By Bettina Cohen : potreroview – excerpt
As the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) prepares for the return of T-Third Street Muni Metro service, the agency plans to implement temporary emergency transit lanes in both directions over the Fourth Street Bridge this month. The idea, which drew a barrage of public comment from an estimated 60 attendees of a virtual community meeting SFTMA hosted in December, would address a bottleneck between Berry and Channel streets that causes systemwide delays to T-Third service by enabling streetcars to move across the bridge without getting stuck in traffic. SFMTA identified public health, equity and economic recovery as other reasons for the emergency transit lanes; more efficient transit reduces COVID-19 transmission risks for people with the fewest travel choices.
General traffic would no longer be permitted northbound between Berry and Channel streets. The single northbound lane now shared by streetcars and other vehicles would be repurposed for transit and taxis only, with bicycles and paratransit vehicles permitted. Going south, the middle lane with streetcar tracks would be dedicated to transit and taxis. The southbound curbside lane would remain open for general traffic.
Additional restrictions would include no left turn onto the bridge whilst heading east; no right turn onto the bridge westward bound from Channel Street; no left turn onto Berry from Fourth Street, including by southbound traffic onto the one-way 100 block of Berry Street. Northbound traffic on Fourth Street would be rerouted onto eastbound or westbound Channel Street.
On the Fourth Street Bridge, the temporary emergency transit lane would be striped with white paint and “Muni/Taxi Only” stenciling and signage. Nearby routes for general traffic heading north from Mission Bay towards South-of-Market include Third and Seventh streets. No changes to the Third Street Bridge two-way traffic are planned…(more)
One part of the city that services a major medical center, and a large number of the newly densified SOMA and Bay View neighborhoods is getting a taste of what the residents around Market and Church have been going through. New traffic bottlenecks being created to annoy the public under the guise of helping move the city’s abandoned public transit system more faster with fewer riders.
Let’s not forget the reason the SFMTA is creating traffic jams by closing streets and removing parking and traffic lanes. They want to promote congestion pricing to keep us all pinned up in little boxes with no way to cross town without paying for the privilege to do so.
As the shutdown lingers and the streets are largely empty, the lanes clear an traffic flows. The SFMTA is using all the tools in their toolbox to produce traffic jams so they can push for congestion pricing. Hence the haste to introduce as many obstacles on the streets as they can. This time they are picking on a neighborhood that was built to be a medical center. They have drive-though testing sites and will have drive-through vaccination sites. Most people would like to avoid the long lines and slow moving traffic, but SFMTA is scrambling to make the drive-throughs as difficult and painful as possible to punish drivers, even though they know that driving alone in a car is the safest mode of transportation.
The national media is having a field day tearing down the “city that once knew how” and bragged about it. Life in San Francisco has soured as our once livable, manageable city spirals out of control. If you are one of the fortunate ones who can hibernate until it is over this may not phase you, but, if you try to get out and run errands in in your car, you have to watch out for the obstacles SFMTA is putting up to control you and forcing you into longer slower traffic lines. I can’t wait to see how the driverless cars will deal with constantly changing road routes.
If you object to SFMTA’s traffic obstructions , you may add them to your growing list of complaints. Write letters, sign petitions and join the voices calling in to City Hall meetings. Demand someone put a stop to this. We need to help each other through this nightmare not add to it.