San Francisco Bicycle Plan Injunction Finally Lifted by Judge Peter Busch

Here’s the news from the office of City Attorney Dennis J. Herrera: The Bicycle Plan injunction has beeen lifted.

Judge Busch finds that City has complied with CEQA, grants City’s request to allow remaining safety, usability improvements

SAN FRANCISCO (Aug. 6, 2010) — San Francisco Superior Court Judge Peter J. Busch issued an order late this afternoon finding San Francisco in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, in seeking to implement its Bicycle Plan citywide. The ruling effectively dissolves an injunction that continued to prohibit City engineers from moving forward on some planned bicycle route improvements intended to enhance the safety and usability of streets for bicyclists. A previous order from Nov. 2009 lifted significant portions of the original 2006 injunction, but left limited restrictions intact while the adequacy of environmental review for certain projects was adjudicated.

“I am very gratified by the ruling from Judge Busch, who carefully considered an enormous amount of evidence in this case, and found that the City met its environmental review requirements,” said City Attorney Dennis Herrera. “Today’s decision clears an important hurdle toward making San Francisco safer for bicyclists, and healthier for all of us. I am very thankful to the many dedicated public servants involved in this policy initiative and meeting the stringent legal requirements to fulfill it, including Mayor Gavin Newsom and the Board of Supervisors, the Municipal Transportation Agency, and the Planning Department.”

The case is: Coalition for Adequate Review et al. v. City and County of San Francisco, San Francisco Superior Court No. 505-509, filed July 28, 2005

So there you have it. “Crazy”* Rob Anderson has driven his dead-bang winner of a lawsuit, one that put him on the front page of the Wall Street Journal…

…and made the City and County** look like a bunch of fools, into the ground. He didn’t know when to quit. (The time to quit would have been when the City finally complied with the requirements of CEQA.)

Who knows, maybe he’ll come up with another beautiful lawsuit idea, another slam dunk, but don’t count on it.

Sic Transit Gloria Anderson

*That’s what they called him, out of frustration, back when they had to pay attention to him.

**”Hey remember when we said we were going to start working on those reports earlier and go faster? Forget all that. Actually, we’re going to start later and go slower. We were going to tell you sooner but…”

[UPDATE: The Mayor would like to add a few words. See them after the jump.]

Today’s order by the San Francisco Superior Court heralds a new era for bicycling
San Francisco, CA—Mayor Gavin Newsom and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) applauded the order issued by the San Francisco Superior Court today that lifts the 2006 injunction that prevented the City from implementing portions of the San Francisco Bicycle Plan.  The SFMTA has announced its aggressive plan to move forward on 45 bike lane projects in light of the end of the moratorium against the installation of bike lanes and other bicycle infrastructure improvements in San Francisco.
“With this decision, better bicycling in San Francisco starts now. From today on, our efforts to promote bicycling as a healthy and environmentally sustainable transportation alternative will surge,” said Mayor Newsom. “Bicycling has increased 34 percent since last year, and I know that with a safer and more inviting bike network, more and more San Franciscans will start bicycling.”
“Today is the beginning of a new era for bicycling in San Francisco,” said Nathaniel P. Ford Sr., Executive Director/CEO of the SFMTA. “The SFMTA Bike Program staff has been working tirelessly to prepare for this day and we are committed to doing the work needed to keep the number of bicyclists growing in the years ahead.”

The first post-injunction project will include significant bike improvements on Townsend, Laguna Honda and North Point.  

Even while the Bicycle Plan has been under the injunction, bicycling has increased dramatically in San Francisco. On May 13, Bike to Work Day, more than 1,000 bicyclists were counted, making up 75 percent of the total vehicles, in 2009 bicycles accounted for 66 percent.

Since Judge Peter J. Busch modified the 2006 injunction on the Bike Plan last November to allow a limited number of bike lane projects and other improvements, the SFMTA has completed nine new bike lane projects, installed 1,600 shared roadway markings, installed more than 402 sidewalk bike racks and five on-street “bike corrals”, and created a green bikeway on Fell Street and one on Market Street that is fully separated from motor vehicle traffic.

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3 Responses to “San Francisco Bicycle Plan Injunction Finally Lifted by Judge Peter Busch”

  1. […] Read more at Streetsblog, SF Examiner, SF Appeal, SF Citizen. […]

  2. Rob Anderson says:

    “And read more here:”
    Judge Busch: Sustained

    “And ponder this question: why doesn’t…’
    Judge Busch: Sustained

  3. […] emerging from a crippling four-year injunction that perversely interpreted environmental regulations to block bike improvements in one of […]