11 thoughts on “Ask Muni

  1. Is the SFPark pilot project involving Smart Meters a study of some kind that requires a follow-up report on the success of the project, or is it a permanent installation of meters on the streets of San Francisco that will remain in place regardless of the success of the program?

    If there is a study what are the criteria involved and how will the success be measured?

  2. Many have questioned the annual Muni budget woes, noting huge overtime payments. How does SFMTP plan to reverse that trend?

  3. We asked for a Drivers’ Hardbook at the last public SFMTA Mission Bay Meeting, and we hear that there are plans to “publish” a policy manual. Is this true and when, where, and how will the public access it?

  4. Could you confirm the truth in these two rumors regarding a couple of traffic rules we heard recently?
    1. Is it true that it is legal across a private driveway, with the owner’s permission, for an unlimited amount of time, without a parking permit for that particular neighborhood?
    2. Is it true that moving vans and trucks will be fined $600.00 for double-parking on a city street? That they must pay $300.00 for a parking permit for the day?

  5. The temporary MUNI bus route from 14th to 26th streets on S. Van Ness has been pretty speedy for both the buses and the other vehicles on the road compared to the regular Mission St route.

    Last week, one late afternoon I was driving west on 18th St coming up to the S. Van Ness intersection behind several cars when the light turned red. An articulated MUNI bus began to slowly cross the intersection heading south apparently thinking a trolley bus parked in the bus stop was about to leave. But the trolley was not moving and the articulated bus crept forward unable to clear the intersection. Traffic on 18th was completely blocked and the horns were blowing. After our light turned green and then red again, cars on my side turned right or left. I never saw why the trolley could not move and only saw the articulated bus trying to squeeze around it. I think the driver of the articulated bus got faked out and the trolley bus had broken down at the bus stop.

    Today I was driving north on S. Van Ness in the right lane and there was a line of cars in the left lane, so I could not move from behind a bus that was approaching a bus stop. I figured that the bus would drop off or pick up and be on its way, so I was patient. Well, the bus was going nowhere, and after a bunch more cars passed on the left I managed to pull out and go around. The bus I had been behind was behind another bus which was behind another bus. That surprised me, so I looked in my rear view mirror after I passed them and saw the middle bus was trying to get around the first bus. My guess is that the first bus in the line had broken down.
    Trolley buses were operating in the opposite direction, so I figured it was not power failure that kept the the first bus from operating.

    Then as I approached the next bus stop two streets to the north, I saw a trolley bus with its trolley detached from the overhead wires parked just past the bus stop.

    During these two days, I have seen most likely three broken buses, two of which jammed up the traffic for a while and delayed other MUNI buses as well.

    So here we see the consequences of old buses and maintenance issues that contribute to congestion. Is this MUNI created congestion seeing the priority of attention that the supposed congestion and MUNI slowdown caused by vehicles looking for parking which are constantly being hammered in SFMTA parking documents?


  6. Dear Mr. Reiskin,

    I am writing as a resident of Showplace Square, the neighborhood directly adjacent to the Mission Bay area that has already had meters installed and is planning for more. We are already feeling a parking crunch from the meters installed on Townsend Street near us. We are distressed at the way that MTA ignores the residents of newer high density housing in Mission Bay and in Showplace Square.

    1. Why is Channel Street between Carolina and Seventh treated as though it is not a street? It is currently being used as a private parking lot for well-connected private businesses, but is a public street, according to all documentation and the City Surveyor. We understand that the fences blocking the street are illegal, though apparently untouchable. The residents of the neighborhood should have access to this right of way, and it should be available to the public for parking. Why is it not considered in the MTA plan?

    2. Can you tell me why the MTA has failed to consider 888 Seventh Street in the latest plan- it a residential building with 224 units of mostly BMR units slated to have metered parking on every side without residential zoning. Residents do not have adequate parking in the building for a variety of reasons:

    -BMR units can only finance one parking spot, even though there may be large multi-generational families in the unit, and BMR buyers were only allowed one spot at time of purchase,
    -The parking was sold separately from units for a price of $35,000, which some BMR buyers could not afford,
    -BMR buyers were only offered tight compact spaces, which cannot fit trucks or other work vehicles that people own,
    -28 spaces required to be residential were transferred to the commercial owner (also the realtor for the developer and all BMR buyers) for much less than the price offered to residents – this done with the knowledge of the Planning Dept and the Mayors Office of Housing even though it violated the building’s approval

    Will there be any residential zoning in the streets around our building which are all still slated for metering under the MTA plan?

    Thank you
    Carla Leshne

  7. Question about tow away for berry street and hooper street between 7th and 8th Street.

    Order # 4070
    The Sustainable Streets Division of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will hold a public hearing on Friday, July 6, 2012, at 10:00 AM, in Room 416 (Hearing Room 4), City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, San Francisco, CA 94102, to consider the following proposals:

    Berry Street, both sides, between 7th Street and De Haro Street
    Hooper Street, both sides, between 7th Street and 8th Street

    Sustainable streets friends, just wanted to know what the final determination for this item is. We are local residents and didn’t see the parking hearing notice until today. This really affects us in a negative way and I can’t really see the point to it. Perhaps people are sleeping in their vehicles but i don’t think this is the solution. This policy really encourages people who work in the area to drive to work and then punishes the residents who need to park in the area overnight. Anyways, is there a way to check online for the results of these engineering hearings? Thanks so much for you help!

    Rudy Choy

    Hi Rudy,
    The Berry Street proposal was modified at the public hearing. The Tow-Away, No Parking regulations are now proposed to go from 10 pm to 2 am, daily. The Hooper Street proposal was approved with the proposed hours. The SFMTA Board will be considering these proposals for final adoption at their August 21st meeting.
    Tom Folks


    hi Tom,
    Will there be a chance for public comment for this item at the August 21st meeting? Is it on the consent calendar? i’m not sure how these meetings work. By the way, was this a neighborhood request? I was just wondering what the rationale is for making these changes. Maybe there’s some neighborhood parking problem that I’m unaware of that would be solved by making it impossible for neighborhood residents to park their cars there overnight on any night. I just wanted to get a little more background on the story.

    Also, the SFMTA hosted several meetings for the public on the parking plan for the Mission Bay area and collected a lot of email addresses of people who are very interested in this subject. It would seem that changes like these would be very relevant to the Mission Bay area plan. Maybe in the future you all could coordinate and include information like this in the Mission Bay parking plan presentations or maybe send out an email to the people on the mission bay email list when these type of changes are being proposed.

    Rudy Choy


    Hi Rudy,
    Yes, any member of the public is welcome to attend the August 21st meeting of the SFMTA Board. The proposed regulations will not go into effect until they are approved the Board.

    The background for the proposal is that the request to establish these regulations came to us from the San Francisco Police Department. They were acting on behalf of other residents and business people in the area to deal with the social and criminal issues related to people living in their vehicles on those streets. These types of regulations have been very effective in eliminating these problems in other parts of the City. Unfortunately, there are few truly effective means for controlling the undesirable behavior, despite many years of various suggestions.

    If you and the majority of other residents and business people on these streets do not want these regulations, please submit a petition so that we know that is the consensus opinion for each proposed block.

    If you have any other questions, please let me know.
    Tom Folks


    hi Carla,

    I first saw the notice taped up on a light pole on berry street. I think there’s still a notice on the light pole on the corner in front of your building if you want to check it out. i think the berry street regulations were changed from tow away from 10 pm – 6 am to 10 pm to 2 am because some of the businesses wanted to have their employees park there early in the morning.


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