Posts Tagged ‘bike’

The SFMTA’s New DOUBLE RIGHT TURN is Creating Problems – Getting Used the Great Peninsula at Fell and Masonic

Monday, February 23rd, 2015

Here’s the situation and here are a couple new photos.

See how the new peninsula juts into traffic? That means that MUNI buses can no longer use lane #3 on southbound Masonic to get across Fell:

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So here’s the upshot: SFPD cars are getting stuck in the #2 lane of southbound Masonic – they are inadvertently “blocking the box,” as this radio car was doing for about five seconds before it could creep forward. I’ve never seen the cops blocking the box like this here:

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I suppose that it depends on the time of day how many people from southbound Masonic head west at Fell or continue south on Masonic, but this change is creating more “traffic” than there was before.

And if you’re on a bike, then you’d need to merge over a couple lanes in between Hayes and Fell, one supposes…

Uphill Cyclist Sanctimoniously and Improperly “Takes The Lane” on McAllister: Staring Down Drivers While Huffing and Puffing

Monday, February 2nd, 2015

Let’s travel all the way over to the left side of the Bell curve to see what the bottom 1% is up to.

Here we go, at about 4 MPH, staying as far to the left as necessary to prevent traffic from passing you too much. And for good measure, be sure to crane your neck around to give the evil eye whenever you can, to tell those drivers that I KNOW WHAT YOU’RE UP TO BACK THERE, MAN!

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OTOH, “taking the lane” would be just fine heading the other way down this block, down Alamo Heights…

Spawning Salmon: The Horrible Pedestrians of the Rather Narrow Golden Gate Panhandle Bike Path

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

(Well, sure it’s not an actual bike-only path, it’s a multipurpose trail, or something. But most call it the bike path cause bike riders are allowed on it, as opposed to the ped-only path near Oak on the other side of the Panhandle.)

I’m a polite ped so I generally stay off the paved part* of the Golden Gate Park Panhandle bike path near Fell. This was my view of an impolite ped as I trod on the grass for a few blocks:

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She spent most of her eastward journey smack dab in the middle of the westbound lane or smack dab in the middle of the trail on the dashed yellow line. This went on for minutes. Westbound cyclists didn’t know how to pass her, on the left or on the right. Occasionally she’d veer to the right side of the right lane, where she belonged, but that phase of her journey didn’t last too long.

So what was this, a cry for help? Yeah, sort of.

Who will hear her?

*Yeah, this bike path is wider (12 feet) than before (8 feet), but it’s still too narrow. 16 feet sounds right, considering. 

NIMBY’s vs. the SFMTA: Local Objections to New Traffic Signals on McAllister at Broderick and Scott for the 5 Fulton

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

This effort appears to be similar to the SFMTA’s attempt to add traffic signals on Haight at Scott and Pierce.

This isn’t the worst example of NIMBYism, but I’d say it’s fairly alarmist, fairly absurd.

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I’ll just say that, generally speaking, it’s generally harder to get around town these days by car, by bike and by MUNI, compared with ten or twenty years ago. Part of this has to do with our newer, absurdly-wide sidewalks, designed for pedestrian “comfort.”

And yet, most ped and cyclist deaths in San Francisco involve fault from the peds and cyclists. Here’s 2014:

The Police Department found that in the 17 pedestrian deaths, drivers were responsible for eight and pedestrians were responsible for nine. Bicyclists were responsible in all three instances when they died.” 

(I should do a video on how to be a pedestrian in SF. It might involve some jaywalking but it would also involve extreme alertness on behalf of peds. You see, the way to prevent a lot of ped deaths in SF would be to get inside their heads to see what’s going wrong.)

IMO, the SFMTA should leave McAllister alone and then start taking out as many bus stops as politically possible.

I’ll tell you, not that many cyclists pass by Broderick and McAllister compared with Scott and McAllister, it seems, owing to geography. So looking at McAllister and Scott, it seems that the lights will be timed against cyclists using FULTON DIVISADERO MCALLISTER eastbound as an alternative to the already-overcrowded Wiggle route to get from the Golden Gate Park Panhandle to the Financh.

So for my own selfish reasons, I’d prefer that MUNI not make these changes, but who am I to stand in their way? What the MUNI people are saying is that we’ll all be better off overall, and 40 seconds each way each day will add up to millions of seconds, eventually.

In conclusion, meh. If MUNI wants to put in lights, we should let them do it.

2015 Hipster Being Chased by His Future Self from 2025

Monday, January 19th, 2015

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Then the minivan sped up to 88 MPH and disappeared…

The SFMTA’s Restriping of JFK Drive Has Been a Massive Failure for a 100 Small Reasons – Let’s Take a Short Trip

Friday, January 9th, 2015

These cyclists stopped for peds at the prior stop sign, and I thought, “These are pretty polite cyclists,” because, you know, most of the time cyclists don’t stop for peds and/or stop signs.

So then here’s the next stop sign, where the peds stutter-stopped for fear of being hit by the very same cyclists:

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Moving on, further into the park, with the very same cyclists, to see this woman, who was totally blocking the bike lane with her body and two open passenger doors. She was oblivious. Then she notices what she’s doing so she goes back to shut the rear door…

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…and then the front door as the cyclists wait:

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This place is a mess. Many long-time cyclists now avoid using JFK. Is this what the all-seeing all-knowing SFMTA wanted? IDK. Oh what’s that, cycling in San Francisco is going to increase six-fold by 2020 (I’m seriously, this was the goal, this was what was “expected” by local pols not too long ago), so we need to accommodate all the new traffic? But what if that huge increase doesn’t materialize and then you lose a significant chunk of the pre-existing riders?

(Any survey from the SFMTA showing broad-based support for these changes isn’t a real survey.)

Moving on, to this. Where else in the world do they put a kink into double yellow lines.

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Why do this? Is this “good design?”

Why not have a single dashed line? (I know that the SFMTA has its reasons, but in other locations these double yellows would be seen as a cue that encourages speeding.)

In short, the restriping of JFK is a mess, a continuing mess, one that was spawned by the SFMTA for ideological reasons.

Oh well.

Vox populi:

“I cannot imagine that any survey demonstrates that most people like the new lanes. I’ve read dozens and dozens of comments and the vast majority feel the same way as I do, which is that these lanes are dangerous for everyone. And what about emergency vehicles? How do they pass when motorists cannot pull to the right? This past Saturday, 4/20, a fire truck got stuck in traffic at the eastern end of JFK. Traffic backed up in both directions. It was utter chaos. And Jesus, does it make the road look ugly or what?”

Redux

“My primary observation on the new bike lanes is that separating them somewhat from the vehicle traffic lanes seems to have been a signal that cyclists should ride a bit faster and ignore the stop signs and pedestrian crossing rules. I find them much more dangerous as a pedestrian. I have taken to holding an arm out when crossing any road in SF to signal my intent, but I am nearly struck daily by cyclists.”

McKinley Statue Graffiti, 2015 Update: Yep, It’s Got Some More – Here It Is, More Evidence for Fence Proponents

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Here’s how things stand now:

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And here’s a little history, complete with an artist’s conception of what the anti-graffiti fence would look like – keep reading down, through the webpages of time.

You know, fundamentally, this is the big landmark at the gateway to Golden Gate Park. I don’t like the fence idea but I also don’t like people coming by to see giant KKK letters on the base of this statue for days, weeks and months. And the Rec and Parks and Arts Commission people say it’s a real expensive PITA to keep the graffiti off.

So I don’t know…

Xtracycle Bicycle Cyclist Gets Into the Holidays with a Rolling Christmas Tree Tableau

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

Ho ho ho:

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Compare and Contrast: Marin County’s Bicycle Movement vs. San Francisco’s – Point / Counterpoint with Marinite Dick Spostwood

Thursday, December 11th, 2014

Check it out:

Dick Spotswood: Marin bike lobby’s political clout is slipping – Marin Independent Journal

1. Hey, SF County has a “powerful bicycle lobby” as well – so let’s take a look, paragraph by paragraph. I should say though, that if I were running things bike-wise in Marin, I prolly wouldn’t listen to Dick Spotswood at all.

2. I’ll bet you the Marin County real estate industry, for instance, has lobbyists more effective than the Marin County Bicycle Coalition’s, to keep things in perspective.

3. So DS is promoting a “silent majority” argument against a minority of a minority? OK fine, but it sounds like he’s mad at just a small number of bikers. And what’s this – “self-righteous on-the-road arrogance?” We have a bit of that on our side of The Bridge also.

4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Well, I didn’t know all that stuff. San Francisco County Supervisors don’t really have to worry about people coming after them for excessive bike advocacy, so this makes Marin seem a lot different than SF. I’ll tell you, riding through a smelly old train tunnel sounds like something worth trying, once or twice anyway. (I could go either way on whether opening these tunnels makes sense, cost benefit-wise – I don’t know much about them.)

9, 10. Charging people for walking or riding across the GGB is a real non-starter, like something that’s never going to happen ever again. (Actually, I wouldn’t mind if the state of CA rolled governance of the GGB into the BATA and then cast Golden Gate Transit out, leaving Marin County to pay for Marin County’s transit system. JMO.)

11. “Biker-anarchist Critical Mass” isn’t all that much these days and it doesn’t operate “most Fridays,” just some Fridays, just once a month, actually.

12. My understanding is that “bicycles are generally restricted from narrow, single-track trails” on Mt Tam, but perhaps some trails have been opened up recently? IDK.

13. What’s this, the  Marin bike movement was “hijacked by big-time developers and their regional alphabet agencies’ allies.” Wow, yes, the same thing happened in SF over the past quarter-century – this is the era of the “urbanst,” indeed.

14. We have a similar dynamic in SF, but it’d be hard to imagine bike advocacy ever being a “ballot box negative” down here.

15. Oh, at long last, the TO BE SURE graf! Finally, all the way at the bottom. Hurrah!

16, 17. Oh, and now come the bromides for the bike movement of Marin. IDK, if I had a lot of time and not much money, I’d get my buds to pack into political meetings as well.

All right, that’s it.

(Oh, I’ll add that the membership at the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition appears to have dropped something close to 20% from the high of a few years back. The SFBC has been captured by SFGov, so  these days it pays more heed to whichever Mayor is in currently in office than its remaining membership. JMO.)

An Unlocked Bike Parked in the Costco #144 Parking Lot is Probably Safer Than a Locked Bike Parked in the Rest of SoMA

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

Like this unlocked bike, for instance.

It didn’t get stolen from the trusting owner for at least an hour

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(Of course, this is the very same parking lot where that lady got carjacked and stuffed into the trunk of her large Infiniti sedan only to be released unharmed in the East Bay.)