Streetsblog Off Today, Cars Off Market Tomorrow

no access to market street_1.jpgAt least for private cars during a trial closure. Photo: Bryan Goebel

Following the lead of Streetsblog NYC, we’re off today in observance of Yom Kippur, though we remind you that your bike commute to work down Market Street tomorrow morning will be quite different than today, should you be riding. With the trial to impose mandatory right turns for private automobiles traveling eastbound at 8th and 6th Streets, your Muni ride might be better, too. At a minimum, pedestrians shopping at Westfield should see a big difference! For more information on the closure, be sure to go over to the Better Market Street website.

  • poncho

    gotta love how on sfgate there are 10 pages of comments of motorists bitching that they can’t clog market street anymore with their clunkers.

  • sfgate_dot_yawn

    hah! i swear sfgate buses in commenters from texas or maybe ron paul conventions. it is always the same cast of characters, too.

    i suspect it draws pageviews for them due to the ironic/comedic nature of it (see: stephen colbert)

  • Aaron B.

    Aw, poo (to no Streetsblog today)

    And yeah, what I don’t get about the opposition to cars off Market is that as it is, it’s already a really inhospitable street for cars to drive on, and relatively traffic doesn’t depend on it that much compared to, say, Folsom, which probably carries most of the traffic in that direction. On Market, cars (are supposed to) have only one lane, they must go slower and constantly stop/swerve because of buses, pedestrians, bicyclists, and loading vehicles. Why would they want to hold on to this street? Oh, windshield perspective… how irrational you are.

  • Aaron B. kinda hit on a point I’ve been making when I talk with people about this project: For most drivers (eastbound after Van Ness at least) Market isn’t the best route anyway and depending on where you’re going Folsom or Mission will probably get you there faster.

    My hunch is many of those driving on Market are already aware of this to some degree, but theres’s a psychological barrier to jumping over to one of the other streets because a) traffic might be just as bad or b) any time saved by taking Folsom would get eaten up by the several blocks, intersections and lights it takes to get down there.

    And then there are the drivers that don’t know any better, took Market, and are paying more attention to where they can make a left/right/park than any cyclists and pedestrians.

    I was out there this morning with other volunteers to answer questions and hand out fliers and saw the effect of the forced right turns first hand. Wtih most traffic being encouraged off at Tenth and forced off at Eighth there were very few cars left on Market after that. It wasn’t just that the traffic was being forced off again at Sixth, with no cars left on the road, what few cars turned onto eastbound Market after that were few and fare between.

    It was a very promising start and we did see plenty of confusion and near collisions at Eighth, but SFMTA staff were monitoring to see what can be done for tomorrow. Cyclists heading downtown, please stay to the left of both lanes of traffic. More than a few tried to squeak between the two left lanes of traffic which are now both right turn lanes.


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