Muni’s New 5L-Fulton Limited Gets High Marks From the Twitterverse

Update: See photos of the Fulton road diet between Stanyan and Baker Streets at the end of the article.

If there’s anywhere you can find a cynical view of Muni service from frustrated riders, it’s Twitter. But riders of the new 5L-Fulton Limited line seem to be tweeting nothing but glowing reviews of the new express service, which Muni launched Monday to speed up trips and reduce crowding.

The 5L is part of a pilot project package of line upgrades and complements the 5’s existing local service, which also had some excess stops removed to speed up trips. The 5L runs the entire length of the route using the 5′s regular electric trolley coaches, serving only the six most heavily-used stops between Market Street and 6th Avenue. Muni planners predict the 5L should run 11 percent faster than the existing local service (and 17 percent faster on the limited-stop stretch alone).

Also part of the project is a road diet on Fulton between Stanyan and Baker Streets (see photos below), which reduced the number of lanes while widening the remaining ones to accommodate buses safely. In addition, some bus stop zones were extended to allow two buses to load at once.

Complaints on the 5L seem to be few and far between, while tweets like these paint the 5L as a resounding success:





Fulton Street, seen here looking west from Central Avenue, was reduced from four traffic lanes to two wider lanes to better accommodate buses and a center turning lane. Photo: Aaron Bialick

Fulton, west of Central to Baker, also had traffic lane markings ground off between the street's two westbound lanes, combining them into one wider lane. The 5 doesn't run on this section, and it wasn't originally included in the road diet plan, but the change seems to have helped calm traffic. Photo: Aaron Bialick