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.
And do not give them any more sales tax dollars. No on Prop K!


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DA’s Office Declines To File Charges Against At-Fault Driver Who Struck And Killed Folsom Street Cyclist

Sasha Lekach : BayCityNews – excerpt

The San Francisco District Attorney’s Office has declined to file charges in the death last August of a 24-year-old bike commuter in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood.

Amelie Le Moullac, who lived in San Francisco and worked at the San Francisco office of the marketing firm Voce Communications, was killed during her morning commute on Aug. 14 when a truck made a right turn and struck her at Sixth and Folsom streets.

The driver was not initially cited, but was later found to be at fault after a San Francisco Bicycle Coalition member found surveillance video of the crash and turned that over to investigators.

About a month ago, prosecutors told Le Moullac’s family that the district attorney’s office was unable to charge the driver, district attorney’s spokesman Alex Bastian said this morning.

After the incident, the Police Department was criticized for how it handled the investigation and for the apparent derisive remarks aimed toward bicyclists that a police sergeant said at a memorial event a week after Le Moullac died.

San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr apologized on behalf of the sergeant in the weeks after the fatal crash and said the incident would be reviewed by the city’s Office of Citizen Complaints, which handles reports of police misconduct.

In January, Suhr made another public apology at a City Hall hearing about how the case was handled.

At the time, he said investigators were working to obtain an arrest warrant for the driver.

Le Moullac’s family filed a wrongful death suit in San Francisco Superior Court last September against Milpitas-based Daylight Foods, the produce company using the truck, and the driver, Gilberto Alcantar.

According to court records, the case is slated to go to trial later this year.


SFMTA to Widen Bike Lane, Remove Traffic Lane on Folsom in SoMa

by Aaron Bialick : sf.streetsblog – excerpt

The SFMTA will re-purpose a general traffic lane to widen and buffer the existing bike lane on Folsom Street between Fourth and 11th Streets by the end of the year, the agency announced today.

The pilot project, which comes about six weeks after 24-year-old Amelie Le Moullac was killed on her bike by a truck driver at Folsom and Sixth Streets, will upgrade the current narrow bike lane to a buffered bike lane, apparently similar to a project implemented on Eighth Street last July,  when that street was repaved…
In addition to providing a less stressful and more visible lane for bicycle commuters on Folsom, the redesign should help tame motor traffic and shorten the distances pedestrians must cross in front of moving motor vehicles on one of SoMa’s notoriously dangerous one-way, high-speed motorways.
“The buffered bicycle lane in this pilot will create a safer, less intimidating street,” said Mayor Ed Lee in a statement, “while giving us an opportunity to study how measures like these can be implemented in dense and rapidly growing areas of San Francisco to make our city streets safer for everyone.”…
a two-way protected bike lane on Folsom is called for in the Eastern Neighborhoods Transportation Implementation Planning Study (EN TRIPS) and the Central Corridor Plan, but it’s undergoing environmental review, which is expected to be completed in June 2015. The protected bikeway wouldn’t be implemented until some time after that…  (more)

SFMTA Announces Folsom Street Pilot Project
Dedicated Bike Lane Plan For Folsom Street Expected To Cost $253,000

The SFMTA needs to spend some of their PR funds informing the public what the rules of the road are.
The fastest way to solve the cyclists problems on Folsom Street is to install signs that say “Bicycle and right turn lane only.” They have those signs for the bus lanes downtown. How hard is it to put them in the bike lanes.

Cyclists Speak Out Regarding Hazards They’ve Faced On Folsom Street

– excerpt

Dozens of bicyclists heading down San Francisco’s Folsom Street Wednesday morning stopped to sign letters to Mayor Ed Lee asking for the city to improve safety for cyclists in the city’s South of Market neighborhood…
Some of the coalition’s ideas include fast-tracking a redesign plan that would make Folsom Street a two-way street with separate bike lanes.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency is analyzing two options for making Folsom Street safer—keeping the street one-way but with fewer lanes for cars or making it a two-way street, agency spokesman Paul Rose said.
The proposed changes are part of a citywide bicycle plan. The changes would still need to undergo an extensive review process before being implemented. That process is expected to take until June 2015, Rose said.
At the earliest, revamping of the street would begin 2017, Rose said(more)

Is this the name of the game? Every Street in town must now get signatures to keep their parking and the traffic flowing? What is the point of forcing everyone to slow down so the bicycles can speed past us? No wonder the animosity is growing between the cars and the bikes.