Posts Tagged ‘deaths’

A Few Beefs with the SFMTA’s Marketing of Its Plan to (Somehow) “Increase Access” to Twin Peaks

Tuesday, April 19th, 2016

Here you go:

Making Room to Enjoy Spectacular Twin Peaks by Aaron Bialick
Friday, April 15, 2016

But the SFMTA isn’t really making anything is it?

Access by foot and bike is pretty limited, the road that loops around the mountain top in a “figure 8” is underused by car traffic and the loop’s intersections are confusing.

OK, well, “access” by foot and bike will still be “pretty limited” after the SFMTA completes the scheme it came up with, right? And let’s take a look at that road, on a dreaded sunny day:

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Now, would you say that the east (left) side of this figure 8 is “underused?” No, not at all!

car-free access

Hey, is being “car-free” a good thing? Like is it as good as being something like herpes-free? One wonders.

On Tuesday, the SFMTA Board of Directors will consider approval of a pilot phase…

This means that the SFMTA is going to do what it wants to do, with the little bit of money it can scrape up to enact its ideology.

The project was shaped with community feedback…

First of all, there’s no community up there atop Twin Peaks. Second of all, if there is, it’s tourists (international, national, regional, and local) and this plan cooked up by the SFMTA is about as anti-tourist as one could imagine.

We’d also create legitimate parking spaces at the center and south intersections to address the illegal parking that already occurs.

WHAT WHAT? So all these People With Cars, the hundreds of People what congregate up there sometimes, they’re parking on the side of the highway “illegitimately?” So it’s legal but it doesn’t comport with SFMTA ideology? Or maybe it’s illegal, but our SFMTA hasn’t seen fit to put up signage what explains things nice and clear for visitors who don’t really have a good handle on English? And so all the scores of places where people park now and, indeed, the past century, all of that was not and is not “legitimate?” Whoo boy.

So the plan is to decrease access IRL and advertise this paint job (that doesn’t add ANYTHING) as one what will “increase” access.

Will that cost anything? Yes.

Will it cost the vaunted SFMTA anything. No, not really. Just a bit of paint…

 

Our SFMTA’s Plan to “Increase Access” at Twin Peaks WIll Actually Decrease Access – Trying to Figure the Figure 8

Friday, April 8th, 2016

IDK, man. On the one hand, SFGov promotes the 49-Mile-Drive, but OTOH, SFGov wants to make it more difficult.

Take a look here down below – where are all these cars going to go after this plan gets going?

The plan, advertised as one what would “increase access,” will decrease access, obviously. Parking areas will be decreased by a whole lot. Oh what’s that, that’s a good thing AFAYAC, Gentle Reader? Well, fine – but let’s agree that taking out scores of places for people to park is going to make for a less-busy Twin Peaks, for better or worse.

And hey, are these people glorious Pedestrians / People With Bikes or are they terrible, horrible People With Cars? One simply can’t tell. Some locals walk and bike up here, but I see very few tourists attempting to do so. Mostly they come by tour bus or car, FWICS.

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On It Goes…

Will the SFMTA/RPD’s Car Ban Plan for the East Side of Twin Peaks Increase Access or Decrease Access? Take a Look at This Photo

Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

Take a listen, to Phil Matier here.

And then take a look, at what an Ivy Leaguer / Attorney / Former Gavin Newsom Jogging Buddy Who For Some Reason Is In Charge Of Our Park System has to say here:

As he sees it, the plan “increases the recreational accessibility of the area and makes it safer for bicyclists and pedestrians.”

As for safety, we’ll have to wait and see. But as for “accessibility,” this is going to be a Big Fat Decrease.

Here’s the east side of Twin Peaks Boulevard as it looks when the parking lot at Christmas Tree Point is all fulled up:

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Where are these people going to go? Not Twin Peaks, that’s for sure. This plan will decrease access, certainly. (Or is the SFMTA going to run a shuttle bus up here? IDTS)

And oh, here’s how Phil Ginsburg attains access himself, using a car:

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Proposed Figure 8 for Twin Peaks: Let’s See if SFGov’s Half-Ass Overgoverning is Better than Its Half-Ass Undergoverning

Wednesday, February 24th, 2016

“No offense Homer, but your half-ass under-parenting was a lot more fun than your half-ass over-parenting.”

Joe Kukura does a good job here of explaining our SFMTA’s Twin Peaks Figure 8 Redesign Project.

Losing one lane of traffic should be no problem, but I don’t know where our tourists will be able to park after the SFMTA gets through.

They kind of make things up on their own now.

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The fourth of July is prolly the busiest day of the year up here, for the fogworks shows you might be able to see some years

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Rec and Park has no idea what it’s doing, as you can see, as per usual. What did they do, just put up some signs and walk away?

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Anyway, that’s the update from the Wild West…

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Our MASONIC AVENUE STREETSCAPE PROJECT is a GO for Mid-2016, Apparently – The Pros and Cons of This Grand Mal Projet

Thursday, January 14th, 2016

Here you go, some non-pdf images that ppl will actually be able to find in six months, you know, after this official link will no longer be working, for whatever reason:

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Y dos:

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Getting Ready for Construction After a multi-year, community-driven planning and design process to create a safer and better Masonic Avenue, the city is pleased to announce that construction on the Masonic Avenue Streetscape Project will begin in mid-2016!

After all the delays, one doesn’t know how the SFMTA knows that it will actually get going. IRL, what the SFMTA is saying here is that it’s PLANNING on getting going in mid-2016 or later. I’d prolly lose any and all exclamation points as well. Also, instead of “community-driven,” I’d read that as SFMTA-driven. As far as safety is concerned, we’ll have to wait and see. The primary effect will be to slow this part of Masonic down down down. In recent years, pedestrian / cyclist deaths on Masonic have been caused by two severely drunk drivers, and one jaywalking pedestrian. So, will this happily-named “Streetscape!” pork-barrel project prevent DUI drivers? Nope, not at all. Will it lessen the bad effects of drunk driving? I srsly doubt it, but we’ll see. And, since this project’s northern border is at Geary, it will necessarily have little to no effect upon jaywalking Trader Joe’s shoppers at the top of the hill area. As far as whether Masonic will become “better,” well that’s debatable. I’ll concede it might be a better street for some. Of course, the SFMTA, being the inefficient political beast it has become, won’t never concede nothing nohow. It won’t even agree to test out how much these changes will slow down traffic, even for one day. What you’d do is cone off the slow lane of inbound Masonic one random morning and then watch the traffic back up and then spend your time explaining away all the consequences. Obviously, the SFMTA doesn’t want to do that, so it makes excuses. Fine. I’d expect nothing else from it.

San Francisco Public Works will be the managing the construction phase and is in the process of hiring a contractor. This project will bring a variety of new features to Masonic Avenue, including a landscaped median, better lighting, an improved sewer system, raised bikeways, bus stop enhancements, and a new public plaza at Geary Boulevard.

It will also take away some things. What are those, SFMTA? Oh, you don’t want to say? OK fine. One of these effects will be a slow down of MUNI on Masonic during the morning and evening drives. But, because they’ll put in some bus shelters, public “access” to transit will be “improved.” This makes no sense. How much will MUNI be slowed? We’ll have to wait and see. And then, the SFMTA will step up a few years later to spend more pork, more of The People’s Money, to “tune-up” Masonic. So that’s a double-win for the SFMTA, even though it’s not clear that the current plan will be a net “improvement.”

These enhancements are all in support of San Francisco’s Vision Zero goal of eliminating all traffic deaths in the city.

This is a simple definition of VisionZero. The complicated version is that, somehow, without really even trying, SF will miraculously eliminate all transportation deaths in SF County by the year 2024 and all in years future. If you acknowledge that this impossible goal is in fact impossible, then there are many positions at the SFMTA for which you’d be ineligible. Oh well.

If you have any questions about construction, please contact Alex Murillo at Alex.M.Murillo@sfdpw.org or 415.558.5296. Parking Management The SFMTA’s recent launch of Residential Permit Parking Area Q has helped keep parking available for local residents and businesses—additional evaluation data will be available in the coming months.

As a general rule, our SFMTA tends to favor Masonic Avenue area residents vs. the current users of Masonic and to a ridiculous degree. JMO.

To offset some of the parking being repurposed…

What would a neutral word be for “repurposed?” Would it be “eliminated?” Yes it would.

by the Masonic Avenue Streetscape Project, the SFMTA is evaluating nearby streets for opportunities to increase on-street parking supply and will be engaging the community for feedback.

So, our SFMTA has been saving up its energy to “create” parking spaces exactly at the time it wants to hush complaints of eliminating parking spaces? Apparently. Looking at the map on the second page, some of these blocks would appear to be non-starters. Our SFMTA certainly approves of illegal double-parking  on Central Ave, but this map would make a hash of that, oh well.

These efforts are in addition to the 20 spots already added on Fulton between Central and Baker as part of the separate Muni Forward 5 Fulton Rapid Project.

Our SFMTA boasts of putting in bike lanes on Fulton, and then pushing them towards the center of Fulton, but then come two blocks of 90 degree parking, the least cyclist-friendly thing I can imagine. But this placated residents and that appears to be one of our SFMTA’s Most Important Things.

And on it goes. If you want to read about Masonic, start here and spend all day if you want, I don’t care. Anyway, that’s the update for 2016. Traffic’s going to get a lot worse as soon as parts of Masonic start getting shut down and then it won’t get much better after construction is completed, oh well.

If you have any questions about potential added parking near Masonic Avenue, please contact Maurice Growney at Maurice.Growney@sfmta.com or 415.701.4549. For more information: sfmta.com/masonic MASONIC AVENUE STREETSCAPE PROJECT N Masonic Avenue Area Proposed Parking Changes Potential Back-In Angled Parking Potential 90 Degree Parking Forthcoming Back-In Angled Parking (Legislated 2012)

Opposition to SF’s Plan to Destroy 26 Healthy Hardwoods at Geary & Masonic: “SAVE OUR TREES From DEVELOPERS”

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Here’s the word on the street, from fliers posted all over:

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Get up to speed on the coming ARBOR-GEDDON here.

I’m not sure about the reference to “DEVELOPERS.” SFGov is fixing on taking out two lanes of parking / rush-hour lanes betwixt Geary and Masonic. It’s not like they’re cutting down these trees to put up a condo building.

Here’s the proposal for after these old trees get cut down – it’s another “street art” project, complete with new, transplanted palm trees. Kind of an L.A. look.

Here’s what it looks like now – not an “urban forest” but this stand does have an actual “canopy,” which, of course, is unusual since forests, by definition, aren’t urban.

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I can’t see anything online yet, but the flier says Judgment Day will be on September 2nd, 2015 – 5:00 PM in Room 416 at City Hall.

Germinator 2: Judgment Day – Interim Mayor Ed Lee Wants to Kill All These Street Trees on Masonic – Public Protests April 27th

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

At first the notices were white.

The Public protested the white notices, so now the follow-up notices are here. They’re yellow:

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One assumes that tree lovers will show up at this DPW meeting on April 27th and DPW will (sort of) listen to them for two minutes each and then most of the hundreds of sidewalk trees on this 3000-foot stretch of Masonic Avenue will get chipped later on this year.

One assumes.

Ironically, SFGov Plans to Remove This Actual Urban Tree Canopy from Masonic and Geary – Aesthetics vs. Safety, Again

Monday, April 13th, 2015

Now I say ironically because it’s standard practice for our local pols to talk about San Francisco’s “urban canopy” as if we were close to having one already IRL.

But here’s an actual canopy, on Masonic near Geary, that’s doomed for the chipper because of some bogus art project called “Points of Departure.”

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One supposes it’ll be a spoonful of sugar to make the medicine of the big new federally-funded, state-funded “Streetscape” / pork-barrel project go down? (Our SFMTA is working, slowly but surely, on this gig what has turned out to be less “shovel-ready” than advertised…)

One local, beloved blogger has gone as far as calling this slow-motion disaster Arbor-Geddon 2015.

Now here’s a little history about how SFGov works, courtesy of San Francisco Mayor (1996-present) / local lobbyist Willie Brown:

“I wanted the trees gone, but knew I’d face stiff resistance both from homeless advocates and tree supporters. We brought in a tree expert and wouldn’t you know it, some of the trees had a blight. I issued an emergency order, and that night park workers moved in and dug up and bagged the trees. By the time the TV cameras arrived the next morning the trees were on their way to a tree hospital, never to return. So bless me, father, for I too have sinned. I just did it before everyone had a cell phone camera.”

Delightful story, Willie. Simply delightful.

Anyway, kiss this small grove, improbably near a big #38 MUNI stop, good-bye.

Appalling Corner Cutting from the Vaunted SFMTA: Newly-Installed Clean-Sheet Traffic Signal Poles on Masonic

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

[All right, a little background. Who’s been in charge of the crosswalk in front of City Hall on Polk? IDK, somebody in SFGov, like the SFMTA, or an agency from before the SFMTA, or DPW, or, no matter, somebody in SFGov, anyway, right? And these people know that driver compliance rates with whatever half-assed “smart” control scheme they installed is a lot lower than the compliance rate with simple red-yellow-green signals. But then, with regular dumb traffic lights, pedestrians would have to wait, at least part of the time, to cross the street to get to the Great Hall of The People and we can’t have that, right? So when a tour bus driver runs over an SFGov worker going back to the office, it’s all the tour bus driver’s fault, right? Well, yes and no. The BOS can vote 11-0 to regulate tour bus operators, but that ignores its own responsibility, non? Oh what’s that, you were going to get around to installing a traffic signal there, but you just hadn’t gotten around to it? And what’s that, you can’t figure out how to do it with the money we already give you, so we need to give you more more more? All right, fine, but that means you’re a part of the safety problem, not the solution, SFTMA / SFGov, at least in this case. Moving on…]

What the Hell is this, this brand new aluminum(?) light pole above Masonic betwixt the Golden Gate and Turk “high injury* corridors.” Believe it or not, you’re looking at signal lights for northbound Masonic traffic at Golden Gate AND ALSO, on the other side, for southbound Masonic at Turk:

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Here’s how things look up the hill heading southbound – no problems here:

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But this is what you see going north, you see a red light on the left and green light on the right, and the farther away you are, the more it looks like one intersection with contradictory signals:

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I’ve never seen anything like this anywhere in the world.

This is appallingly poor design, IMO.

So, what, give you more money and you’ll put in another pole, SFMTA? IDK, you can see that they spent money on three new poles, so why did they cheap out with this half-assed creation?

Tree branches? So, the SFMTADPW wants to cut down hundreds of “diseased” trees** on this 3000-foot stretch of Masonic, but it can’t trim a couple trees in the name of Safety?

OK fine.

ASSIGNMENT DESK: Why did the deciders decide on this half-assed design? This one will write itself.

*Are there any low injury corridors in San Francisco? No there are not. So the phrase “high-injury corridor,” as used over and over again, recently, in SF, is meaningless. Oh what’s that, there are no accidents on Willard Street North, for example. Except that WSN aint a corridor, it’s a just a little street. So “high injury corridor” simply means corridor, which simply means, of course, “a (generally linear) tract of land in which at least one main line for some mode of transport has been built.”

**This is how SFGov works:

I wanted the trees gone, but knew I’d face stiff resistance both from homeless advocates and tree supporters. We brought in a tree expert and wouldn’t you know it, some of the trees had a blight. I issued an emergency order, and that night park workers moved in and dug up and bagged the trees. By the time the TV cameras arrived the next morning the trees were on their way to a tree hospital, never to return.”

Arguably, this occurred a while ago, but, arguably, Willie Brown is still the Mayor, so there you go.

The Difference Between a Serious Safety Organization Like the NTSB and Our SFMTA – “Toward Zero” vs. “Vision Zero”

Monday, March 16th, 2015

(Remember Gavin Newsom’s Vision from 2004 of Zero homeless people on the Streets of San Francisco by 2014? How did that work out? Oh, there are more now? Oh

So now we have a New Vision Zero – SFGov has banned all transportation-related deaths and injuries in San Francisco starting in 2024 and continuing in perpetuity.

Compare that with our NTSB, which is a serious safety organization. It wants us to move Toward Zero. See?

See the difference? One goal is attainable and the other is pie-in-the-sky from the get-go.

Hey, what’s the SFMTA’s record of turning tax and feepayer money into transportation safety? Not so hot, right? The SFMTA is good at creating more “work rules” for its employees, but it’s not so hot on its actual core functions.

And how is the SFMTA going to change to do better, to “achieve” its impossible to achieve goal?

Nothing. It’s planning on doing the same old same old, a “streetscape” project here and another streetscape project there, political district by political district.

Hey, does the NTSB have politics? Yes, yes it does, unfortunately. But it’s not mired in le politique the way our SFMTA is.

And here’s a bonus – the chances of any particular NTSB worker killing me on the streets of San Francisco are remarkably low. Compare that with the chances of me getting killed by an SFMTA employee are what, 20-30%, you know, assuming I get killed on the streets of San Francisco.

So why not this, SFMTA? Why not take Vision Zero 2024 SF and start with SFGov employees, starting now?

You see, SFMTA, transportation safety isn’t a problem with the lack of “safe” streets, it’s a problem with the behavior of people.

The way you’re trying to do affect the behavior of people is the most convoluted imaginable. Sorry.

Anyway, if you changed your project’s name to Toward Zero, you’d have a chance at success.

If not, then you don’t.