Cars-First “Restore Balance” Measure Funded by Ed Lee Backer Sean Parker

by : sf.streetsblog – excerpt

Sean Parker, the founding president of Facebook and a major contributor to San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, has spent $49,000 of his personal fortune to propel a ballot initiative that seeks to enshrine free parking as city policy, according to the SF Chronicle. Parker gave $100,000 to Lee’s mayoral campaign in 2011.

The ballot initiative, which proponents frame as an attempt to “restore balance” to city transportation policy, first surfaced in April. While the measure would be non-binding, if it passes it could further slow much-needed policies to prioritize transit and street safety in San Francisco. One stated goal of the campaign is to kill Sunday parking meters for good. The SFMTA Board of Directors, which is appointed entirely by Mayor Lee, repealed Sunday metering in April, after Lee made unfounded claims about a popular revolt against the policy.

Several veteran opponents of transportation reform in San Francisco are aligned with the ballot initiative. And, in addition to the backing from Parker, another $10,000 for the measure reportedly came from the San Francisco Republican Party… (more)

We’re not sure about the accuracy of these claims, but metermadness tries to cover all traffic and parking stories.

Measure To “Restore Transportation Balance” Qualifies For Ballot

Sean Parker gives $49k to make life easier for other San Francisco parkers  The measure would also roll back Sunday parking meter fees, except that already happened. As I wrote last week, the San Francisco Mass Transportation Agency has an avowed policy position of limiting the number of cars on San Francisco streets and incentivizing the use of mass transit, shared vehicles, bicycles and other transportation efforts that alleviate environmental harm and congestion.

The initiative, found here, would push back against that position by reasserting the interests of drivers and ensuring those interests are represented in city government, as part of a broad “balanced transportation” policy. Other backers of the measure include the Coalition of San Francisco Neighborhoods, the Libertarian Party of San Francisco, and the San Francisco Republican Party… (more)

San Francisco Residents May Vote On A Nonbinding Referendum For A “Balance Transportation Policy” That Protects Interests Of Drivers

 By Phil Matier : kcbslocal – excerpt – recording

Phil Matier reports on the Restore Transportation Balance initiative on the November ballot  and the growing opposition to the taking of our public streets by anti-car agencies and minority organizations… (more)

San Francisco to Study Lowering Speed Limit to 20 mph–or is That an Increase?

By Stephen Frank : capoliticalreview – excerpt

San Fran is geographically a small town, with lots of traffic lights, winding, narrow streets and bike riders that own the roads. Try driving on the 101 freeway, being forced to then drive city streets to the other side of town and then get back on the 101 freeway. The traffic lights are not synchronized so you are forced to stop at almost every block. Yet, some feel good people—folks that want to feel good rather than do good, want to have a city wide 20 mph speed limit. Though almost impossible to drive even that fast, these folks think it will stop pedestrian deaths. We only wish we could drive 20 mph.

I have a better idea. Get the bikes out of the streets so cars don’t swerve into each other avoiding them. Synchronize the traffic lights so traffic can flow and you save gas and save the planet by not having cars idling, waiting for the light to change. Bottom line, these folks need to get a life—and let the rest of us live… (more)

By Bryan Goebel : KQED – excerpt

With growing concern about pedestrian safety in San Francisco, and the city getting on board with a plan to end all traffic deaths within 10 years, Supervisor Eric Mar wants to study lowering speed limits to 20 miles an hour, especially on streets with high collision rates.

“My hope is that as our Vision Zero process for San Francisco moves forward with engineering, enforcement and education, that we also look at policy changes like lowering speed limits, to save lives and make our streets safer,” said Mar. Vision Zero is a plan to eliminate all traffic fatalities by 2024. Under the plan, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency has identified the most troubling intersections and plans to undertake quick “cost-effective” measures to improve pedestrian safety… (more)