Sharks sue to slow BART San Jose extension in parking dispute

By Michael Cabanatuan : sfgate – excerpt

The San Jose Sharks, locked in an NHL playoff battle, unleashed a different kind of fight this week, filing a lawsuit to slow the BART extension to downtown San Jose until a dispute over parking can be resolved…


The suit comes a month after the VTA approved environmental studies for the BART extension through downtown San Jose to Santa Clara, and a week after BART agreed. Plans include a stop at Diridon Station, across Santa Clara Street from the arena, which hosts not only Sharks games but concerts and other events.

“We strongly support the BART project through downtown San Jose,” said Sharks President John Tortora in a statement. “However, we don’t think the current plan addresses several important issues for SAP Center, including a promise to ensure adequate parking in the Diridon area and a safe and accessible environment for our customers during construction.”… (more)

Ambitious SF bike plan requires attitude shifts

 SFChronicle – excerpt

If you think San Francisco has gone bonkers for bikes with green-painted riding lanes and a ride-sharing program due this summer, get ready for more. City policymakers want to more than double the level of two-wheel transportation over the next five years with a batch of new ideas that could cost $600 million…
For all its visibility on major streets, cycling remains only a blip on the transit radar, accounting for just 3.5 percent of the daily transportation picture. But this small share has built up quickly, leading the Municipal Transportation Agency to dream about bumping the figure to 8 to 10 percent of all trips by 2018…
But the heart of the plan is about divvying up street pavement, already a combat zone featuring private vehicles, taxis, Muni and delivery trucks. Inserting bike use into this mix will have a major impact…
As ridership has grown, so have bike accidents. Even mighty Market Street, perhaps the most tested, measured and enhanced bike pathway, comes with hazards that can make it inadequate and unsafe. Streets that can carry more riders in safe conditions must be redesigned. Parking garage slots need to be reconfigured to hold dozens of bikes, not a few cars. Theft-proof spots to lock up a bike should be set up. Traffic lights that regulate both drivers and riders should be installed.
In a perfect world, these are all sensible ideas. But the bill won’t be small. The cheapest set of choices comes in at $200 million with the full menu costing $600 million. The plan offered no firm financial sources, meaning that money will be a problem.
What the study also glosses over is the necessary change in public attitude. Merchants and residents along Polk street – designated for a badly needed north-south bike pathway – are protesting the loss of parking. As other streets are tapped for greater bike use, there will be similar objections.
Both money and public acceptance are in short supply when it comes to carving up San Francisco’s crowded streets. That’s not a reason for dismissing the bike plan, but it should be a warning sign as a major plan pedals forward.. (more)

Voters are ready to revolt against the SFMTA. Most people feel the priority should be to get people where they need to go, not tell them how to get there.
Wait until the BART strike hits and there are no parking spots for all those “casual car shares” being invited to help pick up the slack. We shall see the results of the mass elimination of parking by the SFMTA in their haste to force us out of our cars.
Adding insult to injury, SFMTA raised parking fees and fines. SF now holds the dubious honor of charging the the highest rates in the nation.