Today’s Headlines

  • MTC Committee Leaves Free Muni for Youth Plan Choice Up to Full Board (SF ExaminerABC 7)
  • BART’s Neglected 16th Street Plaza Smells Like a Urinal (SFGate)
  • CA Law Now Says Drivers Can Park at Broken Meters (Already Policy in SF) (SF Weekly)
  • MTC to Finally Fix Clipper Card’s Costly “Going Negative” Glitch (ABC 7)
  • Atlantic Cities: Muni All-Door Boarding is an “Experiment Worth Watching”
  • SFBC Offers Tips and Classes for Cycling Seniors (SFGate)
  • Rally Car Driver Video Turns SF Streets, Into Even More of an “Urban Playground” (City Insider)
  • SFBG Rallys Support for Their Plan to Halt the 8 Washington Project
  • Third Spare the Air Day This Week — Does Anybody Care? (SFGateMarinIJCBS 5)
  • Greater Marin: Frequency is the Key to Improving Marin Transit
  • Berkeley City Council Puts Sit/Lie Law on November Ballot (BerkeleysideCBS 5)
  • Alameda County Bike Counts Up 27 Percent Last Year, 75 Percent in Last 10 Years (EBBC)
  • Palo Alto Approves New Bike Plan, Projects Already Underway (Palo Alto Online)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • mikesonn

    ABC 7 covers North Beach merchants against Central Subway extraction plans. 

  • “Third Spare the Air Day – Does Anybody Care?”

    Funny because it’s true!

  • RichardC

    East Bay BRT bus-only lanes have been scaled back again – San Leandro has cut its portion to only 2 blocks. 

  • Anonymous

    Thanks, but we caught this news and posted it yesterday:

    I am personally disappointed to see the plans get scaled back so much, because when it results in a less than favorable time savings over standard bus systems the detractors will point to it as meaning that BRT is ineffective altogether.

  • mikesonn

    Yeah, no one changes behavior. Especially without free PT. Caltrain couldn’t even handle the increase in passenger load, that is for sure.

  • i had to ride a bus in SF the other day, and people were lining up at the front to hop on, but because i read Streetsblog, i knew of ALL DOOR BOARDING and hopped on thru the back door. zing!

    but i was reminded of how awful riding the bus is. cramped. uncomfortable. bumpy. jerky. loud. 

    i was hoping that seeing all these private luxury buses floating around for tech workers would push advocates to reconsider their support for bus travel and BRT, but no such luck.

  • Anonymous

    I rather think the fact that so many well-paid tech workers (who could certainly afford a car) are happy to commute by private bus kinda shows that Muni is the problem, rather than buses in general.

    If there were no buses, how many of those tech workers do you think would cycle or walk from San Francisco to Mountain View or Palo Alto for work every day, and how many do you think would drive?

    I was in London recently and was once again was reminded how much more comfortable and civilized bus travel is there compared to anywhere in the United States- and I’m talking about London public buses, not private ones. If London can provide public buses that approach the comfort and quality of private buses, so can San Francisco. You really should get out a bit more before making blanket generalizations about specific technologies.

  • Anonymous

    O/T – Streetsblog should do a report on the constant and blatant violation of the new separated bike lanes on 8th St. Because the bike lane + buffer is the same width as a traffic lane cars just treat it as if it is one and drive straight down it. Just a few minutes observation will yield plenty of examples.

  • Anonymous

    Possible solutions include green paint treatment, soft hit posts along the buffer, or land mines set to detonate for anything heavier than a bicycle.

  • mikesonn

    Private shuttle: picks you up within blocks of your house and drops you off at work.

    Public Transportation: bus 40+ min to train, take train for 45 min, then get from station to work (walk/bike/bus?)

    Apples and Oranges.

  • Private shuttle: blocks the bike lane and cuts off Muni so rich privileged tech workers can sneer in superiority at the poor plebes stuck riding public transit.

  • Anonymous

    There are certainly differences in the routing (although it’s worth noting that there’s no reason why a public bus system couldn’t operate similar routes.) I was more responding to the description of bus travel as being ‘cramped. uncomfortable. bumpy. jerky. loud.’ That’s a fair description of Muni, but buses aren’t inherently unpleasant to ride.

    The real problem is that companies like Facebook and Google are allowed to set up in auto-dependent office parks, which are inherently difficult to serve by transit. Better zoning would locate such companies near the Caltrain stations and so make getting there on public transportation far more viable.

  • Anonymous

    @jonobate:disqus I love the idea of soft hit posts, because they provide a physical buffer but don’t prevent access to emergency vehicles. The problem is that some drivers just ignore the posts drive over them anyway. I’ve seen it happen many times and it must be fairly common because those posts get mangled and replaced quite frequently.

    At a planning meeting involving posts used as a traffic diverter, I once suggested that the city connect them to traffic cameras so that anytime a car goes over a post they get a picture of the license plate, then if the car is not a registered ambulance, fire, or police vehicle they get a ticket. Everyone laughed like it was a joke, but I was totally serious.

  • Anonymous

    My vision for public transit is a system that’s so awesome that people prefer it over private options. Not gonna happen overnight, though.

  • Anonymous

    Regarding 16th St. Plaza, what if BART and SF cooperated to install public toilets? We can criminalize poor people for needing to go to the bathroom, or we can make it easier for them to do in a way that’s safer and cleaner for everyone. “Quality of life” citations don’t help anyone.

  • mikesonn

    @Prinzrob:disqus That’s because there are people that will claim that the ticket is unfair, eg the post wasn’t the right color, or it was out of the sight-line, or it was put there just to collect tickets. Plus, actual enforcement of the laws? Yeah right!

  • mikesonn

    No wonder no one gets parking tickets in this city, the DPT guy thinks it’s okay to park 4 cars on his driveway/sidewalk/”front yard”

  • mikesonn

    Just an accident, right? I mean, he didn’t have any intention of killing someone. Much like the texting teenager didn’t mean to kill that 4 year old. And also like that drunk driver didn’t mean to put that elderly woman in the hospital. Just an accident.

  • Davistrain

    How desperate for work would a person have to be to apply for a job as the “latrine orderly” to clean up the skid row commodes?
    Some of the over 300 comments to the original article criticized the city for being too tolerant of vagrants.  Is it time to bring back the “County Poor Farm”?  Maybe
    California should reopen the State Mental Hospitals and get the “nut cases” off our streets.

  • Jim

    I’m not surprised this guy is being picked on by his co-workers…

  • oh no — the ‘technology’ zombie. it never dies. but it has been helping to kill public transit in America for decades.

    i’ve only ridden buses on four continents, so maybe my worldview is too limited to comment on the nature of bus travel.

    the main physical difference between the google buses (Bauer’s) and city buses is that the google buses have suspensions. poor people don’t deserve that technology, apparently. then again, it is just a technology, so it doesn’t actually matter. allegedly.

    i say, if you’re gonna spend $500k on a bus, spend another $50k and get a suspension put on there, too. people will like it. maybe even help recruit new riders. maybe another $50k to tighten up the interior a bit, too — so it doesn’t feel and sound like a roadside bomb blast going off every time you hit a pothole.

    current city buses are designed to punish riders — i guess for being poor — but it doesn’t have to be like this — we could actually demand dignified transport for all and reward users for riding the bus. i mean, why in the world should a smooth-running train (BART) get cushioned seats before a bus? our city buses have no suspension _and_ no cushioned seats. ftw?

  • mikesonn

    Muni buses had suspensions at one point, but then they stopped ordering that part and therefore stopped fixing them.

    Now we just have leaky, smelly, tin cans bouncing down the road that are wrapped in garbage bags and duct tape.

  • 94103er

    Last time I checked there was a JCDecaux coin-op bathroom right on the SW 16th/Mission plaza. It is quite the thankless job to be the worker who maintains that one.

    Nonetheless, Davistrain, we’re all proud of you that you just skimmed through 300 comments on SFGate. Can we keep hateful, unconstructive comments like those off of Streetsblog?