I wonder how many of the people who park their bike on the MUNI island do so because they are not allowed to take their bike with them on the light rail lines. I imagine there are quite a few students who bike down from the hills and then take the train to SFSU or CCSF.

    And MTA policy forbids folding bikes (against all common sense and transit-first goodness) from being brought inside any MUNI vehicle.

  • Kay

    Hi Bryan, nice article and especially nice pic of your cute bike:) So glad this problem is being addressed. I’ll buy you a beer at Lucky 13 and we can talk about more racks there.

  • Of course this is great, and I really appreciate how quickly these racks have gone up, but could they have come up with a more elegant way of covering/protecting the bolts? It looks like 4 pieces of gum…

  • YAY – chilangos!!!!!

  • the greasybear

    It’s a very small step in the right direction, but three racks are nowhere near enough to meet skyrocketing demand for bike parking in the Church/Market area. People will thus continue to park bikes on the Muni island, while motorists will continue to store their bulky private property right in the street itself…when is the reactionary NIMBY injunction against cycling going to end?

  • It will be a great day in SF when instead of taking from pedestrian space, we can concede one car parking space for ten customers on bikes 🙂

  • SFResident

    Overall, I think these are awesome. But does the MTA really have to put down that ugly-ass stencil with every placement?

  • Shawn Allen

    Amen, Aaron!

  • Can anyone explain what problem locking up bikes on the Muni island there poses for the disabled? Bikes do occasionally block the spaces between the railings on the island, but in my estimation it would be extremely hard for somebody on crutches to use those spaces anyways, and certainly a wheelchair wouldn’t be able to. I guess they also restrict the side-to-side space on the island itself, but not by very much from what I’ve seen.

  • Nick

    Why not just extend the boarding islands another 100 feet to the south? That should solve both problems.

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