richmondsfblog – excerpt
The final Geary BRT EIR will be under review at an upcoming public meeting of the San Francisco Country Transit Authority (SFCTA) on Thursday, January 5, 2017 (2pm, City Hall, Room 250). At that meeting, the SFCTA will be asked to certify the EIR, which includes approving the design and configuration described in the EIR. The meeting, which will not be the last public discourse on the Geary BRT, is an opportunity for members of the public to speak their views on the Geary BRT project.
If the EIR is approved at the January 7 meeting, the project will then go into final design planning, which culminates with the SFMTA Board taking action to legislate every one of the recommended changes for the project.
But given the historic pace of the Geary BRT project so far, that is a ways off. The earliest any construction would begin is in 2018 on the downtown portions of Geary. It would not be until late 2019 / early 2020 that any construction would occur west of Stanyan.
Comments on the source as well as here are welcome…
There are so many issues involved with this project, we will have to get back on what they are, but, if you are concerned and want to oppose this, there are two meetings scheduled for next week with two different groups and each may be contacted with public comments. Sample letters and contacts are here:
Open Letter to the City Authorities:
Our plea to San Francisco city authorities is to delay the decision for 30 days and consider what you can better spend $300 million dollars on than cutting trees and digging holes on Geary and killing more local businesses like you did on Mission Street. We need economic impact and socioeconomic impact reports on all projects that involve shifting traffic on major commercial streets.
Wasting time and taxpayer money on a $300 million dollar boondoggle when there are thousands of homeless people on the streets who need immediate attention is a criminal act as far as many are concerned. For once the SFMTA should allow the much cheaper and less disruptive public plan to more forward. See if the public is smarter than the SFMTA. Just give us this one street to prove we can do it cheaper and get better results.
Notice there is no mention of safety here, only speeding Muni on Geary. Who ever came up with the idea of moving the BRT lanes from the curb to the center and back again? That cannot be a safe move. Already we have seen the results of merging traffic with the BRT on 3rd Street and merging bike lanes and traffic lanes without warning. What happened to merging lane warning signs? Bike lanes crossing over traffic lanes has got to be the worst way to protect cyclists.
This plan is all about moving more than $350 million dollars of taxpayer money from our pockets into the contractors’ bank accounts. Read the alternative plan and see if you don’t agree that it makes sense to try a different approach.
– Concerned San Francisco Citizen
Upcoming meetings on this issues listed on the SFCTA website:
Wednesday, January 4, 6 PM – Geary BRT Citizens Advisory Committee – 1455 Market St., 22nd Floor – Details CAC is scheduled to hear and vote on the Geary BRT.
Thursday, January 5, 2:00 PM – Special Transportation Authority Board Meeting – Room 250, City Hall – Details This is where the Board of Supervisors, acting as the County is expected to approve the $350-360 million dollar Geary BRT large project authorization, before the public or the Board of Supervisors has sufficient time to review and analyze the large document that was just released on the 15th of December. CEQA still allows a 30 day period for public review and comment, so this will cut that allowance down, leading, once again to a violation of CEQA by the SFMTA.
SFMTA will have an excuse for fast-tracking their Geary BRT, so we need as many letters and people to protest against this outrage at this meeting as possible. Sample letter: https://discoveryink.wordpress.com/letters-and-comments/geary-brt/
There is a second excellent letter requesting a delay that is here requesting that the Chairman of the SFCTA Board of Commissioners, Aaron Peskin, postpone the Geary BRT EIR vote for one month. Quite a few letters have gone out with that request.
To: Supervisor Aaron Peskin, Chairman, SFCTA Board of Commissioners
Fr: D.W. Dippel, 45-year resident, Richmond District, S.F.
Re: Request for one (1) month postponement, Geary BRT EIR vote
Date: December 28, 2016
I am asking you, as Chairman of the TA Board of Commissioners, to propose to fellow Commissioners a one (1) month postponement for the vote on the Geary BRT EIR at your meeting on Thursday, January 5, 2017. This request is being made for the following reasons:
1) Firstly, the proposed TA Commission vote on Thursday, January 5th would take place 3-days (1-weekday and 2-weekend days) before the swearing in (inauguration) of 4 newly elected members of the S.F. Board of Supervisors, your new fellow TA Commissioners, on Monday, January 9th.
2) Secondly, voting on the acceptance and approval of the Geary BRT EIR will be 4 lame duck Supervisors who, in deference and respect for the voters in their respective Districts, should defer their votes out of respect for those who succeed them and must manage future projects and their obligations for potentially the following 8-years.
3) Voting at what must be publicly seen as the 11th hour for a hugely expensive, impactful and far reaching project as the Geary BRT smacks of not only sharp practice but as a fearful act of desperation driven by a fear of public discussion or review. The rush to judgement is not driven by any timeline other than expiring terms and the fear of some outgoing Supervisors that the Geary BRT won’t stand public discussion or review without their self-declared importance.
4) Accelerated timelines have historically been used to curtail and avoid full public discussion and silence opposition. A rush to judgement and action is rightfully seen as an element of the trickery used in confidence games by con-artists. The business of the public must always be conducted to promote transparency and accountability through full public disclosure and discussion, not by speedup games used to rig a vote.
The touchstone for public conduct for all government officials has been the awareness that the American public does not trust people with power. The people always want transparency and accountability. Speedup of public business promotes well organized paperwork and continuity in public contracts and payrolls, the hallmarks of political machines. But, do accelerated timelines represent open government process or just clerical efficiency?
Please don’t buy into this stampede psychology. Ask to put off approval of the Geary BRT EIR for at least 30-days so that the thinking and opinions of the new Board can be involved.
cc: Supervisor/Board Commissioner Norman Yee