Archive for the ‘bikes’ Category

The Left Turns of Fell Street – This SFMTA Design Expects Too Much from Drivers Entering Our World-Famous DMV

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

IMO.

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What makes this set-up better than the SFMTA’s failed attempt at Octavia “Boulevard” and Market is that this is an uphill stretch with lower speeds.

Perhaps the thinking is that this DMV building is not long for the world…

What It’s Like Paying $100 to Drive a $2500 Electric Motorcycle/Bike About San Francisco for Four Hours

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

You didn’t see this type of thing…

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…back in the day.

As seen on Haight Street:

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I could think of worser ways for you tourist types to spend your time/money. This would seem to be similar but more expensive than touring about the city on an open-air double-decker bus, on a dreaded sunny day…

Single Rainbow All The Way – This is What It Looks Like When a Team Transports a Giant Balloon Rainbow by Bicycle

Monday, June 29th, 2015

As seen on the Golden Gate Park Panhandle Bike Path:

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Good Idea: The Panhandle Bike Path Should Be Widened

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015

It used to have four foot wide lanes.

Then it got six foot lanes, but now it’s lots busier these days, with all manner of transport upon it:

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And the SFPD and Rec & Park drive upon this path with Crown Victorias all the time too, right?

So what’s wrong with eight foot lanes, I ask you.

(Oh, no other “improvements” are required, no beautification efforts are required, or desired. Just work on the basics, SFGov.)

A Tribute to “Robin Williams, 1951-2014″ on an Armed-Powered Tricycle in Golden Gate Park

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015

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If Your Bicycle Enters San Francisco’s Stolen Bike Ecosystem, You’re NEVER Getting It Back – Here’s Why – As Seen on 13th Street

Monday, June 1st, 2015

[UPDATE: Commenter Kyle says a couple of these factories have gotten hauled away by the SFPD – see Comments.]

 

So your horse has been stolen off of the mean Streets of San Francisco?  Well, you’re never ever getting it back because it’s already been chopped up into pieces and rendered at the makeshift open-air glue factory known as 13th Street:

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Oh, what’s that, somebody stole your ride one time and you got it back the next day? Well, sure, cause your bike got stolen, but it hadn’t yet entered The System. Here’s your sausage factory, bursting at the seams:

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Oh look, new chain link fence and barbed wire – that will stop the processing in this one particular place under the I-80

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And look, camouflage!

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It’s almost as if there aren’t any stolen bike parts on the sidewalk at all!

It amazes me when some say that these bikes were simply given away or abandoned. ‘Cause like just as Tsukiji has its fish market, in Tsukiji, SF has its stolen bike market / processing center, on the few short blocks under the freeway called 13th Street

 

The Infamous Fell Street ARCO Gas Station Offers Helpful Queuing Tips for Its Customers, Via an SFMTA Graphic

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

Ah, memories.

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Things are better now, at Fell and Divis, usually. We lost a few parking spaces on Fell, but, you know, the Needs of the Many, yada yada yada…

The SFMTA’s Current Approach to Bikes in the Broadway Tunnel Doesn’t Seem Better Than the Old Approach

Tuesday, May 19th, 2015

After years of work and study…

BROADWAY TUNNEL BICYCLE PROJECT: Staff has sent a work order to
the Signal Shop to have the bicycle symbol flash when turned on. (No
updates)

…this the result, eastbound – a blank, nonsensical, K-Mart-looking diamond what lights up when cyclists are sensed in the BT:

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The old method of alerting drivers was similar, but it actually made sense to drivers when it wasn’t operating.

(The SFMTA seems to think that dreaming up crazy new ideas is its obligation – if you’ve never seen things before anywhere else in the world, that’s proof that the SFMTA is showing “leadership,” apparently)

Now here it is when it’s actually working, which I’ve never seen before, courtesy of Google Maps (from the northern lane – G gives you a choice):

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The big issue is how to handle bikes in the tunnel.

My method, westbound, from Chinesetown, is to walk the bike unless I see the rare ped, and then I dismount and stop while the ped passes me. In practice, this usually means riding all the way through. I think this is agin the current rules, but I don’t think I’m risking getting a ticket or anything.

Now eastbound is a different story, since the grade is generally working your way. The technique is to wait for a wave of traffic to go through and then enter when drivers idle at the red at Larkin. You’ll have a few cars pass you, but that’s better than just blithely ignoring traffic the way most do. Or, you can just ride on the sidewalk, remembering that you’re a second-class citizen when doing so.

Anyway, it seems that the generally dull-witted SFMTA is sophisticated enough to understand that going east and west is different thang here, so that’s good.

So do we want to encourage people to ride through this tunnel? IDK. I’ll tell you, westbound, uphill on the Geary Tunnel is worse and the Stockton Tunnel is way better.

I don’t know what the options are at the Broadway Tunnel. I’m sure most of them are very expensive…

Surprise! Bicycle Use in San Francisco Has Stopped Growing on a Per Capita Basis, Per This Official Report

Monday, May 18th, 2015

Here it is, a brand-new SFMTA PDF, published in May 2015:

Annual Bicycle Count Survey 2014

And here’s your nut graf, on the topic of Bicycle Use, as seen on Page 5:

“2013 vs 2014: … 1% increase.”

And here’s your summary, also seen on Page 5:

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Now let’s add in a little population growth in the 2013-2014 period:

It’s boom time in San Francisco: Population, jobs are growing

And all this adds up to the headline above.

(And, coincidentally, these are the days of falling membership at the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, from a claimed “over 12,000″ to well less than 10,000 these days.)

What can explain this all?

There’s no SF Bicycle Plan injunction preventing new construction these days – that ended a while back, right?

And the weather – the weather the past few years has probably been most bike-friendly since before the First San Francisco Bicycle Boom back in the 1800’s.

Here’s the reaction so far – I’ll show all that I can find, which isn’t all that much:

Grab your pom poms:

Tim Papandreou ‏@tpap_ May 15 2014 SF bike count report is up! 206% increase in cycling since 2006! Go team!”

So I guess we’d call this spin? I mean this report, or something like it, comes out every year, right? And we already knew* about the Great Fixie Craze Of The Late Aughts what made bikes cool again, so why focus upon what we already knew? The new news here, the actual news, is that Bicycle Use in San Francisco Has Stopped Growing on a Per Capita Basis, right? Moving on…

…to this, from Stuart Rob Anderson’s Black Angus Steakhouse Square Cow Fun Bar District Five Diary

Bicycle count report: “Bicycle use slowed down with 1% increase”

The bicycle Count report: A closer look

I should point out that a “1% increase” is an actual increase and not a “decrease.” And also, the reported increase is actually a little bit more than 1.5% IRL, so that’s on a par with the population increase over the same period – I mean, it’s a really close call here. The big point is that the recent era of rapid growth has ended.

I can see why SFGov wanted to delay this news until Bike To Work Day 2015…

*Or I should say I already knew, since I have more years decades hours miles on a bike in San Francisco than you, Gentle Reader, or anybody at the SFBC, or anybody at the SFMTA for that matter. Yes, bike use in SF is way up since the 1980’s, since the 1990’s, since the mid-aughts, yes, freely conceded.

It Looks Like Somebody Wants a Wider Golden Gate Park Panhandle Bike Path – Or, is Planning for One, Anyway

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

I’ll tell you, in my day the Panhandle Bike Path was a mere eight foot wide. And then it went to twelve foot, the way it is now.

But how about 16 feet – what the heck would be wrong with that? JMO.

Anyway, they just got finished repaving the southwest corner of Fell and Masonic, so the bike path got widened to 14 feet, if only for a short section:

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I’ll get my 16 foot bike path, someday. (Prolly with a laundry list of expensive aesthetic “improvements” that I won’t notice, but anyway, someday…