Posts Tagged ‘Improvement’

Our US Postal Service Gets an Early Start with Parking in the New Bike Lanes of Masonic Avenue

Monday, November 27th, 2017

And this lengthy project isn’t even done yet:

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Where will these trucks park after completion?

– The slow lane, leaving just one for MUNI and cars?

– The slightly elevated bike lane, as seen?

– The new overly-wide sidewalks?

– Some yet-to-be-designated delivery vehicle / UBER Lyft dropoff point?

IDK.

 

Test Riding the New and “Improved” Masonic Boulevard – It’s Not Going to be a Night-and-Day Difference, Safetywise

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017

Here you go, heading south, in the downhill direction – you’ve got your new median on the left, your downsized two lanes of traffic, your removed bus stops (so MUNI will just stop in traffic in future), your (slightly) raised cycle track and then your preexisting houses and driveways on the right:

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And here’s your reverse angle:

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So this isn’t much of a difference, safetywise, right?

What else, oh, for the next year or two of construction, we’ll continue to see this kind of half-assed engineering – this is a wheelchair ramp, of sorts:

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Hey, why would bike riders even want to get onto the sidewalks of Masonic? Well, you should try it sometime, as this person ahead of me wisely was doing. (And boy, if you threw in heavy rain and a few epically drunk drivers, the likes of which killed a pedestrian and a bike rider on this stretch of Masonic the past decade or so, well that’d make the sidewalk even more appealing.)

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Those are USF trees you can see on the right in the above photo. This used to be the narrowest sidewalk of Masonic north of Fell, but as you can see it’s quite wide now.

But look, turnabout is fair play, as peds seems to enjoy walking in the new bike path. That’s a bus stop there on the left, complete with a cut out to please Area Residents:

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There are costs and benefits to these changes, of course. It’s too bad that our SFMTA didn’t even try to document them…

Twee Overload: Another Non-Safety-Related, Non-Improvement “Safety” “Improvement” for the Panhandle – How Does This Pole Help?

Wednesday, November 8th, 2017

Somehow, Rec and Park is trying to turn Golden Gate Park into some kind of old-school, National Park fantasyland, like something out of Every Day Is Like Sunday, these days.

So we’re paying for stuff like these Edwardian-era wooden benches, which to me don’t match the Panhandle’s current situation.

(Speaking of which, the wooden graffiti benches are getting used, but perhaps not by those intended by RPD. So people will check-in in the daytime, then you see them still there at the end of the day, and then they’re still there the next day, not that I care, but I question how much RPD knows about GGP, and the Panhandle part of it in particular.)

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Anywho, that’s your background. And here’s what’s new:

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The concrete base has been at this location for a while now. I was thinking it could be for an LED light pole, but I was also thinking I’d be wrong. Turns out we’re getting a sign.

What will it say? Prolly the Rec and Park board would prefer something not allowed, such as ED LEE GETS IT DONE, XXX OOO, RPD, but maybe it will say, “Golden Gate Park?”

IDK.

Now what I think RPD should do is widen the neighboring multi-use path that abuts Fell, but that might be too much of a heavy lift for them, oh well.

On it goes…

Wood Appears to have Been a Poor Choice for the Brand New Benches of the Golden Gate Park Panhandle

Friday, October 13th, 2017

This was the vision, mostly that of landed gentry millionaires with Strong Ideas about How Things Should Look:

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And this is the reality, of Life in the 94117:

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And this is the kind of post-vandalism fix-it job you can expect from Rec and Park, about a week or two after residents call the 311:

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Not saying I could do better, but we’re down to bare wood here people, with no finish at all on all, pretty soon, looks like.

This vignette makes me think Wood Appears to have Been a Poor Choice for the Brand New Benches of the Golden Gate Park Panhandle.

END OF LINE.

Here It Is: Your New, Lower Capacity Masonic Avenue, with a Median and Twee Streetlamps

Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

(We’re gonna rock on down to ‘Sonic Avenue, and then we’ll take it higher.)

Looking north from Hayes. The medians will end up with trees, and looks like a few easier-to-see traffic signals as well:

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Looking south from Hayes. The median ends early here, perhaps in deference to the SFFD’s nearby Engine 21 on Grove, IDK:

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IDK if these trees will survive:

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Here are your old-school streetlight amenities. I guess this is meant to please area homeowners. (The similarly brand-new, old-school benches down the hill aren’t really working out, oh well.)

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Here’s what looks to be a bus island with a bike lane on the right side. MUNI buses will simply stop in traffic, leaving this part of Masonic with one lane:

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Here’s your reverse angle, looking towards Fulton:

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Old sidewalk and trees to the right, new sidewalk added in the middle, new bike lane further left, and then the new median:

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And there you have it.

How Well-Matched are Rec & Parks’ Brand-New and Quite Twee Wooden Benches with the Panhandle? Let’s Take a Look

Wednesday, September 20th, 2017

Not well-matched at all, it would seem:

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(Also, free hair curler!)

Here’s your background.

(Hey, is our RPD Board older, whiter, richer, and more suburbanite-minded than the locals they are employed to serve? You tell me, Babe. You tell me.)

Anyway, workers will take off these scribbles by removing the remaining surface treatment on these old-tyme, Elizabethan wooden slats, and then we’ll see how it goes…

Here It Is, a New Bike Lane for the Vaunted SFMTA “Streetscape” “Improvement” Project on Masonic

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

Here’s the west side of Masonic betwixt Hayes and Grove these days:

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This doesn’t seem like much, this doesn’t seem like much of a “transformation” of this windswept corridor:

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Are old people going to hug each other more? I guess? Actually, all these people look like they just scored, or are about to score, or want to score with you, Gentle Reader:

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It’ll be the Miracle of Masonic! Or something.

Anyway, the primary effect will be more congested rush hours and fewer bike riders on the sidewalks.

But we’ll see.

In the meantime, feel free to continue to ride on the excessively wide sidewalks, where they exist, depending on conditions. And by that I mean the hilly blocks north of Fulton in particular. 

You know, like this:

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That’s the choice that most people make. Some transition back to the street after passing McAllister, Golden Gate and Turk. Others cruise all the way to Anza, where the existing sidewalk turns normal. Downhill is a different story of course. Most stay in the street the whole way. I tend to wait at Mcallister and then start coasting when I know I’ll pass Fulton with a green. (This kind of bike riding isn’t “comfortable,” mindless, thoughtless bike riding for ages ranged 8 to 80, but I’m not sure this stated goal will be attained whenever this pork barrel project gets completed. We’ll see.)

That not very busy sidewalk you see above will get even wider, and a median will go in so that will push the two lanes of traffic to the right a bit. I don’t know what’s going to happen to the trees. Maybe they’ll stay. (Of course, the ones that made up a small grove near the MUNI stop on Geary inbound at Masonic have already gotten the chop, for some related art project, oh well.)

And all these plans are just a guess, as I don’t keep up.  Maybe they’ll get done next year? IDK

Frisco’s Highest Elevator Car

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Here it is:

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I don’t think it ever gets level, so you’re standing on a sloping floor the whole time:

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And then you go up up up to the highest horizontal point of Sutro Tower:

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I haven’t seen it in action lately, but here’s a shot from aught-four:

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And more recently:

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Or you can take the stairs I guess…

Oh, Here’s the Rest of the Panhandle “Transformation” Project: A Bench and Some Bike Racks, But You Don’t Want to Use Them

Friday, May 26th, 2017

Why? Cause this will happen:

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Or might happen, if you lock up your bike in the middle of the Panhandle and then walk away.

If you’re there to lounge on the grass, you’d be better off locking your ride to itself and then just keeping an eye on it.

And here’s the rest of it, garbage cans

I guess this project is over for now.

Vaunted Panhandle “Transformation” Project Appears to be Mostly the Addition of Green Garbage Cans on Concrete Pads

Friday, May 19th, 2017

Here it is, more neighborhood minutiae.

When did this project start? I forget, a half-year ago? You can see an old-school can in the background. I guess they’ll take it out soon? (They used to have a recycling catcher for aluminum cans up top, but I guess that system didn’t work out, and a lot of the time your bottle/can would go straight down into the garbage pile anyway oh well. Sometimes I leave recycling atop the cans, for recyclers, but RPD don’t like recyclers I’ve noticed, and these new-school cans are curved up top as you can see.)

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People thought that they’d put benches in here, but obviously not.

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(I don’t get SFGov, man. Are garbage cans good or not? Sometimes they are, apparently, but you can’t find a one in Dolores Park these days. And yet, they just added a bunch of cans on the Valencia Mission corridor. And right around these places you can see in the Panhandle here, they’ve taken out cans, to fight rats, I guess, but now they’re adding more in the same basic place. And for that matter, is free parking for cars on Sundays good or bad? Our SFGov can’t seem to decide. First it’s good, then it’s bad, and now it’s good again, and there are proposals to get rid of it again. This is like over a period of what, three-four years? And our SFMTA seemed to like traffic for a while there, but now it’s against traffic, particularly when it’s caused by UBER Lyft. Etc.)

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You know man, down in some place like Mexico City, they decide to put garbage cans someplace and then they do it, no muss no fuss. It doesn’t take a year, it takes like a week. The local government doesn’t boast about how great it is with endless signage and marketing and it doesn’t tell us how we should all support the area’s unpopular, appointed Mayor. So IDK, Man.

Anyway, there are still a few concrete pads unfinished, so there might be a few more benches going in. And I guess we got LED streetlamps last year (so now when they’re shining all day long in the daytime, they use less juice).

But many places in the world have garbage cans, and LED lighting for that matter. Like all over the place, the Central Valley, for example. And yet they don’t have this whole self-congratulatory hullaballoo about “transforming” the “streetscape” or whathaveyou.

Oh, and another thing. People fall down on the horrible, unmaintained surface of the Panhandle walking path along Oak like every day/week. Do you know that Rec and Park? Oh you have claims filed against you from joggers and others so you do know that? But you don’t really care? OK. OK fine.

And, needless to say, the Panhandle is still the same place as it’s been the past half-century. There will be no “transformation,” anytime soon. Sry.

Anyway.