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    In a thread earlier this year he acknowledged that physical pain prevents him from what he described as “normal” (20+ mph?) riding:

    While these kinds of aches are unfortunate and something no one would wish upon anyone, one really does wonder if he and others in similar conditions would bike more often if he hadn’t spent decades decrying 8-to-80 infrastructure as “not normal” or for “incompetents.”

    Indeed, my eightysomething grandparents actually bike every day, but understandably only under speeds and separated conditions J-Fo has for decades acerbically disparaged as the domain of “not normal” or “incompetent.”

    The sad part is that while my grandparents are clearly physically able to bike under the leisurely speeds and safe conditions comfortable to them available within their senior community, they would never dream of biking the quarter mile to the shopping center since the infrastructure to do so is totally lacking. So they drive.

    The tragedy is that for decades J-Fo fought against bike-specific infrastructure, lambasting it as a supposed defense of “motordom” for “incompetents.” Yet the end result is only props up “motordom” all the more. And a lot of it is truly incompetent motordom, at that!

    If we should all be so lucky to reach such an advanced age, I’d surely hope we won’t be so disenfranchised by a “sink or swim” infrastructural status quo that barely even works for the youngest and fittest.

    That’s not an equitable or acceptable policy for the public spaces we all share.


    Aaron Bialick

    Did you read the SFBC’s explanation?

    “We appreciate several initiatives the Mayor has spearheaded, including his support for the City’s Vision Zero goals and expansion of bike share, but it was clear from our member vote on this year’s mayoral endorsement that our members remain concerned that supporting biking is an afterthought in the current administration. We believe this can change over the next four years and will work with the current Mayor, if he is re-elected, to build a legacy of safe streets for people to enjoy across San Francisco.

    “None of the other candidates for mayor have a strong enough track record in creating change in government policy or on city streets to be considered a strong candidate for endorsement.”


    D G Spencer Ludgate

    The sharrows and BMFL signs would be for the education of the motorists, not for the confusion of the cyclists. Since we cyclists are not required under CVC 21208 to use this facility, motorists need to be reminded that we are entitled to use of the general travel lane.

    Just like some people choose to operate a bicycle instead of an automobile – or some motorists prefer the use of freeways instead of surface streets – there are cyclists who choose to use the general travel lanes instead of segregated facilities.

    Cyclists that travel at 15+ mph may wish to avoid a facility that reduces their speed to 10 mph.

    The City of Redondo Beach, California installed a cycle track and sharrows in the general travel lane. Faster cyclists, who wish not to have to dodge slower cyclists, rollerbladers, and pedestrians still use the general travel lane.

    The installation of sharrows and BMFL signs along with the side path creates an environment that is truly 8 to 80 and for all skill levels.



    Over 30 years I will have paid over double the price of the house in interest. Having this deduction makes owning a home more affordable and anyone who purchases a property can access it. It is a privilege for sure but if it makes property more accessible to people, not sure why even a renter would want that gone. If it were gone, rents would not be impacted.

    Property taxes are deductible because otherwise you are paying tax on the same money twice – another privilege everyone has.

    A rental property is a business. They take the same deductions other business owners would take, depreciation, etc.

    Both of you are still failing to show how increasing property tax will make housing cheaper for people to rent or own.



    Why on earth would you install a protected bike lane and then put sharrows next to it? How is anybody on earth supposed to know what to do when confronted with such a combination of symbols?


    D G Spencer Ludgate

    Since this a side path (optional use facility not subject to CVC 21208), is San Francisco painting sharrows on the general travel lanes and installing BMFL signs? It would be nice to remind motorists that use of this is optional. By using sharrows and BMFL signs in conjunction with the side path truly creates cycling infrastructure for all skill levels.


    SF Guest

    What makes you think the SFBC is interested in Lee’s money? And do you seriously believe Lee would be willing to pay SFBC to shut up?



    Good thing is that with better facilities (like the one on 13th St), people on bikes tend to follow the law more: less sidewalk riding, less wrong way riding, more predictable movements. When people constantly feel like they are fighting for their survival, they sometimes do crazy things.



    “The private transit service “Leap” drew praise from many quarters of San Francisco” — Examiner

    That’s funny, I recall them drawing widespread ridicule and scorn “from many quarters of San Francisco”


    Nicasio Nakamine

    Are you for real? This is the most boilerplate anti-bike comment there is. Do you post this comment in every thread on all news sites across the country, all day, every day? Amazing!


    Nicasio Nakamine

    The whole mayoral race is a joke. Ed Lee is terrible, but there is virtually zero chance of unseating him. I think not endorsing the guy we’re all going to have to work with for another term is about the most we can expect from the SFBC.



    We need more police ticketing those scofflaw cyclists.



    I like the fuel tax. It doesn’t require any new toll-collecting infrastructure, and it doesn’t require much enforcement (just consider how incomplete the driver’s license and registration enforcement is, currently). It benefits electric cars and hybrids at the expense of gas-guzzlers– which aligns with public policy (instead of creating a special low-emissions-carpool-lane-pass program, just tax the gas and call it a day).

    Now, the fuel tax should be raised, to pay for roads, and for the environmental and social damages caused by cars. But that’s straightforward to do, unlike a toll program which would require all sorts of new infrastructure and technologies.


    Ziggy Tomcich

    So you think the SFBC would look like idiots for endorsing a mayoral candidate that actually supported bicycling? I think the opposite is true. This is corruption plain and simple. Was it money the SFBC got from mayor Lee, or was it a threat to the SFBC by mayor Lee for supporting an opponent? Either way it’s clear the SFBC is more interested in representing politicians than its own members, and therefore they can no longer be an effective advocacy group. The SFBC has become a PR firm.



    Democracy is not (supposed to be) about guessing who will win. The bike coalition should endorse the candidate who best represents their values.



    The first week (or two) of the GGP parking-protected bike lane was pretty ugly too. It got better reasonably quickly though. Hopefully the same happens here.



    “Your plan is not means tested and simply rewards people for being renters vs owners”
    Interesting. what is your take on the fact that mortgage interest is deductable, property taxes are deductable, if you are a landlord all sorts of improvements and expenses are deductable, but if you rent nothing is deductable?



    Home equity line of credit. Currently running in the 3.25% range. Take out a couple hundred thousand and pay only the interest – with money that you have taken out, and pay the property taxes with it. This beats having a property that has not increased in value with many many sticks.



    Please. For the SFBC to endorse fringe candidates who will get 1% of the vote makes the SFBC look like idiots.


    Jeff Gonzales

    Well transit also gets subsidies. Anyways it seems better to have some combination of mileage fees, tolls, and congestion charges in order to increase variable costs of driving, thus incentivizing even car owners to drive less. And also raise the gas tax, because in the long run we don’t want gas.



    If fairness is the main objective, why not decouple taxes from property altogether and levy a tax on income to all residents.



    This is not a zero sum game and homeowners are a different class than people who own multiple units. Landlords abusing the law to evict tenants has nothing to do with how much tax a homeowner pays. Just because you have an insecure situation doesn’t mean that you should impose that on other people. I don’t see how you can argue for more stability for one class of people at the expense of another.

    Admittedly Prop 13 has some loopholes and people abuse it (namely corporations or people in multimillion dollar mansions putting ownership in a trust rather than a person) but making seniors on a fixed income, for example, pay market rate taxes doesn’t seem right to me. Why should they have to leave their homes and their established communities? Why should middle class people have to leave so richer people can move here? Homeowners paying more taxes is not going to make housing cheaper or more stable for renters.


    Patrick Devine

    I’ve been considering getting a second monthly Caltrain pass and
    letting anyone inside the car with me use it for the duration of the
    trip. Most of the conductors on Caltrain are pretty nice to people who don’t have a ticket, however the odd one will berate a passenger who may not be able to afford a ticket.

    It seems crazy to me that car infrastructure is effectively free (fuel taxes don’t even come close to paying for roads, and will become less and less effective with more fuel efficient cars), while the price of transit continues to rise.

    I’m not sure how you can make this equitable. Maybe eliminate the fuel tax entirely and charge everyone tolls and/or make a monthly (annual?) “usage fee” of say $150-200/car/month? That would be comparable to the monthly price of a BART/Caltrain ticket.



    Perhaps to you $3.5k a year is nothing but to me, an extra $300 a month in tax on top of the $700 I already pay would be a burden.

    The median monthly rent for a one-bedroom in SF has increased from $1400 to $3200 in the last 5 years. So, I should feel sorry for you because without prop 13 you would have to pay an extra $300/month, but I shouldn’t care about market-rate renters who now have to pay an extra $1800/month, on average? Please.

    I’m fortunate enough to live in a rent-controlled apartment, but I feel for those who don’t. And I’m very conscious about how vulnerable I am to my landlord finding a way to pull off a no-fault eviction, and how hard it would be for me to take the increase in rent for an equivalent apartment, which would be at least $1500/month.

    Renters are bearing the brunt of the increased cost of living in SF. I’m interested in making property owners pay more of the cost, and renters pay less, because right now the situation is so heavily skewed in favor of homeowners. You can call that unfair if you like, I see it more as leveling the playing field.


    Ziggy Tomcich

    The SFBC doesn’t give any endorsement for mayor despite two very well qualified pro-bike candidates running. How much money is Lee paying the SFBC to shut up? By not endorsing any of Lee’s opponents, the SFBC is endorsing Lee.



    As I mentioned elsewhere in this thread I think it’s unfair for corporations who never die to abuse Prop 13. Since Prop 13 was put in place, the tax burden of property owners has increased relative to the taxes that commercial property owners pay.

    Your plan is not means tested and simply rewards people for being renters vs owners. A couple making $300k per year could be living in this rent controlled unit at $1700 and invest all their extra money elsewhere.

    Someone else who inherited their home and makes $40k per year now has to uproot their entire life because they cannot afford property tax on a $1MM property.

    Taxes should be fair and not serve to promote your agenda to punish people who bought a place cheaper than what’s available now. Perhaps to you $3.5k a year is nothing but to me, an extra $300 a month in tax on top of the $700 I already pay would be a burden.

    Someone else mentioned that should Prop 13 be removed, the property tax rate would probably drop. Having bought in 2011, we’re already paying thousands more than our neighbors that bought their homes for under $100k. That might be more equatable but I can sympathize for people who wouldn’t have the means to stay in homes they’ve lived in for 30+ years so they can vacate for some nouveau riche asshole . I like the idea that I can pass something down and that there are incentives for people to build lives here rather than constantly have to keep moving as prices rise.

    You support that stability for renters but you don’t for owners.



    Nice to see a PARKING PROTECTED bike lane installed on a street in San Francisco. However, that bike lane needs some work, it be nice to see green paint on it, as well as proper markings indicating where the parking spaces are.



    At least J-Fo acknowledges that 20mph is a sprint speed. Ironically, a very challenging speed that is impossible to sustain for most people is what you need to ride “with ease” in his reality.





    I especially wish the people piloting speeding multiton metal boxes would follow proper traffic rules.

    Also, this:



    Yup. That image is from this post:

    Which perfectly juxtaposes J-Fo rants with the reality that most embodies his supposed dystopian nightmare–the horrible, dangerous Netherlands:

    J-Fo’s quite the Stockholm Syndromist in terms of wholeheartedly adopting the whole car-centric status quo apologist thing. His complete and utter denial of data is especially sad.

    Also, he consistently misspells woonerven.


    Dino Galdamez

    Now I only wish the Bikers respect stops signs, traffic lights, one ways and wrong directions, etc. Everyone who share the streets should follow proper traffic rules.



    I like that double dooring pic. Has Bob Gunderson seen that one?



    Wow, that quote from Forester says a lot about how far out to lunch he is. I don’t even understand his issue with woonerven, which are basically very slow speed roadways. Those roads with 10mph traffic are more dangerous that normal roadways that have speeds of 30-45 miles per hour?? Or does he get cranky because he wants to be able to ride at 20mph+ at all times – a speed unattainable by the vast majority of people who may want to ride.



    While neither is fun, when given the choice most people would rather play tag with shopping carts than big rigs.

    If only those kids had a nice high-speed arterial to bike on to save them from the dangers of that separated bikeway!



    Gascon’s press conferences are only held to denounce bicyclists. The most harmful road users, motorists, continue to get a free pass from the DA’s office.



    At least you can bike around those obstacles on the left…





    Gezellig, that is exactly the question here. Moving a bike lane from the street-side to the sidewalk-side implies that cyclists are willing to share their lane with pedestrians and non-car wheeled devices.

    Meaning that it is not so much a bike lane as an anyone-but-cars lane. Is that what you are saying?


    Andy Chow

    BART already gets a portion of the bridge toll money: RM1 and RM2. A part of RM2 goes to fund BART to Warms Springs (while defunding Dumbarton Rail). Not sure how BART would address the Dumbarton corridor traffic, but MTC made the determination that it is RM2 eligible.

    RM2 was also supposed to fund a direct fare gates between BART and Muni Metro. A good idea but has gone nowhere.

    BART capacity is limited by the available space on trains, number of trains it can run, and ability to access the stations (parking lot, number of stations, bike access). On the other hand, there’s still room to grow for buses and ferries.



    It’s very clear though, that lower speeds lead to fewer crashes or, if there is a crash, a less severe crash. The distance needed to stop goes up exponentially with speed, as does the amount of force and the severity of the crash. Seeing that the study shown above shows not only a decrease in severe injuries for pedestrians, but also for drivers, maybe the traffic calming is actually working.



    No, I think you’re reading into the article something which isn’t there. Streetsblog celebrates regular protected bike lanes just as much as parking protected bike lanes.



    We currently have a situation where prop 13 covers all property owners, including those not at risk of eviction, such as corporations, and landlords who don’t live in their property; yet rent control only covers renters who live in buildings built before 1979, and provides insufficient protection against no-fault evictions initiated by landlords hoping to re-rent their property at market rates.

    The first thing that should happen is that rent-control should be extended to all renters, and no-fault evictions eliminated.

    The second thing that should happen is that prop 13 should be eliminated. If this results in a situation where the increased tax paid by landlords is results in their rental properties becoming unprofitable as businesses, we can increase the annual allowed rent increase (e.g. we might increase the current 1.9% up to 5%).

    Doing some rough calculations – a typical one-bedroom in SF has increased in value from $500k to $800k over the last 5 years, which without prop 13 would increase the annual tax bill by roughly $3.5k. If that cost was passed on directly to the tenants, the increase in rent would be $300/month after 5 years. If that was the only increase in rent (which it would be with universal rent control) that would increase the rent from $1400 (which was the one-bedroom median in 2010) to $1700. That’s roughly a 4% annual increase, which I’ll take over the ~18% average annual increase in market-rate rent that has actually occurred during the same period.

    In short – the potential increase in rent due to increased property tax is minuscule compared to the actual increases in rent which are occurring due to lack of renter protection.

    Now, if you were an owner-occupier rather than a landlord, you would have to eat that $3.5k tax increase yourself. I don’t think that extra $3.5k/yr expense is going to result in many people being forced to leave the city, but if it does, you can sell your house at a $300k profit and I’m not feeling too sorry for you.



    This article implies that it is, does it not? This is not the first protected bike lane in the city.



    Yup. High-quality bike infrastructure doesn’t just benefit people on bikes:



    Sure a lot of hit and runs nowadays. Despicable.



    Sure, but I’d rather deal with the occasional wayward shopping cart than even the occasional wayward SUV.



    Two hit and runs. Now that’s despicable. Will Gascon hold a press conference?



    Those are due to factors beyond my control. The house is still modest, my job pays the same, and it’s still on the lower end of what’s available. If I were a tenant, you would argue that my rent should not change for the same reasons.



    This makes no sense. I’m not sure where you live but here in SF, the median home price is in excess of $800k. Good luck finding many properties for less than that – there aren’t many – and for the ones that exist it can get quite competitive. Your proposal only makes sense if we sell and then leave the city which hardly seems fair and will only serve to further remove the middle class.

    Without Prop 13, how can you argue that rent control should still exist? How is a landlord going to afford ever increasing property taxes while still maintaining low rents for tenants? Prop 13 and rent control go hand in hand.