While all bicycle facility improvements in San Francisco remain at a halt because of a disruptive bike injunction, other Bay Area cities are moving ahead. Take Brisbane. Our reporter, Matthew Roth, snapped this photo of a blue bike lane that was installed near the Brisbane/South San Francisco border in early January. The concept was thought up by a working group of professionals and bicyclists and Fehr and Peers, a transportation consultant firm, designed it.
This stretch of Bayshore Boulevard near the northbound Highway 101 off-ramp is a dangerous conflict spot for cyclists because of speeding motorists, narrow shoulders, limited visibility and broken roadway surface. It's also a major north-south connection for cyclists commuting from San Francisco to San Mateo County. At about 400 feet it may be the longest colored bike lane in the Bay Area and was designed to improve sight distance between bicyclists and motorists.
Leah Shahum, the executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, is envious:
It's pretty astonishing that our neighbor to the south hassurpassed San Francisco -- supposedly a gold-rated biking city -- inadvancing bike innovations. Colored bike lanes have been usedeffectively in places like Portland, OR for a decade, but still SFlags behind. Unfortunately, the Municipal Transportation Agency and the CityAttorney's Office have shown an aversion to innovation when it comesto sustainable transportation improvements. Historically, they havebeen unwilling to try anything new. Meanwhile, other cities arecharging ahead with smart, effective safety improvements thatencourage more biking. It's time for SF to catch up.
The MTA, as we wrote recently, is preparing to do a colored bike lane experiment in the city once the injunction is lifted but it wants to gather data first about bicyclists in San Francisco.
Bryan Goebel is a reporter at KQED Public Radio in San Francisco. A veteran journalist and writer, he helped launch Streetsblog SF in 2009 and served as editor for three years. He lives car-free in the Castro District.