Eyes on the Street: Tenderloin Sunday Streets

Nathan Woody of the San Francisco Yellow Bike Project pauses while working on this slick little two-wheeler during Sunday Streets in the Tenderloin. Check out those tassels! Photo: Streetsblog.

Sunday from 11 to 4 p.m. it was the Tenderloin’s turn to enjoy its streets free of car traffic. The route followed Fulton St. between Hyde and Larkin, Larkin to Ellis St., Ellis to Jones St., Jones to Golden Gate Ave., and Golden Gate back to Larkin St. The streets were filled with various activities and opportunities, including a “kid’s bike swap” with the San Francisco Yellow Bike Project, seen above, where families could bring their children’s bikes to have them repaired or, if necessary, replaced for free (or with a donation).

That wasn’t the only thing available for Tenderloin families. A petting zoo was set up in the new bike lane on Golden Gate. Note: that’s the only time anything should be parked in that bike lane.

RoadHog IMG_20160710_113741
Usually it gets our goat when some turkey hogs the bike lane. Photo: Streetsblog.

SFMTA Van Ness BRT IMG_20160710_124024
One of SFMTA’s new hybrid buses was available to check out, and the agency handed out flyers on coming Van Ness and Geary bus improvements. Photo: Streetsblog.

SFMTA was also there, showing off one of its new hybrid buses for people to stroll through. They also handed out flyers and answered questions about the Geary and Van Ness Bus Rapid Transit project.

In fact, there was no shortage of transit information. Even Amtrak had a booth. Emily Castellanos, below, was there to promote the addition of a seventh daily “San Joaquin” trip between the Bay Area and the Central Valley.

Amtrak IMG_20160710_115246

And no open streets event would be complete without two of San Francisco’s best known and most ubiquitous safe-streets advocacy organizations, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition (SFBC) and Walk San Francisco. The SFBC was giving parents a chance to try out a family bike, seen below.

Family Bikes SFBC IMG_20160710_114627
SFBC invited people with children to try out family bikes like the one seen above. Photo: Streetsblog.
WalkSF IMG_20160710_115840
Meghan Arnold and Marselle Alexander-Ozinskas of San Francisco Walks. Photo: Streetsblog.

Marselle Alexander-Ozinskas (white t-shirt) and Meghan Arnold (green), both on the board of Walk SF, were collecting signatures for safe streets. “The main concern of residents is just being able to cross the street,” said Alexander-Ozinskas. They’re worried about “cars moving at high speed, and high volume.” She added this is especially a concern with so many seniors in the Tenderloin.

Tenderloin Eco Development IMG_20160710_121326
Helen Bean of the Tenderloin Economic Development Project. Photo: Streetsblog.

Helen Bean, a Senior Adviser with the Tenderloin Economic Development Project, said the new bike lane on Golden Gate makes a big difference for people. She also said that, unlike in some other neighborhoods, Tenderloin businesses support more bike lanes. “Anything that moves people around gets more business.” Especially here, she added, because “this is much more a walk and bike area.” At her booth residents were invited to write their main concerns and desires for the neighborhood on the table.

At the Tenderloin Economic Development Project table, people were invited to write and draw what they want to see in the neighborhood. Photo: Streetsblog.
A look at the new Golden Gate bike lane, for once free of parked cars. Photo: Streetsblog.

Small world: Danica Helb was there too. Readers may recall she was the cyclist who got pepper sprayed by a motorist earlier this year. Although she was having fun at the event, she reported that SFPD has still not produced any results in the investigation of the assault, even though they were provided a photograph of the suspect’s car and license plate back in January.

Danica IMG_20160710_131342
Danica Helb, the cyclist who was pepper sprayed by a motorist in January, in front of the SF Yellow Bike Project shop on Ellis. Photo: Streetsblog.

But on Sunday, for a few hours in the Tenderloin, some streets in San Francisco were truly safe, relaxed, and as they should be: available for people to enjoy.

Did you go to the Tenderloin Sunday Streets event? Share your experiences below.


This Week: Oakland Bike Share, TOD, Sunday Streets

Here are this week’s highlights from the Streetsblog calendar: Tuesday Tonight! Oakland Bike Share Expansion Workshop for new station locations including Adams Point, Grand Lake, and Lakeside. Motivate has started the process to choose locations for bike share stations that are part of the East Bay Expansion Phase 2. While bikes will be arriving by the […]

SFMTA Brings Humane, Two-Way Traffic Back to Ellis and Eddy

The SFMTA began converting several blocks of Ellis and Eddy to two-way streets in the Tenderloin last week. The conversion is expected to calm motor traffic on the former multi-lane, one-way arterial streets designed to rush car traffic through one of the city’s densest neighborhoods. “Converting one-way streets to two-way is a proven way to slow traffic, […]

This Week in Livable Streets Events

This week, the SFMTA Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee gets updates from city staffers, the East Bay Bike Party rolls out in prehistoric style, and Sunday Streets returns to Civic Center and the Tenderloin. Here are the highlights from the Streetsblog calendar: Tuesday: The SFMTA Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee meeting will include staff updates from the SFMTA, SFPD, and […]

The Tenderloin Finally Gets a Taste of Car-Free Sunday Streets

Mary San George was sitting outside her neighborhood flower store yesterday, facing the historic residential high-rise building on O’Farrell Street where she has lived for 27 years, and marveling at something she very rarely gets to experience in her Tenderloin neighborhood: a street full of people instead of cars. “People use this street like a […]