Posts Tagged ‘Muni’

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 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 your 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.

“BURRITOFICATION IN PROGRESS” – Chipotle Chain Store Comes to Mervyn’s Heights, 94118 – NOW HIRING at Geary and Masonic

Monday, April 6th, 2015

After a giant Fail Whale landed upon the efforts to bring a Chipotle Mexican Grill to the masses at Church and Market a few years back, the purveyors of America’s Favorite Mission-style Burrito set about making things work up at 2675 Geary.

And lo, here it is:

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Soon enough, everybody living on the wrong side of Divis will be able to Live Más and Think Outside The Bun…

“Slow” #5 Fulton Driver Totally Pwns “Rapid” #5L Limited Driver on Market Street, Once Again.

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

I’ll tell you, when I first saw the Orwellianally-named #5R Fulton from our inefficient SFMTA, I thought it stood for Regular, you know, as opposed to Limited.

Isn’t that sad?

Anyway, yeah, out in the Richmond District, 5Ls travel faster than 5’s, but the tables turn on Market Street, when the regular #5’s regularly pass by the vaunted #5R’s (nee 5L’s).

Here’s the pass from the #5…

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…and then he’s gone, leaving me and the #5L driver in the dust:

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I’m thinking that unless you live Way Out West in the boonies of SF County, 5 > 5L.

Or, in the New Math, 5 > 5R.

Isn’t it ironic.

Dontcha think?

Fish in a Barrel: This SFMTA PCO Can Hand Out Multiple $105 “Block the Box” Tickets in One Minute

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

Of course, the SFMTA could jigger the lights around the neighborhood of Bush and Sansome in a more efficient way, but then this meter maid wouldn’t be able to park her Cushman and then stand in the intersection to generate so many tickets that she has trouble with all the receipt tape she’s generating. See?

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Her little machine might have a camera built in, and the GPS and the Wi-Fi and all sorts of things to allow her to bag three rides in one cycle of green yellow red.

Check it. All of these drivers on Bush inbound in the Financh are used to crawling across a San Francisco  intersection before the light turns red and then making it out of the intersection before the peds start coming. Except that this is notorious Bush and Sansome, where things don’t work that way.

And then here come the judge – tickets for everybody! It’s like Oprah handing out Pontiacs – YOU GET A TICKET! AND YOU GET A TICKET! AND YOU GET A TICKET!

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(Mind you, this is an intersection where it’s quite safe to loiter about, so fret not.)

(Hey, is she recording the Vehicle Identification Numbers of all these rides? I think not. Is that some sort of technicality that will allow you to get out of your ticket after spending hours and hours of time fighting your ticket? IDK.)

Some drivers get stuck, but I’m thinking, well just make the left up Sansome* while you have the chance and then you’ll avoid a painful three-figure citation. But the drivers, then don’t have respect, they don’t see the danger.

And I’ll bet most of them aren’t even aware that they’re getting a citation.

Eventually, the driving culture at this intersection will change** if this woman makes a habit of harvesting money on the Evening Drive each and every day.

I ask you, Gentle Reader, what if the rest of SFGov were as efficient as this PCO?

*Whether it’s legal or not. In this case, that would be a legal turn but even if it weren’t, the chances of getting a moving violation doing that are virtually nil, as opposed to a parking ticket, where the odds are virtually certain. 

**In the old days, the SFMTA would tell its PCOs to stop handing out tickets during the Evening Drive and start directing traffic at busy intersections. Those days are over. This woman can pay her salary and fund her generous benefits and retirement package in one or two minutes of her shift. Remarkable!

MUNI’s Brave New World is Truly Orwellian: Like the #5L is Now the #5R? – Because “Rapid” “Sounds Better” Than Limited?

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

So let’s see here, who’s offered me money, you know, for “outreach” that, you know, I’ve rejected? Well, PG&E and the SFPUC and that slow, clumsy SFMTA, for instance. Of course, some places, like the Bay Guardian (R.I.P.), and a defunct blog from the Avenues, and the MUNI Diaries or the SFBC, take money from those institutions, and in some cases, the dirty money has talked.

But it don’t talk to me.

Now you yourself might know more about MUNI than I, since I’ve mostly ridden bikes since I got here back in the 1980’s, because MUNI is such a remarkably poor transit system.

Having said that, WTF to this:

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One supposes that this is from an internal SFMTA PowerPoint presentation?

So “MUNI FORWARD?” What’s that? IDK. But let’s call it MUNI’s plan. And since we’re translating from marketing / “framing” words into Plain English:

“Investing” = Spending tax and fee payer money

“Customers” = Passengers

“Rapid” = Limited

Oh, here comes the “branding”

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Oh, a pole with a sign on it with the number of the bus? How fucking innovative! (Be sure to get a design patent on your “branding,” SFMTA.) And, what’s this,  you can’t put up plain simple cheap bike racks, you need to promote yourselves, SFMTA? Yish. Now “HISTORIC,” that means $6 one-way, soon enough, just as all the other lines will be $3 minimum, one-way, soon enough.

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[Poles + The airing of grievances = Festivus]

All right, time to pour the old wine into new bottles, or as they say in Japan: “古いワイン、新しいボトル” [Oh, snap!] So forget about the “branding” of the brand-new #5L, that new line that’s not really faster than the regular old #5, not really. Oh, here we go:

The 5L doesn’t really work

That’s from 40 Going On 28, who similarly isn’t on the take from the SFMTA. Anyway, here’s your scorecard showing that the 5L is history:

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(Comrades, the 5L is the 5R, therefore, the 5L has always been the 5R)

The nice thing about the word Limited is that it’s accurate and people understand it. OTOH, calling any particular SFMTA bus line “Rapid” might not be accurate, right?

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And here’s the Good News, Gentle Reader! OMG! Look at all the exclamation points! Wow!

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Of course some things the SFMTA wants to do are good and some are bad.

Hey, MUNI, what about all your antiquated work rules, what about those?

Oh, that’s hard to deal with? Oh, you’d rather just rename things and make PowerPoints? OK fine.

Anyway, we’ll see how this one goes…

*Originally, I had a heavy $199 cr0-molly MTB from Price Club and then I got some other bikes and now my main ride is a heavy aluminum $269 MTB from the Marin Bikes Outlet at 7th and Folsom. Not much has changed, huh? 

OMG, What’s This, a “GOING TO GOLDEN GATE PARK” Parklet / Bulb Out on 9th Ave in the Inner Sunset?

Monday, March 23rd, 2015

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Here’s the Word on the Street:

“Attached you can find a PDF with Jadwin’s emails about the project, and I have attached a few JPEGs for your convenience.

It is unbelievably stupid to move these N Judah stops (especially given how important these loading spots are for restaurants, etc.), but this “Streetscaping” in an “activity zone” is over the top idiotic.

You can find more information here:

http://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=inner+sunset+tep+streetscape&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8

It is completely wrong that this “parklet” is being maintained where passengers will be disembarking.

Even worse is that Michael Rieger failed to reach out to the businesses and residents living here before making plans and setting up a bogus online “survey.”

Jadwin is just the worst. She led the charge to close down the HANC Recycling Center.  :(“

So that’s all I know on this proposal.

IMO, SFGov should strive to attain competence at its core missions, so I don’t get this kind of “streetscape” “activation” focus.

Sorry.

Well, Now the SFMTA / MUNI _LIKES_ the State of Israel – Of Course, SFGov Could Stop These Ads, But $$$

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

Options, all kinds of options:

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Looks Like They’re Done Working on Fell and Masonic – How Long Will “DOUBLE RIGHT TURN” Last?

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

This was yesterday morning, with the crew packing up, after weeks of work:

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And this was yesterday evening – it looks like they’re done?

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So what’s the deal here? Are they going to pull up the tape on the intersection what forces cars in the right lane to turn right and then lay down some permanent lines, or are they going to go back to the way it was before, back when you had the option of going straight or right?

Maybe that’s what the orange on the signs means, that these changes were only temporary? Or maybe the orange means, “Hey look, here is the new rule?”

I can’t tell.

But if all they were doing was fixing up that corner of the intersection, then what did they do? It looks exactly the same to me. And why did it take weeks?

On It Goes…

Uh, “MAKE CALIFORNIA IVORY FREE?” – Uh…

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015

Uh…

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Uh…

O.K.

“Hi San Francisco!” – The New TargetExpress Store at Bush and Sansome Looks Pretty Sweet

Tuesday, March 17th, 2015

I don’t know, do you care about stores ‘n stuff?

Here it is:

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I thought it would be like a convenience store, but no they sell cell phones and tablets and all kinds of stuff.

Big, in’nt it?

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Now, here are your Tar-zhays, in order of size, as best I can figure:

Greatland

Regular

City

Express

All right, see you there!