Skip to content

Recent Comments


    Jamison Wieser

    Many drivers coming into SF complain that they would take BART if the parking lots weren’t filled by the time they got there.

    BART’s five busiest stations are here in San Francisco, yet none of them have any parking. Rather than wasting money of more parking, BART might be better off doing what’s proven successful in San Francisco: eliminate parking and provide more transit connectivity.



    This IS part of a major transit system – the vast majority of Golden Gate Transit buses, plus Muni’s 28/28L (and 76X on weekends) use this route. The shoulders help reduce delays to their tens of thousands of passengers, too.

    Not to mention that backups on Doyle Drive/Presidio Parkway back to Richardson/Lombard Streets lead to increased congestion in that area, along with all the associated negative health benefits to those living and walking nearby (and delays to the 22 and 43 lines).

    So shoulders benefit more than just solo drivers.



    Yes, and it is already funded and on the way in the form of a BikeLink-access secure bike room to be installed at MacArthur BART as part of the plaza renovation set to break ground soon. This will augment the existing BikeLink lockers which will remain on site.

    The BART board voted recently to fund an additional 375 BikeLink lockers to be installed throughout the system (a bit over 1,000 exist already). I’m not sure how many will go to MacArthur, but the need is definitely demonstrated there.



    You are right about Telegraph, thanks for the correction. Definitely not going down to 2 lanes, though.

    On a side note, it’s curious how we don’t count the bike lanes in any of these calculations. With the bike lanes the Telegraph proposal actually takes it from 5 to 5. Broadway would be 6 to 6.



    “this one examples is the exception rather than the rule”

    That does not make it exempt from criticism nor mean “hey, man, cut the drivers a break, they haven’t had a shiny new road in forever”.



    Hmm. I actually like the idea of building parking right off the highway exits. If it is coupled with congestion pricing for driving in the city and the lots are served by intense transit services, and the parking facilities themselves doubled as transit villages to an extent, this would free local streets from non-local traffic (helping locals, muni, and cyclist).

    But just building parking next to highway exits itself is really not that useful to anyone for anything.

    As far everything else you said, ehh, same arguments. Regardless of what you think about BART there was absolutely no reason to replace any of the parking lost at MacArthur due to the construction of the new housing. There are some many transit lines, local area shuttles, and cyclist that serve that station that prioritizing any driving there makes very little sense



    None of those measures have anything to do with BART. They measures you mention are all local San Francisco initiatives and won’t have a bit of difference on East Bay commuters, except for the fact that less money for MUNI and more parking garages in the city will encourage more people from the East Bay to drive.

    As for building parking garages near freeway exits, what a crock. Ask yourself Sebra – how are people going to get to their destinations after they park at these “freeway exit parking garages”? No – what you and your ilk want is parking garages in neighborhoods. Where we already have a housing crunch. And given the cost of land and the public review process already in place, that just isn’t going to happen. Until you tell me that you’re ready to donate your house to be a parking garage, I’m just not believing that you want to anything more than externalize your parking fetish on those other San Francisco residents who don’t live near you.


    Marven Norman

    This design offers a chance to not just make a PBL, but to do another useful addition: allow bicyclists to bypass an unnecessary stop light. Assuming that they’re stop sign/light controlled, here’s no reason why the eastbound cycletrack needs to stop at all at the intersections in the middle. The only potential conflicts are with pedestrians, but people are generally able to figure that whole thing out on their own without signs and lights.


    Marven Norman

    However, back-in angled parking allows a much better view of the road before pulling away. Normal head-in angled parking means that the view is much more limited, especially when a something like Suburban has decided to park next to a Miata. The driver backing out typically cannot see until they’re almost in the lane. With back-in, not only is the big box at the rear of the SUV not in the way of the view, but hoods are generally lower and easier to see over too.


    sebra leaves

    With attitudes like these to the BART customers it is no wonder customers and drivers don’t trust public transit officials and are fighting back with No on A and B and Yes on L campaigns. Many drivers coming into SF complain that they would take BART if the parking lots weren’t filled by the time they got there. That is why some smarter folks decided to build more parking lots near BART stations.
    Many SF residents who want more parking garages built near freeway exits and transit hubs are favor an elected MTA Board in order to get a more congenial group of people who will listen to their needs.



    My comments about not undertaking expensive road schemes in the last 25-30 years was limited to the city. Obviously there have been recent projects like the Willie Brown Bridge, Devil’s Slide Tunnel and the new bore on the Caledecott Tunnel.

    But in the city itself, what projects costing billions have been done other than seismic retrofits of bridge approaches, which we really have no choice about? The last one was 280 and that must have been at least thirty years ago. Octavia Boulevard, perhaps, but part of that was tearing down a section of 101.

    I wasn’t saying that there are desirable projects out there, only that this one examples is the exception rather than the rule.



    Check this story

    Bike lockers were added in some pretty obscure places in Santa Rosa. Most of them are at places of employ where cyclists just bring their bikes inside.

    Why aren’t the lockers at the transit mall? They were supposed to go into the transit mall. But they were designed to fit in the old transit mall, and didn’t fit in the new one!

    Which makes one grumble – if bike parking wasn’t designed into this garage, have they made it hard to retrofit it.


    Nicasio Nakamine

    These all sound great, but also very costly. Tunneling is just about the most expensive type of project there is. If we had the budget to accomplish this list, I think we would have to look very hard at if more could be accomplished with a greater number of less expensive projects.



    As bad as this parking garage is, the complete lack of safe bike access is a much bigger problem. Oakland staff still opposes continuous bike lanes on Telegraph. And let’s not also forget that idiotic Green-Stripe they put on 40th St.

    Almost as many people bike to the station as drive. Just imagine how many more would bike if it wasn’t so dangerous to do so.


    jeannie marie

    can we get more secure bike parking at macarthur bart please???



    Re-reading this – what crap. We have invested hundreds of billions of today’s dollars on huge car infrastructure projects over the decades – at the expense of other modes. Now it slows to a trickle and a few bulb outs and bike lanes means “unbalanced!”

    In 1990, it would have been pretty accurate to say there has NEVER been a major bike or pedestrian project, and accurate to say that a lot of the car centric ones really made it crappy to walk around here (19th, Brotherhood, etc….)

    If you were King – what car centric project does SF Need? There isn’t really any unfunded but needed project on the docket being discussed.


    Reynolds Cameron

    SFCTA’s priorities should be:
    1.) Expand Central Subway to Fisherman’s Warf.
    2.) Underground all Muni rails that run on surface streets.)
    3.) Tear down 101/Central Freeway and underground it along Potrero Ave.
    4.) Continue Doyle Drive tunneling under Lombard and Van Ness to the 101/280 interchange at Cesar Chavez.
    5.) Underground 19th Ave.
    6.) Underground Geary.
    7.) Underground Cesar Chavez.
    8.) Underground 280.


    Amanda Clark

    The amount of surface area at Fremont BART is such you could probably do both-have TOD housing *and* enough parking if you built a multistory garage.



    If instead of building that parking lot, they built housing complexes for thousands – people could walk…



    The road was there before the national park.


    david vartanoff

    What a huge waste! Improving feeder services is where the money should have gone.


    Richard Mlynarik

    He’s been an outsider and outvoted for two decades, that’s why.

    Want any change? Start with dumping that asshole Fang. He’s toxic in every way, and has caused immense and long-term harm to the Bay Area along side his contractors-before-riders and contractors-before-efficiency and contractors-before-economy and contractors-before-the-environment cast of inexplicably unindicted co-defendents on the BART Board majorities.

    But don’t rag on Tom who has consistently been on the right side on nearly every issue forever. The only wonder is that he keeps trying.


    Amanda Clark

    I take Fremont BART every single day, and the parking lot doesn’t quite get full by 0700-you’ll have to park at the outskirts of the lot, but its still quite doable. More like 0730. The problem I’ve had with the Fremont BART lot is:
    1. The parking lot is incredibly poorly designed. Its very narrow, and you often can end up really screwed waiting for people to cross the street. There’s like a 5 way intersection that’s like that.
    2. How are people supposed to get to stations like Fremont, and the newer ones built to the south? AC Transit? VTA 180 and 181? I’m afraid that’s being overly optimistic. And I don’t own a car and have relied on transit for the past several years.
    3. There’s a clump of parking spots close to the BART entrance at Fremont that require a permit, but are never, ever close to being filled up by 0700. *That’s* a colossal waste that should be remedied.

    Basically, stations like Fremont are at the intersection of the VTA and suburban southern Alameda county. It doesn’t seem like the kind of analysis used for the urban core stations to the north really applies. Its like someone form Oakland or SF asking someone in Santa Clara County “Why don’t you take the VTA more often?”



    “…Jean Quan …heading up to the empty rooftop
    to take in the views.”

    Check out “Klunkerkranich” a project in Berlin utilizing the top of an underused parking garage in the middle of Neukölln. Now that this ridiculous project has been built, maybe one day (in 5 years?) something useful will be done with it.


    Matt Chambers

    I don’t remember seeing outrage at the meetings. I remember disagreement.


    Matt Chambers

    Well, Broadway gets you from the waterfront to College Ave and Piedmont Ave which is very much somewhere. Using 980 and 24 instead isn’t always worth the effort. NB Broadway at 51st/Pleasant Valley is always backed up in the afternoon. Broadway at MacArthur is congested in all directions most of the day. Broadway is very much a major roadway.



    Ugh, more bad math. $15,371,000 / 481 spaces = $31,956 per space.

    The bart website claims that the parking is full by 7am. Say there is some turnover and it’s used by 600 cars/day, M-F. Maybe add to that another 500/day on weekends. That’s about 208,000 cars/year. Or $520,000/year in $2.50 parking fees. That’s almost 30 years to pay back just the construction cost.

    Add to this the fact that the lot is full by 7am, it means the fee is too cheap. A demand pricing system to keep the lot 95% full would be more effective.



    It’s the same issue as the fights over bike lane standards — civil engineers only know how to do it “by the book”.

    “The book” has no sense of context or proportionality, and that’s why we paved over portion of a national park so semi trucks can park safely on the side of the road.



    If Doyle Drive undermines the fairy tale of “transit first”, wait until you see the new Transbay Bus Terminal. Nearly all of the same criticisms can be leveled — Taj Mahal aesthetics with little to no improvements in basic mobility.

    When you get down to it, it has nothing to do with highways or bus terminals, and everything to do with our local political machine preferring glamours monuments to pork instead of the incremental basic improvements we badly need.



    Both Doyle Drive and the Bay Bridge approaches were rebuilt because they were seiismically unsound structures that carry hundreds of thousands of people every day, a not insignificant fact that seems to have been conveniently overlooked.



    Telegraph would be 5 lanes to 3 lanes. The left turn lane already exists.


    Jeffrey Baker

    Tom Radulovich has been on the Bart board for two decades, but still uses the outsider’s term “appalled” to describe what Bart is doing. When does it switch to “ashamed”?

    Speaking of ashamed, let’s talk about the transit village being built at MacArthur. What a disaster. Has anyone ever seen more than three guys working that site at a time? If it were my project it would be crawling with workers. I don’t understand why Bart condones the opportunity cost of leaving that site half-built.


    Marven Norman

    Then put the park back in parklet and just have benches and stuff for the public and maintained like any other park.



    I take the current buses. Nothing you describe is the issue. The problem is Lombard Ave, Van Ness, North Point, Embarcadero, and Battery.

    I get off of Caltrain at 4th and King a few minutes after the GGT bus leaves the terminal at 3rd and Folsom. I ride my bike to the bridge. I routinely beat the bus by 10-15 minutes.

    The carpool lanes on 101 in Marin are usually clear enough to travel near the speed limit.



    Well said. Anytime there is a “police activity” or technical problem, it seems that all BART trains in the vicinity of the problem are brought to a standstill and it’s no-go until it’s resolved.



    Hello, Mountain View is building housing. It may not be right in the middle of the Googleplex and it’s surely not enough to meet the city’s job/housing imbalance.

    But Tim Redmond’s claim that “regional powers to insist that San Francisco take on 92,000 housing units when Mountain View won’t allow any at all” is so false that I question why this article was linked. Believe me, if Mountain View weren’t building any new housing I’d have a lot fewer anti-growth NIMBYs to fight at City Hall.


    Dexter Wong

    Compared to 1971, yes the rules have changed. Back then it had to be an American carbuilder (and I believe that Pullman-Standard was still in business at the time). But after the Boeing fiasco, foreign carbuilders were allowed to bid but had to include 51% American equipment in their cars. It doesn’t matter to the FTA where in the USA the cars are built, but it does help local politicians if the cars are built nearby.



    I believe the proper approach to this lack of swift transit would be to fight for continuous, dedicated transit only lanes on the new Presidio Parkway, 101, and possibly the Bridge itself and Hwy 1. People going north and south will take the bus if it has them passing by commuters stuck in traffic. Perhaps some of them already do this via the ferry, but plenty more would take a bus if it were faster than driving their own car.


    Aaron Bialick

    Can you email me about this on background?



    I never disputed there’s a net commute into SF! You are putting words into my mouth. Maybe you should clarify what a ‘suburb’ is then, because there are a lot of ‘suburbs’ around here that actually have a lot of commercial development and/or office space and, let me tell you, they are not keeping up with demand for housing there.

    Why the hell is it hypocritical for SF residents to criticize MTV for not building housing?!? We need housing everywhere–many of us acknowledge this. But we’re going to keep fanning the flames of the Google Bus protests as long as the towns tech workers commute to flatly refuse to build housing.



    Totally agree. But your turn of phrase re MTV not ‘attracting people’ was strange and that’s all I was taking issue with. Mountain View, Emeryville, Palo Alto, Marin…they’re all trying to export the problem of people needing housing.


    Parker Pelican


    I need to post this anonymously of course, but the project is being held up and the cost increases are largely due to the Presidio Trust scamming the project to get as much free construction work done as possible to make as much money as possible from the resulting tourist attraction – see the ‘presidio parklands’ project that is hijacking a good portion of the project – The Presidio Trust is adding to the delays and millions (conservatively millions) to the cost, not the contractor, not Caltrans.




    Part of the issue, too, is that in a lot of places Southern Marin tends to be pretty all-or-nothing in terms of infrastructure. The Mill Valley path passes by areas that sometimes don’t even have sidewalks, much less bike lanes (and the bike lanes that do exist are almost never 8-to-80). This makes the MUPs even more a draw for recreational activities than would otherwise be the case. And of course there’s nothing wrong with that, but it all adds up.

    What’s really insane is the last-mile (or often just the last few hundred feet) problem. Within spitting distance of the MV path you have streetscapes that function like the one in the first image of Shoreline Hwy near Mill Valley. Notice the bewildered pedestrians in the StreetView. It sucks to walk or bike there.

    In the second image you see Donahue St near Marin City as it goes under 101. It happens to the only road connection between a major (well, for Marin) bus hub and the MV path, and it’s ridiculously hostile to non-cars. Other than a few racer/road-warrior types I don’t see many people on bikes confidently “taking the lane” there. Practically everyone bikes on the separated sidewalk there because that’s just insane. Cars speed like crazy there and there’s little visibility due to the narrow sharp curve of the underpass.

    The third one is at Shoreline and Manzanita transit hub, where a lot of GGT bus lines stop. Despite a few corporate offices and the MV path all in close proximity, the area is totally hostile to bikes and peds. Notice how there’s only a pedestrian crossing on one side–a long light that prioritizes car traffic above all else. Despite being less than a minute bike ride away from the MV path there’s no bike lane connection on the road.



    Southern Marin’s multi-use paths can almost be described as victims of their own success. They are well used by bicycle commuters, school kids, joggers, walkers, dog walkers, etc. More such paths and protected bike lanes are needed, to meet the demand for safe places to bicycle and walk.



    Nope, it’s the built environment that makes so many poor people think they need a car that sucks. Cars cost thousands of $$ a year–THAT is a poor tax on working people.

    No one can ‘relax and not drive around endlessly looking for parking in their own neighborhoods’ if the local residents occupied every last goddamn metered parking spot at 5:30pm Saturday evening and don’t move their cars until Monday morning. Don’t be so willfully obtuse.

    As for the $5,000 comment, why do I bother acknowledging stupid trolls but here, have a look at this hipster bike brand with $300 bikes


    Michael Smith

    You are forgetting about Park Presidio. So now we will have 10 lanes funneling into 6 on the bridge. Plus breakdown lanes only where they are most expensive (through the tunnels and viaduct).


    Upright Biker

    I disagree with both the substance and the uncivil tone of your reply.

    Apart from making cars vaporize, which cannot be done, there has to be infrastructure for them.

    And if that infrastructure can be attractive and functional in many different ways, then all the better. Should we give up our fight for more bike/ped infra? Absolutely not. Could this have been done in a more economical way as Jim Chappell pointed out, and the savings spent on bike/ped? Absolutely yes.

    We keep fighting, we keep learning. Unless you’ve decided that demagoguery is a better tactic.



    The old Doyle Drive structure had six lanes, if my memory serves me correctly, but usually one of these lanes was coned off as a median buffer. With Highway 1 leading to and from the bridge, five lanes on Doyle Drive seems sufficient. The new Doyle Drive will promote automobile access to San Francisco (from the north) more than ever before. It will have more lanes in operation at all times and, although there’s ample space, it will lack a bus/HOV lane or rail right-of-way. At times of congestion (due to collisions, holiday traffic, etc.) Golden Gate Transit and Muni 28 and 76 X riders will be penalized at least as much as motorists. This is the opposite of transit first.



    Many times the disabled have more money with the resources they become entitled to get.



    Telegraph would be going from 4 to 3 (including a new center turn lane), but Broadway is going from 6 to 4 to accommodate bike lanes. In both cases the traffic studies largely show excess capacity via existing conditions.

    Also, in terms of “major roads out of downtown” you are completely ignoring the freeways, which is what most drivers should be using instead of surface streets, if they do not have destinations along the way.