“Walk [Your City]” Signs Take the Guesswork Out of Hoofing It in SF

Photo: Darryl Jones/Twitter

You may have gotten a kick out of some of the signs posted along Market Street in recent weeks telling people how long it takes to walk to destinations like Yerba Buena Gardens, Civic Center, and even the Pacific Ocean.

The signs are the doing of Walk [Your City], a national effort to facilitate what has been called “guerrilla wayfinding” — providing residents the means to “plan, design and install quick, light, and affordable street signs for people.” The campaign started in Raleigh, North Carolina, but the organizers received a grant in February to bring it to other cities, including San Jose.

The signs were featured as part of the three-day Market Street Prototyping Festival, a project of the city’s Better Market Street redesign. The dozens of sidewalk exhibits, which line Market until tomorrow, are intended to “do a lot more with these beautiful sidewalks that we have… they can be much more dynamic social spaces,” said Neil Hrushowy, program director for the SF Planning Department’s City Design Group, in a KPIX segment. Hrushowy said some of the exhibits could be made permanent with Market’s reconstruction.

SF did pilot pedestrian wayfinding signs along the Embarcadero during the America’s Cup races in 2012, but they weren’t nearly as attractive or cheeky. While most of the Walk [Your City] signs are functional and point to actual destinations, some are more whimsical. “It is a 5 minute walk to High-Speed Rail (soon),” one sign said. Another sign points the way to the “Twinkie defense” — presumably, City Hall.

Photo: 7 Days of Smiles

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Continental Crosswalks and Sharrows Striped at Market and Sixth Streets

|
The SF Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) highlighted crosswalks and added sharrows at the intersection of Market and Sixth streets last week. The improvements should improve pedestrian visibility and help drivers comply with the mandatory right turn put in place last year. “It’s an excellent first step in improving this dangerous intersection,” said Walk SF Executive […]

Upper Market Street Gets First Phase of Safety Upgrades

|
The SFMTA has completed its first wave of safety upgrades on Upper Market Street. The changes include painted sidewalk extensions (a.k.a. “safety zones”), high-visibility crosswalks, and signs prohibiting drivers from turning right at red lights. SFMTA officials and Supervisor Scott Wiener held a press conference today to mark the completion of the improvements between Octavia […]