Longtime SF Bicycle Coalition chief to step down

By sfexminer – excerpt

One of the strongest San Francisco voices in advocating on behalf of bicyclists is stepping down from her role as head of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and heading to Europe.

Leah Shahum, often seen riding around town on her orange two-wheeler, announced in a letter to the nonprofit’s members Tuesday that after 17 years with the group, 12 of which as its executive director, she is calling it quits by the year’s end.

“It’s time for me to pedal toward new adventures, including participating in a German Marshall Fund Fellowship to research the successes of Vision Zero in Europe,” Shahum said in the letter… (more)

Good news for some of us. One less anti-car voice to counter.

SF cabdrivers vote to unionize as industry continues to take beating from ride services

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

San Francisco cabdrivers have decided that it’s time to form a union.

The local industry has been reeling for years as venture capital-backed ride services like Uber and Lyft have proliferated and taxi companies’ calls to The City to level the playing field have done little to help.

On Wednesday, cab drivers voted to initiate the San Francisco Taxi Workers Alliance, an affiliate of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) — marking the first time cabdrivers will be unionized in The City in more than four decades.

“If we don’t form a union, we’re toast,” said Beth Powder, 35, a union organizer and driver and dispatcher for DeSoto Cab Co.

Cabdrivers discussed unionizing for a couple of months, but in a “standing-room-only” meeting at the Verdi Club on Wednesday night, they voted unanimously to move forward with making it official, said Barry Korengold, president of the San Francisco Cab Drivers Association.

About 150 taxi drivers signed up for the union and pledged to bring more drivers with them, Powder said… (more)

Pelosi, Lee tout Central Subway as model economic development project

By sfexaminer – excerpt

The yearslong creation of the Central Subway is a prime example of how large infrastructure projects in cities can boost the economy, create local jobs and increase commerce in the U.S., House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday.

Amid the roar of construction of Muni’s future Yerba Buena-Moscone station, Pelosi, Mayor Ed Lee and San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Transportation Director Ed Reiskin touted The City as a key pillar of the Middle Class Jumpstart agenda launched by House Democrats last month to ensure “good-paying jobs” for workers nationwide… (more)

If incumbent Democrats claim that controversial projects like the Central Subway are a good way to generate jobs around the country they are in trouble.

They will have a hard time convincing transit riders faced with higher fees and cutbacks in Muni services and maintenance.

Forget counting on any further support from California motorists who are being gouged by higher fines, fees and an increase in the state gas tax, (unless a bill now running in Sacramento passes in time to save them).

Everyone who is trying to get anywhere on the jammed streets in San Francisco, LA, and elsewhere in California cities where local authorities have implemented restricted parking and traffic policies before establishing workable alternative transit systems.

The major benefactors of these projects are the land owners along the transit corridors who have all their building height limits lifted and the banks and bond holders.

And some of the young, fit, cyclists who demand more bike lanes but refuse to stay in the ones they have.

Unjust parking tickets

 ktvu – excerpt

Imagine getting billed for a parking ticket that isn’t yours then getting sent to collections for not paying it! It happens more often than you might think. 2 Investigates uncovers mistakes leading to unjust bills… (more)

The SFMTA’s Secret Plan to Kick Lyft and Uber (But Not Taxis!) Off of Market – It’s Called “Safer Market Street” and It’s Coming Next Year

sfcitizen – excerpt

So apparently, the SFMTA is working on a plan to ban cars from parts of Market Street while still allowing them to cross over Market Street?

It’s called “Safer Market Street.”

Will kicking cars off of Market Street betwixt Montgomery and Eighth make Market “safer?” I don’t know. (But if the SFMTA wants to propose kicking buses and taxis off of Market, well then that certainly would make Market safer, IMO. )

I don’t know why we allow the SFMTA to do whatever it wants without getting something in return. Like, OK SFMTA, we’ll let you spend all this money on the porked-up Central Subway project, but in exchange, you’d have to bring MUNI up to the level of a mediocre big-city transit system.

Anyway, it’s easy to get tripped up with all the Orwellian names the SFMTA comes up with, like Great Streets! and “Livable” Streets and Safer Market and Better Market, but see if you can figure the words you can see below.

First up, a rep from the local government-subsidized urban renewal outfit uses the word pilot as a verb, because that’s the lingo:

Lawrence Li (SPUR): Can you pilot some of these auto restrictions? 
Some auto restrictions were piloted in 2009 and have since then become permanent. We do not plan to pilot auto restrictions at this time due to environmental review constraints. However,  there is a separate project, independent of Better Market Street, called Safer Market Street that is looking at implementing some auto restrictions between 8th and Montgomery potentially as soon as next year. The public kick-off for that project is planned for later this summer.”

And here’s a way for the SFMTA to stick it to the man, to fight back against those TNC’s by supporting cabbies:

“Kevin Carroll: There are private autos operating as taxis such as Lyft, Uber, etc. Will they be  allowed to drive on Market Street with these auto restrictions in place? 
No. These services are subject to the private vehicle restrictions and would not be allowed on Market Street with these auto restrictions in place.”… (more)

 

SFMTA board expands locations for car share vehicles

: sfexaminer – excerpt

Despite dissenting voices from several San Francisco residents, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency board members on Tuesday approved 25 new curbside locations across The City which only permitted car share vehicles can occupy.

The vote expands the transit agency’s on-street car share pilot program from its original 12 spaces citywide. Under the program, the curbside locations will be tow-away zones for all but permitted car share vehicles.

Three car sharing companies – City CarShare, Zipcar and Getaround – qualified to participate in the two-year pilot program and have together already requested 450 of 900 parking spaces available. San Francisco has 275,450 spaces on its streets, according to a citywide parking census released in May…

Zipcar relocated 90 percent of its spots where neighbors raised concerns about losing parking, said Jonathan Tyburski, representing the company…

“The City sounds like it’s selling curb to private business. I understand that concern and I would be very resentful of that, but to remind you this is a pilot,” he said. “SFMTA believes there is many public benefits to car sharing.”… (more)

Decisions to “take” public space for private use has angered many residents and merchants who are signing up to support The Restore Transportation Balance initiative. Join us and let the voters have the last word on these matters in Novembers: http://www.restorebalance14.org/

If you object to privatization and commercialization of public property:

 

  • Contact the supervisors and representatives on the MTA CAC and request that they address this matter.
  • Contact the media and let them know how this effects your life and businesses.
  • Let the “sharing companies” know that you will not support them until they relinquish the parking on public streets.
  • Contact legitimate car rental companies and find out how this policy effects them.
  • Ask local businesses how public  parking removal effects them.

 

Port Commission Meeting on Embarcadero Project

July 9 Port Commission Meeting – (video)

Item 12B: Embarcadero enhancement Project

http://sanfrancisco.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=92&clip_id=20592