Is this how MUNI envisions its passengers, you know, just staring off into The Future?
Click to expand
You know, like this?
Sometimes I just don’t know…
(You know, someday I’ll have to explain why my aging Samsung smartphone is better than your brand-new iPhone 4S, you know the one that has that big “Apple” chip inside that’s made by, um, Samsung? My phone cost $40-something, the sales tax was $40-something, the monthly bill is $40-something (plus San Francisco’s rather high tax scheme, which means I’m paying $50-something per month), I talk as much as I want, I download as much as I want (but no texting, texting is not in my plan, oh well, someday I’ll tell you why that’s sometimes a good thing), I have a bigger, better screen, I have a lighter phone, and before the year is up, I’ll get another brand-new phone. And BTW, what’s the Apple “experience” about? Is it the experience of choosing between the unreliable network (AT&T) and the slow network (Verizon)? Why is it that my phone never drops calls and gets double-digit scores on the same test that you see in the previous link? It’s like 11 Mbps indoors in the Financh. That’s like an order of magnitude faster, right? Not that I care, really, but what am I missing but not paying extra for an iPhone? The phone I have is faster, better, harder, stronger than any iPhone. And, as a bonus, it’s way cheaper. Just saying.)
Sorry iPhone owners, the Only Bay Area Transit App Worth Having isn’t out yet for Appleland, but you Android users should step right up and type “511 transit” into your “Market” icon thingy.
MUNI sucks, of course, but 511 Transit works awesome with MUNI. Try it and you’ll see.
All the deets:
“GPS-Based Trip Planning Available for more than 30 Bay Area Transit Agencies
OAKLAND, Calif., Feb. 22, 2012 — The Bay Area’s 511 traveler information system is now offering its first smartphone app for transit users. The free 511 Transit App is a multiple-agency public transit trip planner using GPS-based location tools for smartphones. Ideal for a daily commute, weekend errand or occasional trip, the app serves both residents and visitors who are planning transit trips within the nine-county region.
“We are pleased to offer this unique and powerful tool for transit riders in the Bay Area,” said Adrienne J. Tissier, chair of the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC). “Now you can use one app to plan trips on more than 30 public transit agencies, accessing the most complete coverage for the San Francisco Bay Area.”
The free 511 Transit App can be downloaded through the Android Market (search for: 511 Transit). A version for iPhone 4 will be released soon. The new app provides door-to-door transit trip planning and scheduled departure times for transit routes near your location or from a location you specify. It includes information for 720 routes and more than 23,700 transit stops throughout the region. An interactive, dynamic map shows routes and stops along the way, as well as your current position while on the move. Walking directions to and from stops and fares (including transfers) are also displayed.
“Smartphones and on-the-go trip planning are becoming increasingly common, and 511 is now extending its Bay Area transit planning tools to these faster, more compact platforms,” said Tom Spiekerman, 511 Transit project manager. “Currently, 511 customers plan more than one milliontransit trips per month using the popular website version of the 511 Trip Planner. The new app brings core features of this tool to customers on the go.”
Additional app features include:
— Recently viewed locations and trips are saved automatically, as well as
— GPS positioning enables users to set their current location as a
starting point for a trip, or to find nearby stops and transit routes
with scheduled departure times.
– The app incorporates transit agency announcements that may affect a
511 Transit App customers are able to provide feedback on the new app by clicking on the “Help/Info” button to send an email to the 511 Team.
The new app complements numerous options people already have to access 511 traveler information. Smartphone and other mobile phone users may access many of 511’s most popular features through the mobile 511 site (m.511.org), by calling 511 from any Bay Area phone, or by receiving real-time transit Departure Times texts (SMS). Desktop users can access the information from 511.org.
The 511 Transit App includes data from SF Muni, BART, AC Transit, VTA, SamTrans, Caltrain, Golden Gate Transit, County Connection, Vallejo Transit, LAVTA, Sonoma County Transit, VINE (Napa County) and more than a dozen additional agencies. For a complete list of all transitagencies included in the 511 Transit app, please visit the trip planning page at 511.org.
For more information, please see the 511 Transit App for Android Fact Sheet.
511 is a one-stop phone and web source for up-to-the-minute Bay Area traffic, transit, rideshare and bicycling information. It’s free of charge and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from anywhere in the nine-county Bay Area. Call 511 or visit 511.org. 511 is managed by a partnership of public agencies led by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, the California Highway Patrol, Public Transit Agencies, and the California Department of Transportation.
Yesterday saw the debut of a brand-new 12-foot-wide path for pedestrians and bike riders on one of the spans of the Benicia-Martinez Bridge a way out there in the extreme East Bay. That means that you can now easily travel from the former home-town of the Zodiac Killer to the beaver-ridden shores of Martinez, CA without using your car.
Take a look at the circuit you can now make on your bike way out in the 925. Just use the Carquinez Bridge (cost overrun = $47,000,000 in 2003) one way and the B-M Bridge (cost overrun = $1,000,000,000 in 2007 mas o menos, due, in part, to the alleged suicidal tendencies of bay area fish, srsly) the other and you’re looping, baby.
New Path Closes Gap in Bay Area Trail System
Festivities were held today to mark the official opening of a new pedestrian/bicycle path on the George Miller, Jr. Memorial Bridge leading from Benicia to Martinez. The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), Bay Area Toll Authority (BATA) and Caltrans hosted opening events at both ends of the bridge, with a ribbon-cutting in Martinez at the foot of the bridge kicking off the festivities. Attendees then joined in the official first walk/ride across the bridge, where an opening ceremony followed at Vista Point in Benicia. A bicycle rodeo geared to youths at the nearby Amports lot was offered by the City of Benicia.
“The opening of the pedestrian/bicycle path is an exciting milestone that signifies completion of the final improvements to both spans of the Benicia-Martinez Bridge,” explained Bijan Sartipi, Director of Caltrans District 4 and an MTC/BATA Commissioner. “We are thrilled that we now have safe and efficient travel across the Carquinez Strait for drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians.”
The Benicia-Martinez Bridge connects Contra Costa and Solano counties across the Carquinez Strait. It is comprised of two separate spans, named for father and son (the late Senator George Miller, Jr. and current Congressman George Miller III), making the bridge a unique landmark. The 2007 addition, the Congressman George Miller III Memorial Bridge, carries five lanes of northbound Interstate 680 traffic from Martinez to Benicia and includes the Bay Area’s debut of open-road tolling technology. The original George Miller, Jr. Memorial Bridge, built in 1962 to carry traffic in both directions, now carries four lanes of southbound Interstate 680 traffic with full shoulders and the new pedestrian/bicycle path.
“This is a milestone project that has been in the works a long time and we are all very excited to see its completion,” said Laura Thompson, Bay Trails project manager for the Association of Bay Area Governments. “We are happy that we are making strides to close both the Bay and Ridge Trail gaps.”
Funded primarily through the Regional Measure 1 toll program approved by voters in 1988 and administered by BATA, the $50 million Benicia-Martinez Bridge project encompassed reconfiguring the bridge and adding the new path. The completion of the construction on the pedestrian/bicycle path indicates the final phase of construction on both bridges.
Caltrans owns, operates and maintains the state highway system, including seven of the eight Bay Area toll bridges. BATA, which is directed by the same policy board as MTC, administers toll revenues from the region’s state-owned toll bridges. MTC is the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area.
GEORGE MILLER, JR. BRIDGE PEDESTRIAN/BICYCLE LANE
Significance The new Benicia-Martinez pedestrian/bicycle lane on
the Senator George Miller, Jr. Memorial Bridge will
close a gap in the San Francisco Bay and Ridge Trails.
This lane also serves as a link in the Carquinez
Strait Scenic Loop Trail, which is a 50-mile trail
that crosses both the Benicia-Martinez Bridge and Al
Zampa Bridge spans over the Carquinez Strait.
Bicyclists and pedestrians using this new path will be
treated to stunning views of the Suisun Bay, as well
as the Carquinez Bridge and the Mothball Fleet.
Official Name George Miller, Jr. Memorial Bridge
Opened September 16, 1962
Location Carquinez Strait linking Contra Costa and Solano
Roadway Southbound Interstate 680 from Benicia to Martinez
Configuration Originally, three northbound lanes and three
southbound lanes; now four southbound lanes and one
Path 11,800 feet or 2.2. miles
Path 12 feet; bi-directional travel
of the Bridge 138 feet
Construction Deck truss
Project Cost $50 million to seismically retrofit the bridge and add
the pedestrian/bicycle path
Funding Regional Measure 1 funds: 77%
Federal funds: 21%
State funds: 2%
Seismic Safety A “Lifeline” structure designed to remain in service
following a maximum credible earthquake. The
Interstate 680 corridor has been designated as a
primary route for transporting emergency supplies into
the Bay Area after a major earthquake.
Tonight’s Fourth of July fireworks show had a fairly high fog ceiling, so it would have to rate as better than average. Better than last year anyway, but not as good as 2007.
Here’s an excellent eight-second exposure of the northern waterfront show from Lafayette Park in Specific Whites Pacific Heights. Click to expand:
And here’s a real-time shot of the same show from Twin Peaks:
Everything is done double – that’s the way they do it. Here’s a double double:
But this is what happens when the fireworks get too high – you can only see the bottom halves sometimes due to the fog:
Let’s look across the Bay over at Sausalito. That’s USF in the foreground:
Now here are some illegal explosions in San Francisco. This was an impressive burst above the northern Mission district:
And here’s Mission Bay / Dogpatch with Alameda / Oakland in the background – very nice:
The Mission and points south all had lots of illegal fireworks booming:
Oh noes, it’s a flare, shooting high above Twin Peaks…
…and then landing somewhere in the Castro District:
And there you have it.
When they tell you “Fog could shroud S.F. fireworks” up in Fishermans Wharf at 9:30 PM on the Fourth of July 2009, what they really mean is Fog WILL shroud S.F. fireworks, barring some Act of God, or Gaia, or Whomever.
Sometimes the weather is good, sometimes not. This year, not.
Check it out from 2008. Click to expand:
This is by no means the worst case scenario. So when they talk about special low-level fireworks and let’s cross our fingers, they’re spinning. And spinning is just the polite term for lying. So, what do you do? Head on over to the Mission District, where they’ll have oodles of Yelp-rated, illegal, illicit, MUY PRO HI BI DA DO (now I say that in Spanish because that’s how exotic and not allowed it is) fireworks, fog-free, for free. Just check out this screen saver album from 2007.
Of course, you can always go with the flow and follow the madding crowd northward into la niebla, le brouillard. And who knows, maybe it will be clear the way it was in 2007. Thusly:
This is the view you had from Crissy Field on 7-4-2007 – those lights at the bottom have something to do with Fishermans Wharf.
But dude, don’t drive up there. Even if they didn’t block off the streets and you already had a parking space waiting for you, you’d still have to drive out of there in a traffic jam when the show’s over at 10:00 PM. Of course, you could always hang out at all the places that will be open up in the Wharf after the show, but maybe you’d be better off driving into the City with your bikes in tow and parking South of the 101 near the Giants’ AT&T Park. Then you could ride up the flat, flat Embarcadero (on the sidewalk – it’s legal) back and forth.
Can you dig the colors, man?
But if that doesn’t pan out, you could follow the cable cars on Hyde (that’s the one north-south street they don’t block off, in my experience) and drop off the brood. Whatever you do, stay off of Van Ness. Or you could BART it to the Embarcadero Station and then hoof it up to Pier 39. But forget about MUNI, ’cause walking would be faster.
And most likely it will be foggy anyway, you’ve been warned.
Dress warm. Panthers out.
Fourth of July Waterfront Celebration
Saturday, July 4, 2009
1:00 PM to 9:30 PM
“PIER 39 invites you to enjoy a fun-filled Independence Day celebration. Rock out with ‘Take 2′ from 1-4pm followed by San Francisco’s favorite 80’s cover band, ‘Tainted Love’ from 6-9:30pm. Immediately after the entertainment look to the sky as the City of San Francisco lights up the night with it’s Firework’s Spectacular, accompanied by a musical simulcast from KISS FM 98.1. PIER 39 has the best viewing area on the bay! In addition, 39 of PIER 39’s businesses will remain open after the fireworks so that guests can miss the traffic, enjoy the PIER, have a drink, get a bite to eat, and shop. Click here for the list of locations open after the fireworks. Sponsored by Crystal Geyser ALPINE SPRING WATER, DeLoach Vineyards, Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, The San Francisco Examiner, Tawain Tourism and Asus.”
If you feel like getting up bright and early tomorrow, head on over to Lotta’s Fountain to commemorate the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906. Get there by 5:11 A.M. to see the action, or consider the effect of Daylight Savings Time and the then wait to mark the moment at 6:12 A.M. Either way.
Check the schedule below:
This is what it looked like back in ought-six, the 100th anniversary, with people dressed up in old-timey clothing. Click to expand:
“The 103rd Annual Commemoration of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire that almost destroyed one of America’s greatest cities will take place April 18 at Lotta’s Fountain on Market Street, at 5:11 AM. 1906 Quake Survivor 105-year-old Rose Cliver, Mayor Gavin Newsom, San Francisco Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White, and dozens of dignitaries and celebrities will travel by vintage cars and fire trucks to Lotta’s Fountain and then on to Church & 20th Streets to paint the Fire Hydrant that saved the Mission Churches in 1906 gold.”
5:11 AM, APRIL 18th AT LOTTA’S FOUNTAIN free
6:00 AM AT THE FIRE HYDRANT THAT SAVED THE MISSION CHURCHES free
7:00 AM LEFTY O’DOUL’S SURVIVOR BREAKFAST open to the public
9:00 AM SCREENING OF “1906 ” FILM & BREAKFAST-WESTON ST. FRANCIS free
11:00 AM JOHN’s GRILL ANNUAL SURVIVOR LUNCH open to the public
WHAT: The 103rd Annual 1906 San Francisco Earthquake & Fire Wreath Laying and Commemoration
WHERE: Lotta’s Fountain-Market Street at the junction of Kearny, Third and Geary, San Francisco, California
WHEN: 5:00-6:00 AM-Saturday, April 18, 2009
The Gilding of the Fire Hydrant That Save the Mission Churches
WHAT: The 103rd Annual 1906 Painting of the Fire Hydrant that saved the Mission District Churches.
WHERE: 20th & Church Streets at Dolores Park
WHEN: 6:00-7:00 AM-Saturday, April 18, 2009
Lefty O’Doul’s Bloody Mary Breakfast
WHAT: The Lefty O’Doul’s annual Survivor Breakfast-Open to the public-
WHERE: 333 Geary Street (at Powell)
WHEN: 7:00 AM-Saturday, April 18, 2009
1906 a Film Tribute to Herbert Hamrol
by Alon Aranya
WHAT: A free to the public screening of 1906 A Tribute to Quake Survivor Herbert Hamrol by Alon Aranya-Limited seating-reservations required (313) 377-4453 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
WHERE: The Weston St. Francis Hotel-St. Francis Suite-335 Powell Street (at Powell)
WHEN: 9:00 AM-Saturday, April 18th, 2009
John’s Grill’s Annual Survivor Luncheon
WHAT: Historic John’s Grill’s annual Survivor Luncheon-Open to the public-Free to Survivors (415) 777-4700 will be attended by 105 Year Old Rose Cliver.
WHERE: 63 Ellis Street (at Powell)
WHEN: 11:00 AM-Saturday, April 18, 2009 Reservations suggested (415) 986-0069
Your local gas and electric utility monopoly would like you to think before you dig. PG&E reminds us all today to call 811 at least two days before you start digging around, else you might hit a gas main and blow yourself to kingdom come. Some local folks will answer the phone and check things out for you and what’s wrong with that?
But what about all the other x11 telephone services – they are starting to add up huh? Let’s learn about them below.
Here there are, all the N11 Codes we have:
211 Community Information and Referral Services
311 Non-Emergency Police and Other Governmental Services
411 Local Directory Assistance
511 Traffic and Transportation Information
611 Telephone Repair Service
711 Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS)
811 Access to One Call Services to Protect Pipeline and Utilities from Excavation Damage
Wow, that’s a lot.