Here’s the sitch – drivers southbound on Masonic south of Geary want to get to the City Target lower level parking lot.
Here we go, looking south, with City Target to the left and behind a bit, so drivers need to make a U-turn at the light:
To help with this, our SFMTA rigged the traffic signals (which were paid for by Target, BTW) to start the green light phase of Masonic with a left-only signal for southbound traffic only, allowing one, two, three, or four cars to make a left or hang a Louie, depending on how alert the drivers are.
However, drivers who aren’t at the start of the queue know that it’s simpler and faster to make the U-turn further north, as this car just did:
So now we’re looking north, Gentle Readers, in all the rest of the shots – Tar-GHEY du Ci-TAY is to the right.
So the question is whether this is an illegal turn over the double yellows…
This sedan is making a legal left to go east on Anza as the Jeep in the background is making an illegal U to get to City Target:
I saw three drivers do this in about ten seconds the other day. I’m thinking it’s illegal but drivers are unlikely to get busted for doing it.
Now the bonus part about making a U-turn to use the lower lot is that it’s easier to find parking there and it’s generally easier to exit from, depending on where you’re heading after your shopping session.
I’ll say that once you’ve gone past the lowest parking level, getting out of the City Centre mall and back on your way can be convoluted – like even the best path might appear to be the “wrong” way to go.
Of course, nobody would design a system such as this – it’s just an accident of history. The question is how to handle things.
IMO, the SFMTA handled this sitch the wrong way.