Today’s Headlines

  • SFMTA’s Board to Vote on Plan to Plan Subways (SFExaminer)
  • Plans for Austin Alley (Hoodline)
  • Tehama Street and the Two San Franciscos (SFChron)
  • Finding the Heart of the Mission (Hoodline)
  • More on Bike Share Vandalism (SFChron)
  • Letters on Enforcing Valencia Bike Lane (SFExaminer)
  • Feds Tell SF to Build More Housing (Curbed)
  • Shipping Container Housing (Hoodline)
  • BART’s Dublin/Pleasanton Parking Garage (EastBayTimes)
  • Dumbarton Bridge Study (EastBayTimes)
  • Impact of Google’s Downtown San Jose Development (EastBayTimes)
  • SMART Train Still Waiting for OK from Feds (MarinIJ)

Get state headlines at Streetsblog CA, national headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • mx

    SFMTA’s capital plan is so sad. This is our 20 year vision and the best we’ve got is “maybe we spend billions to put a rail segment on an outer edge of the city that already has a dedicated right of way for most of the way underground?” Taking a couple minutes off the M between West Portal and Parkmerced in the most expensive way possible just so the train can get stuck in “traffic” in the subway sooner is really the biggest vision we have for transportation in this city?

    We’re budgeting for every parking meter installed in 2014 to have to be replaced three times in the next 20 years, but we can’t even dream of a new subway line?

  • Exactly. After 17 years in SF, I’ve officially given up. I have no interest waiting around for the city to “maybe” get its act together at some point in the next 100 years. Clearly, the plan outlined in the article only proves that the city is clueless and those in charge don’t use transit. My Muni commutes from the Sunset still suck as much as they did in 2000. People are still stuck on the 38 for an hour to get downtown. DTX, which was promised decades ago, is still decades away from connecting to the shiny new $2B bus station. Thousands of housing units are planned for the Bayview/HP area, but no transit connections or upgrades to move around any of the residents/workers. these are just a couple egregious examples, but there are many others. Feel free to add to the list.

  • mx

    New housing in Bayview/HP, and transit connections to new housing in general, is such an important issue. A little while ago, I was listening to someone from one of the local YIMBY groups dismiss concerns about traffic and parking from higher density by saying that it takes an average of six years to build housing, so new transit can be built at the same time. I honestly started laughing out loud at the idea that any major transit project could go from idea to reality in six years in this city.

    We’re building one of the largest developments in the city and the only transit access is the 19-Polk? It’s pathetic. The capital plan is utterly devoid of any vision.

  • Jeffrey Baker

    100% with you. When I got here, in the late 90’s, I read so many things that gave me optimism. e-BART? Could work. Pacheco vs. Altamont HSR.
    Bay Rail Alliance had a whitepaper about Dumbarton Rail. Sounded interesting. 20 years later and what do we have? Outreach meetings about Dumbarton! The number of worthwhile transportation projects that have been completed in the Bay Area in 20 years can be counted on one finger: SMART and nothing else. Maybe Caltrain is a little faster and a little more frequent than it was. Other than that, nothing. It is completely ridiculous.

  • I’ve also read many comments on this site and others opposing rail under Geary because “development has to happen first.” Wrong approach. Infrastructure projects take at least triple the time to plan, approve and build, than a building. Development and transit need to be thought of together rather than separate, unrelated entities. If the city wants 2,000 units of housing it had better figure out how to move all these people prior to approving the construction and work within its own agency (and neighboring transit agencies) to find a viable solution.

  • p_chazz

    BART extensions to SFO, Pittsburg-Baypoint and Warm Springs. Oakland Airport connector. Muni T line to Bayview. Central Subway Project. I wouldn’t say nothing else has happened.

  • p_chazz

    IYBITWC (If you build it they will come)

  • Jeffrey Baker

    I said “worthwhile”. BART to airports has been a disaster which almost bankrupted Samtrans. Warm Springs serves the middle of a field. The Muni T line was an unmitigated disaster that I could go on for days about but TL;DR it was built without signal priority, and despite repeated MTA statements it still doesn’t have it. T-Third still doesn’t work as well as the 15-Third bus it replaced, at a cost of $650 million. Central Subway doesn’t exist. Pittsburg/Bay Point station opened in 1996, so it’s not in the last 20 years.

  • p_chazz

    BART to the airport was overbuilt. A people mover from SFO to Millbrae Station would have been the better choice. It didn’t help that air travel took a nosedive right when the extension opened.

    Warm Springs is in an area that has been paying for BART without receiving the benefit. The further flung communities in the District deserve to get something after all these years.

    This article from SFMTA suggests that signal priority on the T-Third does indeed exist:

    “Third Street is already considered to have Muni’s most sophisticated system of “transit priority signals,” which allow traffic lights to detect Muni vehicles and turn green (or stay green longer). With recent upgrades that extend the hold times of green lights for Muni vehicles, coupled with an increase in service on the T Third, the Mission Bay Loop will provide even better access to San Francisco’s southeastern neighborhoods.

    Make of that what you will. T-Third doesn’t work as well as the 15-Third bus. By what measure? This is an unsupported allegation. Central Subway doesn’t exist yet, but it’s getting there.

  • Don’t forget…$650 million for the surface route + nearly $2B for the subway portion that woefully ends in Chinatown. So, for $2.5B you get a 1-car train that duplicates part (not all) of a bus route that worked fine on its own. Nor does it connect to Caltrain at Bayshore, another promise that fell flat.

  • Jeffrey Baker

    The 15 ran 24/7. The T runs LRV hours, which are more limited.

    Regarding the signal priority, the key phrase in Muni’s pack of lies is “Third Street”. The T (and the N) have to traverse a bunch of signals, starting from the Folsom St. portal. There are lights at Folsom, Harrison, Bryant, Brannan, Townsend, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th. None of these have transit-priority signals. The T continues on to hit non-prioritizing signals at Berry and Channel before finally reaching Third St. This is one of the reasons the T is scheduled to take 13 minutes to go 1.8 miles from Embarcadero to Mission Rock, at less than 9 MPH.

    This problem won’t be solved by Central Subway because it will still run on the surface until north of 4th & Brannan, so the T will still hit half of those lights that I mentioned previously, and nobody expects Muni to come to their senses now. After all the N has been hitting every light in town for decades. Why would they fix it for the T?

  • Any idea how many crossover tracks will be in the central subway? Assuming there is one south of Chinatown station…