Muni Proposing Major Changes To L Taraval Line

cbslocal – excerpt – (video)

Don Ford reports on planned changes to L Taraval Muni line in SF’s Sunset District… (more)

RELATED:

SFMTA approves contentious Taraval Street changes | SFBay :: San Francisco Bay Area News and Sports

With Unanimous Vote, SFMTA Approves Changes To L-Taraval Corridor | Hoodline

Unpopular Taraval Street plan approved in the name of safety – SFGate

SFMTA approves controversial L-Taraval changes in name of safety – The San Francisco Examiner

SFMTA Board Unanimously Approves L-Taraval Boarding Islands | Streetsblog San Francisco

 

Sunset Tunnel’s crumbling interior may end $19 million renovation

The cost of building San Francisco’s Sunset Tunnel has just grown by $3 million more, after the discovery of a crumbling interior inside the tunnel has the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency doling out even more money to see if the project is salvageable.

The Sunset Tunnel tracks for the N-Line were built in 1928 and are now used for the city’s N-Judah light-rail vehicles.

A report from the SFMTA has found that the during the tunnel’s renovation last winter, the conduit began to crumble and exposed “live feeder cables,” adding that there is a “high probability of hidden damages” that might cause the Muni to stop operating in the location for good… (more)

Looks like SFMTA has more important things to do than they can keep track of. Why are they spending money on Red Lanes and BRTs when they need to shore up tunnels and bridges? It boggles the mind sometimes where the priorities lie. If they can’t take care of this problem a lot more people will start driving again.

L-Taraval changes head to SFMTA board

By Jerold Chinn : sfbay – excerpt

Contentious changes along Muni’s L-Taraval route could get decided Tuesday.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s Board of Directors on Tuesday are expected to vote on a final proposal on the L-Taraval Rapid Project.

Residents and merchants have been at odds with transit officials on proposed improvements including adding boarding islands at some stops, and removal of other stops altogether…

The original proposal had called for boarding islands at all L-Taraval transit stops that did not have them, but transit officials comprised with businesses to instead pilot a program for six months that does not remove any parking on Taraval at 26th, 30th, 32nd, 35th and 40th avenues.

Instead of transit boarding islands, a large sign will get placed to warn drivers that they must stop to allow for passengers to board and disembark trains, along with a painted white solid line in the traffic lane where vehicles must stop behind the train. Both treatments would be placed along Taraval to match the configuration of a two-car train.

Additionally, painted markings will also be present in the traffic lane to warn drivers ahead of time of transit stops ahead…

Documents from the transit agency said transit officials will work with merchants to develop an education campaign alongside working with the San Francisco Police Department on enforcement at these five transit stop locations during the evaluation of the pilot.

New flashing lights on trains when the doors open will also be part of the pilot, to bring more attention to drivers that they must stop.

The pilot changes will be installed in Fall 2016. If there is not at least a 90 percent compliance rate of drivers stopping where they are supposed to, or if there is a collision with a pedestrian and vehicle during the six-month evaluation, officials will pursue boarding islands at those five locations, SFMTA documents said…

Paula Katz, a resident in the Parkside neighborhood, started a petition to save all of the L-Taraval stops, which she has submitted to the transit agency. She said the removal of the transit stops would put a burden to riders especially for the elderly who shop at places like at Safeway on Taraval and 17th Avenue.

Early implementation

SFMTA documents show the transit agency wants to carry out specific positions of the project earlier than what was originally proposed.

Officials plant to start the transit-only lane early, with signage and painted symbols, but no red paint. Officials said they will monitor the effects of traffic flow and congestion for one year to due to concerns from the community that a loss of a travel lane would cause traffic congestion.

Painted clear zones will also be implemented early at locations where the transit agency are proposing boarding islands. Vehicles would shift to the right as if there were a boarding island present at 10 locations. Parking spots at those locations would no longer be available.

The public can still give public comment on the final proposal of the L-Taraval project at the SFMTA’s Board of Directors meeting Tuesday at 1 p.m. in room 400 of City Hall… (more)

Major L-Taraval changes up for vote Tuesday

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

taravalcard

Taraval Street is about to transform in the name of transit.

The proposed changes are contentious. As transit officials have proposed to make the L-Taraval line safer, neighbors in the sleepy Sunset district have booed and hissed at transit officials in community meetings…

Now, a hard-won compromise was reached between those who want the L-Taraval line to be safer, and those fearful businesses will be harmed.

Most sides still have gripes with the project…

“We’re not saying we want no islands, we’re saying we got to this point and let’s test it out,” Chow said. “Because every implementation [the SFMTA has] done so far has upset every community they’ve been in.”…

As a compromise, the SFMTA plan up for vote on Tuesday would paint stripes that would ban cars from being in part of a lane, instead of creating boarding islands at four of the proposed locations closest to businesses.

Lighting the way..

On a recent tour of Muni Metro East, a light-rail vehicle repair yard, the San Francisco Examiner was shown L-Taraval train No. 1428.

Train 1428 is a guinea pig for new ultra-bright LED lights running along the door and on the front and back of the train. It will likely be a “modest” cost, Haley said, to help car drivers better see trains and pedestrians in the foggy stretch of Taraval…(more)

This really is a case of neighborhoods uniting to fight the giant street eater. Citizens are tired of this constant disruption and changes in their lives. There is no point to most of it. Why is SFMTA spending money they don’t have to harass the voters? Yes on L and No on J and K and if you can show up to protest tomorrow, September 20th at the SFMTA Board meeting, please do. See above for details.

 

 

Keep Our L Taraval Stops

Hello Supporters of Keeping Our L Taraval Stops,

Below are links to the staff’s presentation to the SFMTA Board of Directors for their meeting on Tuesday September 20 at 1 pm. at City Hall Room 400. All of the arguments that we made at the July 22 Public Hearing were rejected, and the staff rebutted each of our arguments, and specifically discussed on pp. 22-23 why the stops at 17th, 24th inbound, and 28 should be removed.  If you are interested, you can skim through the presentation to see what they said about the items that interest you, and you can rebut it in your emailed public comment if you want.
Staff Report PDF
Slide Presentation PDF

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

1.  Please make every effort to attend the meeting on September 20 at 1:00 pm in City Hall, Room 400.  We are the only item on the regular agenda and should come up by 1:30 or 2.  The staff will present the Project, and then we will make our public comments.  We will be allowed to speak only 1-2 minutes.  We need the largest turnout possible to have an affect on the Board’s vote.  Let us know if you can attend.

2.  Email a public comment, even if you are attending the meeting.  We found out that If emailed by Monday noon, the Board members will receive it in time, but the sooner they receive the emails, the more time they will have to read them. Sample letter

3.  Forward this email and the l-taraval-save-our-stops-postcard-for-9-20-board-meeting-jpeg to your friends and family members, post the relevant information on Facebook and your other social media sites, and encourage your friends/family to email the Board (with cc to us) and to attend the meeting on Tuesday September 20 if they can.

Thank you so much for your support.  We are all in this together, and we need your help now!

Paula Katz
Save Our L Taraval Stops!

Ford Partnering with Global Cities on New Transportation; Chariot Shuttle to Be Acquired, Ford GoBike to Launch in San Francisco

By media.ford – excerpt

  • Ford is teaming up with major global cities – starting with San Francisco – to help solve congestion issues and help people move more easily, today and in the future
  • Ford Smart Mobility LLC to acquire Chariot, a San Francisco-based crowd-sourced shuttle service that plans to grow Ford’s dynamic shuttle services globally, providing affordable and convenient transportation to at least five additional markets in 18 months
  • Collaborating with Motivate across San Francisco and the Bay Area, Ford is adding more transportation options for residents and visitors with new Ford GoBike bike sharing
  • Ford establishes new City Solutions team as part of its Ford Smart Mobility LLC to lead expanding mobility efforts with key cities worldwide

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 9, 2016 – Ford is teaming up with major global cities – starting with San Francisco – to solve congestion issues and help people move more easily, today and in the future.

The company today is announcing an agreement to acquire Chariot, a San Francisco-based crowd-sourced shuttle service, and collaborating with bike-sharing provider Motivate to expand its transportation solutions in city centers. Ford also is establishing a new City Solutions team to work with cities around the world on their transportation needs…(more)

Bay Bridge rainy-day fund runs low, leaving toll-payers on hook

By Michael Cabanatuan : sfchronicle – excerpt

The new Bay Bridge span, beset with construction problems, could cost as much as $270 million to complete.

Three years after it opened, the eastern span of the Bay Bridge has been beset with so many problems that a multimillion-dollar rainy-day fund set aside for unanticipated expenses has been nearly devoured, leaving toll-payers responsible for any additional costs.

In a report sent to the Legislature on Thursday, the three-person committee that oversees the $6.8 billion bridge project said just $67.7 million remains in the contingency fund, far short of the estimated $184 million bridge authorities say they need. The fund was $900 million when it was created in 2005.

The committee said the estimated cost to complete the span — including any remaining repair work — could run as high as $270 million or as low as $100 million. But in any case, the Bay Area Toll Authority will have to pay the bill — with money collected from drivers crossing the Bay Area’s seven state-owned toll bridges.

Toll hikes will not be needed, according to officials with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, which operates the authority.

“We’re not going to raise the tolls to pay for this,” said Randy Rentschler, a commission spokesman. “There’s no question about that.”

Instead, cash that the authority has already banked for improvements on the region’s toll bridges and their approaches will cover the costs…(more)

Nearly three decades after Loma Prieta earthquake, Folsom Street sees new life

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

In 1989, the Loma Prieta earthquake wreaked havoc throughout the Bay Area.

But nearly 27 years later, one part of its legacy — the removal of a controversial freeway — may finally lead to the revitalization of Folsom Street.

Part of Folsom Street runs in the shadow of what was once the Embarcadero Freeway, which was torn down after a bitter public battle ended in the 1989 earthquake that rendered the freeway unsafe.

Down came the freeway. But, now, Folsom Street will rise.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency on Tuesday approved a series of bike and pedestrian changes to Folsom Street, a key approval in a project that aims to transform the roadway into a hub of nightlife and walkability by early 2018…(more)

Which universe do these people live in? Take a look at the photo at the top of the page and tell me what is wrong with the story. This is a major construction zone. No sidewalk work and no road work will make this safe for pedestrians until the construction is complete.
Why is the SFMTA or DPW or whoever is responsible for scheduling work on Folsom starting a sidewalk or street project before the big construction projects are complete?
I walked past a rather small construction project on 17th Street today and was forced to walk into the street to get around the site and the rather large truck parked next to the site.
How is working on streets or sidewalks in front large construction projects under way on Folsom a good idea or a safe way to proceed?
Folsom Street is a major arterial that connects the Embarcadero with Cesar Chavez. There is a Fire Station at Folsom and 19th Street and two hospitals nearby. All this gridlock in a construction zone will make access for emergency vehicles very difficult, if not impossible.
Enough of this gridlock. Let’s pass Prop L so we can demand the SFMTA limit itself to one large project at a time instead of three or four. stopsfmta.com
And do not give them any more sales tax dollars. No on Prop K!

TAKE BACK OUR STREETS!

Continue reading

Muni’s $2.4 Million Mission Transformation Saves 2 Minutes, Costs Shopkeepers More

Phil Matier : cbslocal – excerpt – (video)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — San Francisco’s plan for Muni in the Mission District promised to speed up commutes, but the time saved has come at a startling cost: a million dollars a minute…

For the past five months crews have been busy remaking 23 blocks of Mission Street to make it more bus friendly, putting transit only lanes, taking out parking and rerouting traffic.

The price tag on the project? $2.4 million.

Muni says the transformation will save commuters about two minutes.

Local business owners say the money, along with the time saved, is just not worth it.

“We support better service for Muni riders, but this is basically hurting the businesses and the economic vitality of this community,” says Roberto Hernandez of the Mission Merchants Association.

The trouble is faster buses also means fewer cars coming in to shop.

Take, for example, the busy intersection at Cesar Chavez Boulevard.

“They created what we are calling the “Trump wall” – people cannot drive onto Mission street. They are forced to make a right-hand turn,” says Hernandez.

Drivers are forced to go around the block to get back on Mission Street. No sooner than you get back on Mission, you’re ordered off again, and the again , and still again…

“What it has done is stopped people from coming onto Mission Street,” says Hernandez. “Consequently, for over 300 businesses revenue has dropped drastically over the last five months.

City Hall feels the time-saving project is worth it…(more)

If you don’t agree with City Hall that “it’s ok to spend 2.4 million dollars to save 2 minutes”, cut off the normal flow of traffic on a busy commercial cross-town street, put hundreds  businesses and employees at risk, force elderly and young people to walk longer distances to catch more crowded buses with less seats, support Proposition L, the SFMTA Charter Amendment, that calls for changes on the SFMTA Board. Get the details and join the campaign: stopsfmta.com

 

 

Google to launch ride-sharing service in Bay Area, taking on Uber, Lyft

By Riley McDermid : bizjournals – excerpt

Google will launch its own ride-sharing service this fall in the San Francisco Bay Area, taking on Uber and Lyft, after launching a test pilot program in May, news reports said Tuesday.

Google will connect riders via its traffic and commute-sharing app Waze and will recruit drivers through the app as well, reports the Wall Street Journal, which broke the news.

Google began a pilot program around its Mountain View headquarters in May that enabled thousands of local workers at pre-designated companies to use the Waze navigation app to connect with fellow commuters.

“In the San Francisco pilot, any area Waze user can sign up as a driver, but ridership is limited to roughly 25,000 San Francisco-area employees of several large firms, including Google, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Adobe Systems Inc. Riders are limited to two rides a day—intended to ferry them to and from work,” the paper reports.

“In the planned expansion, anyone with the Waze app in the San Francisco area could sign up to be a rider or driver, the person said. Though Google currently doesn’t take a cut, the company is exploring different rates in Israel and San Francisco, the person said.”…(more)

Google will not need any drivers for long. They will shift to using their driverless cars as soon as they can to reduce their costs. Drivers will be out to lunch for good. Hope they know their days are numbered.