Posts Tagged ‘bus’

Fell Street Blues: Triple-Parked Tourist Buses – How the Millionaire Homeowners of Alamo Square Cried Their Way to “Victory”

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

On the one hand, the millionaire NIMBY’s of the “Alamo Square Historic District” literally cry about tourist buses and band together to ban them from Hayes Street, but on the other hand, they say “fuck you” to those who use and reside upon neighboring Fell.

This is the result – problem solved (for us millionaire property owners, anyway):

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Then what they’ll say is, “Why don’t you start your own Historic District?”

It’s human nature to band together to work on a common goal, you know, the way the anti-vaccination crowd does – there’s fraternity there, there’s sorority.

But sometimes you lose perspective. That’s the price.

If the SFMTA Wants to Ban “Private Vehicles” from Making Most Turns onto Market Between 3rd and 8th, What About Drivers with Handicapped Placards?

Tuesday, June 16th, 2015

Get up to speed here.

So “Safer” Market Street is going to ban “private vehicles” including Lyft and Uber-type vehicles, but does that include rides with properly-displayed handicapped placards?

IDK. It seems our SFMTA doesn’t want to deal with this issue.

(Actually, it seems our SFMTA deals with embarrassing issues discussed on the SFMTA website by simply deleting webpages/URLs as soon as members of The Public link to them. Boy, it sure seems that way lately. But moving on, moving “forward” as they say.)

Oh look info about the SFMTA not located at the official SFMTA site – so here’s a link I cite without worrying that it will go bad within 24 hours:

• Bob Planthold: Taxi drivers say they can travel where Muni goes as stated by City Charter. The City will need investigate this. Also broader phrasing is needed regarding disability because “Red & Blue Placards” cannot be restricted.

Read the whole thing, if you want. It’s about all the plans the SFMTA has for this area.

So, is the SFMTA going to ban drivers of private vehicles with handicapped placards from turning onto Market at most places between 3rd and 8th?

Serious question. I think they are…

The Empire Strikes Back: UBER Does NOT Appreciate Getting Banned from Turning Onto Market from 3rd to 8th Streets – Petition

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

Our SFMTA wants to ban TNC’s from turning onto Market at most places between 3rd and 8th, so now UBER, for one, is fighting back with a petition from Uber drivers.

(Man, this is a quick reaction to San Francisco Chronicle writer JK Dineen‘s article from just yesterday.)

Anyway, here’s the nut graf in the Uber petition:

“If the traffic restrictions are imposed, driver partners will be forced to take longer, more complicated routes to pick up or drop off passengers — increasing congestion around Market Street and making it more difficult, more time-consuming, and dangerous for riders to get from place to place.”

I think they’ll get to the goal of 10,000 [UPDATE – now it’s set to 15,000] electronic “signatures” with a quickness, seeing as how they seem to clocking about 50 supporters per minute now.

All the deets:

THE SITUATION

Over the last several years, Uber has become an integral part of San Francisco’s transportation ecosystem — with thousands of residents and visitors relying on ridesharing services to get them to all corners of the city. Ridesharing has been embraced and supported by the California Legislature, Governor Brown, and several State agencies. What’s more, UberPOOL and similar ridesharing services are taking cars off the road, reducing congestion, and making huge strides toward making San Francisco’s roads safer.

But now we need your help. As the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) revisits its rules for the types of vehicles allowed on Market Street — your ability to take an Uber from Market Street is at risk — and we need you to speak up in support of ridesharing services like Uber.

NEW SFMTA RESTRICTIONS THAT WILL IMPACT YOU:

→ Taxis on Market Street – APPROVED
→ Buses on Market Street – APPROVED
→ Ridesharing on Market Street – DENIED

Market Street is a major artery of the city, and shutting off access to ridesharing services, where an overwhelming majority of residents choose to live car-free, is counterproductive and dangerous. Ridesharing services a significant and increasing share of the transportation puzzle here, and cutting off riders and driver partners from this main artery will only increase gridlock around town while forcing you, the riding public, to criss-cross busy streets and corridors to get to your ride or destination.

If the traffic restrictions are imposed, driver partners will be forced to take longer, more complicated routes to pick up or drop off passengers — increasing congestion around Market Street and making it more difficult, more time-consuming, and dangerous for riders to get from place to place.

Sign the petition and tell San Francisco’s leadership that TNCs need to be included in their rules for Market Street!

THE PETITION LETTER

[Your personal message]

[Your first name] [Your last name] from zip code [Zip Code]
[Email]

###

Dear [Recipient’s title] [Recipient’s name],

I urge you to not to single out TNCs like Uber, and ensure that they have the same access as taxis to pick up riders along Market Street. Ridesharing has become a core part of the way people get around the city and I support giving San Franciscans more choice for transportation options along Market Street. Your inclusion of TNCs will give people like me more transportation choices downtown, provide an equal playing field for all transportation options, and improve safety for riders and drivers alike.

Again, thank you for considering the collective voice of thousands of San Franciscans who want more choice in transportation options on Market Street.

THIS LETTER WILL BE DELIVERED TO
TOM NOLAN
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD

“SFMTA vs. Lyft and Uber Drivers” Continued – Let’s Hear Why the SFMTA Wants to Stop You From Turning onto Market

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

This was my stab at things yesterday – also coming out yesterday was this:

In safety move, turns onto Market Street to be limited

Let’s take a look to see how “safety sells” pretty much whatever the SFMTA has wanted to do the past quarter-century, with my comments in ALL CAPS, you know, for the benefit of those all-important mobile readers:

“This is focused very clearly on safety,” said Tom Maguire, director of the Sustainable Streets Division of the SFMTA. “This is about how we can get out this summer and find ways to save lives this summer.”

WELL, LET’S SEE HERE. I’LL CONCEDE THAT THIS MOVE WILL HAVE US ENDING UP WITH FEWER CAR VS. PED ACCIDENTS ON MARKET STREET BETWIXT 3RD AND 8TH. BUT IS TOM MAGUIRE SOME KIND OF SUPERHERO, A SPIDERMAN SAVING LIVES (PLURAL!) DURING THE END OF SUMMER 2015? ABSOLUTELY NOT. SORRY. HOW MANY LIVES WILL TOM MAGUIRE ACTUALLY SAVE THIS SUMMER? ZERO. ABSOLUTE ZERO. STATISTICALLY SPEAKING. SORRY.

“…lively and entertaining urban boulevard, it is also dangerous.”

WRITER JK DINEEN HAD THE CHANCE TO USE THE BOGUS PHRASE “HIGH-INJURY CORRIDOR” AND HE DIDN’T GO FOR IT? I’M SURE IT’S IN THE MATERIALS HE HAS AND I’M SURE THE SFTMA WOULD LIKE HIM TO USE THIS NEW CATCH-PHRASE, BUT HE DIDN’T. MMM…

Roughly half of these collisions happened at or near an intersection.

WELL, I SHOULD HOPE THAT MOST ACCIDENTS WITH PEDS GETTING STRUCK HAPPEN NEAR INTERSECTIONS. I MEAN, PEDS GENERALLY DON’T BELONG IN THE STREET OUTSIDE OF INTERSECTIONS, RIGHT? ALSO, NOTE THAT WRITER JK DINEEN IS UNAFRAID TO USE THE TERM “ACCIDENT” – THIS TOO GOES AGAINST THE CURRENT SFMTA PLAYBOOK. “COLLISION” IS THE PREFERRED WORD THESE DAYS. BOTH WORDS WORK, OF COURSE.

The package of traffic improvements, known as Safer Market Street…

THESE MOVES CERTAINLY ARE CHANGES, BUT WE DON’T KNOW YET IF THEY WILL BE ACTUAL “IMPROVEMENTS” RIGHT? WHAT’S A NEUTRAL, NON-ORWELLIAN TERM FOR OUR SFMTA’S “IMPROVEMENTS?”

Vision Zero, an effort to eliminate traffic deaths by 2024.

INSTEAD OF “AN EFFORT,” HOW ABOUT “AN _INSINCERE_ EFFORT,” CAUSE, YOU KNOW, THAT’S CERTAINLY THE CASE HERE?

“Our approach to Vision Zero is not to wait to save lives when we have tools to prevent these collisions and we know how to implement them,” Maguire said.

IF WE’RE TALKING ABOUT PED DEATHS IN SAN FRANCISCO, LET’S SAY, FOR CALENDAR 2014, MOST OF THOSE DEATHS WERE THE FAULT OF THE PEDESTRIANS THEMSELVES, PER THE SFPD, RIGHT? SO, WHY NOT MAKE AN “EFFORT” TO ENFORCE THE CVC UPON THE NOTORIOUSLY ILL-BEHAVED PEDESTRIANS OF MARKET STREET RIGHT NOW? THAT WOULD CERTAINLY HAVE THE EFFECT OF SAVING LIVES OVER TIME, SO WHY IS SFGOV WAITING? OH, BECAUSE OF POLITICS, I SEE. ALL RIGHT. AND OF COURSE, WE’LL NEVER GET TO ZERO TRANSPORTATION DEATHS, ON A STRETCH OF MARKET OR ANYWHERE ELSE FOR THAT MATTER, BUT PED ENFORCEMENT IS THE LOW-HANGING FRUIT. THE FACT THAT THE SFMTA IS SO AFRAID TO MENTION ANYTHING TO DO WITH THIS ISSUE IS TELLING.

The reduction of traffic turning onto Market Street will cut down the chance of someone getting seriously injured or killed by a turning vehicle, say SFMTA officials.

AGREE. POINT CONCEDED, CHEERFULLY

It will mean smoother and faster sailing for city buses…

UH OH. _FASTER_ BUSES? IS THAT WHAT WE WANT, SAFETYWISE? IDK. HEY, WHAT PERCENT OF ACCIDENTS ON THIS STRETCH OF MARKET INVOLVE MUNI OR SFMTA-REGULATED TAXICABS? IS IT FORTY-SOMETHING PERCENT ALREADY? LOOK FOR THAT PERCENTAGE TO RISE…

“Motorists would still be free to cross Market Street. Taxis — but not Uber or Lyft”

HERE WE GO – HERE’S THE POINT OF “SAFER” MARKET STREET. IT’S ABOUT FUCKING WITH THE TNC’S. HOW MANY TENS OF MILLIONS HAVE THE SFMTA LOST DUE TO UBER, LYFT AND THE OTHER TNC’S? IDK, BUT A LOT. THERE WILL BE SOME SHORT TRIPS THAT SIMPLY WON’T WORK WITH UBER ANY LONGER. NOT IF YOU WANT TO DRIVE LEGALLY ANYWAY. WHY DOESN’T THE SFMTA ALSO BAN TAXIS FROM MAKING THESE VERY SAME TURNS, IF THE SFMTA IS SO MUCH ABOUT SAFETY? MMM…

Speak of the Devil, here’s some anti-TNC, pro-SFMTA taxi  propaganda, courtesy of your SFMTA:

7J7C0916-copy

“Local opposition subsiding”

WELL, I DON’T KNOW. HAS ANY POLLING BEEN DONE OF THE CURRENT USERS OF MARKET STREET? SO I DON’T KNOW HOW SUBSIDED THE OPPOSITION IS. I’LL TELL YOU, OBJECTIONS TO THE SFMTA’S “DOWNTOWN CORE” TRAFFIC BLOCKADE DURING RUSH HOURS IS STILL PRETTY STRONG, WELL OVER 50%.

Susie McKinnon, executive director of the North of Market/Tenderloin Community Benefit District, said at first she was worried that the changes would push more traffic into the Tenderloin…

WELL, OBVIOUSLY IT WILL. VISITORS COMING UP 6TH STREET WON’T BE ABLE TO TURN RIGHT AT MARKET, SO WHERE ELSE ARE THEY GOING TO GO BUT THE TWITTERLOIN, RIGHT?

…force unregulated car services such as Uber and Lyft off of Market Street.

I WOULDN’T CALL TNC’S UNREGULATED, BUT THAT’S JUST ME. _LESS_ REGULATED, CERTAINLY, BUT NOT UNREGULATED, IMO. AND WHAT HAS THIS TO DO WITH SAFETY? FASTER TAXIS AND FEWER UBERS = SAVING LIVES OVERALL? WE’LL HAVE TO WAIT AND SEE.

Eva Behrend, a spokeswoman for Uber, disagrees: “Market Street is a major artery of the city…

YEP.

…and cutting off riders and driver-partners from accessing this thoroughfare will increase gridlock around town…

MAYBE.

…with no improvement to safety.

WELL, THE POINT IS TO “SAVE LIVES” “THIS SUMMER” ON FIVE PARTICULAR BLOCKS OF MARKET STREET – WE’LL JUST HAVE TO WAIT AND SEE THE EFFECT UPON OVERALL SAFETY ON MISSION, HOWARD, FOLSOM, THE REST OF THE TWITTERLOIN, AND ALL THE REST OF SAN FRANCISCO.

AND PLEASE NOTE THAT BOTH TOM MAGUIRE AND EVA BEHREND ARE IN THE SAME BIZ – THEY’RE BOTH IN THE ABUSE-WORDS-ENOUGH-AND-THEN-YOU’LL-GET-COMPENSATED-WITH-SIX-FIGURES-A-YEAR-PLUS-BENEFITS CLUB…

TTFN.

SFMTA vs. Lyft and Uber Drivers: Forget About Turning Left or Right onto Market Betwixt 3rd and 8th – Orwellian SMS

Wednesday, June 10th, 2015

Let’s see if I can pay off on the headline here.

This is the Safer Market Street proposal, which used to be a part of Better Market Street? Hey, is SFS a kind of “chop shop project,” the likes of which is the SFMTA’s excuse for not doing anything until it gets a more massive project implemented? And it’s to support “Vision Zero” 2024? (That. of course, is the promise of absolute transportation safety. It will fail only after the terming our of our Interim Mayor and all the Members of the Board of Supervisors. Not a single promoter of Vision Zero actually believes we’ll get to zero transportation deaths, / injuries on or near Market Street or anywhere else in town, within nine years, or ever at all…)

Now here’s what I’m talking about not being able to make turns – all those red arrows show what you won’t be able to do anymore:

Captureggg copy

Will TNC drivers be banned? Hells yes! That’s the plan last I heard. Will taxi drivers be similarly banned? No, the SFMTA wants to promote taxis and the SFMTA hates, just hates, TNCs.

Note that when the SFMTA calls this proposal a proposal, that means it’s a done deal.

Note that when the SFMTA calls a street a high-injury corridor, it means that the street is a corridor, which is, of course, “a (generally linear) tract of land in which at least one main line for some mode of transport has been built.” Would the SFMTA care to ID a similar number of low injury corridors about town? No? That’s ’cause if a street has a low number of injuries, it isn’t a corridor at all. So, that means that high injury corridor means plain-old corridor. Moving on…

To this – look, the SFMTA has invented, in the Year of Our Lord 2015, a device called a “sign,” ’cause, you know, drivers is stupid.

“WAYFINDING SIGNS Driving on Market Street can be confusing for residents and visitors alike. Wayfinding signs help drivers “find their way” to specific areas while on the move. To avoid confusion while driving through this area, we want to ensure signs pointing to destinations are easily visible and understandable for drivers to safely navigate through the streets. Signs will be posted on streets surrounding Market to give drivers enough time to plan their approach. Special attention will be given to popular destinations, including off-street parking and major roadways. Using iconic San Francisco destinations and simplistic designs, these wayfinding signs would help keep cars moving and enhance the City’s unique visual identity.”

And did you catch that? Why should our SFMTA use a simple word like “simple,” when it can use a $5 word like “simplistic,” you know, facile? Does the SFMTA really mean to crittercise it’s Brand New Thing? IDK.

That was the wind-up, now here’s the pitch:

“The City is one step closer to Vision Zero pending SFMTA Board Approval of the Safer Market Street project.

Market Street is the City’s premier civic and commercial corridor hosting hundreds of thousands of people arriving by means of transit, walking, biking or driving. More bikes travel down Market Street than vehicles, making it one of the busiest bikeways west of the Mississippi.

High collision rates, however, also make Market Street a high-injury corridor, with four of the top 20 intersections for pedestrian-injury collisions and the top two intersections for bicycle injury collisions. Safer Market Street is one of over 24 Vision Zero projects being expedited to address the recent spike in fatalities along high-injury corridors such as Market Street. The proposed changes, including a package of turn restrictions, the extension of existing transit-only lanes and supplemental safety treatments, will help the city reach its Vision Zero goal of eliminating all traffic fatalities by improving safety conditions for all users.

The team recently submitted its environmental documentation to the planning department and completed its third round of outreach, in which it met with community organizations and concerned property owners to inform them of the proposed changes and address any questions or concerns.

Years of analysis and outreach to the community have informed the proposed changes and pending the approval of the SFMTA Board of Directors June 16, 2015 construction can begin within the month. The turn restrictions would be unveiled as a package once complete later this fall.

Question or concerns please contact Kate Elliott at kate.elliott@sfmta.com

Date, time and location of SFMTA Board of Directors Meeting:

City Hall Room 400, June 6, 2015 1:00 pm
1 Charles B. Goodlett Drive
San Francisco, CA 94102

Cold Busted: Facebook Buses are “Staging in a Travel Lane” in the 94117 Again – “Hayes Valley-MPK” Idling on Ashbury, Again

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Get up to speed on corporate bus “staging” right here – just keep going down.

So a couple months ago, the Facebook got busted by blithely staging its buses on Masonic. Then all of a sudden the buses went away – you could still see them moving but you wouldn’t see them sitting around at a makeshift bus terminal on Masonic complete with a supervisor standing about in the Panhandle, fine.

So where do all these buses sit around these days? Well, all over. The Facebook Bus Teamsters are trying to hide out around the neighborhood for 10-15 minutes at a time. And, through trial and error, they’ve found some better places.

Like here on Ashbury, as seen yesterday AM. This location is much less disruptive than the slow lane of Masonic, certainly. But I don’t think this routine is SFMTA-approved either.

unnamedfff copy

Anyway, this idling bus bothered at least one person, who took a snap and sent it over to me.

I’ll tell you, I’ve seen more buses about lately, but I can’t ID them very well from a distance, oh well.

Now to some, this isn’t a Facebook bus, to them it’s a Loop Transit bus or a WEDRIVEU or whathaveyou. But I don’t look at things that way. IMO, this is a Facebook bus, because it’s a Facebook bus, right? Tell me if I’m wrong.

Anyway, where should these giant buses stage?

IDK.

A Call for Artists: Sue-Happy “SF Beautiful” Org + SFMTA’s MUNI Buses = A Chance to Display Your Art

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Let’s see if I can pay off on this headline here.

San Francisco Beautiful is a 501(c)(3) what likes to sue us, the People of San Francisco. Last I saw, they got spanked by some appellate judges and the Wealthy Wizened White people of SFB said they were weighing their options, oh well.

And MUNI, well that’s America’s Slowest Big-City Transit System, right? (Ask about our hidebound ‘work-rules’ what have accumulated over the years – we’ve got a lot!”)

Put them together and you’ve got the ‘MUNI Art’ Call for Artists.

And here’s your compensation:

“This is a high visibility opportunity for artists to have their work seen by thousands of persons daily”

Oh, and maybe you’ll make a couple thou to boot.

Also, resumes are required.

Now an art car has had its exterior prettified, made beautiful, but an “art bus” looks just like any other bus, oh well. Your winning piece won’t be seen by the millions outside of MUNI buses, oh no, oh well. (And please note that your art can’t promote the use of cars as transportation, under MUNI’s advertising rules. Hey, why not make your bus art an image of an art bus? It could work!)

Have at it:

Call for Artists
San Francisco Beautiful presents: MUNI Art
Application Deadline: June 19, 2015
Project Description
SF Beautiful is inviting artists to create original artwork to be digitally reproduced for display within 50 Muni Art buses in San Francisco this fall (2015).The artist will retain ownership of the artwork. This is a new initiative of SF Beautiful, in partnership with SFMTA. This is a high visibility opportunity for artists to have their work seen by thousands of persons daily.
5 winning designs will be selected by a public vote from a pool of pre qualified finalists. Each of the 5 artists will have their work displayed in 10 buses for a period of three months. No advertising will be displayed in the buses during this period.
Eligibility
Applicants must live in one of the following Bay Area counties:
• Alameda County
• Contra Costa County
• Marin County
• Napa County
• San Francisco County
• San Mateo County
• Santa Clara County
• Solano County
• Sonoma County
Theme
Artists who are selected as finalists are encouraged to develop designs that are evocative of “The Spirit of San Francisco.”
This can be broadly interpreted and should be appropriate for the context in which it will be displayed.
Selection Process
Stage 1:
Complete applications will be vetted by a Review Committee comprised of local gallery owners and art institutions.
Applications will be considered based on their eligibility, application materials, and adherence to SFMTA’s advertising policy, on pages 4 & 5.
Stage 2:
Finalists will submit initial designs that will be presented to the public through an online voting system.
Applying
Applications must include the following:
1. 1-page project proposal including:
a. Project Description (text only, no visuals of project at this time)
b. How your project relates to the theme – “The Spirit of San Francisco”
c. If your project will be continuous or multiple panels (example on page 3)
2. 1-page resume
3. No more than 4 images of previous work (submitted as Microsoft Word or PDF document)
a. Include medium, dimensions, date, and a brief description for each image

“Undergrounding” – Once Again, the Rich and Connected Want to Impose Their Aesthetic Values and Have the Little People Pay For It

Wednesday, May 27th, 2015

The problem with London Breed attending house parties to raise money for herself is that it warps her perspective. On the subject of 9th Avenue:

“It’s one of the major gateways to Golden Gate Park and it just looks so horrible”

And which part looks horrible? The infrastructure, supposedly.

To me, it looks beautiful:

_o8f2117a1.jpg

Isn’t it funny how real estate interests out there deny how bad the fog is, and the wind, always with the swirling wind, but, somehow, it’s your internet and the N Judah overhead wires what’s really holding them back?

Anyway, to the rich people who want to impose their aesthetics on the rest of us, why don’t you raise the money to pay for “undergrounding” yourselves and then pay into a fund to cover the future additional costs of “undergrounding?”

Just asking.

The Latest SFMTA Bus Ads: “I BIKE TO … BURRITOS” & “WE BIKE TO … BRUNCH ON MARKET?”

Tuesday, May 26th, 2015

Here you go:

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And:

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So let’s see here. The SFMTA isn’t* allowed to endorse, say, Ed Lee for Mayor, but the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, coincidentally, is, as so it did about four years ago and that’s what it’s done/will do again for this “cycle” and that’s kind of funny since SFGov is the SFBC’s biggest benefactor, as evidenced by its giving the SFBC hundreds of thousands of dollars* per year.

And then the SFBC spends* its mad money on SFMTA bus ads, to return the favor, or is it a payment in kind, sort of to say, thanks for endorsing the right-of-center incumbent again*, or maybe somebody else is paying for all these new ads?

Mmmmm…

And this comes at a time of falling membership (from over 12000 in aught-11*) to what, 9000-something* these days?

And what’s the point of the ads? To remind restaurant owners who’s buttering their bread?

OK fine.

*Correct me if I’m wrong here, Gentle Reader

Flickr’s Photo of the Decade, IMO: Owl Purse + Horse Shoes + MUNI Bus Stop

Friday, May 15th, 2015

We’re only halfway through the 2010’s, or whatever you want to call the decade of 2010-2019, but it’s clear that Will Wilson‘s shot from aught-11 will not be surpassed:

Surprised it didn’t go viral…

In closing, PUT A BIRD ON IT!