Eyes on the Street: Geary’s Bus Lane, Wiggle’s Curbs Get Red Paint

Geary at Powell Street. Photo: Cheryl Brinkman

Updated 4/23 2:45 p.m. with corrected project timelines for the painted bus lanes.

The SFMTA started adding the red carpet treatment to Geary Street’s bus-only lane, and started painting curbs red to daylight, or improve visibility at, corners along the Wiggle.

The Geary/O’Farrell Street couplet, between Powell and Gough Streets, is the second of three bus-only lane segments to get red paint; the first was Third Street in SoMa. The red paint is intended to warn drivers to stay out of the bus lanes, though reports from folks on the street say results have been mixed so far. The third stretch set to get red transit lanes is Market Street, inbound between 5th and 12th Streets, and outbound between 8th Street and Van Ness Avenue. The SFMTA said the Geary/O’Farrell project would be completed by mid-June, and the Market lanes by September.

On the Wiggle, street corners are finally getting daylighting — the practice of removing parked cars to open up sightlines between street users. It’s unclear what took so long to paint the short red segments of curb paint, which the SFMTA promised as early as 2012. Nonetheless, these simple measures to reduce the “peek-a-boo” effect at intersections are very welcome.

Steiner and Waller Streets on the Wiggle. Photo: Mark Dreger
  • Bing Wu

    Get that boy off the street, he’s gonna become a pancake w/ the drivers in this city!

  • It took a while, but every time I’ve gone by Church and Market lately I haven’t seen cars in the reddish bus/J church only lanes. (Wouldn’t that area count as well?)

  • Peter Lauterborn

    Thanks for posting this! Our office has been pushing the MTA to do this for some time– this should be a great improvement for Geary riders as we keep moving towards Rapid service on Geary.

    Peter Lauterborn
    Legislative Aide
    Supervisor Eric Mar, District 1
    Office: (415) 554-7411

  • Upright Biker

    Because they’ve all gone over to 3rd Street to clog the new red bus lanes there.

  • Hard to beat daylighting for the “cost effective” award. I did see “Tenderloin daylighting- Red curbs at every intersection in the TL” on the draft Vision Zero project list, which is good!

  • Mario Tanev

    It’s very easy to spot a car in the lanes to get your blood boiling, but they tend to move out of the way if a train is coming now. And you definitely don’t see multiple cars in a row blocking a train anymore.

    It’s one of those things like Proof of Payment, where you don’t need 100% compliance for the whole thing to work, but you do need critical mass.

  • SuperQ

    In Minneapolis daylighting corners is a default. Basically every corner with a stop sign has a 30′ no parking zone, and non stop sign corners are 20′.


  • jd_x

    From the picture, is that really daylighting? That just looks like 4-5′ from the crosswalk, whereas I thought true daylighting is at least one car length. I’ll take it, but two years for a couple extra feet of visibility? I feel like we should expect more ….

  • p_chazz

    Now you know how I feel when there are bicyclists on the sidewalk!

  • Jamison Wieser

    I was under the impression “daylighting” meant painting the curbs further back so drivers can see pedestrians entering the crosswalk. In the photo, on the near side the striping doesn’t even extend to the end of the curb cut.

    How many parking spaces did the SFMTA to daylight this intersection?

  • Bruce Halperin

    Expect more? From the SFMTA? I’ll assume you must still be high from 4/20.


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