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    “We based moving here on the quality of life of MV, knowing it was a quiet, sleepy, whistle stop town.”
    Actually, I moved to Mountain View in 1986 because I had a job in Palo Alto, *despite* the fact that it was a quiet sleepy town. I didn’t necessarily want to live in San Francisco, but would have preferred a place with more night life, like Mountain View is now.

    I don’t fear having more people living here in 4-6 story buildings in parts of town where there is transit or the density and walkability to support new transit. In fact, I want it.

    I’d love for there to be enough demand for transit that I wouldn’t have to wait an hour between trains on the weekend, and maybe the bus might go past my house more that its current 6x a day, M-Sa only schedule. I’ll need that when I’m 85 or so and may have trouble riding my bike and certainly won’t want to be driving.

    As for the Friday night story, that was an example. But neighbor commented to me that he noticed the Safeway is far more crowded than it used to be too, and that old-timers were complaining to him.



    So now we’re choking foreign nationals into unconsciousness and holding babies without contacting the mother?!? Wow, SFPD, keep it classy. Seriously, is there some secret agenda drawn up by our police departments to deter immigration or even tourists from around the world from visiting our cities? Because it is just mind-boggling to me how often I read about completely insane escalations of pretty straightforward infractions.

    Do I think it’s sensible to ride in SOMA with a baby strapped to my chest? No. Does the risk to the infant even compare what befalls them in a car, which probably has its safety-seat incorrectly installed? Yeah, uh, nope.



    Agreed. And all the 6-way intersections along Market!


    Richard Gardner

    Granted, I’ll take your parsing, and eloquent answer in its spirit, including your conclusion. However, I think you might want to measure the temp of the 75,000 peeps who already call MV home. Because other than just them, I’m also wondering just how many of those 15,000 Google workers who already may live in MV, and whether they feel the same as you… or as I do? and moved here precisely because it isn’t “the City”. /shrug, but your comment is well taken /salute.


    66 City

    Police need to be on agile machines to really bust the driving scofflaws: traffic enforcement should also be done from bicycles or the small “enduro” motobikes SFPD sometimes uses. Regular police cruisers, or fat motorcycles, can’t move well through traffic to actually bust the jerks who do the dangerous driving.

    How can we pressure the SFPD to use the right tool for the job?


    Richard Gardner

    Please, again, if you have read carefully, I did not say I am against a “concomitant” amount of development to support a “concomitant” amount of growth. (As per Bay Area current CPI trending, I’d put that at a liberal 3-5% growth per year. )

    But it IS true that “if you build it they will come”.

    AND, If growth is to come to MV, it must come in a “measured” fashion, not as a “reaction” to a “perceived” lack of housing. I am not doubting there IS a lack of housing… but…

    Just how much housing is needed? exactly? What type? Single family ranch homes? Dense apartment complexes? A mixture of both? What demographics? What tax structures? What perks will MV city hold out for in recompense? How much park and non-housing land is committed? Will Google repay the developers or the City of MV if it all goes bust? What if Google implodes and goes bankrupt (LOL, yeah, I know…), but this is what is known as a Risk Assessment… about as crude of one as can be, but a formal one “should be done”.

    I don’t see any specifics, just more Chicken Littles being spurred on by Google’s fat wallet… (not directed at you, ladyfleur).

    The representative push against adding more housing is borne of a notion that many of us “already DID move close to our jobs”.

    We already live here and staked out our lives in our neighborhoods; however, it’s not just a “NIMBY” attitude. We based moving here on the quality of life of MV, knowing it was a quiet, sleepy, whistle stop town. Had I wanted to live in a densely populated town-center, located next to XYZ-work-type of job; I would have either gotten a job near where I used to live, near Lake Merritt (circa 2000), or had moved to S.F. or San Jose downtown. Instead, I “chose” to move to MV because it ISN’T zoned for dense population centers.

    Again, I am not against that notion entirely, though. You want to place more and more affordable, dense, ~4 story apartment complexes near CalTrain and VTA? Perfect!

    But building a vast number of housing units, in what is essentially an island of concrete on the far side of the freeway, will not a) reduce congestion on local or state roads and highways; the theoretical proposals seen so far would increase it, nor will it b) dissuade the larger number of young workers there who will STILL want to live in “The City”, precisely because it is A CITY! (*and it is here ladyfleur that I will point out an argument against your reply…, I don’t think an anecdote about the ShoreLine Safeway is enough to convince me, there would be no need for Shuttle buses if there weren’t a critical mass enough of workers who will primarily want to live in SF. What I believe your anecdote is illuminating is the mass of young persons from all around the bay, (not necessarily even Googlers) who are getting beverages, etc. before heading to a show at ShoreLine theater. If you live in Mtn View, that’s nothing new, not sure where the scrunchy faces comes from…/shrug, cuz we’ve been dealing with that “it’s 8pm on a Friday, don’t take North ShoreLine” thing since I moved here.)

    What it “sounds like” <– note that I am not accusing anyone, but the prevailing notions in favor I have seen, align along a sentiment of "Yes, we know MV isn't The City, but we want to make it more like The City."

    IF that's the case, and IF it is stated above the board and honestly, then let's have that conversation instead… (Recall my statement about ABAG and MTC…) but keep in mind, I do not think you would find a majority of MV voters who would support either abruptly nor gradually turning MV into a "City".

    **If so, then I will say right now, "Ok, fine by me… but first thing's first", I want far more Live Music venues, especially on/near Castro with all genres and more akin to 6th street in Austin, than SF or SJ music scenes. How about an "Alamo Theatre" where you can get posh-pub food while sitting in leisure watching both classic movie’s for “Quote along” or new releases…


    66 City

    Police need to be on agile machines to really bust the driving scofflaws: traffic enforcement should also be done from bicycles or the small “enduro” motobikes SFPD sometimes uses. Regular police cruisers, or fat motorcycles, can’t move well through traffic to actually bust the jerks who do the dangerous driving.

    If I was a bike cop, I could write a ticket every 10 minutes just riding between Russian Hill and the Mission, citing dangerous distracted drivers on Polk, Market, and Valencia.

    How can we pressure the SFPD to use the right tool for the job?



    Strange. I visited Argentina a few years ago, and NYC’s oldest trainsets are more rickety than the subway train I rode on. Secondarily, there was a rather nice, new luxury commuter train that I paid a full 7 pesos to ride on — very expensive by Argentina standards.


    Richard Gardner

    You have to read the other comments (above and below) first to follow that logic thread; yes I could have “sewn” it together more eloquently… “The” original developer who builds said homes may be successful, or also they may fail, and if they do, its not like that cost/benefit is lost, the units will sit fallow until sold, and though the original developer by that time may have lost his margin and sold off, the ultimate costs/benefits still are consumed/reaped.



    But think of all the goodwill we’d get with Ted and Al’s towing



    presumably these signs were placed right in the middle of the bike lane.


    Karen Lynn Allen

    Re: changes to Stockton/Sacramento intersection, while daylighting is good (and should happen at every intersection with crosswalks in San Francisco) I agree with Chinatown residents that in cases of high pedestrian density (such as this location), a pedestrian scramble in the signal cycle is the way to go.

    In complex urban environments, we ask drivers to process a huge amount of information in a very short time span, far more than they can often do safely. Drivers turning left anxiously focus on oncoming traffic to try to find a small window to dart through. They can’t take their eyes from oncoming traffic, and they may even have someone behind them honking in impatience, adding to pressure. When they finally get a break in traffic, they hit their accelerator to shoot the gap. Then they may or may not see who happens to be in the crosswalk.

    As San Francisco grows more dense, traffic design that might have worked in the comparatively empty San Francisco of the 70′s continually degrades in terms of safety and needs to be rethought and reconfigured. Pedestrians need to be given more space and protection. Speeds in dense pedestrian areas need to be lowered, and when possible through traffic should be routed away from/around dense pedestrian areas. Cars need to be prevented from making turns quickly during periods when pedestrians are crossing (if allowed to turn at all.) Many intersections on Mission and Valencia Street would benefit from a pedestrian scramble in the signal cycle.


    Nicasio Nakamine

    This morning, there were dated sandwich-board style “no parking – tow away” signs all along Oak – as if the regular no parking signs are just a suggestion, but now they really mean it.



    Apparently your snark detector is broken. Although that would teach them never to do it again.


    SF Guest

    Really, porcupines? Cars with flat tires will be stuck there longer. How is this a solution?



    Why not porcupines (real ones), to puncture cars’ tires if they try to cross into the bike lane?



    Just added that to my phone!



    Armadillos could be installed within the buffer in the short term, at very low expense and less likely to be obliterated within a week compared to plastic bollards:






    415-553-1200, 1, 7

    (4 = parked for 72 hours/abandoned, 5 = blocked driveway, 6 = sidewalk parking or illegal in construction zone, 7 = all other illegal parking)



    I hope that the city doesn’t go for a total blanket ban on sidewalk riding. While bicycling on sidewalks should be discouraged due to safety and pedestrian conflict issues, there are plenty of places in a city as large as SJ where a little sidewalk riding on lightly used pavement can make a big difference.

    Focus on high conflict problem areas like downtown first. San Jose is too large and diverse for a one size fits all rule.



    Re: the Stanley Roberts piece…roundabouts shouldn’t have stop signs–that’s kind of their whole point.

    Also, that’s the only place I’ve ever gotten a ticket for going through a stop on a bike. When no one was around. On a roundabout. On a bike. With a stop sign. $200 ticket.

    Way to focus on the top 5 (, police. Way to go.


    Scott Mace

    Downtown developers, including the University of California, and patrons of the bike station itself should be funding this facility. The overtaxed Berkeley taxpayer should be a last resort, not the piggy bank of first resort.



    The issue is that cars have nowhere to go. The southbound block between Haight and Market is often completely full before the light changes for traffic on Haight.

    The light timing here needs to be fixed. For years, the lights have been timed to prioritize traffic on Page by leaving half the southbound block between Page and Haight empty so the buses don’t get stuck there forever.

    Now they need to prioritize traffic on Haight instead. If they leave more of the southbound block between Haight and Market empty, there will be sufficient room for cars to clear out of the intersection.



    This is a start, although motorists often back up past Webster in the morning. The plan for Haight St. muni improvements will interface with the third lane at Buchanan, and I’m hoping they’ll extend it further up.



    And why is it so absurd? Disabled people have placards and licenses, and Uber and Lyft drivers could easily verify their status by the software on their phones.



    He means that you know as well as we do that this is such an absurd idea that implementing it would be worse than doing nothing. In other words, a ‘poison-pill’ idea.



    But isn’t the point of the airport connector that it doesn’t have drivers and therefore the project cut jobs that the BRT design would have included? Are construction jobs the only ones that matter or can be created?



    Can they please get rid of the right turn lane from 3rd street onto Market? Many times biking through I’ve seen either the 30/45/8 corridor blocked or Market street buses blocked.

    Very much looking forward to these improvements and hopefully we’ll have data about improved performance with the transit only lanes. Anecdotally It feels like I’ve seen fewer cars on them. Though it would be nice, we don’t need 100% compliance to get tangible benefits.


    Liz Brisson

    @crusselsprouts:disqus: please feel free to join our email list. We welcome all who share our vision!



    This really warms the cockles of my heart



    Talk about Transit Preferential streets, this is a good example of it



    I just globbed onto the fact that they’re calling out Oakland streets for being so GD wide(!) – thank you.

    That being said, I didn’t know there wasn’t a real transportation decision-making apparatus in Oakland and that these types of decisions are not being approached holistically.

    Would be interested in being involved maybe. Somehow. At some point.



    double bonus – it will create jobs for Uber drivers! with the yuppification of downtown Oakland, there is a new demand for OAK – but the not so stupid yuppies downtown do the simple math that 2 people splitting a cab pay less than two people paying a BART fare and the OAC fare.

    Sort of like the people on the Peninsula skipping on Caltrain to BART, instead choosing to drive to Millbrae BART and pay the super cheap long term parking and taking BART one stop to SFO. Because the ridership was low enough that the direct line from Caltrain to SFO is shuttered.

    2 huge projects BART delivered that disincent transit use.


    Liz Brisson

    I agree that the Oakland Airport connector isn’t a paradigm of good project development and delivery. That said, we cite it’s connection to job creation as we are trying to build a case to policy-makers about how transportation ties to policy areas that are more at the forefront of policy discussion in Oakland-one of which is economic development. Perhaps we should have pulled the job creation statistic for the International BRT project instead, and I do think there was a lot of merit to the BRT alternative championed by TransForm. Regardless, I’m very interested in learning about any analysis of job creation numbers that may contradict the one we cited. Please point me in the right direction- you can email me at liz at transportoakland dot org. I also hope you’ll look beyond one statistic cited on our page to the larger set of issues we believe in – changes that our whole group feels very passionately about and that I sincerely believe will make Oakland the place that your typical Streetsblog reader really wants to see! Thanks!






    It says so on their web page (“2,500: number of jobs created by BART Airport Connector”).

    Even worse, they actually believe it created that many jobs.



    Nice! Keep ‘em coming!



    Agreed, but why do you say they support it?


    Dark Soul

    Basing on the Long 71 Buses and 6 Parnasses BUS… picture taken on Saturday.



    The main issue I’ve noticed with the new lane is that drivers turning left from westbound Haight onto southbound Octavia often block the intersection for eastbound buses, despite big “KEEP CLEAR” pavement markings. Better enforcement is needed.


    Josh Levinger

    Nice website!



    Tried what?



    I find it hard to take seriously a “group” that supports the BART-OAK connector project.



    Well, if young people don’t want to live in Mountain View someone should tell the ones I’m seeing in increasing numbers all over town. In particular, the Safeway on Shoreline Blvd is crowded by 20-somethings much to the dismay of older residents who aren’t accustomed to long lines at the checkouts at 8pm on Friday night. You should see the furrowed brows. It’s almost comical.

    Seriously, some younger people will choose to live in San Francisco and take shuttle buses. Others are quite content to live in Mountain View, especially near downtown which has restaurants and dance clubs open at midnight just like it did 20 years ago when I was their age. We need more housing to accommodate this growth and not presume young people don’t want to live near workplaces like Google, LinkedIn and Intuit.



    Mostly because we don’t have, never did have, nor dont want a “City”.

    Interesting. In your other post you discuss the people who work at Google – 15,000 strong or so, wanting a “City”. They work in Mountain View and certainly could have the freedom to live in Mountain View, and to change the fabric of the city as well.

    You are co-opting the word “we” and “us”. How many people are in this group “we” that you discuss? You and 100 of your Facebook friends? I understand that you – and perhaps some of your friends – may like Mountain View pretty much the way it is. But don’t pretend to be speaking for everyone – you are speaking for yourself. And that’s fine – if you like the town the way it is you are absolutely free to use the political process to keep it that way. But we know nothing is encased in amber.



    Nah, there just won’t be a “market” for them other than for those who
    will benefit most from this effort – developers and those candidates
    that support them.

    How does a developer benefit from building a bunch of houses they can’t sell?


    Richard Gardner

    Mostly because we don’t have, never did have, nor dont want a “City”. Mixed biz/suburban housing is ok, and per my above, we (who live in Mtn View) are not saying we shouldn’t build a “concomitant” amount of housing to support current needs. But (in so far as the proposed dense structures/high rises, etc. as seen in the links from the discussion) you should be singing the praises of The City rather than attacking Mtn View. You have built a City that rivals any on Earth (ON EARTH), and that is why there are so many people living in the City but commuting to the Peninisula, reversing what was the original “plan” if you want to call it that – though a “plan” is exactly what is missing.

    Side Bar – ABAG and the MTC are HORRIBLE. And unless “we” get off our asses and force our representatives to appoint logical, progress minded appointees to the ABAG and MTC we will forever be having this argument.

    They call us bedroom communities, or “whistle stop” towns for a reason. There never was an intention to have industry along the Bayshore, but it happened, and Mountain View as opposed to other, more tony neighborhoods (Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Burlingame, etc..) are far more accommodating and progressive than these other towns. We should be (companies should be) looking also at building where their workers live, and allow for options where like either Livermore or Tracy are afforded opportunities to host corporations, and as Mountain View always has will continue to look at sensible, logical growth with a sober view.


    Richard Gardner

    I think you all may be forgetting some important points, amidst your assumptions that “Towns like Mountain View need to contribute in taking in some of the growth and not bear all of it to SF” or that “we don’t want them”.

    Speaking as a Mountain View(er?)…, I would welcome a measure… a measure…, of concomitant housing to support a measured amount of growth.

    What y’all are forgetting is that a) if people (Googlers, etc.) wanted to live in Mtn. View, they would. They clearly make enough to afford it if they can afford apartments in the city. But that’s just it, they don’t “want” to live here, they want to work here, they want to maybe browse and shop or eat here at lunch or directly after work, but sticking around in Mountain View is “not” where the attraction is… This city rolls up its carpet by 10pm, even on weekends because there are no other attractions. People want to live in the City because its vibrant, there are shows, plays, concerts/music, fine dining, attractions, etc… The nightlife for that age bracket (the major demographic of those who work at Google – young white or asian males) does not jive with the proposal to bring a community of family homes to North Mountain View.

    And in reference to b) that “we dont want them” is ludicrous… read onward…

    I do support dense housing, and would support “some” development in North Mtn. View, but to the level that is being proposed? Nah, there just won’t be a “market” for them other than for those who will benefit most from this effort – developers and those candidates that support them. The persons I am most concerned with getting more access to housing, I will bet are vastly different than the ones you are most likely thinking of…, the biggest burden is not amongst the tech workers; it is amongst those who make the very least. These folks are NEVER going to be able to afford housing in Mountain View, OR the City. These are our janitors, facilities workers, admin assistants, groundskeepers, etc. These are the people who have for at least the last 14 years been pushed out of East Palo Alto, Redwood City, East San Jose, etc… and these are the most under-served and hardest workers. Most of these persons have had to build lives for themselves in the Central Valley and commute 3-4 times a far/much as the tech workers from the City. They also have the least amount of capability to adapt when boom and bust occur. These folks, I support apartments and single family living dwellings for whom to be built in North Mountain View.

    For those who “do” want to live in Mountain View, and don’t want to commute, most are going to be full fledged families. The 30+ and older with kids, who will also want to benefit from Mtn. View schools, etc. But this proposal won’t address those issues, and the A#1 thing that these prospective homeowners will want is “Quality of Life”; but by providing that you thereby then take it away.



    My (recurring) question on Market: with little or no car traffic now, can we finally get rid of the chains that obstruct crosswalks on the North side of Market? And the labyrinthine islands and merge lanes as well.