Proposal for $9 tolls on Bay Bridge, $8 on other bridges gets big boost

By Lizzie Johnson : sfgate – excerpt

Night-Bridge

Sunset cruise on the Bay Bridge photo by zrants

A measure to raise Bay Area bridge tolls to $9 on the Bay Bridge and $8 on others over several years took a major step forward Wednesday when a key transportation committee unanimously recommended putting it before voters in June…

But to get before voters, the recommendation will need approval from the full Bay Area Toll Authority, which usually follows the committee’s lead. A vote is expect Jan. 24.

If the authority gives the measure the go-ahead, the Board of Supervisors in each of the nine affected counties will make the final vote to place it on each county’s ballot for June 5 as Regional Measure 3. If it passes, the toll hikes will affect only drivers on the Bay Area’s seven state-owned bridges. The Golden Gate Bridge would be excluded. Commuters who cross two bridges to get to their destination would receive a 50 percent discount on their second crossing if they have a FasTrak pass…

The measure also includes a proposal to create an inspector general whose job would be to examine BART finances and operations…(more)

Good to know that they will use the increase in bridge funds to hire another high-paid consultant. That sounds like a winning strategy for workers who are paying an average of 40% of their shrinking incomes on housing. I’m sure they will jump at the prospect of paying higher bridge tolls.

 

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Parking control officers in a huff over violent public, want city protection

By : sfexaminer – excerpt

photo of a San Francisco parking control officer on the hood of a moving car that went viral last month seems to have captured the mood of The City’s parking enforcement officers.

Things are so bad, the workers and their union picketed outside of the Hall of Justice on Thursday afternoon — along with nurses who work for the city — to pressure city leaders to do something. Dealing with assaults and attacks on these city workers are increasingly becoming a part of their jobs, nurses and officers say, and they want The City protect them.

Even though there is no indication that such violence has increased dramatically recently — there were only 12 reported incidents of parking control officers facing assault or battery this year, according to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency — workers feel too little is being done… (more)

Muni gets red carpet treatment on Market

By Jerold Chinn : sfbay – excerpt

Market Street drivers are going to start seeing red on the roadway very soon.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will start painting red transit-only lanes Friday night on Market Street between Fifth and 12th streets to let drivers know that the lane is for Muni use only.

Work for the $1.8 million project will begin from 10:30 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. on Saturday, which will require a partial lane closure of the eastbound track lane of Market Street between Fifth and Mason streets…

The westbound center lane of Market Street — currently open to all vehicles between Steuart and Eighth streets — will become transit-only from Fifth to Eighth.

The SFMTA has already painted red transit-only lanes on Church Street, Third Street and on Geary Boulevard and O’Farrell Street transit-only lane… (more)

Drivers are already seeing red. They will get to have their say in November when they vote to Restore Transportation Balance to the city. Having learned not to trust the SFMTA to do the right thing with bond money, many will not support the $5oo million bond measure either. That one needs a two thirds  majority to pass.

Here is a good example of what SFMTA does with bond money:  5 Fulton Capital Improvements

Bike Lockers Could Replace Parking Spaces in San Francisco

By Chris Roberts : bynbcbayarea – excerpt

Up to 86 bike lockers could be installed in San Francisco. San Francisco could become the first major American city to replace parking spaces for automobiles with lockers for bicycles, according to the San Francisco Examiner. Eighty-six new bike lockers could be among the up to $11.8 million in capital projects for bike parking, according to the newspaper, all recommendations in a plan examining where to stash bikes written for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency… (more)

Do the politicians really think the taxpaying car owner voters will put up with this kind of discrimination?

S.F.’s parklets program learns from failure, moves ahead

By : sfexaminer.com – excerpt

On Haight Street, two new parking spaces where a parklet was recently removed highlight the growing pains of a popular open-space program and what The City can learn from the failure.
In July, a parklet outside of Martin Macks bar in the Upper Haight was the first to be removed after nearly a year of controversy, and Planning Department officials running the program have learned from this incident and others that have cropped up around The City.
San Francisco pioneered parklets, starting in 2009 when then-Mayor Gavin Newsom asked the Department of Public Works, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and the Planning Department to come up with a “temporary urbanism program.” The concept the agencies came up with allows businesses, nonprofits and property owners to apply for permits to convert adjacent on-street parking into open spaces that are open and accessible, though also removable… (more)