Dear Scott and Ed: About Sunday Parking for Religious Orgs

By missionlocal – excerpt

At least one Liberty Hill resident is unhappy. Elizabeth Zitrin sent this letter to Ed Reiskin, from the SFMTA and Supervisor Scott Wiener. She added a link to the church’s website.

If you would like to add your unhappiness, please comment or send Reiskin an email at ed.reiskin@sfmta.com and Wiener an email at Scott.Wiener@sfgov.org.

Dear Scott and Ed,

This picture was taken looking south on Guerrero between 18th & 19th Streets at 6:27 pm on Saturday, September 13, 2014.

This ongoing illegal parking by protected private churches who guard their privilege, and are protected by you and SFMTA, continues to create traffic hazards.

There is, as you well know, no application process for this privileged parking in a public roadway, no permit, no accountability, no person in the government or agencies of CCSF who claims to provide this special service and protection, no enforcement by SFMTA and years of absolutely no help from you for you constituents.

I ask you again to stop this dangerous and illegal occupation of active public roadways by private religious organizations… (more)

Thank you.

Elizabeth Zitrin

Liberty Hill

This is a divide and conquer tactic by the SFMTA. If you don’t like they are handling traffic and parking, privatizing public parking spaces, forcing more vehicles to double park, slowing traffic and creating gridlock, tell the city authorities you have had enough! Vote NO on A and B (no money without accountability) and YES on L: Restore Transportation Balance:
http://www.restorebalance14.org

Walnut Creek Parking Meter Glitch Fixed After Malfunction Produced Unwarranted Tickets

cbslocal – excerpt

WALNUT CREEK (CBS SF) – A glitch found in some new downtown Walnut Creek parking meters that left at least 100 drivers with unwarranted parking tickets has been fixed, city officials said.

Sensors near the new “smart meters” installed downtown last year are designed to wirelessly signal to the meter when a vehicle enters and leaves a parking spot, city officials said.

But some of the sensors were too sensitive, causing them to erroneously reset and prompting parking enforcement officers to issue tickets, according to Matt Huffaker, assistant to the City Manager… (more)

Or in the case of the sensors in SF, the batteries died.

Dan Walters: If bicyclists want respect and safety, they should act like they deserve it.

By Dan Walters : sacbee – excerpt

Hilary Abramson is one of the most talented and prolific journalists ever to practice the craft in Sacramento.

She’s also a personal friend for the past four decades, and thus it was horrifying to learn that she had been clobbered by a young bicyclist who was riding illegally on the sidewalk near her downtown apartment, causing very serious and permanent injuries.

The bicyclist paused briefly, then pedaled off without leaving his name – which, if he had been a motorist, would have been felony hit-and-run driving and earned him up to four years behind bars.

Hilary wrote about the incident in a lengthy Sacramento Bee article last month and about her mission to protect pedestrians from bicyclists who commonly use sidewalks as their personal paths…

We get it that bicyclists want respect and protection as they share roads with cars. But the flip side is that bicyclists need to drop the arrogance that too many exhibit as they cut in and out of traffic, blow through red lights and stop signs, and imperil pedestrians by careening down sidewalks.

The three-foot clearance law should be matched by one that absolutely prohibits bicycles on sidewalks statewide with stiff fines for violation, and another that makes hit-and-run bicycling just as much a crime as hit-and-run driving.

Moreover, if bicyclists want to be taken seriously, they should also be paying some of the cost of marking bicycle lanes and building bike paths, rather than making motorists pick up the tab, as the pending bill would do.

Fair is fair. With privileges come responsibilities, both legal and financial. And receiving respect means acting like you deserve it(more)

Costly New Parking Garages Still Gobbling Up Land at BART Stations

by : sf.streetsblog – excerpt

BART continues to encourage the construction of multi-story parking garages at its stations, despite the exorbitant costs and lost potential for valuable land that could be put to better use…

Livable City Executive Director Tom Radulovich, who sits on the BART board, said he’s “appalled that we wasted tens of millions of dollars building a commuter garage at an urban station like MacArthur.”

“Ridership kept growing at that station despite the reduction in parking during construction, which demonstrates that we could have done perfectly well without it,” he said. “Many of our highest-ridership stations — Balboa Park, Berkeley, 19th, 16th, 24th, Glen Park — have little or no commuter parking. At stations like MacArthur, Ashby, West Oakland, and Lake Merritt, we should be phasing out parking as we build transit villages, and enhance walking, cycling, and local transit access instead of building structured parking.”… (more)

What happened to customer service? BART is trying to bring it back by building more garages and extending late night hours by partnering with bus lines:
BART to try late-night bus service for passengers

In spite of the BART Director, the majority of elected BART Board members appear to be more inclined to listen to their customers than the appointed SFMTA Board. That may be why many SF residents are planning to vote No vote on Props A and B and Yes on L.

Citizens want more parking garages built near freeway exits and transit hubs and do not expect to have their wishes met by the current MTA Board. Transportation issues along with housing will determine the outcome of some Supervisor races as voters become ever more fed up with gridlock and the parking wars. And, as Engardio points out in the sfexaminer, Commuters can have a say on BART service. Do your own research before you vote on anything. Make sure you are voting for your interests, because no on else is.

NYC’s Tom Maguire Expected to Lead at the SFMTA, if Mayor Lee Lets Him

by : sf.streetblog – excerpt

Ever since we broke the news that New York City’s Tom Maguire would be hired as the new director of the SFMTA’s Sustainable Streets Division, we’ve heard only positive reactions. If nothing else, there’s a lot of hype building for this promising veteran of the livable streets renaissance seen under Janette Sadik-Khan‘s NYC Department of Transportation. On the other hand, Sadik-Khan and her executive staff had the full support of former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg… (more)

Does anyone still doubt that the intent of Plan Bay Area, sustainable growth and stack and pack housing along transit corridors is to Manhattanize San Francisco?

Postal Service’s big delivery edge: no parking tickets

By Kyle Stock : sfgate – excerpt

Undeterred by snow, rain, heat, gloom of night – and cheaper than ever. The U.S. Postal Service is slashing prices for big retailers in a bid to wrest holiday shipments from FedEx and UPS.

For customers shipping at least 50,000 packages a year, Uncle Sam’s mailing service will charge up to 58 percent less for its accelerating Priority service, in some cases undercutting its for-profit rivals.

FedEx and UPS are none too happy about this. The Postal Service has a monopoly on letters, they argue, and is raising prices on some customers unfairly to subsidize big retailers. The Postal Service, however, has another huge advantage they are past griping about: It doesn’t have to pay traffic tickets… (more)

Homeless Camps, RV’s Roll Into Potrero Hill Neighborhood To Avoid Ban On Large Vehicles

cbslocal – excerpt

Anger is growing in San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood as homeless camps and trash-filled RV’s invade the streets.

San Francisco recently started a new program making it illegal to park large vehicles like RV’s in forty designated areas of the city. But, a span of the Potrero Hill neighborhood called the Design District anchored by 16th and Vermont Streets is not part of program… (more)

Parking permits program appealed: San Mateo streets may be included to deter Caltrain commuters

By Samantha Weigel : Daily Journal – excerpt

A group of residents are disagreeing over whether their San Mateo neighborhood should be included in a permit program that would deter Caltrain commuters from using their street as a free parking lot.

The city’s Public Works Commission will hear an appeal Wednesday night from those who do not want Otay Avenue and San Miguel Way included in the Bay Meadows Residential Parking Permit Program.

A group of residents approached the city in December concerned by commuters using their neighborhood to avoid paying to park at the Hillsdale Caltrain Station parking lot, according to a city staff report.

In June, the director of Public Works approved including Otay Avenue between Pacific Boulevard and Curtiss Street, and San Miguel Way between Otay Avenue and Curtiss Street, into the decades-old parking program, according to the report… (more)

Making parking near transit hubs difficult or expensive is not working for anyone. Commuters need parking near transit hubs and the faster public transit agencies solve the problem the sooner motorists will start taking public transit.

SFMTA Spent $27 Million on Settlements Last Year

By: Victoria Holliday : resetsanfrancisco – excerpt

Reset research found that last year SFMTA spent $27 million on settling lawsuits levied against the MTA. These MTA settlements accounted for one-third of the $71 million total the city spent on settlements. The MTA had the most settlements of any single city department.

San Francisco Man Sues SFMTA for Improperly Towing His Ride

SFMTA could spend even more on settlements this year if the on-going class action lawsuit against it for improper tows is settled.

Riley got his refund, but he did not stop there. In 2010, he filed a class action lawsuit against the SFMTA for improperly towing his car based on a non-existing city statute. And with that, Riley is set to become a hero to frustrated San Francisco parkers.

The Class Action Lawsuit

The crux of Riley’s case is this: the city claims it has the right to haul off legally parked vehicles after 72 hours (residential parking permit or not) based on a state vehicle code, while Riley says they can’t because no such ordinance exists here in San Francisco. The SFMTA certainly has reason for towing cars after a certain period – nobody wants abandoned cars in their neighborhoods. But Riley’s lawsuit claims that there was no signage regarding the towing of cars with residential parking permits after 72 hours on the block where he parked. Even more, Riley contends no such sign exists anywhere in San Francisco. But that didn’t stop SFMTA from towing his vehicle and hitting Riley with $915 in tow fees.

Should Riley succeed, untold numbers of San Franciscans may be due a refund from the SFMTA. Given that our research shows SFMTA spent $68,000 on improper tow refunds last year alone, there is a pretty solid chance that the number could be substantial.

Stay tuned to follow this story… (more)

RELATED:
SF to study impacts of removing fees for retrieving towed stolen cars 

Commute to campus comes at a higher cost for students after Muni and parking price increases

By Daniel Rivera : goldengatexpress – excerpt

The commute to SF State became more expensive today, with the price for a single ride on Muni increasing to $2.25. The surge in cost follows the introduction of a $1 increase on daily parking passes on campus July 1.

“I don’t like it,” said SF State student Coel James, who rides public transportation three times a week. “If I’m paying more, there should be more buses.”

San Francisco Municipal Transit Authority (SFMTA) boosted the price of monthly passes, including the Adult “A” Fast Pass, from $76 to $80, and the “M” Fast Pass, from $66 to $68, to match the single ride increase. The fare for a Lifeline monthly pass, a discounted pass for limited-income residents, rose from $33 to $34 as well…

Along with the Muni fee hikes came a rise in the SF State daily parking permit fee from $6 to $7, which took effect over summer and was the first increase of its kind in two years… (more)