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    Do not let the city distract us with the particulars of these killings. The fact remains that they are falling way short of implementing measures that are proven to protect everyone. In the Mayor’s case, it’s proven that he actively blocked the MTA’s plan to do so in *at least* one case:
    Since threats of litigation are their prime concern, after re-election or reappointment, a legal challenge could work. The lawyers I’ve spoken to cite the use of writs of mandate as one possibility. Where are the advocate groups willing to pursue that?



    Did anyone report the SFMTA employee to 311? It should be on the official city records that they committed something wrong.



    First, my understanding is that under no circumstance – except out of common courtesy, which is optional – do you need to ask anyone, let alone a police officer, for permission to take their photo. (See The only problem is that earlier this year, a U.S. District Court ruled that there is no first amendment protection in photographing or filming the police, so I could be contradicting myself ( Consider consulting a lawyer.

    As to whether bicycle infrastructure could have prevented the two crashes, I honestly am not so sure. For both scenarios, I would suggest that all motor vehicles be recalled nationwide, and these vehicles’ engines be repowered so that they cannot exceed speeds of 20mph. However, this is a long shot, and will probably remain so for as long as I’m alive.



    I said that eastern Alameda and Contra Counties should get an adequate level of service, not that every rural corner of Alameda and Contra Costa be served–that’s a straw man argument. Of course, we could just remove them from the BART District. No need for them to pay for service they are not getting. Also, there are fewer and fewer rural corners in eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties as this area develops.


    Joe Brant

    By that logic, BART should be extended to every rural corner of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. After all, those people pay taxes; they must be served, no matter how cost-ineffectively.



    Livermore has been paying into the BART District for almost 50 years and has gotten little to no service. People from eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties deserve to receive an adequate level of service, or they should be removed from the BART District.



    Extending BART to Livermore is a huge waste of transportation funding. BART is so expensive to build, and their rolling stock is all custom made, making construction prices crazy high, always more than twice the price of standard high-speed rail.
    Are there enough people to justify extending this BART line? Where does BART plan on putting them?



    SFMTA completely mismanaged this meeting. They didn’t switch mics off after 2 minutes, they tolerated rowdiness and disruptions, and just stood by and watched the meeting dissolve into chaos. At one point I went up and told the 2 MTA staff, sitting passively at a table in the front while the audience was shouting everything from false data to shut up and sit down, to control the meeting. It’s your meeting. You have to control it. Of course they just looked at me like I was crazy for even asking. All this time Reiskin was also just leaning against the wall seemingly amused by the boisterous chaos.

    The crowd acted like the 5th graders who discovered the substitute teacher was in over her head and then reenacted a scene from “Lord of the Flies.”

    MTA needs to do better, rather than dispute the value of meeting that they let explode.



    We’ll never be able to afford a subway, but BRT can be up and runnning in a couple years.



    Really not. The central subway is regarded by many as a boondoggle that doesn’t need to be built.



    Really! Who hired this dweeb?



    Federal law requires HOV lane person minimums to be raised (from 2+ to 3+) if lane doesn’t flow at least 45 MPH. Caltrans is also authorized to ban “clean air” sticker vehicles if congestion remains problematic.
    So why hasn’t VTA raised the Carpool lane minimums? Look at who the executive director is and some of his shortsighted comments.


    Cali Curmudgeon

    Don’t worry JustJake. Political leaders like that and their minions will kill off the growth soon enough. What they leave behind might be a place you don’t want to live in anymore, but hey, they can’t take away the nice weather, no matter how much they claim they can.


    Cali Curmudgeon

    “The Mercury News reported in April that VTA’s transit ridership has dropped 23 percent over the past 15 years. Image: The Mercury News”

    That sadly is not surprising. To build their light rail showpieces, VTA cannibalized some very effective express commuter bus routes. These commuter buses with their bus and HOV lanes actually provided commuters with a faster way to get to work than driving alone!

    But now, the commuter who used to take a single express bus from his residence area to his workplace and back, now has to take a bus to the rail to another bus from his residence area to his workplace and back. Which is now a longer commute than driving alone.


    Rogue Cyclist

    Not extending BART to downtown Livermore is such a wasted opportunity. It doesn’t look like that will change at this stage of planning.



    definitely there should be more speed bumps in both GGP and the Presidio



    Take his life. eye for an eye.


    Ziggy Tomcich

    Jimbo, that has to be the most vile and disgusting responses the deaths of Heather and Katherine that I’ve read yet. Do you even realize that you’re blaming the victims and defending the assailants? Based on your questionable writing skills, most of us on here think you’re just completely clueless and not too bright. But you should know that when you write inconsiderate and offensive posts like this, people might mistake you for a sociopath.

    Wearing helmets and paying closer attention couldn’t have stopped either of these tragedies because they were both caused by drivers willfully ignoring the rules on roads that offered no protection for people riding their bicycles. It would have been impossible for the two victims to have avoided these collisions no matter how defensively they rode. When a speeding car flies through a red light or suddenly crosses the lane on a two lane road, there is simply no time for anybody react.

    Despite yesterday’s tragedy, it’s a myth that riding a bicycle is dangerous. In fact, it’s a magnitude safer to ride a bicycle in the middle of the traffic lane in San Francisco than it is to even walk across the street. The real danger is people ignoring the rules, and our streets not having any safety margin to accommodate for that.






    City Resident

    Thank you, Roger, for this excellent article. Condolences to the families and loved ones for their immeasurable losses. It could be any of us/our families who are now in mourning.


    City Resident



    they are way too many concessions already to the bike lobby. we can educate car drivers and cyclists. cyclists need to wear helmets and drivers need to pay closer attention. We also need a campaign to cyclists about the dangers of cycling and how they should be more defensive


    alberto rossi

    Did Streetsblog give RichLL the day off?


    Rose Cabral

    And another death in Sacramento this morning along Stockton Blvd. formerly Highway 99.


    Rogue Cyclist

    Or set up a park-and-ride lot and expand the ADA shuttle. I’d feel a little safer with professional drivers.



    Agreed! It’s called a “park” not a freeway. No cars should be allowed in it.


    Frank Kotter

    Why in God’s name are there wide avenues through GGP? What the city once considered a sign of modernity and sophistication is, in reality, a way of indicting a city is stuck in another century.

    With the exception of Crossover, all other roads should be made impassible for through traffic if not made car free altogether. Any single point in the park is accessible by foot with a walk of less than 2 blocks from the perimeter where there is always available parking.


    Frank Kotter

    Oh, you don’t need to be ‘unmarked’. Once on a bike, they are already invisible


    Andy Chow

    At least in the Golden Gate Park the car was stolen (therefore intention to drive fast, make illegal lane change that resulted in collision, and leave collision scene). So yes there is a safety issue at large but it is not fair to imply that most car drivers are car thieves.



    It’s time for a #safeinfra protest in Civic Center Plaza




    Michelle Sykes


    Michelle Sykes


    Michelle Sykes


    Michelle Sykes



    Vote for Andy Thornley



    Lets get the cars out of the park! Of course all the streets in SOMA need a complete makeover we all know that, but it’s going to take a long time before that is all done. Closing the park to cars on the other hand can happen almost immediate. Maybe leave on gate open for disabled placard holders with a 5Mph maximum speed limit.



    “…then that person needs political support…”

    And that is the core problem: political support. So long as within the great demos of society that bicyclists are “them” instead of “us” getting political support will be hard.

    This is why parking is continually favored over safety. It is why lower speed limits and red light cameras don’t have broad support.

    There are some politicians who can see past the windshield. They are unfortunately rare and their careers are often in jeopardy. In my town a council member took a bold stand in support of a road diet which resulted in an enormous improvement in safety for bicyclists and pedestrians. But it also resulted in a minor inconvenience to motorists. Guess who’s voices echoed the loudest in public fora? It nearly sunk the council member’s career.

    One approach to overcome the majority bias against safety is to face it head on with values based consensus and then convert that into enforceable law. People feel emboldened to shout about merchants losing business due to a specific road reconfiguration at in public meetings. That’s because their rhetoric excludes the missing piece of the puzzle: increased safety. But when the discussion is focused directly on value based tradeoffs like “is it worth losing 20 parking spaces to reduce fatalities by one per decade?” then you take the air out of the anti-safety windbags.

    One successful example I know of is that Sunnyvale officially established that traffic takes priority over on-street parking. And they seem to have leveraged that to start deploying bike lanes on the dreaded El Camino Real.



    Please consider protesting these entirely preventable deaths the old fashioned way, by joining Critical Mass tomorrow night at 6 p.m., at Justin Herman Plaza (at the foot of Market Street). Strength in numbers!



    What if we some undercover police officers in unmarked bikes doing some patrols?


    Karen Lynn Allen

    The gentle speed humps on Noe in the Duboce Triangle are great. I can’t imagine they would cause problems for bicyclists even in the dark, but they do cut car speeds down considerably. Also possible to insist on adequate lighting in GG Park for bicyclists. (Could use down directed LED lights that don’t create light pollution.)




    SFPD needs a new chief for whom vision zero is a real priority, and who will be held accountable for real progress. And then that person needs political support to do the hard work of creating a culture of vision zero in the SFPD.

    I’m not sure what SFPD priorities are, but they’re not vision zero.

    I’m not sure what Ed Lee’s priorities are (besides his “legacy” project of building a basketball arena), but it’s not vision zero.



    Speed humps no. Not good for cyclists – spoken as someone who took a major endo over a speed hump. GGP has a lot of bike commute traffic through it in the dark. Lights sure, but they don’t pick up humps until it might be too late.

    Just k-rail or bollard chunks of the various roadways, making it mostly cul-de-sacs., leaving pass through for bikes. This even retains the sacred ability to park your car in the park, but prevents it from being a pass through.



    Is there a group or coalition of groups yet working to limit auto speed or use of Golden Gate Park’s roads? One cannot walk alongside the main drives during morning or evening commute times without the unpleasantness of heavy traffic, much of it speeding. Now we see how dangerous, not just noxious, this type of car use of the park is. What if we reduced speed limits to 15 mph and put in numerous speed humps and speed cameras? Wouldn’t those measures take away the incentive for drivers using the Park as a cut through? It would still allow people to slowly drive through the Park for enjoyment of the scenery without being hassled by impatient drivers. And most importantly, it would make things much safer and more pleasant for walkers and riders. Golden Gate Park seems like a much easier place, politically speaking, to institute traffic restrictions.



    Yet another bike rider was killed this morning, this time at a known problem intersection in Pleasanton:



    The Netherlands must be covered in carnage.



    Patently false. Each person who uses a bicycle instead of a car is substantially less likely to cause a fatality.



    As more people use bicycles, mortality will increase commensurately.