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    Aaron Bialick



    Most passenger cars cannot deliver a desk



    I’d like to see a cargo bike deliver a desk. Bikes and motor scooters may be fine for small items, but you need a loading zone for large items.


    Jeffrey Baker

    The picture of the USPS truck perfectly supports your idea. It’s less than 1000 feet from where that ridiculous jeep is parked to the nearest post office. You could deliver the mail over that distance with a handbasket. Or you could copy more civilized societies and deliver by bicycle, or motor scooter for those in a real hurry. Either would take negligible street space. Either could be parked up on the sidewalk.



    It is unfortunate that we allow incompetent people to drive cars, indeed.



    The most important thing to extract from a negligent drivers wallet is his drivers license



    The only way that would make sense is if the house would never be sold.



    I get the idea that our courts tend to be biased towards drivers, that getting away with murder is most easily accomplished in a car, and that our vehicular codes are unevenly enforced. But we cyclists and pedestrians are too quick to think that locking up every Mr. Magoo would make us safer. Criminality requires intent, or at least extreme negligence, and has to be seen in a broader background of punishment fitting crime. These difficulties don’t make the criminal system an especially effective or efficient way to encourage better driving behavior, nor do they help mitigate harm. By contrast, risk to the pocketbook tends to be very effective. If we held drivers liable for at least half the cost of a crash with a vulnerable user, as they do in the Netherlands, or require drivers to prove they didn’t cause the crash or else pay up, we will have taken some useful first steps at equalizing the roads.

    Ultimately, though, we need better infrastructure.



    Especially important would be carefully figuring out how those conflict points are supposed to work and building that into the design. If we build a ‘canyon’ protected lane (like the contra-flow lane on Polk) that cyclists can’t get out of, cyclists won’t (and shouldn’t) yield to a vehicle that wants to cross the path through a driveway opening. Those are separate lanes of traffic and we don’t just yield because someone wants to cut across a street from alley to alley. If that’s what they want they must make it so autos _can’t_ easily cut off the bike traffic lane(s) and other autos need to deal with that turning vehicle sitting in front of them, etc.

    If it’s built more along the lines of a raised path with beveled edges that cyclists can get off/on easily, there’s more possibilities for the traffic streams to intermix, cyclists to go around a turning vehicle, etc.


    Jym Dyer

    • The Velasquez ruling is a non-story (lawyer makes a bogus argument that gets shot down), but that won’t stop the Chron from milking it, first with a specious story that made sure the mention the unrelated Bucchere tragedy, now with rambling musings from their laid-back columnist guy. Chron coverage is reliably bereft of actual information about bike matters, but plenty of inflammatory nonsense.

    Jon Carroll tends away from the inflammatory, but we still have the lies of omission here: “everyone knows that bicyclists break traffic laws all the time,” but let’s not ever mention the most deadly behavior of all, speeding, which motorists do all the time.


    Jym Dyer

    @Greg – Revolution Rickshaws, duh. (Well, okay, admittedly that’s not going to get garbage to the transfer station.)


    Jym Dyer

    • Cargo bikes, duh.


    Jym Dyer

    The notion that these are civil issues is a problem. Or more to the point, that sticking the word “vehicular” in front of “assault” or “homicide” means it’s somehow less of a choice and less of a crime. Even more to the point, dismissing a whole range of deadly choices as “violations” and “infractions” under the law.

    Lower your expectations, and sure enough, they’re yours.


    Jym Dyer

    I also expect peds in cycle track because that’s what they do in NYC — even though they have to step down off the curb.


    Diamond heights

    Does anyone have a link to the new full language so I can read it firsthand? I checked the city site and it appears to trail a few weeks. Thank you in advance.



    All I want to see is a two way waterfront side PROTECTED bikeway built period. The time for protected bikeways on the Embarcadero waterfront is so long OVERDUE, it needs to be seriously built in a timely manner along with the other improvements along the Embarcadero, its time has come



    Could be tricky… there are usually light poles or traffic signals at those locations.



    It definitely needs thought and good, careful design. Creating bike lanes that are clear for cars or delivery trucks (color) and safe (separated) is one thing.

    A good and crucial addition could be to build bike lanes on almost the same height as the wide sidewalk, so delivery trucks slow down, have to go up a ‘bump’ and realize that they are ‘visiting’ and that bikes and pedestrians go first. Depending on each situation, and total number of necessary access points, traffic lights (for bike and turnout) can help. With of course a green wave for cyclists along Embarcadero.


    Greg Costikyan

    The Hudson River bike path should be considered both a model and a warning here. Because separated from traffic, it’s hugely popular, but as with pier access on Embarcadero, there are several points where vehicles need to cut across it to reach businesses or government facilities on the waterfront. And since traffic runs fast on the West Side Highway, and the turnouts across the bike path aren’t always well designed, those points of conflict can be problematic… as a post on Streetsblog NY today about a NY Waterway bus hitting a cyclist shows. Pretty clearly, an Embarcadero bikeway would get a lot of use, but some thought needs to be given about how to minimize conflicts, and potential injuries, when vehicles do cross it to the piers. (I’ve lived in both cities, and biked both routes.)



    Perhaps another option would be to ramp it up to sidewalk level, and back down again, where the parking lane disappears.



    Assuming that the city isn’t going to cut into the curbs, you’ll need to lose a northbound traffic lane to accommodate a two-way protected cycle track along the waterfront, because the parking lane is intermittent. That would leave one northbound lane for much of the route, which might be contentious.

    For two one-way protected cycle tracks, you can choose to lose a traffic lane or lose the parking lane, with the bike lane being unprotected (i.e. the status quo) in locations where there is currently no parking lane. While I’d rather see a two-way cycle track, this option might be politically easier. You could remove a traffic lane where there is currently 3 or more lanes, and remove parking where there is currently 2 lanes, leaving 2 traffic lanes throughout and preserving parking in the busiest area near the Ferry Building.


    Mario Tanev

    Muni’s fare inspection rate is significantly below the industry standards. But having said that, all evidence shows that after taking into account the lifeline pass holders and people who transferred but forgot to tag, the evasion rate is low enough, that it’s not worth making a big fuss out of it. KTVU’s analysis specifically didn’t take that into account.

    No mater how hard Muni may try, they won’t be able to recover as much money as they lost by giving away Sunday parking.



    It’s a wonder they don’t have their helmets on backwards.



    There is a good video on youtube about a guy from the Netherlands pretty much saying how ridiculous us Americans car when it comes to bikes.



    The street level tracks are already painted green and every day I find myself having to go out into the street because people want to run the wrong way in the bike lane and won’t budge as if you are invading their space. They are just as bad as non cyclists in the cyclist car on Caltrain.



    I have some of the same qualms. These are civil issues. At the very least we should 1) require proof of car insurance before issuing license tags, and 2) require the driver to show innocence in a crash involving a vulnerable road user.



    Building new housing makes rents go up? That’s absurd and goes against all economic knowledge and data.

    Rents go up because of demand. New housing is built in response to that demand. So people think “rents are going up, and there’s lots of new developments, they must be the culprit!” but that’s confusing correlation for causation. The fact is, new development eases the demand and without it, rents would go up even faster!

    You can’t make demand go away by refusing to increase densities. All you do is constrict supply, and make the problem worse. Demand is what it is. Population is going up, cities change, it’s the nature of things. You can’t make it illegal for people to move to your town and you can’t enclose your town in a bubble. Either plan for the change intelligently or end up in crisis like san francisco.

    (Well, you *could* make demand go away by making your area less desirable to live in. Is that what you want?)


    David D.

    Name one heavy-duty transit bus that has wheels that don’t stick out. Wouldn’t Muni just switch wheels if it were as simple as that?


    David D.

    The Van Ness BRT corridor will be served by more than just BRT. Muni’s 76 line will also run along the corridor, as will all of Golden Gate Transit’s routes. Are you proposing that we buy dedicated equipment for all of that service too? That certainly seems like a waste of money to me.


    David D.

    Your proposal was one of the design alternatives studied for this project. You can read up on it by checking out the EIR, etc. Ultimately, your proposal did not fair that well compared to center-running BRT, and therefore center-running BRT was selected as the preferred option.



    A cute piece on a local kid who wished to ride BART through Make-a-wish Foundation:


    Rahya Blackwell

    This article really touched home. A cyclist was killed here in New Orleans just a week ago. “The truck driver, identified only as a 51-year-old man from Violet, was neither arrested nor cited, according to NOPD spokesman Officer Garry Flot.”



    It’d be nice if Market Street had as much traffic enforcement as the airport. If the airport can have half a dozen traffic ccops in tiny vehicles, Market street should, too.



    I think Marco is saying to move the stops from the right lane/curb to the middle lane and use the boarding islands.



    Bus doors are on the right



    That Chron piece is precious…



    Thanks for the hyperbole. That intersection, and a few others are quite tricky for the bottlenecks they create. By moving the stop slightly further (30 ft) down the street or onto the transit island w/ red lanes, boarding would not be impacted, and bikes and cars would be able to use the right lane more efficiently. As it is, it’s unsafe to pass by bike and it encourages drivers to use the transit lane if it’s clear.



    If it keeps a certain percentage off then maybe it does work? It’s annoying to see, but we don’t need 100% compliance for transit lanes to be effective, especially if it reduces bottlenecks or prevents them.



    They are going to do intersection treatments, hash marks I believe, to discourage it. Less effective than camera enforcement or red lanes, but it’s something.



    If I had a garage, I’d keep my teardrop trailer in it. Taking away my (imaginary) curb cut would make it less convenient to hitch up.



    How does this stop the box-blocking?


    Michael Morris

    I’ll admit I’m still split about the moral implications of sentencing drivers to jail time for something they didn’t really mean to do, except when alcohol is involved. But if you severely injure someone with your car I think your licence should be suspended for life, these people are not capable of handling the challenges of driving, they shouldn’t be on the road.



    They should just get rid of buses entirely in SF since they interfere with bikes. SF should be biking only. If you can’t ride a bike, move out of SF.



    [I]n many areas of SF, street parking is not at a premium (Sunset, Richmond)

    Are you kidding? Have you tried to go out to eat in these neighborhoods, like, ever?



    Its a complete lie.

    Boston reopened all their subway restrooms within the past 3 years, and the new DC subway line includes restrooms at every stop.



    Helmet. Your eyes/head track the interesting stuff.

    Also, drivers will start to notice cams on helmets…


    Chris J.

    Strictly speaking, if you read what the law used to say, it didn’t outlaw garages being used as storage units. It only said that if a garage had a car, then you weren’t allowed to store anything else in it. This is because it defined private garage as, “A building or a portion of a building, not more than 1,000 square feet in area, in which motor vehicles used by the tenants of the building or buildings on the premises are stored or kept.” In other words, if you weren’t storing at least one car in it, it wasn’t considered a garage.



    If you own a place with a curb cut that’s a considerable financial asset. To preserve that asset, your proposed policy would provide an enormous financial incentive to buy a car. Once the car is purchased, it substantially reduces the marginal cost of driving (both in $ and convenience). So it sounds good from a socialist perspective, but from a pragmatic perspective, the result would be more driving. OTOH, allowing people to store bikes in garages facilitates replacing that car with a bike, which is to everyone’s interest in many ways. The real solution is to charge a reasonable rental rate for street parking. That would incentivize storage of private property on private property, increase the viability of private parking garages, decrease congestion, and allow for more investment in public transit.


    Chris J.

    In your experience, what’s the better placement for something like this — a helmet cam or a handlebar cam?



    One person’s “junk” is another person’s “treasure”. Let’s not be too judgemental about folks who have trouble parting with what George Carlin called “stuff”.