Today’s Headlines

  • With Six Pedestrians Killed So Far This Year, Where’s the Leadership for Safer Streets? (SF Examiner)
  • SFBC to SFMTA: “No More Excuses” On Installing Fell and Oak Bike/Ped Improvements
  • “Save Polk Street” Leader: We’re Committed to Dragging Down Safety Improvements (Marina Times)
  • Six Years After Opening, Muni T-Third Line Riddled With Delays and Switchbacks (Potrero View)
  • Assemblymember Ting Backs Senator Yee’s Bill to Enshrine Double-Fine Zones on SF Highways (MT)
  • BART Board Looks to Hold Some Meetings In the Evening (SFGate)
  • Reminder: If You’re In a Traffic Collision, Always Report It (
  • Matier & Ross Ought to Do Some Comparative Cost Research: East Bay Bus Rapid Transit is a Bargain
  • CA Police Begin Crackdown on Distracted Driving (ABC)
  • The Greater Marin: “Ferry-Oriented Development” Could Boost Revenue for GG Transit
  • Former High-Speed Rail Champions Turning Against the Project (SFGate, SacBee)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • iskandr

    Muni riders need to resist switchbackis by peacefully preventing the operator from exiting the cab making clear that the train must continue to the end of line as “advertised” by the destination sign when they boarded. Doing this with some regularity will “educate” Muni.

  • Mario Tanev

    On SFBC’s photo of a rider on Oak: the rider is doing it wrong. I have to admit that I am really looking forward to the Fell protected bike lane, and I care very little about the Oak one (though I am in favor if it too, for 8-80). For me Oak is of the most fun stretches, since I can take the full lane with comfort. It’s downhill and the street is usually full of cars so bicyclists can easily match the speed of the surrounding cars (stay in the center of the right lane behind one car and in front of another, not on the side of a moving car). Car drivers tend to realize this and not pull stupid stunts.

  • triple0

    Exactly. “…so bicyclists can easily match the speed of the surrounding cars…” It’s not about ‘bicyclists’ — or strapping young 20-year-old men like yourself. It’s about all the other people in the world having a chance to try bicycling.

  • Though Broderick to Divisadero on Oak isn’t too bad, I can’t easily match speeds with surrounding cars between Divisadero and Scott unless the cars are going slower than 15 mph. 90% of the time for me on this block cars are going faster than I bicycle. Sometimes they begin to go faster than me half way between Baker and Divisadero (depends on traffic.) I do take the lane regardless because while there might be room for me and, say, a min-Cooper, there isn’t room for me and an SUV, and I’ve learned the hard way I can’t take the chance an SUV driver will think there is. (I’ve had SUVs come inches from my elbow squeezing by me on this block.)

    But my taking the lane does not make the motorists behind me happy, and they express their displeasure in varying ways. I ride as fast as I can bear between Divisadero and Scott and then slow down enough so I can make the right turn without hitting the huge, slick manhole cover smack in the middle of the lane. Though I’ve been doing this for four years, I find it at best tense and unpleasant and at worse fully deserving it’s nickname of The Three Blocks of Terror. I always breathe a sigh of relief once I am off Oak and onto Scott. There is no way I can recommend this route to anyone not who is not a seasoned urban bike rider.

  • Ted King

    Re : “Former High-Speed Rail Champions …” article at the SFGate website
    The article has been moved to the Chronicle‘s paid site –
    NB – The byline is “Ralph Vartabedian Los Angeles Times“.

  • Mario Tanev

    I hear you, and I am in favor of the Oak St protected lane, not everyone should be comfortable riding in traffic. But for me Fell is much scarier than Oak, because I can’t take the full lane (going uphill I am much slower, and I don’t want to deal with angry drivers), and the bicycle lane isn’t yet protected. Different people have different experiences – to me Fell St is much more of a problem than Oak, even though it has a bike lane.

  • Anonymous

    I have long understood cyclists using Fell to complete the westbound wiggle run, but I’ve never figured out why going downhill or flat on Oak is so preferable to parallel and quieter side streets. I don’t take this route eastward often though, so maybe I’m missing something about the importance of Oak to riders.

  • The only “education” that’s going to happen is when you’re thrown in jail for doing that.

  • Should work now.

  • iskandr

    FWIW this was done in NYC on the A train some decades back. Noone was busted and the TA stopped short turning the trains.

  • Mom on a bike

    Under the category of ‘things we have already discussed to death” but I’ll reply. It’s an absolute pain in the ass to take any other route from Panhandle to the Wiggle. Alternative 1, you’re going a couple blocks out of the way–north on Baker to Hayes and a slow uphill to Divis (or really uphill to Scott) and then to Page. Divis is traffic-choked and harrowing for 8-to-80 types. Or Alternative 2, you’re going south on Baker to Page, up that steep hill. I can do it solo with my light racing bike, but with kids and/or on a cargo bike? Forget it.

    Admittedly I’ve never tried the obscure GG Park mixed path along Kezar Drive to Page. But that’s numerous blocks out of the way and not really signed at all, and probably difficult to cross Stanyan, so I don’t see myself adopting it as my favorite even if it were quiet and lightly traveled.

  • Henry

    Blocking operators from conducting switchbacks is counterproductive because service is more delayed than it already is. Switchbacks are OK if they are advertised at the beginning of the route, since there isn’t much demand on the outer lines. If a switchback is not conducted during the outbound trip, just have it do a full run and have it switch back on its inbound trip. For example: If an L was supposed to be ordered to switch back when heading outbound, but was never conducted, it can always turn around at West Portal when heading inbound.

  • Henry

    And I should point out that the inspectors and Central Control sometimes order switchbacks at the last minute. If anything, they, not the operators, should take the heat.

  • Anonymous

    thanks for the info.

  • iskandr

    Well aware that CC/Insp. are involved. Point is dumping a trainload of work weary riders is just dumb. The better solution would be to order the (usually mythical) follower to run express to catch up, offload to the leader and turn. That way no one is standing on the street fuming, and a train can head “back” to service more riders. Much of this still goes back to Muni’s refusal to dynamically resequence trains so that the routes are each served. The inmates are still running the asylum for their own convenience and the public be damned.