Paul McCartney Fans Stuck in Traffic Start Petition to Get Refund for Missed Show

By : sfweekly – excerpt

Paul McCartney fans who missed the last concert at Candlestick Park earlier this month due to a parking fiasco that created a two-hour traffic jam are now demanding a refund from whoever is responsible for wasting their time and money.

Thousands of ticket holders missed the Aug. 14 concert, which many are attributing to poor parking plans on behalf of the event promoter. Afterward, those fans asked for refunds to which Another Planet Entertainment has politely said “no.”

But the irate fans aren’t letting this one go: They’ve launched a Change.org petition demanding they get every penny back that they shelled out for the high-priced tickets. The petition is addressed to Mayor Ed Lee, Gregg Perloff, Another Planet Entertainment, and Ed Reiskin, SFMTA, Director of Transportation:…

San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr had been quoted in media reports partially blaming the fans for the traffic jam, saying they hadn’t researched the parking layout before heading out to Candlestick Park. Of course, there were also a few accidents and stalled cars on Highway 101, which didn’t help…

Taking a page from the SFMTA playbook, authorities blame the drivers for the traffic jam. Fans don’t buy it and demand refunds. Muni riders didn’t have it much better. They were also given bad directions.

There is no excuse for not being able to manage parking at Candlestick after decades of parking cars in the lot.

Safety on Top of Safety: The City Rips Out a Pedestrian Upgrade to Install a Pedestrian Upgrade

By sfweekly – excerpt

City dwellers residing in the vicinity of Franklin and Turk streets can be forgiven for peering out their windows and experiencing a sense of déjà vu. City crews recently tore up and rebuilt the sidewalk roughly a year after tearing up and rebuilding the sidewalk and just over two years after tearing up and rebuilding the sidewalk…

The most recent work was the installation of a pedestrian bulb, an extension of the sidewalk into the parking lane, shortening the distance required for pedestrians to cross the street.

That’s well and good — but area residents couldn’t help but notice that the new bulb required the obliteration and reinstallation of a wheelchair access ramp installed in 2012, as well as the replacement of a sidewalk itself replaced in late 2013 for electrical traffic signal work.

Bulbs are the city’s new favorite method of ensuring pedestrian safety. Department of Public Works spokeswoman Rachel Gordon says to expect many more streets to be upgraded with one. These upgrades will supersede prior upgrades — even ones undertaken mere months ago.

You can’t put a price on safety. But you can put one on a pedestrian bulb — $30,000, in this case… (more)

Not only are these projects redundant, but one needs to consider that concrete is comprised of 30% water.
The city that expects residents to cut back should put some of these unnecessary projects on hold.

OPINION: Daily commuters should get discounted campus parking permits

By Madison Rutherford : goldengatexpress – excerpt

It’s hard enough to roll out of bed to make an 8 a.m. class. For the 88 percent of SF State students who live off campus, the struggle is even more real. Many students must rely on the questionably steadfast steeds known as Muni and BART. For some, it’s a traffic-ridden car commute across the bridge. But this semester, being a student at a “commuter school” is about to get a lot more difficult.

Drivers will also be impacted because daily on-campus parking rates have increased from $6 to $7. In 2010, it only cost $5 a day to park at school.

The impending hike in parking rates and Muni fares will make it even more difficult than before to get to and from SF State. Among ever-increasing rent, tuition, health fees and overpriced books the least of a student’s worries should be affording their morning commute…

SF State faculty are given heavily discounted parking passes. Why aren’t students given the same liberties?

Daily commuters should get discounted parking permits like faculty do. We work just as hard to be here. We should be commended, not punished. If SF State is a commuter school, why doesn’t it cater to commuters?… (more)

‘Sharing Economy’ Stopped from Privatizing S.F. Public Parking Spaces

By S.F. City Attorney : capitalandmain – excerpt

Following today’s close-of-business deadline that City Attorney Dennis Herrera imposed on mobile app companies seeking to facilitate sales or auctions of the city’s on-street public parking spaces, all three businesses involved in the practice have confirmed in writing that their apps are currently on hiatus in San Francisco.

Herrera issued the first cease-and-desist demand to Monkey Parking on June 23, noting that the service violated state and local law, put drivers on the hook for $300 fines, and risked steep civil penalties of up to $2,500 per transaction for the company. The announcement named two other startups whose businesses similarly violated the law with mobile app-enabled schemes intended to illegally monetize San Francisco’s public parking spaces: ParkModo and Sweetch… (more)

RELATED:
sfcityattorney.org

Too many parking tickets in SF

By David Hegarty : sfbg – excerpt

OPINION San Francisco made $87 million in parking citation revenue in 2012; roughly double what the city made off actual paid parking meter revenue.

Let that sink in for a minute.

It’s become so hard to park a car in San Francisco that its citizens are paying almost $281,500 a day simply to park, and then they’re cited for doing it wrong.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency should be responsible to the people — to create and maintain clean, orderly streets and transit systems that work for the people who use them.

The responsibility of the SFMTA is not to incentivize government agents to write more tickets and make citizens a passive revenue stream because it’s convenient. Parking citations, in their current form, do not support an ethical citizen-focused approach by the city to parking law and violations.

The simple fact that revenue gained for parking citations is roughly double that of legal, paid parking meter revenue shows an inherent flaw in the system. If it is easier for the city to make money by writing citations, why would it change its systems to create more revenue through meters or alternative means such as license fees or permitting, even if it significantly benefitted citizens of San Francisco? It makes more financial sense to incent its relatively small fleet of parking authority officers to write more tickets…

Conflicting rules and regulations between systems are also a common issue in San Francisco — often signs will contradict themselves or other SFMTA systems, with no clear indication of which rules precede the others. Meters are inconsistent with other regulatory systems in use, permanent parking restriction signs are sometimes missing, hidden, or poorly maintained, and temporary restrictions are often inaccurate — creating grossly unfair conditions for people parking, and incorrectly written tickets by parking enforcement officers…

Ethical parking law would be a clear, mutually fair system which benefits citizens of San Francisco, creates revenue for the city through legal, noncriminal means, and enables a parking environment where citizens can easily follow the rules. Parking law should be optimized for clean, orderly streets and transit programs that are profitable and reliable — instead of convenient revenue.

There must be another way to achieve SFMTA budget requirements than to make the people this government agency should be serving into unintentional criminals.

David Hegarty is the founder of Fixed (www.getfixed.me), a company that helps customers contest parking tickets… (more)

California Legislation Watch: Weekly Update

Among the flurry of votes, the following bills passed out of both the Assembly and the Senate and are now waiting for the governor to sign—or veto:

  • Vehicle registration surcharge for bike paths and trailsSB 1183 from Senator Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord) would allow local jurisdictions–cities, park districts–to place initiatives on the ballot to fund bike paths and trails with a local vehicle registration surcharge. Because this fits Brown’s ideals about fiscal responsibility—that is, the surcharge cannot be imposed unless 2/3 of voters approve—let’s say this one is likely to be signed.
  • Bike racks on buses: AB 2707, from Assemblymember Ed Chau (D-Monterey Park), would allow newer, longer buses to carry bike racks that fit three bikes. Right now buses are generally restricted to two-bike racks, except in a few places that argued for an exception. This would make the rules consistent statewide.
  • Traffic violation fines in school zones: S.B. 1151, from Senator Anthony Canella (R-Ceres). Despite unanimous passage in both houses and all the committees it passed through, advocates are worried that Brown may decline to sign this bill because it uses fines to generate revenue. In this case the revenue would have been used for active transportation projects.
    The bill originally called for fines to be doubled, to match fines in construction zones. However, the original language would have required new signage and legislators balked at burdening locals with those costs. Now, the bill merely adds a mandatory $35 increase to any other fines a scofflaw motorist would incur for unsafe driving in a school zone.

Meanwhile the following bills passed the Senate and returned to the Assembly for approval of Senate amendments:

  • Higher fines for hit-and-run convictions: A.B. 1532 from Assemblymember Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles).
  • Yellow Alert on hit-and-run perpetrators:A.B. 47, also from Gatto.
  • Vulnerable users defined:A.B. 2398, from Assemblymember Marc Levine (D-San Rafael). This bill was amended in committee to lower the fine for violations against vulnerable users from $1000 to $300. This is still over three times the current fine which is either $70 or $95 pending the severity of the crash.
  • Active Transportation Program list approved: At its monthly meeting, the California Transportation Commission approved the list of projects its staff recommended to receive funding—a total of 145 projects out of 771 submitted applications. Can you say: woefully underfunded?

Cap-and-Trade Auctions on Track: On Monday, the California Air Resources Board held a successful quarterly cap-and-trade auction, selling out all the available pollution credits at a price slightly above the minimum set by the board. The list of bidders included plenty of fuel companies, who will be subject to the cap come January—unless legislative attempts to delay that, such as A.B. 69 from Assemblymember Henry Perea (D-Fresno), gain some traction in the next week. Perea’s bill is awaiting its turn to be heard on the Senate floor.

Closing hit-and-run loopholes: The L.A. City Attorney and the L.A. Times endorsed A.B. 2673 from Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-Gardena), which would end the use of civil compromises to remove criminal charges for hit-and-run crimes .

Protected Bike Lane Bill Still Being Amended: A.B. 1193 from Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) is the bill that would add protected bike lanes, or “cycletracks,” to the four types of bike facilities defined in the California Street and Highways Code, and would require Caltrans to create engineering standards for them by January of 2016.

A secondary aspect of the bill, which allows local jurisdictions to choose a different safety criteria than that created by Caltrans, is meeting some resistance on both sides of the liability debate (cities don’t want liability, and consumer advocates want someone to take responsibility). The bill actually passed on the Senate floor on Wednesday, but it was pulled back to make amendments to address those concerns.

The California Bicycle Coalition, the bill’s sponsor, is pleased with the results of negotiations. “We have come to an agreement with both sides of the debate,” said Dave Snyder, CalBike’s director. “We’ve agreed to new language and that this bill will not affect liability.”

A.B. 1193 will be heard again in the Senate. It’s expected to pass, but the Assembly will have to approve the new amendments.

.. (more)

Not all of these are problematic, but people should know all the laws our representatives are working on a decide for themselves which to support and which to oppose.

Anyone who is considering donations to the reps may want to find out where they stand.

Note that not one of these bills has anything to do with public transit. These are the bills that are being tracked by the California Bicycle Coalition. They obviously don’t care about public transit.

Jerry Brown gets bill to OK local fees for bicycle facilities

By Laurel Rosenhall : sacbee – excerpt

Californians could vote to tax themselves to build bike paths, bike parking and other bicycle facilities under a bill heading to Gov. Jerry Brown.

Senate Bill 1183 would allow cities, counties and regional parks districts to put a measure on their local ballots asking voters to approve an annual fee of up to $5 that would be added to their vehicle registration fees and go toward building or rehabilitating bicycle infrastructure. Two-thirds of local voters would have to approve the fee…

SB 1183 passed the state Senate Thursday with no debate, on a 24-9 vote… (more)

Anyone in Desaulnier’s district feel like taking this on? We understand he is running for higher office now. You can go onto the web site or send messages to his aide: Mark Stivers, mark.stivers@sen.ca.gov 

Move Over, Uber, SF Residents Can “Yo” A Smart Car To Take Them Anywhere They Want Tomorrow

by : techcrunch – excerpt

A very gimmicky Mercedes-Benz campaign hopes to tap into the SF tech millennial market tomorrow by offering free rides in its smart electric vehicles to anyone who sends them a “Yo.”

Starting at noon on August 21, smart will place pop-up signs at two outdoor locations in San Francisco – one in the Mission and one in SoMa. Anyone who reads the sign and then sends out a “Yo” to “smartUSA” will get picked up on the spot and taken to wherever they tell the driver to go. “The main priority is to get people to drive the vehicle, and tapping into that Yo audience is a great way to do that,” says Mercedes-Benz spokesman Eric Angeloro. “We’re giving ‘Electricurious’ San Franciscans the world’s first-ever Yo-powered test ride.”…

With a 17.6kWh battery that provides a range of 68 miles, the compact, plug-in smart car is able to take commuters anywhere within SF city limits. Angeloro says there will be 8 vehicles out and about tomorrow, three of which will be electric and five gas-powered just in case. We’ll see if the campaign makes any millennials more “Electricurious” though…(more)

Anyone having any fun with this yet? Let us know.

Taxis in San Francisco are fighting back through apps, with the city’s blessing

by  Time – excerpt

Standing on the corner of California and Polk in San Francisco, I took out my phone and ordered a ride from Flywheel, an app that’s competing with rival transportation services like Uber and Lyft by leveraging the thousands of taxis already on the road. Like with those services, once I order a Flywheel ride, a map pops up with a car icon, showing me where my ride is in relation to me and allowing me to monitor the driver as he or she gets closer.

On this particular morning, as I watched multiple Lyfts go by (unmissable with their trademark giant pink mustaches attached to the cars’ grilles), and a couple Ubers (the black cars now identifiable by small logos that must be placed on their windows), my driver’s icon drifted away from me. After some minutes passed, I called the driver, who assured me he was on his way. When he continued to travel not towards me, I canceled the order and got a new Flywheel, which picked me up and promptly delivered me to the company’s San Francisco office, with my bill and a 20% tip paid automatically through the credit card I stored on the app.

Once at Flywheel, Chief Product Officer Sachin Kansal explained what had likely happened with my misguided driver. “He may have been ride-stacking,” Kansal explained, meaning that the driver accepted my order on the app and then took a street hail, thinking he could deliver the latter before I ever knew the difference. But the moment I canceled my ride, the driver’s plan was foiled. He would be blocked from the system until Flywheel investigated the case, and these did not appear to be circumstances that would yield quick forgiveness from administrators. Kansal made sure I knew how swiftly justice would be dealt, because this is not the kind of mistake companies can afford to treat lightly in the midst of the Great Ride App Wars…

Using apps like Flywheel is a way for taxis to fight fire with fire instead of tattling, however justified it might seem. Flywheel’s Kansal says that drivers may double the amount of rides they get in a shift through the efficiency that the system provides, matching people who need rides with nearby drivers. “There are weaknesses that others have. There are regulations that they may be breaking,” he says. “But 90% of our energy is spent on making sure this experience always stays top notch. That the experience that you had this morning never happens again.”…  (more)

 

 

No Refunds For Paul McCartney Fans Who Were Stuck In Traffic, Missed Show At Candlestick

KPIX – excerpt

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — The promoter of last week’s Paul McCartney concert at Candlestick Park confirmed to KPIX 5 on Monday that they will not be offering refunds to ticketholders who missed the show due to traffic.

About 2,000 of the nearly 49,000 people who had tickets to the final event at the stadium never made it, because of what has been called a horrendous parking situation that had backed up traffic for hours.

Last week, Another Planet Entertainment said it would consider refunds on a case by case basis. When KPIX 5 ConsumerWatch contacted the company on behalf of several consumers, the promoter made it clear that as a general rule, it is not giving refunds.

The promoter has been criticized for not having a parking plan in place.

Many of the concertgoers who attended also dealt with long delays leaving Candlestick Park, in some cases up to two hours, following the show… (more)

A lot of pissed off fans will never come to San Francisco again unless they have to. Great way to treat visitors.

 

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