Is somebody in charge here?
‘Cause if somebody is, I’d have a few notes.
Here’s shot of a 2000-something square foot knoll from a couple years back, in the Golden Gate Park Panhandle – keep off our expensive new turf, man is what RPD was saying with the temporary cyclone fencing:
Nice and green, huh? This was the color of the Mound when these volunteers installed a (fake) Rain Garden, seen on the other side of the benches:
But now here’s how things stand today betwixt the Panhandle Bathroom Building the and Panhandle Bike Path:
This brown mound will become a “planted area,” whatever that means:
Trot out any RPD spokesmodel with an explanation and I’ll have a counter for it. Hey, maybe the Panhandle shouldn’t be a lawn? Hey, maybe decisions about how to handle Our Current Drought shouldn’t be driven by the concerns of Area Realtors? Hey, maybe we should repave the Panhandle’s currently abysmal Oak-side walking path now and worry about installing a bunch of “irrigation” later? Or, hey, maybe just forget about irrigation and let Gaia take its course?
Well, I suppose it’s three peds, actually. Now let’s see how they do:
The two peds on the left act properly and the jogger ped does not.
There’s room for improvement at this intersection, SFGov/SFMTA.
Here you go:
Well, let’s see, there are LOTS of reasons to not ride the vaunted THE WIGGLE route and also, there are other options asides from OAK.
But let’s consider Oak now. Oh, here’s famous fixie-riding Andy on the left side of Oak, from all the way back in aught-seven.
And look, the dashed lines made a sort of bike lane on the left side – good times. (Unfortunately, this space for bikes is no longer there, due to subsequent restriping.)
Anywho, going straight on Oak instead of taking the Wiggle at Scott is nice because you’ve only got one sort of steep block. I see people take Oak all the time. Oak is good. Oak is fast. Oak is congested a lot of the time due to horrible horrible Octavia Boulevard (what was dreamed up by wealthy homeowners in Hayes Valley), so you’d spend some time weaving about, getting around drivers trying to get on the I-80 / the 101 superslabs, but that’s OK. I’ll add that Oak is for the adventurous, certainly.
So, Oak is far from being a ridiculous choice, a choice TO TEACH US ALL A LESSON about the dangers of the SFPD handing out citations. It’s a viable option.
Or what of Oak and Baker to Fulton to Divisadero to Mcallister to Market? This is THE UNWIGGLE with no wiggling at all betwixt Divis and Market. And look, you’ve defeated the rich people of HV who put a 105 foot wide BOULEVARD betwixt you and your destination, ’cause Octavia is but a nothingburger walking path / federal housing project parking lot on this route – it won’t slow you down at all.
Or Fulton? It’s a bit hillier than McAll and you’ve got big old City Hall in your way, but it’ll do.
Or Golden Gate? That works too.
Or Haight all the way to Fillmore, just to avoid the congested THE WIGGLE?
Notice that all these routes avoid “cycling” a bunch of people through the stop signs at WALLER and STEINER in the Lower Haight.
Those are some of your inbound routes.
As far as using Fell to go back home, well that’s CRAZY TOWN, that’s ill-advised. I rarely have seen that, in all my years.
IMO, the best way to get back is MCALLISTER…
…of course, there are other non-THE WIGGLE choices as well.
[UPDATE: For instance, this, from this AM.]
Well, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition must have sent over a cadre (of its now disempowered, voteless minions) to the latest scoping session / open house / focus group for the proposed Panhandle Improvement Project what took place on Saturday.
Nevertheless, it would appear that the majority of those invited by SFGov through snail mail have a few beefs with the behavior of cyclists on the bike path / multi-use trail on the Fell side of the Golden Gate Park Panhandle.
Here’s a smattering of written comments:
In turn, one Brocephus wrote about putting in a bike lane on Oak and Fell, over and over and over:
I guess that’s a kind of parity.
The people who turned up are probably what SFGov considers The Community, when it ponders on how it spends our money, but, of course, there’s a degree of sample bias.
If SFGov conducted a poll of the actual community, it might discover a different hierarchy of important concerns.
On It Goes…
[UPDATE: The images you can see below are no longer current, apparently. The ones displayed yesterday and purportedly printed Friday, have the parking spaces restored, for whatever reason.]
Here’s the official word:
“We hope you can join us onsite at the Panhandle to discuss safety improvements to the pathways, lighting and signage issues. Please tell your neighbors and friends, we will be onsite to answer questions about the upcoming improvements.
SATURDAY AUGUST 1ST, 2015
ON THE PANHANDLE AT ASHBURY INTERSECTION
I’ll tell you, there are some safety elements to this so-called PANHANDLE PEDESTRIAN SAFETY IMPROVEMENT PROJECT, but most of the big decisions have already been made, mostly by politically-connected, nearby millionaire homeowners who are obsessed, just obsessed with property values and the aesthetic “identity” of where they live, so your input will certainly be noted, but You, The People are not in the driver’s seat. Your primary role is to pay for most (or just some?) of the changes and, later on, to cheer for our wealthy white wizened Panhandle Overseers.
Is widening the Panhandle bike path on the agenda? NOPE. Over the years, i t’s gone from four foot lanes to the current six. What’s wrong with 8 foot wide lanes? (Hilariously, the stencils depicted barely even fit onto the lane.)
How about a speed limit for the Panhandle Bike Path, particularly heading downhill to the east?
How about signs telling people the speed limit?
How about taking down the existing signs that hamper peds’ sightlines of the bike path? (Oh, RPD just put them in and they don’t care? OK fine.) For ex, the new sign near Fell and Ashbury…
So what’s this, you realtors can’t get a giant metal fence (srsly – the mock-up looked hilarious) around the McKinley statue, so the next best thing is lighting it up, the better to chase away hippies? C’mon, be honest!
OTOH, moving the pedestrian path on the Oak side away from Oak near Shrader sounds like a great idea.
Speaking of which, who let the Oak Street path devolve into such a state of disrepair that people walking/jogging on it fall down on a daily basis? Oh, the same people pushing for this new project? Oh, that’s good to know!
OK, here it is – click to expand.
Stanyan to Cole:
Cole to Ashbury. Hey, look at Ashbury at Fell and at Oak – bye bye parking spaces, right? One looks like a crosswalk to nowhere and the other is a painted bulb-out. That’s four spaces right there, right? How many spaces total are in jeopardy?
Ashbury to Central
Central to Baker:
Once I saw two people tumble over this deceptive-looking crack within five minutes of each other.
Faller-downers tend to be women, women with small feet who brush themselves off and end up jogging or walking away after a minute or two of recovery and assessment.
People know that cracks are here, but they tumble anyway. IMO, this state of disrepair is shameful, but that’s just me.
Anyway, have at it, Gentle Reader, swim around in the large 2500-pixel-wide jpgs if you want.
All the deets, after the jump.
The past few months we’ve had at least three jaywalkers/jayjoggers blow across Masonic on the north side of Oak against the ped signal only to end up getting hit and injured by a vehicle.
Therefore, Park Station had a pedestrian-focused enforcement action* a few days ago.
Here you go, here’s a Stanfoo grad hopping down the bunny trail – right past a cop and into traffic about 15 seconds too late (assuming you’re legally allowed to run into a crosswalk, even with a green**):
Guess what – no ticket for her. Not even a warning. (Dude just told me he was specifically out there to hand out tickets, oh well. Maybe he was saving his energy for more flagrant violations, IDK)
Oh, here we go – here’s a ped red citation on the south side of Oak:
On It Goes…
*I’ll tell you, I’ve never seen an SFPD ped-only enforcement action in all my quarter-century plus on the Streets of San Francisco. I’ve seen numerous cyclist-focused and driver-focused actions, but never for peds.
**There are nuances here. Is this crosswalk part of a “wilderness trail” ala Masonic at nearby Fell? I know not.
Get up-to-speed on the massive Urban School Oak Street expansion here and also from Camden Avery at the Hoodline
This has been the scene in the Upper Haight / SoPA (South of Panhandle Area – srsly, some people actually use this term) lately:
And here’s how things looked yesterday – we’re all set to go:
See that, the entire crib has been mounted on rails. The entire house is going to start moving today, Monday, July 20th, 2015 at 8:00 AM, or at least that was the plan at the close of bidness a few days ago.
Here’s your detail:
All right, bon courage L’ecole Urbaine!
And that comes on the heels of this, back in April:
The way our SFMTA has this intersection set up now is that joggers only have about 7 seconds to start crossing Masonic during a 75 second signal cycle. Assuming they don’t purposefully speed up or slow down to catch their green, that means they have less than a 10% chance of not encountering a red signal for crossing. Human nature being what it is, people jog across against the light and the resulting accident is the jogger’s fault. Check it:
Anyway, that’s why so many people are getting hit by cars at this intersection.
For whatever reason, the SFPD isn’t motivated to enforce the CA Vehicle Code upon peds, so this is the result.
If you believe in ped safety, you’d be in favor of a ped enforcement action here, to learn the joggers. OTOH, if you get paid to promote ped “rights,” then you’d disfavor a ped enforcement action here – you’d bend over backwards to displace blame. I mean, these peds aren’t “mistakenly” jaywalking, they’re doing it on purpose, right?
Choose or lose…