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    Andy Chow

    I think Uber’s surge pricing kind of outrageous, but I don’t have much sympathies for those who were willing to pay the price for it, unless they didn’t know the fare upfront. It is a competitive market and they can avoid the price by taking taxis, Muni, other TNCs, walk or bike, or wait 30 mins to an hour in a nearby bar or cafe for the crowd to disburse, or leave 15-30 mins early.

    Having an online platform actually help drive high fares because riders essentially are bidding for car service electronically. So some car in the Richmond or Sunset can see all the bidders in the area and take the highest bid. Without the technology, the revenue maximizing strategy is to take the nearest rider willing to pay a reasonable fare (you may get a few groups of potential riders to get bid from, but not everyone in the area), and make more money by taking more riders in a given time period.



    Re: Homeless people sleeping in Bart stations, plazas, stations, and tunnels. The Examiner guest editorial was a broad assault on Bart’s history of police actions, but failed to grapple with a basic issue: Do people using public transit have a right to clean, safe, functional spaces, or must they share that with people sleeping, defecating, etc? I think most of us understand that homeless people in BART are there looking for shelter, safety, or spare change, and that there are not enough homeless beds. But that does not mean that BART and its customers have to be the providers of shelter, if that gets in the way of the system’s functioning for passengers. Nobody would argue that one should leave one’s car parked and unlocked so that homeless persons can sleep there. Why should public transit users have to shoulder the responsibility for the homeless?



    Re: Outside Lands surge pricing – I walked three blocks back to Judah & Sunset, waited 10 minutes, got a seat on the N Judah and laughed to myself at all the poor suckers trying to squeeze on at 34th Avenue (and every stop thereafter). Total cost: $2.00.



    From the parking study: “The project will remove the parking along the westbound travel lane (the north side of the street) in order accommodate standard 5-ft wide bicycle lanes in both directions of travel.” I haven’t heard anything about a two way bikeway anywhere.



    Wait will SFMTA cite anyone in a video driving in the bike lane on Townsend? I see it all the time and would like nothing better than to nab these offenders, I will take the video myself if it leads to a citation.



    I designed sustainable homes in Old Palo Alto for 3 years and from my experience that wouldn’t be very successful. Even among those who are trying to be green on the peninsula, it’s still very much a car culture and with the exception of a few areas it’s too spread out for most people to want to bike for more than exercise. Those who do bike down there usually have the resources to own their own bikes and the space to store them. I think they need to focus the system on Oakland & SF to make it truly successful with wide use by a critical mass and from there it can expand out, otherwise the resources are spread too thin for its success and adoption to be fully realized.



    Thank you for this, it gets right to the flaw I see in the current system and that’s spreading the resources too thin in order to create a regional system rather than focusing the effort on densely populated SF & Oakland where it’s clearly more successful. It’s the same mindset as BART, they keep expanding out to have a regional system yet in the city where they are really needed and would be used the most because of density, they don’t have the coverage. Focus the efforts on the two areas with the highest density and population in order to make the system the most successful and then expand out from there.


    Idrather Bebikin

    Nice article! People need to get down there and be part of the public process. The more people that are there, the better the city’s plans will be IF we have a breadth and depth of opinions. Don’t be shy. There will be break out sessions. Let your voices be heard. Share your frustrations with what is existing and your suggestions of how to make these corridors better!

    If you’re a business along these corridors, then you really need to be there. If you’re worried about parking, then please help identify where you think parking can be found. Because even though I’m fully supportive of your businesses a green bike lane is probably the answer that makes the most sense here.

    We need people of ALL ages and capabilities to be comfortable riding from downtown SJ and the Diridon Train station out to West SJ.

    And to the planners, are you talking about a green bike lane on each side of the street? Or a two-way bikeway on the westbound lanes? I’m assuming it’s a green bike lane in each direction.

    And to SJ DOT – you’ve seriously got to fix this road, it is completely coming apart. Not that this is the worst in the city, but it’s a mess!



    I regularly see people riding the BABS bikes around Crissy Field and the Golden Gate Bridge and Golden Gate Park. I’m guessing that they either did not understand the 30 minute overage charges or misjudged how far those destinations were from the nearest docking stations. Do any of these reports say where people were actually riding the bikes, instead of just which docks they were using?



    Tourist users maybe? I have seen people take those over the GG Bridge before and as far away as Tiburon.



    Keep in mind we had a very dry and balmy winter. There was one cold week that was near freezing in December only and the mean temp in January was mid/high 50F and there were days in January where temps even in Sunset exceeded 70F. Seasonal variation will likely be greater when we have more rain.


    Kenny Easwaran

    Average trips on weekends are over 40 minutes? That seems quite surprising, given that all of those trips cost extra. I would have expected that people use BABS to get places, and would just switch bikes at the 28 minute mark rather than pay extra, but I guess a significant fraction of people are doing longer rides outside the station area, and are willing to pay for it.



    I have to believe that more people would use Bike Share in Silicon Valley if there were more stations in the residential areas. Right now, the stations are mostly in business areas, which makes the system useless to people starting from home.



    But parking garages would not have the same effect as home garages and on-street parking. To use them would require walking as well as driving, for instance. Instead of driving from point to point to point, you would drive from neighborhood to neighborhood — in the end making the “convenience” of driving about the same as that of riding transit or biking.


    Play games in



    That’s great! No slick graphics but it cuts straight to the heart of the matter. The peninsula zones are way below critical density, but then so is the development there, which is why so many are willing to live with the burdensome commute from San Francisco. And the seasonal variation is less than might have been expected. I’m personally impressed the bikes remain in good operating condition: I had expected more vandalism, more abuse. Hopefully the system can spread across SF and reach closer to its potential.


    Andy Chow

    Photoshopping can be quite deceiving. The anti-HSR folks made this: but cities that have similar grade separations (San Carlos, Belmont, San Bruno) actually look better than the photoshop. The artist already made a conclusion that target is bad so he or she made them to look as ugly as possible to drive that point.

    In San Francisco, a lot of multi-level garages have street-side retail, and some even have residences or offices above. Even San Jose has street-level retail for their newer garages downtown:

    Not that I support the proposition, but you can’t assume that voters won’t think that parking garages can’t ever be designed in a more tasteful way that they can accept in the community.


    Nicholas Littlejohn

    Excellent, we need to remove those bridge bollards to one and stop cars blocking the entrance. Bike lanes, not sharrows need to be painted. San Jose has potential but is pretty scary for biking now.


    Aaron Bialick

    Not in the works yet, but I look forward to having another one indeed.



    Bar crawl sounds fun! Hopefully I can make it after work to at least the last 2-3 spots.

    Any chance of another Streetsblog Happy Hour in the works? That was fun. :D



    There were a non-trivial set of people upset that the town square would disappear and reduce parking. At least one neighborhood elder preferred a parking garage built there.

    I never did hear if in the end there will be no parking fronting the square.



    I have taken the 80 in a pinch but dismiss it as transportation. The 72 expresses from Rohnert Park to the bridge and kicks butt. There is a huge disparity in usefulness between the basic service and the commute services.

    Since I started riding it, they have expanded the 72, started the 101, added the 101X, and are now eliminating the 80 in return for more 101′s. They are following the cues of the ridership and this is good.

    I think if they ran hourly 101X (SF, Petaluma Depot, Cotati, RP, SR Transit, Piner) all day (including weekends) they would get solid ridership. Note that the 4 and 27 are now running all day in each direction.

    As for fares – if you pay with a Clipper card knock off 20 percent from your fare, if your Clipper is funded pre-tax knock off another 20-40%. You can get from Santa Rosa to SF – 60 miles – for the price of the bridge toll.



    I didn’t see what I thought would be the most interesting statistics, so I made some graphs from the data on the website. I’m assuming that there are 350/130/50/50/50 bikes in the cities, which I read earlier. It’s not interactive, but I think it’s more informative. Here you go:



    Great reporting for a great event! Wow, this sounds great. I have bicycled around San Jose and further west and it needs a lot of work. Glad smart people are advocating for it.



    Well, it looks like the folks in charge of the pro-Measure L website showed some decency and replaced the photo of a Muni train on their front page with an image of backed up traffic. This seems totally appropriate to me, likely for totally different reasons than they intended.

    The Muni train graphic still appears on several other pages on their site, though. This is inappropriate and misleading, as the proposal as written offers no specific benefits to Muni riders.

    I wouldn’t vote for but would at least respect the opinions of the Measure L backers if they just played it straight and stopped messing around with so much obfuscation and omission. The data and figures cited on their “Facts & Myths” page are so obviously cherry-picked to favor their argument while carefully ignoring inconvenient details, I have a hard time believing that anyone in favor of the campaign either fully understands the issues or doesn’t have an ulterior motive for supporting it.


    Moo Dang

    republican plan? Republicans have been extinct in sf for a couple of decades.



    @murphstahoe:disqus You clearly have not taken route 80 to Sonoma before. It takes 3 hours and its one of the more expensive commuter buses on the West Coast. Then tack on hourly frequency and the casual rider takes 3.5 hours to get to Santa Rosa. Luckily the 101 is completely replacing it soon but that only shaves off about 20 minutes.



    Yeah, I guess that makes sense. I frequently use GGT to do the reverse SF -> Marin trek so I’m probably not the majority use case. It’s just strange from an SF perspective that with Muni and BART both having had real-time predictions for some time now GGT is still dragging its feet on this (though when I asked recently they claimed to be implementing it sometime this year).



    I think the closer you live to SF, the more people get upset about the service. When you are coming from Sonoma County, the bus is so superior to driving in time, cost, and hassle, that everyone seems very pleased with the service. The primary improvement would be more buses – not so much for frequency but because the buses are getting pretty crowded.



    I was thinking the same thing. Then again, I’d be afraid that people that saw the pictures would just think “yes! I’d love to have more parking in my neighborhood!” So many people here simply don’t care about good urbanism. Its all about making their commute and errand-running easier. Suburban mindsets in the densest metropolis in the country.



    GG Transit risks running a death spiral. What I don’t get is GGT seems to have no other notification other than official schedule, as they still have no real-time indicators, no texts, etc.

    This can be a really big deal as someone who rides a once-hourly bus. You just have to stand there waiting for 10-15 minutes hoping that it’s just late and not that you missed it (they’ll sometimes leave earlier than scheduled, too).



    I know! It really required an overactive imagination on my part to Photoshop in a double-decker freeway in front of the Ferry Bldg of all places!



    When you mandate parking, you are basically pushing private costs onto the market without demand. It becomes more expensive to build housing which drives up the cost of housing, not something that SF needs. And when you mandate parking be provided, you also induce more car ownership which just creates more traffic, something else that SF does not need. There is and endless supply of reading that explains all these issues on this site. I recommend reading up on it all. You’ll quickly see what a bad deal mandating parking is for cities.



    Wait, you disagree with the measure but hope it passes out of spite because you don’t like someone’s efforts against it? That’s just bizarre and a terrible way to establish policy in a city.



    Frustrating that the Cal Alumni article cites a bunch of recent successes and plans that Bike East Bay (formerly East Bay Bicycle Coalition) was largely responsible for, but doesn’t provide any quotes from their staff members or even mention them in the article. No love for their home town bike coalition?



    How can you dictate to developers how much parking to build, but then say it’s not up to you or I to decide the policies? Building less parking allows for more affordable development and more units per development. Would you rather house cars or people? Should voters be able to dictate how much private parking is built?


    Upright Biker

    @disqus_2xADSo7Zq7:disqus that is _so_ sleazy of you to show that Photoshopped image of what SF would look like if we allowed double-decker freeways to be built right in front of our most important civic buildings! How could you stoop so low as to suggest that’s really the way it would be if cars-first became City policy!




    What lie are you referring to?



    Not to mention the sleazy factor of their first bullet point in their ‘About’ section:

    “Parking meters shouldn’t operate on any City holiday, Sundays, or between the hours of 6:00 pm and 9:00 am.”


    Uhhh….Sunday metering was already rescinded and it had nothing to do with L. Purposeful obfuscation here.



    They’re part of the Drivers’ Team and nothing will change it except making them all ride bicycles.





    Yes. This. Only addition I’d make is it’s certainly not just mainly those who write and read this site who recognize there’s a better toolbox cities could be using besides the All Cars All The Time one.

    Anyone who’s enjoyed the amazing street life at the square at Hayes Valley (post-freeway) or the Embarcadero (post-freeway) or even just the conversion of a parking space to a parklet outside a coffee place recognizes that maybe, just maybe, this whole 125% Cars All The Time m.o. hasn’t been the best idea all the time.

    Also, it’s funny how just like with other movements, once the group enjoying the most privilege and dominance in the status quo starts noticing even minimal encroachments they are quick to label it as “imbalance” or discrimination. Oh, no, we’re going from 125% All Cars All The Time to only 110% All Cars All The Time! Restore balance!

    What’s even funnier is that by implementing better bike/transit/walking infrastructure you take more cars off the road in the first place meaning for the die-hard motorist and/or someone who really does need to drive it’s fewer cars to road-rage with in the first place! Imagine rush hour if all those bikes were cars–it’d be insanity.

    Yet the car traffic along that road mostly flows freely even at rush hour in a major city. From a driver’s point of view this kind of infrastructure *helps* them in that they have less competition! (and it keeps bikes out of the way).



    Right, and voters in SF have decided on a transit first policy. But more to your point, we also never voted on whether or not we should have a car-centric culture, it was an idea imposed by planners in the 1950s and 60s and continues to be carried out today. We inherited the world as it stands so we tend to think that this is just the natural way it came about. But it was the result of manipulation by people who at the time considered it the “right” way to go. Nowadays, that way no longer works and we are all having this argument about what the “right” thing to do is. To some, like you and the proponents of this measure, we need to continue with the status quo and make sure to shore up the dominance of cars in our society. Others, mainly the people who write and read this site, like to imagine that there could be a different way in the future. We’ll all decide together, I guess.


    sebra leaves

    It is not up to you or I, or an unelected body of appointed administrators, to decide what the policies and goals should be. The voters will decide and their wishes should be honored.


    Jeffrey Baker

    So true. There’s a one-story parking structure at Webster and 13th that just acts like a black hole sucking the energy out of the neighborhood. Not to mention the full block of surface parking adjacent to the absurd full block spiral cold war parking garage at 13th and Jackson, or the five-story parking pedestal beneath caltrans regional offices on Grand, or the cathedral that’s more parking garage than anything else.

    Part of Oakland’s problem in this regard is public “servants” have been effectively promised ready parking as part of their compensation. But anyone who needs an example of “balance” can come to Oakland to admire or surfeit of wide, deserted boulevards and empty parking spaces.



    Can we get some images of a garage in Noe – say at the proposed town square, or where the Radio shack & current at-grade lot are – and the Mission on 24th Street – say at 24th Street BART where the McDonalds is, or where Galleria De La Raza is?


    San Franciscans 4 more parking

    Your posts are hilarious. This parking-obsessed-driver routine really shows how stupid and shortsighted people could be if they didn’t give a single thought to anything but their car.

    Nobody in real life could make an argument there is insufficient off-street parking when garages are only 70% full at peak. What would be sufficient? 50% of spaces empty? 70%? 90%?



    Agreed, and I’d just add that there IS a point where adding more parking satiates demand. It’s the point where the city is no longer worth visiting because it’s been turned into a giant parking lot.



    See Prinzrob’s comment above.



    The problem with that, though, is that assumes there’s lots of space around the city to build lots of new expensive parking garages–in addition, whatever space those take up is space that can’t be used for housing/commericial/etc. needs.

    The more car-centric infrastructure you build, the more it creates its own demand. In fact, the mid-century push to require garages in homes and other forms of off-street parking also was based off the assumption that the N number of street-parked cars was static and as soon as you put them inside a garage those spaces would be open on the street again.

    Turns out, that only made driving/parking all the more attractive an option, encouraging yet more people to do it in yet more instances, so it suddenly became Nx2 or 3 or whatever and voilà still not enough parking. Just like widening freeways in a city is never enough to satiate demand, neither is adding endless more parking.