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    Thomas Rogers

    Yeah, it’s subjective, but I think relative to a lot of things you might read in the PV, that article is pretty even-handed.



    At least 3 Leap vehicles are up for auction on that site. I wonder how much they will sell for?


    Alexander Vucelic

    you PAID to park ?



    I don’t think that’s fair; the article is reasonably balanced. The text you quote is from an arena opponent, but there are arena supporters quoted as well.



    Generously, Streetsblog’s editorial standards could be described as “arbitrary”.



    This is dubious. I very rarely visit the area, but I recall it was choked with construction during 2012.

    In any regard, a study without a control and a bunch of anecdotes doesn’t register for me.



    Interesting results, but pretty limited things can be drawn from the study because (1) This may only work in tourism-dominated areas, so in proper neighborhoods (with grocery, hardware stores, etc.) you may not have the same effect. (e.g.: Polk Street is a totally different shopping demographic, so don’t expect the same results there) And (2) Measurement of spending during the 2013 America’s Cup, which was designed to draw people to that space, may not have been the best time period for to look at for an accurate measurement. That would be like changing meter prices during Fleet Week, and saying that there was an increase in spending over the previous weekend, so it must have been the different meter pricing.



    “The net volume of tourism also hadn’t significantly changed over that period.”

    So there wasn’t more tourism during the America’s Cup? I find that hard to believe.



    I’ve lived in the burbs about an hour away from Fisherman’s Wharf for about 30 years. I’ve probably visited it once a year, and have only parked there maybe five times. The other times I either took a cable car, street car or bus from BART or Caltrain or rode my bike from Caltrain.

    When I drove I either parked in the garage by Pier 39, at Fort Mason or in the paid lots near Levi’s Plaza and walked in. If people want to drive we should direct them to garages or paid lots on the periphery, not encourage them to circle for the very limited street spots.



    Oh, Potrero View, you’re trying so hard!
    That headline doesn’t really match the content, despite your trying so hard.
    “This neighborhood can’t handle 9,000 people.”



    That sucks. Make sure you throw your weight backward and downward when you brake hard on the front and rear simultaneously. A bike should be able to stop in shorter distance than a car.



    Oh my god, you do not know what ‘Yield’ or ‘Right of Way’ mean, and therefor cannot understand the Idaho Stop Law.


    Jym Dyer

    @mx – Gosh, really? “It’s 2015?” Argument by tautology sure is easy, ennit?



    The problem is that people reading this article evidently don’t know what yield means. It is black and white. I agree with you in supporting “stop means yield for human powered vehicles”.


    Bob Gunderson

    But where will all the merchants… I mean, disabled people, elderly, children with puppies, park their cars?!



    Probably late to the game with this one: do we know how the project will impact performance on the E or F lines? How will the already-completed Phase 1 project affect the Streetcar Extension to Fort Mason (since the LPA currently calls for it to operate one block west to Leavenworth, which is half of the Phase 1 project).


    Richard Mlynarik

    The veto of curbless roads comes from somewhere deep inside DPW, and may or may not be due to some historical nitwit “disabled activist”, or the threat of nitwittery, or some past threat of nitwittery. It is not enshrined in the Sacred Americans with Disabilities Act, but rather within the “no can do” culture which pervades all of San Francisco.

    My direct personal (ie anecdotal!) experience with actual blind people is that they sat say there are a number of mechanisms that make them perfectly aware of sidewalk-to-deathmonsterroadway transitions, and that the insistence of “the city family” on automobile-oriented street design is not anything designed to improve their lives.


    Greg Costikyan

    So the first time I visited Fisherman’s Wharf was in the late 80s; I drove up from Orange County with my then-wife and inlaws, and our reaction was what you might expect from car-culture suburbanites; wow, finding parking is hard, and expensive, and the traffic here is terrible.(We still had fun.) More recent visits have been along the lines of taking the Muni there with my daughter, visiting me from New York, and feeling that the sidewalks are too crowded with too much space devoted to motor vehicles.

    But maybe that’s a dichotomy we should think about addressing; yes, Fisherman’s Wharf is basically for tourists. And yes, most tourists come from car-culture America, and don’t instinctively know how to navigate crowded urban areas. My guess is that most tourists going to New York KNOW that it’s different before they get there, don’t expect they’ll be able to get everywhere in a car, and likely understand they’re going to navigate the city by cab, transit, and feet, as a matter of course.

    Certainly, visiting from Orange County, I didn’t instinctively have that understanding of San Francisco; I mean, it’s California, isn’t it? The land of the automobile.

    In general, I think SF could benefit by spending some effort signalling to visitors that they don’t need cars here, and indeed are better off leaving it parked somewhere; that getting around the city isn’t that hard, and in fact, at 7 miles x 7 miles, a car doesn’t help much. And hey, trolleys and the F Muni are fun, never mind the cable cars.

    The lack of wayfaring signage doesn’t help; when I moved to SF, it took me quite a long time to figure out the bus system in particular, and I imagine few tourists have much confidence in using it either. How can we fix that?


    Richard Mlynarik

    What “to do about” Stockton is blinding obvious, and has been for decades.

    * No private automobile traffic on Stockton, anywhere between Market and Columbus. (Possible exception for “Bush”—Post—Geary, for garage access.)

    * No parking. No turns onto Stockton from any cross street.

    * Stockton through Chinatown (Sacramento—Broadway) converted to three lanes, with doubled (or more than doubled) width sidewalks. The two curb lanes are Muni, taxi, and local delivery truck exclusive, the middle lane being for parking delivery trucks serving the many business along these blocks.

    All problems solved.

    Except for the “problem” that PBQD, Tutor-Saliba and associated grotesquely corrupt, rent-seeking consultants and contractors, along with their on-the-take patsies at SFMTA, SFCTA and in the “Mayor”‘s Office, needed to be gifted more than two billion public dollars for the horrific, negative-value Central Subway to Nowhere. So, no, the main problem isn’t solved by truly simple and negative cost traffic reconfiguration, and Stockton Street must remain a clusterfuck forever. It’s The American Way!



    None of these trips to other cities learning about cycling infrastructure will be useful if we can’t turn those ideas into reality. And certainly none of these trips to other cities that have good PROTECTED cycling infrastructure will be useful or helpful because most of our elected leaders and SFMTA don’t have the BALLS and courage to implement them where it’s needed in a timely efficient manner!



    Looking at the top photograph of Jefferson St, having walked there before, the way it is, the two blocks of Jefferson St between Hyde and Jones should be pedestrianized. I’ve been there a few times, and those times I visited it can be packed, despite the wide sidewalks it can still feel crowded. I think if they pedestrianized it and banned all motor vehicles, except for delivery vehicles, there would be more space and my guess would be that it would attract more people in a positive way only adding more life, energy and business to that area as well as improved safety and increased space. It would be great to see the street level up with the sidewalks.

    Now that they got the unsurprising proof and evidence that the improvements turned out very well, I wouldn’t be surprised if pedestrianizing the rest of the street completely would turnout positively as well. This seems like a big misopportunity to me, they could have made it even better!



    For example, this article says overall San Francisco tourism spending has increased from 8.9 to 9.4 in the same period. So some of the increase should be attribute to this general trend.

    Overall this is a good story. I am just wary of all these blog posts that says, as a matter of fact, when you do X, it will result in a success of Y. The reality is usually not so simple.



    Painting crosswalks, pretty doable. Installing crosswalk signals where there are none for pedestrians crossing Van Ness and Tenderloin intersections or adding signals with countdowns, pretty doable. The idea that there is the Vision Zero map of high injury corridors and intersections that need funding to get fixed up, but let’s spend $1.7 million on a primarily tourists used and relatively safe street… Disingenuous hyperbole when there is talk about protecting pedestrians with such prioritization of Jefferson over high injury streets in District 6. This strikes me as simple electioneering with public dollars for benefit of Mayor’s appointed District 3 rep at the expense of pedestrian injuries and lives on high risk corridors that a decent human being would give first priority instead of Jefferson Street getting $1.7 million.



    The Broadway tunnel is the death trap tunnel in the city. On the eastbound approach to the tunnel vehicles are blinded as their eyes are adjusted to the outdoor light and then suddenly encounter darkness in the tunnel as it also curves. It is extremely dangerous.

    The Stockton tunnel is not the bike-friendliest, but is much safer than the Broadway tunnel.

    Here again is another phony politician who has probably never got off their ass onto a bicycle in the city, trying to score brownie points…



    Some education was necessary and there’s still not total buy-in by the locals but as the tunnel is a few blocks away from ‘claimed turf,’ the discussion was more reasonable.



    And 2nd



    When successful examples from all over SF, the US, and the world were put before the Polk opposition, the refrain was always “We’re not them.” To which my reply was on the order of, “But we’re all human and we all behave similarly; we congregate, stroll and relax in safe, pleasant places and car-filled streets are not safe, pleasant places. When we linger we spend.” It has made a dent but has a way to go. One example is that the Middle Polk Ass. has rebranded to being transit friendly. No sign yet that they’ve taken up the 22-Day Muni Challenge ;-) Bobby, G.



    Not so. I’ve spoken with Campbell and the surveying before and after was carefully planned to take into account other factors. The net volume of tourism also hadn’t significantly changed over that period. The fact that merchants who had strongly opposed the change are now happily denying that they ever did is the biggest tip off.



    The art of the doable in SF. It’s that simple, Jamie.



    It is good news the Fisherman’s wharf’s sales has go up. This is really a good reference to debunk the catastrophic prediction some merchants assert, often no good basis, on reconfiguring street use. Kudos to the CBD for doing this survey to allow people make decision base on information.

    That say, I don’t think there is enough evidence to support that claim that “Street Revamp Boosts Sales”. The article zero in to one particular change, the street improvement and attribute all success to this one factor. When you step back, you will see there are a lot of relevant factors weren’t considered. In particular, the general economic upswing in the Bay Area and the running of the 2013 American cup. All these could have make significant boost to the Wharf business.



    Wait, is this real? I thought the best customers were the ones speeding past at 40 mph.



    Because there are no NIMBYs there



    I wish Polk would make the same realization. And I wish the businesses would help find these projects that directly benefit them. But most importantly, I’m glad it’s working and that these projects would take off without so much commendation and opposition.

    Thank you for giving it a chance. Thank you for a great design, and may we try this in other places too. In fact there was just the article about the possible Stockton tunnel revamp, and essentially market street will finally become a true transit oriented street.


    Mike Fogel

    For south bay commuters, and if you don’t consider 9th & 10th downtown. Or 6th or King with 280. But – point taken. It would be better to route any protected bike/pedestrian space on the east side of 4th – so it didn’t conflict with the existing freeway ramps.



    Note that Jefferson Street is NOT a Vision Zero High Injury Network or Intersection, and why the fork is this a priority with $1.7 million of public dollars when people are dying on the high injury networks and intersections that SHOULD be fixed first? Then there is that Stockton Street tunnel thing yesterday. The bullshit factory is sure full of it.


    Upright Biker

    Let’s call that Phase 2.2. I’m just pleased that all of us who continue to advocate for livable cities and walkable streets now have another merchant contingent on our side.

    Next up: Columbus Avenue, if only to show those Polk Street ninnies how it’s really done.



    I was disappointed that the ‘mixed space’ aspect of the original plan was watered down. I believe the plan called for the elimination of the curbs, to turn the street into a real pedestrian-dominated space.


    Chris J.

    Agreed re: easy identification. One of my pet peeves is that there is no easy way to complain about Uber / Lyft drivers behaving dangerously. Taxis have short 4-digit ID numbers easily visible from multiple angles, and it’s not hard to find what phone number to call. The same can’t be said for Uber / Lyft (but more so for Uber since there isn’t even a way to confirm whether a car is an Uber car).


    Mario Tanev

    I am a big supporter of Uber and Lift. They have revolutionized Taxi service for the better. However, they need to recognize that cities can’t just allow the wild west on the streets. The car is not king. A lot of these Uber drivers don’t know the streets and rules of safety. I am not saying taxi drivers do, but at least they can be held accountable and SFMTA should have direct communication with them. Uber should seek regulation as a taxi and SFMTA should drop the quota requirements and allow these companies to operate, but administer and require a fee per driver, registration, safety education, tracking and easy identification. And then, they should be allowed to use the taxi privileges. It may be a barrier to entry and may make them a bit more expensive, but it’s needed. They shouldn’t complain and threaten smart transportation policies, if they themselves have been avoiding taxi regulations.



    Honestly, it’s 2015. We need to get over it. If the state wants to fine Uber and Lyft for breaking the law in the past, it can take them to court, but we need to find a way to make things work today in the present shared reality we’re all living in where Uber and Lyft are massively popular in SF.


    Richard Mlynarik

    Because the TNC’s are racketeering organizations whose entire business model is based on breaking laws and buying legislators, not upon regulated legal use of regulated rights of way, that’s why.

    God only knows the taxi industry is a cesspool of iniquities and dubious, and shady operations, but at least there there is an acknowledgement that laws and regulation exist in a civil society, and that adhering to laws and regulations is part of the cost of doing business.



    You mean besides the ones at the new police building that people who work there keep running into?



    taxi companies are regulated by the SFMTA. On the flipside of it, limo drivers like uber are also not allowed to drive in these areas but that never stopped them.



    “most”? You’re not on Nextdoor, are you?



    Are they campaign donors?



    Apparently there are still some benefits taxis get from being regulated by SFMTA.



    Convention, most likely.



    It’s unclear to me why taxi drivers get to literally sit down and give the SFMTA a two page list of the traffic laws they want to be exempt from (I’m not kidding, see:, but Uber and Lyft (and Sidecar) drivers aren’t included. Taxis are already allowed in “red carpet” bus lanes, get to make left turns at dozens of places where nobody else can, and get to proceed straight on Market at 10th and 6th, and these are only the things they are legally allowed to do, let alone all the illegal U-turns and other maneuvers they get away with.



    Fourth Street = only remaining downtown freeway entrance/exit.



    Great ideas! We need to improve the tunnel for people on bikes or on foot, and it makes sense to rethink the value of that second southbound travel lane.