Posts Tagged ‘jaywalk’

SFGov and Traders Joe’s Both are In Denial of This Persistent Jaywalking Problem at the First Block of Masonic

Friday, July 31st, 2015

I suppose I’ve been harping on this issue over the years.

Who created this problem? SFGOV, including  the Planning Department, for starters.

Who can do a better job of fixing things? SFGOV, including the SFMTA, for starters. And IDK, SFPD and DPW? And Trader Joe’s as well.

Here’s a recent example, just a couple of Bros on the west side of Masonic wanting to get to a parked car on the east side, just above the SFMTA’s Presidio Yard. (Note that they might not even be TJ’s customers, but their transit across four lanes of traffic is at the same place where shoppers do it.)

All these southbound cars have stopped for the red light at Geary. So far, so good:

7J7C1504 copy

But uh oh, cars are now coming up from Geary in the northbound lanes – it’s time to rethink and try again later:

7J7C1505 copy

Or, in this case, spend 2.5 minutes going down the hill to Geary, wait for the green light, and then ascend back up Masonic.

7J7C1506 copy

This is the choice people face. Sometimes they err and get hit by a car.

I’ll tell you, if you look at the death rate in Frisco due to earthquakes the past century vs. the death rates of Trader Joe’s shoppers jaywalking in front of TJ#100 the past decade or so, they’re about the same.

What can SFGov and TJ’s do now to fix things, to account for Human Nature?

What Trader Joe’s #100 Needs is Ocean Beach-Style Warning Signs for Its Shoppers Who Jaywalk on Deadly Masonic

Wednesday, December 31st, 2014

This is typical, this is routine – people parking on Masonic northbound and then jaywalking across five lanes of traffic to get to Trader Joe’s #100 and then jaywalking again back to their rides

7J7C1696 copy

Why do people do this? Well, ’cause getting from northbound Masonic to southbound, which is the only way to get into the parking lot, is a PITA. Drivers are banned from simply turning left into the parking lot because that would end up blocking half of northbound Masonic, and of course Masonic is the Great Connector betwixt The Avenues and the Place Where People Want To Be.

And even if you get yourself facing southbound, you still have to queue up to get into TJ’s ridiculously small parking lot. Hey, couldn’t they have built an underground garage? Well, sure, but you’d have to talk with the Planning Department about that. And hey, couldn’t they have built parking on the roof? Well, sure, and actually they did but you’d have to talk with the Planning Department about that because the average shopper isn’t allowed to park on the roof.

And actually, the current parking situation is better than before. Our vaunted Planning Department did a very poor job with this project and now we’re left with a kludgy fix that commits part of Masonic to TJ’s shoppers idling and parking and waiting.

So that’s the situation, that’s why people say I-don’t-wanna-deal-with-all-that and simply park on northbound Masonic on the east side of the street.

And that’s fine, that’s legal, but then the shoppers see that northbound Masonic has long stretches when it’s empty (because drivers need to wait at a red for a long time to let traffic on Geary go through) and they see a bunch of stalled traffic on southbound Masonic (because of the shoppers queuing up and also to wait at a red for a long time to let traffic on Geary go through). So they march across 30 MPH Masonic to get to the store.

How many TJs shoppers do this on a busy day? IDK, hundreds. It’s their thing, it’s their routine.

So can you die doing this? Sure. Does TJ’s know about this situation? Sure. I don’t see how they couldn’t be aware. I mean, when you have journalists calling up your store asking about how somebody died, I assume that you’re aware of the situation.

What’s the solution? Well, people’d be safer walking down to Geary and crossing legally, but they all already know that.

You see the problem is that they don’t know how dangerous it is to do what they’re doing.

Hey, you know how many people die at Ocean Beach during a typical year? A lot. So many theat they have a special sign:

OceanBeach-3 copy

How about similar signs for shoppers at this unique store:

People Jaywalking Have Died Here

How about that?

Unique situations call for unique signs, right?

Are you going to do anything at all, Trader Joe’s #100?

Four College Degrees (I’m Guessing) Play Frogger with 30 MPH Traffic on Masonic to get to Trader Joe’s #100

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

This crossing was particularly arduous for those involved – it took about 90 seconds of waiting and sprinting.

The speed limit is 30 MPH, but of course some cars might be going faster. If you want to get into mean, median and mode, well, an average speed would be in the single digits, due to all the stalled traffic waiting to get into the notorious TJ’s Masonic parking lot.

7J7C0656 copy

 

Let’s talk about Human Nature. These humans already know what they’re supposed to do – that’s heading south to Geary, waiting a while for a green and then heading back up north in the sidewalk to get to the gro sto. But once they’ve spent 30 seconds scanning for cars and then starting to run and then stopping to go back and then scanning for traffic again, they are accumulating SUNK COSTS of time and effort. So even if crossing legally would end up taking less time, THESE JAYWALKERS NEVER GIVE UP by walking down to the Geary intersection.

Anyway, there’s a happy ending to this story – the jaywalk back across the street with groceries in tow went much better, as these naughty peds used the stalled southbound traffic to their advantage, and northbound traffic is usually easy to negotiate. Hurrah! For this particular day…

(The reason why people park on the wrong side of Masonic and then go to TJ’s is that it’s much easier than doing things the legal way. It’s human nature to imagine consistent patterns, in this case patterns of traffic, even when they don’t exist IRL. The problem with the deadly game of Frogger on this particular block is that there’s no safety area, there’s no place to hide if you, the ped, make a mistake. Then it’s game over, man.)

If You’re Going to Jaywalk Across Masonic to Get To and From the Trader Joe’s, This is How You Should Do It

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Instead of heading up the hill to get back to their ride, these gals walked downhill a few paces and then used congested traffic near Geary to their advantage:

7J7C8166 copy

That’s better than most, of course.

What they’re doing is turning a complicated, deadly game of chicken into a simpler chore of waiting for northbound traffic to get a red and then shuffling across two lanes…

Photo: A Game of Frogger But In Real Life on Masonic in Front of Trader Joe’s #100 – Who Will Be The Next To Die?

Monday, June 9th, 2014

These people parked across the street from our popular Trader Joes on Masonic, as many people do, ’cause the TJ’s parking lot is too small, ’cause that’s what nearby residents wanted.

Our Planning Department created this disaster and then moved on to more important work, such as the failed 8 Washington project, oh well.

Fixes have been tried, but still we’ve got this parade of customers jaywalking back and forth across this stretch of 30 MPH Masonic, thusly, from a few days back:

Click to expand

Cars were coming in the fast lanes both northbound and southbound, so their only choice was to wait for the black car to pass and then sprint behind it.

This game has been going on for years, with many shoppers playing, and some getting hit by vehicles.

Driver and Writer CW Nevius Goes on a “Rant” Against the “Militant” Pedestrians of SF – Do They Have the Right to Jaywalk?

Friday, January 31st, 2014

Here’s the latest effort from CW Nevius, who’s taking a break from being spokesman for San Francisco’s right-side-of-the-aisle  political faction to go on a “bit of a rant” against local pedestrians. But what’s up with this?  

“Even when they are in the right, I worry about them. When the traffic light countdown gets to five or six, they step confidently into the crosswalk — which is their right…”

But pedestrians don’t have “the right” to do so. It’s agin CA law – check out V C Section 21456,* which is dealt with by Rule #3 of the Five Rules for Pedestrians.

Don’t you have an editor, Nevius? Oh, that’s right, you’re too old and experienced to have an editor, and plus, editors cost money, that’s right.

But don’t you have a fact checker, Nevius? Oh, that’s right, you’re too old and experienced to have a fact checker, and plus, fact checkers cost money, that’s right.

But don’t you have a photographer, Nevius? Oh, that’s right, photographers cost money. So all your observations, we’ll just have to take your word about them. OK fine. BTW, [sarcasmmode ON] nice stock photo you’ve got there, Neve. “Cause a stock photo taken in the People’s Republic of China, you know, from more than a thousand li away, well, that really illustrates how “militant” and “freaking nuts” San Francisco peds are, huh? [sarcasmmode OFF]

And oh, BTW Neve, the peds of SF aren’t militant, not at all. Try to find a different word for what you mean.

Of course you’re new in town, I get that. Sure, welcome to San Francisco, Neve.

But you’re doing a half-assed job doing your half-time gig.

You need to try harder.

*”Walk, Wait, or Don t Walk

21456. Whenever a pedestrian control signal showing the words “WALK” or “WAIT” or “DON’T WALK” or other approved symbol is in place, the signal shall indicate as follows:

(a) “WALK” or approved “Walking Person” symbol. A pedestrian facing the signal may proceed across the roadway in the direction of the signal, but shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection at the time that signal is first shown.

(b) Flashing or steady “DON’T WALK” or “WAIT” or approved “Upraised Hand” symbol. No pedestrian shall start to cross the roadway in the direction of the signal, but any pedestrian who has partially completed crossing shall proceed to a sidewalk or safety zone or otherwise leave the roadway while the “WAIT” or “DON’T WALK” or approved “Upraised Hand” symbol is showing.

Amended Ch. 413, Stats. 1981. Effective January 1, 1982.”

This is How Masonic Avenue Jaywalkers Die – Between Geary and Bush – Back and Forth to Trader Joe’s #100

Monday, January 20th, 2014

Let’s start of with how people get across a different part of Masonic Avenue a bit lower down Mervyn’s Heights – note that that area is at the crest of a hill.

Compare that part of Masonic with the first block of Masonic just north of Geary. See that? All of those people are NOT on crest, they’re on a slope so they can’t see what’s coming.

As here – MUNI bus barn to the right, TJ’s to the left:

Click to expand

Note the driver of the dark minivan tapping his/her brakes for the ped:

The ped was distracted here by the traffic that just popped up heading south

And now she’s picking up the pace:

This is the situation, 100% created by SFGov.

Here’s the “Solution” for the Deadly Pedestrian Problem at Trader Joe’s #100 on Masonic – Is It Enough? Maybe

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

You see this sign? It’s the one you see as you exit TJ’s #100 on Masonic near Geary, assuming you’re not driving or riding.

It was put in as a response to all those shoppers who jaywalk to their cars on the other side of Masonic.

Click to expand

People still jaywalk of course, owing to the ease of parking on the northbound side of Masonic and the difficulty encountered trying to park in the TJ’s lot.  (There’s a lot of history here on this example of bad planning.)

Did I call for this sign? Yes I did. So it’s good that it’s there now. It wasn’t there a couple of years ago, so good on you, SFGov.

But can SFGov and TJ’s do more? Sure. Hey, why don’t the Powers That Be take the opportunity revisit this whole situation before others kill themselves?

Right? I mean I’m not talking politically, ’cause the politics part of getting a new gro sto here is already done. But, you know, morally.

Just asking.

Moving on…

Now here’s an example of people actually taking the several minutes required to get back to their cars by walking down to Geary and waiting for the four-way signal.

This gal here broke from her shopping group to jaywalk while her friends did things the legal way.

(Until this, I’ve never noticed a person not  jaywalking,)

So here she is, sitting pretty whilst waiting for her friends, exulting in her ability to not get hit by a car on this occasion:

I don’t notice this kind of scene as much these days so that’s good.

That’s the update.

Encountering Five Trader Joe’s Shoppers Jaywalking Masonic in Five Seconds – WHO WILL BE THE NEXT TO DIE?

Thursday, May 9th, 2013

These were the final two I saw after just passing three others ALL walking/jogging west to get to Trader Joe’s. This is my personal best, after all those years.

Oh yeah, I know all about the history of jaywalking and about Who Framed Roger Rabbit and the Red Car and so forth. So what. How does that kind of stuff help us here? Answer: It doesn’t.

Moving on….

Click to expand

Here’s what I said about Trader Joes #100, a half-decade ago, on the old blog:

“Of course, everybody needs to be on the lookout for all the Frogger-like jaywalkers carrying their groceries across six lanes of parked and moving cars. (Somebody is going to get hit one of these days.)”

Now that got a bit of attention from TJ’s Corporate. (I know because I saw the logs indicating such.)

So what the reaction? Nothing, basically.

Stuff like this is what the TJ’s people spent their time on instead, it would appear.

Now this is what occurred last year. Actually, it’s the one-year anniversary of  the death of 25-year-old Suzanne Monaco.*

Did the San Francisco Planning Department plan things well? No, obviously.

Is the SFMTA doing anything about this particular block? No. They have plans to put a whole lot of useless trees and a useless median south of Geary but they don’t seem to care about where TJ’s parkers park  and where they walk.

Yes these jaywalkers are illegally crossing the street and yes they are 100% responsible for their deaths when they get killed but what can be done to prevent future deaths right here in this one location?

I don’t know, a parking garage, an enforcement action, a ban on parking on the east side of Masonic on that particular block of Masonic, a traffic signal and crosswalk, opening up Emerson Alley to allow shopper parking on the roof, you know, just throwing things out there.

This situation is one giant FAIL for SFGov.

You should all be ashamed, SFGov.

Srsly.

Leaving you with one reaction, from Jessica Levin:

“I saw the flower memorial outside Trader Joe’s, and if that is the spot where she crossed, then she must have had a death wish. That’s a busy high speed corridor in both directions and she crossed near a blind crest. She didn’t deserve to die, but if anyone gets the blame, unfortunately it is the pedestrian. I parked across Masonic exactly once (and I did jaywalk to get back to my car) but I was careful to cross at the crest where I could see traffic coming from quite a distance, and even then I was extremely nervous. That was two years ago, and I have never done it again.”

*Was she really carrying “an armful of groceries” while heading “west” back to the store? Probably not.

Trader Joe’s “Bro” Vs. Moving Traffic on Masonic Avenue – San Francisco Planning at Its Finest

Friday, September 7th, 2012

You see, area NIMBY’s didn’t want the Masonic Trader Joes (Store #100) to have a proper parking lot, so this is the result:

Click to expand

Bad pedestrian behavior on this block has led to the death of one TJ’s shopper this year so far.

The question is why do peds act this way at this particular location.

The other question is what can be done about this.

San Francisco: The City That DOESN’T Know How.