Supes, neighbors block Ford GoBike’s citywide expansion

By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez : sfexaminer – excerpt

Ford GoBike’s expansion has been halted and slowed across The City, and the reason given is often the same — there wasn’t enough notice given.

From Glen Park to the Haight, the Mission District and most recently, the Marina, residents are pushing back against the rental bike docks, which are usually placed in parking spaces meant for cars.

And as the bike rental service is on the cusp of its planned expansion to 7,000 bikes Bay Area-wide, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors is also increasingly pushing back against it and the Lyft-owned company that operates the program, Motivate, by saying that not enough notice has been offered to neighbors about new station installations…

But while each supervisor sees this problem through a neighborhood-focused lense, each individual battle adds up: The bikeshare-slowdown now stretches citywide… (more)

First we want to thank our supervisors for supporting the rights of residents and the public to determine how our streets are used. Stopping the spread of corporate controlled curb space is important. Some people may not be aware that the Board of Supervisors passed Ordinance 180089 to allow the public to make these decisions by giving the supervisors greater control and oversight of the SFMTA Board decisions. Look it up if you are not familiar with the ordinance: https://metermadness.wordpress.com/actions/sfmta-review/

We need some data on the number of stations to bikes Motivate and other private entities have installed in the city and the number of vehicles assigned to private parking spots. We have noted a number of GoBikes parked in public bike parking spots that are meant for private bikes and a lot of empty Motivate racks.

Perhaps we need to ask Randy Rentschler, director of legislation and public affairs with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, which negotiated Ford GoBike’s exclusivity contract to provide docked bikeshares within the Bay Area, what the intent of that contract was or is. He claims he just wrote the contracts and it is up to us to deal with them. If the public objects to them being placed on our streets they should honor our objections. We don’t need an excuse.

The above mentioned ordinance is a good start in taking back control of our streets, but the voters of San Francisco may want to consider a Charter Amendment as well if these matters and others are not resolved to our satisfaction soon. Let Mayor Breed and the Board of Supervisors and the candidates running for office know how you feel. They are in office to serve the public not the corporations.

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Privatization of our Streets

Multiple media stories over the last week prove that corporations plan to control our streets. They are fighting for them. What are we doing to keep them?

Lyft’s Big Bike-Share Buy Is About Ruling the Streets: https://metermadness.wordpress.com/2018/07/05/lyfts-big-bike-share-buy-is-about-ruling-the-streets/

The SFMTA has not done a great job of protecting our interest and may come under fire. Follow the action this week: https://cancalendar.wordpress.com/special-events/

Supervisors passed an Ordinance to help us. We need to ask for their help now.
Ordinance: https://metermadness.wordpress.com/actions/sfmta-review/  
Charter Amendment: https://metermadness.wordpress.com/actions/charter-amendment/

Stay in formed. Demand Respect. Support the candidates running for supervisor who will protect our city and our streets. Put SFMTA needs listen the voters, not their staff.

San Francisco Transportation Funding Ballot Measure

by alevin : greencaltrain – excerpt

On July 22, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted to place a transportation measure on the ballot, supported by Supervisor Wiener, to fund Muni and active transportation in proportion to population growth…

The San Francisco ballot in 2014 will also include a $500 Million General Obligation (GO) bond to pay for transportation capital improvements, improving Muni reliability and speed, planning for the downtown extension and funding pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure…

Meanwhile, opponents of transit and active transportation have launched a ballot measure to end San Francisco’s transit-first policy, freeze parking rates and build more parking supply… (more)

Three ballot measures on the November ballot. Two asking for more money and one asking for more balance. Voters will cast their opinions on SFMTA priorities that have created gridlock and eliminated thousands of parking spaces in the last two years. Citizens and public officials are demanding accountability.

 

Siemens selected for San Francisco LRV order

by  railjournal – excerpt

SAN FRANCISCO Municipal Transportation Authority (SFMTA) has recommended awarding a contract worth up to $US 1.2bn to Siemens for up to 260 S200 SF LRVs, which will replace the city’s ageing Breda trams and expand the fleet for the opening of the Central Subway line.

SFMTA’s board of directors is expected to approve the contract today and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors is expected to give its own approval in September.

The first prototype vehicle will be delivered in December 2016 and a further 23 units are due to arrive by 2018… (more)

The lack of seats on these cars will make these cars difficult for the elderly and the disabled to use them. Hope that means the SFMTA has future plans for a lot more ADA-friendly vehicles.

Transportation funding faces key test after Mayor Lee flips on VLF increase

By   : sfbg – excerpt

Facing a deadline of tomorrow’s [Tues/10] San Francisco Board of Supervisors meeting to introduce measures for the November ballot, advocates for addressing the city’s massive long-term transportation funding gap still hope to introduce an increase in the local vehicle license fee, even though the once-supportive Mayor Ed Lee has gotten cold feet.

While Lee and all 11 of the supervisors support a $500 million general obligation bond that would mostly go toward capital improvements for Muni — a measure almost certain to be approved by its July 22 deadline — the local VLF was originally presented by Lee as a companion measure to fund Muni, street resurfacing, and bike and pedestrian safety improvements.

But when Lee got spooked by a poll in December showing 44 percent voter approval for increasing the VLF and the need to actually do some campaigning for the measure, he withdrew his support and left cycling, streets, and safety all severely underfunded. A report last year by the Mayor’s Transportation Task Force pegged the city’s transportation infrastructure needs at $10.1 billion over 15 years, recommending just $3 billion in new funding to meet that need, including the embattled VLF measure… (more)

Firefighters concerned about narrowing SF streets

By Eric Rasmussen : ktvu – excerpt – video

SAN FRANCISCO — The recent efforts to make San Francisco streets more pedestrian friendly may have the unintended consequences of slowing the response time of fire trucks answering emergency calls.
San Francisco streets can be frustrating and dangerous for pedestrians and drivers alike. Just ask San Francisco firefighters.
KTVU recently rode along with teams on two hook-and-ladder trucks in the city. They said some tight streets are getting tighter…
“They’re making bike lanes and putting palm trees in the middle, taking out a lane of traffic,” said firefighter Jim Fewell as he navigated down a stretch of Cesar Chavez.
Streetscape plans for the busy thoroughfare include a wider median, trees and something called “corner bulb outs.”…
Those “bulb outs” and wider sidewalks are a key part of pedestrian safety legislation passed by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors and written by Scott Wiener.
“We have an epidemic of pedestrians being hit on our streets,” said Wiener.
But San Francisco firefighters argue the changes could make navigating city streets even more difficult.
“We don’t want to keep piling on these challenges,” said San Francisco Fire Dept. spokesperson Mindy Talmadge. “That will affect our response time.”
Response times are already ticking up…
When asked if city officials were trying to make it as miserable as possible to drive in San Francisco, Wiener replied “The goal is to give people really good options other than driving a car.”… (more)

If you feel that this is a dangerous situation, let the Supervisors know how you feel: https://metermadness.wordpress.com/district-supervisors

San Francisco Board of Supervisors Hosts Hearing on MTA Parking Plans

By Keith Burbank : potreroview – excerpt

Last month the San Francisco Board of Supervisor’s Neighborhood Services and Safety Committee asked San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s (SFMTA) director of transportation, Ed Reiskin, to discuss the agency’s parking meter plans. Committee members presiding over the hearing included District 9 Supervisor David Campos, who represents the Mission, District 1 Supervisor Eric Mar; and District 2 Supervisor Mark Farrell, who sat in for District 7 Supervisor Norman Yee, who couldn’t be present, with District 10 Supervisor Malia Cohen also in attendance. Reiskin answered questions from the supervisors, provided data on parking revenues, and explained the rationale driving parking meter expansion.
The “MTA is on the wrong track,” said Cohen, who explained that her main frustration with the agency relates to its lack of a comprehensive planning, with SFMTA’s transit, parking and enforcement divisions going in different directions. The supervisor added that transportation and associated infrastructure wasn’t keeping up with development and growth in her district. Worse, complained Cohen, in some instances SFMTA has been considering cuts in service, has been inconsistent in its enforcement of the residential parking permit program, and the agency’s plans don’t adequately acknowledge the parking needs of production, distribution, and repair (PDR) businesses…
Campos said he appreciated the agency’s effort to listen to the community. But he pointed out that the Eastern Neighborhoods Plan calls for protecting PDR businesses, and asked that SFMTA follow this policy…
Reiskin acknowledged that parking management affects the economic viability of commercial districts…
Farrell asked the transportation director how parking management efforts can meet the needs of families — especially ones with multiple children, and both parents working — who depend on cars…
Farrell said residents have told him that SFMTA seems to be making car ownership more challenging, rather than making public transit more attractive. “I hear that time and time again,” Farrell said. The supervisor insisted that making transit more attractive should come first…
Campos told Reiskin that there should be no artificial deadline for the parking meter expansion. Instead, SFMTA should be sure to hear the concerns of residents and business owners.
“We’ll continue to take the time that it needs,” Reiskin responded… (more)

New Bicycle Parking Requirements Approved by Planning Commission

sf-planning.org – excerpt

New Bicycle Parking Requirements Approved by Planning Commission…
The proposal is anticipated to go before the Board of Supervisors in June 2013.
If the proposal is adopted, garages and buildings owned and leased by the City will be required to upgrade the bicycle facilities within one year to comply with the new Planning Code standards. The proposal will also require new and renovated privately owned commercial buildings, and new residential buildings to comply with the bicycle parking requirements… (more)

 

Economic cleansing, part two

Guardian Editorial – excerpt

Don’t let realtors’ cash determine the future of San Francisco
EDITORIAL
Over the next two years, tens of thousands of San Franciscans will face the loss of their homes. If the current tech boom is anything like the last one, the impact on the city will be the economic equivalent of a massive earthquake, with displacement transforming entire neighborhoods and low-income tenants, artists, writers, musicians, small merchants, cheap restaurants, and nonprofits getting chucked aside to make way for an influx of wealthier people and the businesses that serve them.
That’s why the supervisorial races are so critically important — and why groups like the Association of Realtors, which wants to limit tenant protections, is throwing such a huge amount of money into two district races… (more)

What is wrong with the status quo? Why do people move to San Francisco if they don’t like it as is? San Francisco residents revere our city as a jewel, like Paris, to be preserved with our views, quaint neighborhoods, and distinct cultures intact.
Being progressive is of no political consequence when the primary decision is whether to preserve the city as it is or tear it down and rebuild it. This is where the denser population along a transit corridor argument begins to distort reality.
Look behind the green mask of the SFMTA’s allegiance to Transit First anti car plans and you will find the connection between the “greening” argument and the green money of the developers intent on displacing property owners as fast as they can so they can grab up their land on the cheap.
Ask the folks in Potrero Hill, Parkmerced, and North Beach about the city’s plans to dislocate them, or crowd them out with tall buildings blocking their views. Then look at your own neighborhood and watch them rezone portions of it to lift height limits. Or, watch the efforts to turn your residential neighborhoods into mixed-use commercial and residential zones, so they can deny you residential parking rights and implant meters in front of your homes.
Do you want to restructure San Francisco into a high tech futuristic city devoid of views and historic buildings, or do you want to preserve what we have? That is the question voters need to concern themselves with. Who best represents your interests?
Supervisors and Candidates statements

 

Subway utlity work begins in North Beach despite lawsuit

abclocal.go.com – excerpt

SAN FRANCISCO — Over the protests of neighbors — one of whom has sued the city — crews Monday are starting to relocate utility lines in North Beach as part of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s Central Subway project…

The planned work has prompted one man to file a lawsuit, and other neighbors and merchants who are angry about how the construction will affect them are threatening to file a second one.

Marc Bruno, a North Beach resident with the group Save North Beach, filed a lawsuit on July 31 asking a San Francisco Superior Court judge for an immediate temporary restraining order to block the project.

That request was denied last Thursday, but an injunction hearing is scheduled in the case on Aug. 29, Bruno said…

(more)

Related stories:
Despite Lawsuit, Central Subway Work Kicks Off In North Beach

We just learned that Marc Bruno is running for District 3 Supervisor, against President of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, David Chiu.