Bus stop: Muni could collect millions in fines against private shuttles — but it won’t

by Rebecca Bowe : sfbg – excerpt

… Using bus zones for private passenger pickup is not legal — but so far, that hasn’t resulted in any kind of systematic enforcement. It did boil over as an issue when it became the focal point of the Dec. 9 Google bus blockade, a Monday morning rush hour episode staged by anti-gentrification activists that went viral thanks to Bay Guardian video coverage, spurring commentary by Wall Street Journal, Fox News, and dozens of other media outlets.

SYMBOLIC ISSUE

The significance of the private buses as a symbol for an economically divided San Francisco, private service that spares a high-salaried class of workers from the delays, crowds, and service breakdowns that can plague Muni, has never been more resonant. The shuttles are frequently mentioned in conjunction with eviction and displacement, since apartment units in proximity to shuttle routes have become more desirable and expensive…
At least 27 institutions and employers provide private shuttles in SF, according to data compiled by SFMTA…
The pilot program for sharing bus zone space with private shuttles is expected to be reviewed by the SFMTA board early next year, and it could be implemented by July of 2014. It does not require approval by the Board of Supervisors… (more)

 

Uber’s Motion to Dismiss SF Taxi Drivers Suit Defeated

Posted by The Brandi Law Firm Blog – excerpt

On November 20, 2013, Judge Ernest Goldsmith of the San Francisco Superior Court rejected Uber Technologies attempts to throw out a suit brought by San Francisco taxi drivers seeking compensation for unfair completion from Uber.  The taxi drivers all drive vehicles that comply with the legal requirements of the CA PUC and SFMTA including one million in insurance per vehicle, police background checks for drivers, and vehicle inspection safety checks.  The drivers contend that Uber competes unfairly in that it has not complied with the regulations for carrying passengers for hire.

In his Order, Judge Goldsmith wrote:
“The Court declines to invoke the doctrine of judicial abstention as to the first cause of action for unfair business practices, fourth cause of action for accounting, and fifth cause of action for declaratory relief.  The instant case is distinguished from Alvarado v. Selma Convalescent Hospital (2007) 153 Cai.App.4th 1292, where the court found judicial abstention appropriate where it was called upon to oversee nursing hour requirements and regulate complex health care matters on a class wide basis involving several classes of health care providers.  The gravamen of this instant case is statutory interpretation with no regulatory or administrative implications… (more)

SF is receiving vehicle collision data faster with new database

by : sfexaminer – excerpt

A collision occurs. What next?
In San Francisco, a police officer documents the details in a collision report and the hard copy is sent to the California Highway Patrol, which compiles all accident data for the year and shares it with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and Department of Public Health. The entire process takes a year and a half to two years…
Meanwhile, agencies outside of law enforcement that need the data to push various transportation initiatives would be left waiting at least a year until the CHP released its Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System database.
“We’ll have this information at our fingertips almost immediately and it allows us to better plan and design the work we do to make our streets as safe as possible,” said SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose.
The SFMTA already has Crossroads data — designed to compile information including collision types, degree of injury and historical highs — from January through October of this year… (more)

More none-Muni projects and studies that the SFMTA is spending time on trying to prove that cars are bad instead of just putting ALL the money into making Muni run better.

SFMTA Abuse – Meter Maid parking illegally for personal use

youtube – excerpt

SFMTA Abuse – Meter Maid parking illegally for personal use …
SFMTA abuse documents the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Administration’s abuses of power and neglect that they show residents and taxpayers.
www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3j6JOVJoA8

Parking Losses Prompted by Potrero Avenue Project Continue to Rile Residents

By Keith Burbank : potrero view – excerpt

Despite new designs that maintain more parking spaces than previous proposals, residents of Potrero Avenue and nearby streets are still angry about the loss of parking that would result from the Potrero Avenue Streetscape project. And though the City has made changes in response to citizen requests, some residents insist that local government isn’t listening to them.

“They [the City] come back with what they think we need,” said Mari Sorenson, a Hampshire Street resident. “It’s not about neighbors.” According to Sorenson, the project has been resisted by the community, but City Hall isn’t listening. She’s also upset that a question and answer session hasn’t been included in the past two meetings; a complaint echoed by others. Instead, residents were given the opportunity to talk with City staff at an open house held last month, record their ideas on comments cards and vote for one of three options…

More than eighty people attended last month’s gathering, held at San Francisco General Hospital, at which an additional Streetscape option was added to the two proposals that had been presented previously. Under the options for 22nd to 24th streets, Options One and Two would result in the loss of 29 parking spaces. Option Three calls for the loss of only three spaces along that street. Option One widens the sidewalk on the east side of the avenue to 14 feet, while Option Two widens it to 15 feet. Rather than widening the sidewalk, Option Three creates a bulb for a bus on the northeast corner of 24th Street and Potrero Avenue. In addition, Option One creates a six to 10 foot continuous planted median, while Options Two and Three build six foot refuges and place landscaping at the intersections…

The City added a fourth community meeting to discuss the project in response to citizen requests, according to Nate Albee, a legislative aide to Supervisor Campos, who encouraged DPW to schedule the additional gathering. And Albee said that four community meetings are more than average for the City to host to discuss a project.

The City has made changes requested by Flores, with no parking eliminated along the block that she lives on. Flores has a nephew who has cerebral palsy and a mother who is frail and has asthma. Flores seemed pleased she’ll have parking in front of her home, but still wants the City to avoid removing any parking from the project area. To save all the parking on Potrero Avenue, Flores and others have started a petition, which has more than 330 signatures.

Besides parking, concerns were expressed about street lighting. According to residents, half the street lights along Potrero Avenue are encased in foliage, and the City wants to plant more trees. In response, Chris Pangilinan, associate engineer, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), said the City is proposing “pedestrian scale” lighting on both sides of Potrero Avenue, which would rise to only 10 to 12 feet. Residents also wondered whether the project’s proposed medians would prevent emergency vehicles from traveling along Potrero Avenue during rush hour. According to Pangilinan, emergency vehicles going south would have a 15-foot wide transit-only lane to use. SFMTA met with the San Francisco Fire Department last month to be sure the department was satisfied with the access it will have once the project is built… (more)

 

 

SFMTA Slow to Unfold Parking Strategies

By Keith Burbank : potrero view – excerpt

Last month the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) announced plans to reopen the conversation with the Dogpatch and Potrero Hill communities about strategies to better manage parking, within the context of future transportation development along the Central Waterfront. At a meeting held at Genetech Hall at the University of California, San Francisco-Mission Bay, SFMTA presented parking data it had collected in the area.  At the gathering Hill resident Ed Lortz expressed concerns that SFMTA will install meters along the 18th and 20th street commercial corridors that extend around corners to the fronts of residents’ homes. “That’s one of my big worries,” Lortz said.

According to Paul Rose, an SFMTA spokesperson, any parking changes in the area are likely to be “small in scope and iterative, with the goal of addressing parking on the busiest of commercial blocks, where customers are currently having a challenging time finding parking spaces. A comprehensive approach is not likely.”

But changing parking policies space by space isn’t the approach preferred by some community groups.  The Eastern Neighborhoods United Front (ENUF), an anti-parking meter advocacy organization, is working with the San Francisco Board of Supervisors “to develop better, more comprehensive solutions than the spot zoning SFMTA is trying to use,” said Mari Eliza, an ENUF member.

According to Potrero Boosters president J.R. Eppler, the neighborhood is likely to get a suboptimal plan unless SFMTA looks at the whole system simultaneously. Eppler argued that SFMTA needs to try some new ideas, such as commercial permits, that allow for parking by employees. “It may be time to develop some new tools to address the issues we have,” he said.

Pennsylvania Avenue resident Jim Wilkins agreed. Wilkins said the agency has yet to address the parking needs of the neighborhood’s production, distribution and repair businesses. “Do they intend to blanket 16th and 17th streets with meters?” Wilkins asked. “Or will they work with the businesses and community to come up with a more creative solution?”

At last month’s meeting, Tony Kelly, past Potrero Boosters president, suggested that SFMTA install meters in Dogpatch and Potrero Hill, but give residents a parking card so they don’t have to feed the meters. Commuters would have to pay, and the City would still receive most of the revenue it would collect if residents weren’t provided with a parking card, given commuter demand to park in the area.  Mission District residents have expressed support for Kelly’s idea… (more)

Since this article ran, the Supervisors stopped the expansion of parking meters into the neighborhoods and the Small Business Commissioners announced they plan a more active role in working with the SFMTA at the earliest stages of the planning process to protect local businesses.

We need parking transit hubs near freeway and bridge exits. Members of a number of influential city agencies – Small Business Commissioners, MTA Board members, and some Planning Commissioners – are starting to suggest that the best solution to traffic problems in San Francisco are to build parking near freeway exits, so that people can easily get out of their cars and take public transit to their final destinations. SMTA needs to get us where we need to go not tell us how to get there.

 

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Parking in San Francisco

Posted by : withoutapillow.wordpress.com – excerpt

I am reading this very small book about parking rules in San Francisco, how to avoid tickets and increase parking karma. It’s an entire book about parking!

I’ve learned a few facts:
1. You always need to turn your wheels to the curb on every block that is above a 3% grade (which means almost all the time, unless the street is flat).
2. You need to move your car every 72 hours, even if there is no sign, by law, someone (say a neighbor that doesn’t like that you’ve parked in front of their house), can call the parking people and they will issue you a citation to move the car.
3. When it’s 2 hour parking, you can’t add money to the meter after your 2 hours. You need to move the car to another place, not just to another parking spot across the street. The parking people have become more advanced past chalking your tires and now scan your license plate.
4. The #1 citation: alternate street parking. #2 citation: parking meter expired.
5. Parking signs may be posted far away, 100 feet away, which is several car lengths away, but that sign applies to you… (more)