SFMTA Interns Help Educate Drivers on New Fell Street Configuration

IMG_0417.jpgPhotos: Bryan Goebel

Recognizing the need to educate easily confused drivers on the new configuration at the troubled intersection of Fell Street at Divisadero, alongside the Arco station, the SFMTA has sent out a two-person team of interns to explain to drivers that they shouldn’t obstruct the bike lane while waiting to turn left to get gas. In addition to the curbside talk, the interns are handing drivers this flyer (PDF).

According to SFMTA spokesperson Kristen Holland: "The interns on Fell Street were deployed on Tuesday and Thursday to distribute the flyers and to explain to drivers who block the sidewalk and/or bike lane that they shouldn’t and that they should use the queuing lane instead. The SFMTA will continue this education effort to educate station visitors about the changes."

In less than a month, the SFMTA plans to paint the bike lane green but before it can do that, in order to comply with Federal Highway Administration colored pavement regulations, it needs gather data on how many drivers and bicyclists interact at the dicey intersection. Some bike advocates and bicyclists who use the route regularly have suggested that nothing short of a cycletrack with no left turns is the only way to solve the problem.

In the meantime, the weekly protests at the Arco station will continue this afternoon, and every Friday, according to organizers, until the problem is fixed.


  • Intern, make me a latte! – Steve Zissou

  • Brian

    Or they could remove the curb cuts and plant a few trees where the old driveways were.

  • Chava

    Wow, that is one very good looking intern. He can tell me about left turn movements any day.

  • Jym

    =v= So, are these interns “angry” and on an “anti-car crusade?” That’s the impression I get from reading the New York Times.

  • Nick

    They’re going to need more than one piece of paper to fix this street. They should also print up some that say:

    -Don’t exit the station and cross into the bike lane. It’s left turn only.
    -Don’t pass within 3 feet of a cyclist.
    -Don’t speed faster than 35mph (or is it 30 now?)
    -Don’t forget to signal your turn into the bike lane
    -Don’t block the sidewalk
    -Don’t honk to force others onto the sidewalk.
    -Don’t block private driveways in the queue line.
    -Don’t support BP.

  • eugho

    this flier could have been more informative if it visually showed drivers what MTA means by “queue in the curbside lane” and showed what a driver is supposed to do (rather than just what they’re not supposed to do. An info graphic that says “do this (insert image or aerial plan)” not “this (image).” I’m going to guess that only the transportation geeks and a handful of drivers know what is meant by the words on the flier.

  • Kat Szymkowicz

    How about educating the bicyclists on red lights and stop signs? Can I tell you the story about the girl bicyclist who didn’t stop at the red light and lost her head (literally)?

  • Nahiel

    That intern is hot!

  • Chava – haha, you can barely even see his face though!

  • Will H

    The PDF should simply state block bike lane; earn bike lock to mirror, window(s) or fender. Then maybe have a nice graphic of a car with the drivers side windows and mirror smashed in. A lack of respect begats a lack of respect. Calling ones insurance to fix a mirror or paying out of pocket is simply an asshole tax. These people obviously cannot comprehend the value of a fellow humans life, but I bet they’ll understand the cost in parts for their car.

    SFMTA is just as responsible for this ongoing situation. The “solution” implemented by the SFMTA is a joke and only continues to promote the bike lane block while re-enforcing in the motor vehicle operator’s mind that what they are doing is right and safe as they point up at that stupid sign.

  • Nick

    The SFBC talks about making the streets safe so those “8 to 80” can ride in them safely.

    I propose we also design the streets so that anyone from 8 to 80 years old can easily understand where cars and bikes are supposed to go.

    Seriously, does an 8 year old know what a queue is? Does an 80 year old know what sharrow is for? I think I may have just stumbled upon a new idea in bike advocacy.

  • cyclotronic

    will h – you don’t even need to use the bike lock or break the mirror, really. just a smack of the hand flips most mirrors up and makes a nice sound. you wouldn’t believe how offensive this is to a motorist. i mean, i’m always suprised by how offended they are when you touch their vehicle in any way. cars are sacred.

  • marcos

    I thought we had spend years and millions of dollars to produce a bicycle plan that was supposed to anticipate these trouble spots and propose well thought out treatments to make them safer?


  • If their car’s dirty enough, you can use your finger to harmlessly help them self-advertise on the side of their car šŸ˜€

  • 0101!

    hey Chava, can I tell you about left turns?


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