Today’s Headlines

  • An Argument Against Free Muni for Seniors and Disabled Riders in Favor of Funding Service (Medium)
  • SF Bicycle Coalition Maps Top Ten Spots for #ParkingDirtySF Sightings
  • More on the Civil Suit Over Amelie Le Moullac’s Fatal Bike Crash With Trucker (SF Examiner)
  • Burglars Drive U-Haul Truck Into Patagonia Store to Steal Merchandise (NBC, KTVU)
  • Oakland Residents Collect Donations for Man Hit on Bike by Driver, Robbed by Bystanders (EBX)
  • Oakland Airport Connector Goes Out of Service Yet Again (SF Weekly, CoCo Times)
  • Racial Justice Protestors Take the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge (ABCKTVU)
  • Palo Alto Set to Approve New Bike Boulevard, Bike Ramp Near High Schools (PA Online)
  • Palo Alto to Hold Community Meetings on New Association Aimed at Reducing Driving (PA Online)
  • Marin IJ Calls for Enforcement of New Lower Speed Limits — On a Bike Path

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Mario Tanev

    Statistically, it seems SFBC didn’t control for ridership. Valencia St and Market St have the highest ridership so that could explain more reports about bad parking. That doesn’t necessarily mean bad parking is worse than elsewhere, but that it impacts more people (potentially even duplicate reports for the same incident). That’s not a bad criterion in itself – we should target solutions to where people need them most. I certainly know I am conflicted about Valencia – I love the scenery, the low speed limit and the signal timing, but having to navigate through double parkers on almost every block is very frustrating.

  • Mario Tanev

    Regardless what you think about whether Free Muni for kids and seniors is a good idea, and what else the money could be used for, it’s very cost effective. Making one day of parking free, thus screwing up congestion and the ability to park in front of businesses (that is, reduced mobility), cost us $11 million. Making every day free for low to moderate income people to ride Muni (that is, increased mobility) costs us less than that.

  • Mario Tanev

    It’s not acceptable for the OAK airport connector to not have some backup shuttle service. I experienced this myself and I felt completely abandoned by the system. It might be expensive to keep vehicles and staff on-hand for events such as these, so BART should enter an agreement with AC Transit to provide shuttle service in emergencies or to ensure better connections to line 73. Or it could enter an agreement with the rental car companies to use their shuttles. If the cost of that means an increased fare for the OAK connector, so be it. Abandonment is the worst outcome and completely defeats the purpose of the connector (reliability).

  • murphstahoe

    The people arguing against the free MUNI are completely disingenuous. They use numbers “this will cost MUNI X” where X is the number of eligible seniors, as opposed to the actual money MUNI collected from seniors the previous year.

    Nonetheless, getting a senior or child to take MUNI for a trip they would have otherwise driven or be driven – because it is free *saves* money for everyone.

    The biggest argument for me is that if we get new riders then it expands MUNI’s constituency, increasing the clarion call to improve service. The voices against this program tend to fall in the category of “I don’t take MUNI because it sucks”, who think that some pittance of fares from seniors or children would magically fix the problem, as if a couple million dollars would build a barricade to keep drivers from driving into the N Judah tunnel. Hint: The worst drivers are 17,18, and over 70 years of age.

  • murphstahoe

    We are flying out of OAK in April. Not being in the catchment of the BART system, the seven of us were going to drive one BigAss(TM) car to Coloseum BART, park, and take the train to the airport.

    Now I’m wondering if this is a pretty dumb idea.

    Of course the dumbest idea is BART having parking garages so big that they rent them to air travelers for $5 per day.

  • theqin

    I know that this would probably crush uhaul, enterprise trunk rental, etc.’s business, but normal C class licensed drivers should not be allowed to drive in the city. These rules seem to have been written for suburbia where the driving is much easier. But I find it scary that the drivers of small trucks in the city may not have any better training than the average car driver.

  • guest

    take a taxi. for 7 people it’s cheaper than airbart anyway (2 taxis * $15/ each, vs 7 airbarts at $6 each.).

  • guest

    or just park elsewhere, i think you can find $8/day offsite at OAK. or if you’re flying to texas they have some free parking promotion at the airport. (really. no i have no idea why texas, or the details.)

  • murphstahoe

    3 are under 5 thus free

  • murphstahoe

    Aside from wanting BART to get the money instead of some parking concession, the kids will like the train and I am presuming this will be faster/simpler. This presumption may be crazy.

  • Don’t Ever Change Ever

    The Marin IJ editorial calling for increased enforcement of bike path speed limits cites an incident last year in which a 9-year old boy was struck and seriously injured by a woman on a bike. It fails to mention, however, that its own reporting on the incident found that, “the cyclist has not been
    cited and police say that based on interviews with her and the boy,
    there is no evidence she was speeding.”

  • Do seniors who currently drive instead of taking Muni do so because they can’t afford $20 a month (or 75 cents a ride)? Or do they do so because they can easily get a disabled placard from their doctor and then park everywhere in the city for as long as they want for free?

    I am all for seniors taking Muni instead of driving. But I truly don’t think cost is the issue.

  • helloandyhihi

    At $20 million per year, over 5 years free Muni passes and free Sunday metered parking will cost San Franciscans $100 million. Considering the abysmal service we get, we need laser focus on improving Muni, not freebies to win political points.

  • coolbabybookworm

    muni lasers!

  • There is extensive work being done to improve reliability, speed, maintenance, complete fleet replacement, etc.

    Free Muni service will encourage more people to take Muni instead of driving (young, old, and parents won’t need to drive their kids around as much) and reduce traffic delays that slow Muni down.

    I’m not sold on this idea, but if spending $8.9 million/year providing free service saves the SFMTA more than that annually, then free service is a way to improve Muni. Free parking is a different matter because it promotes the very thing that most slows Muni down.

  • murphstahoe

    SPEEDING cyclists is a way to distract from the fact the real solution there is not bollards and roundabouts on the path, but safe efficient bike lanes on Miller that would attract the faster cyclists away from that path. But you know, roads are made for cars.

  • helloandyhihi

    Your logic does not compute.

  • murphstahoe

    winning political points = winning public support = more funding for MUNI. QED

  • Jame

    The airport connector has only been running about 3 months, and there have been hours long outages 3 or 4 times. That is pretty terrible.

  • baklazhan

    My favorite solution to Valencia involved a two-way bike track in the middle. Drivers are happy to block bikes, but they won’t block other cars, so that’ll effectively take care of the double parking issue.

  • jd_x

    The same would be true with a buffered bike lane on the other side of parked cars. Either way, you’re right: motorists will feel much more guilty blocking car traffic than a bike lane and hence it will happen much less.

    I still don’t understand why the city keep’s that damn center lane throughout much of Valencia. As one of the most heavily traveled streets by both bicyclists and pedestrians in the city there is absolutely no reason for that waste of space (er, a space to allow “church-goers” to park for free). Instead it should be split in half and added to each side for either wider sidewalks or buffered bike lanes.

  • The center Valencia bike lane is a very good idea. Class 2 side unprotected bike lanes are really just double parking lanes.

  • Mario Tanev

    In fairness, you could argue that the connector being new could mean some kinks need to be worked out and the uptime is going to only improve.

  • Mario Tanev

    Where you got the $20 million number is beyond me.

  • helloandyhihi

    $4.5 million: Free Muni passes for seniors
    $4.4 million: Free Muni passes for kids
    $11 million: Free Sunday meters

    $19.9 million in politically motivated freebies

  • Mario Tanev

    Oh, ok, but I am not sure why you’re treating them as equivalent. Sunday meter repeal is very different (and as I pointed out, much less cost efficient – we pay for harm).

  • CamBam415

    100% agree with your point that speed is a simple point to grasp and makes a good short talking point that people can grasp despite the fact that speed was never cited as a cause for the accident.

    I don’t agree entirely with the point about Miller. Yes, the bike lanes in Tam Valley are abysmal, but where the path intersects with Miller/Almonte just south of the Tam HS football field there are good bike lanes and Camino Alto has good bike lanes. I’d love to see recreational riders heading north take Miller to Camino Alto and those heading to heading to a Paradise Loop take the path through Hauke Park to Hamilton to the the 101 frontage road. But many commuters use the path the whole way as it is the most direct route and doesn’t have lights/stop signs so it is much faster.

    For commuting when path usage is low in the early mornings and evenings I don’t think speed is a factor. When usage is high on the weekends, as a parent with kids it can be a little scary. When I take my kids to soccer/baseball it is easy enough to walk along the waterfront side of the park and not on the main path (wish more parents did this), but when my kids want to ride on the path, it can be intimidating (especially because my kids are still wobbly).

    Bottom line we need to widen the path (though I know wetlands issues are preventing even the re-paving of the path).

  • murphstahoe

    Google did give the city 8 Million for the free MUNI for kids program. Presumably they would not have done so for the “extra run on the 5L” program

  • I’m certainly more interested in impact to cyclists than whether someone’s parking 15 cars near Glen Park or parking badly in an industrial street/illegal dumping area that no one rides on.

  • Don’t Ever Change Ever

    So we can’t repave the path because of the wetlands but we can build a concrete roundabout in the middle of it and parking and sports fields on either side?

  • CamBam415

    Ha! You bring up a good point. With that said, the wetlands issue is further south between Tam High and the 101 underpass. I read that technically the path is below sea level and the process to “reclaim” the land and convert it to above sea level is a crazy & expensive mess.

  • Gezellig

    I’ve definitely noticed it’s below sea level during the king tides!