Posts Tagged ‘traffic’

It’s SCOOT’s World, We’re Just Living in It – The Solution to All the New SFMTA/UBER/Lyft-Created Traffic is a Quick Quiet Electric Scooter – (NOTE: Some Lane-Splitting Required)

Tuesday, March 13th, 2018

The Future is coming at you on just two wheels:

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This bit should make my point:

“Thanks to California’s tolerance of lane-splitting (thanks, California!), a scooter can sneak between cars and maneuver around the ubiquitous construction zones and double-parked delivery trucks, cabs and buses, which can reduce trip time dramatically.”

If you can lane-split through stalled traffic at 5 MPH to get to the front of the queue, well, that could get you to your destination two or three times faster than MUNI, UBER, Lyft etc, right?

Just saying…

UC Berkeley Professors Took Away Part of Our Retrofitted Central Freeway – And Now, UC Berkeley Students are Coming for the Rest of It – Octavia Boulevard is Good?!

Tuesday, March 6th, 2018

Via Eric Fisher, who’s Everywhere You Want To Be, we see, among other items, this proposal for what’s left of our Central Freeway:

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Read the first sentence – it’s ABSOLUTELY WRONG* about how great the failed Octavia Boulevard flows.

“Octavia Boulevard has demonstrated how it has been able to handle as many cars as the former Central Freeway, without causing undue congestion and delay”

Sorry kids!

*For lots of reasons, but I guess a few of the major ones have to do with it beginning / ending at Market Street (as opposed to letting Market flow by allowing north-south traffic on the Central Freeway to go over Market. Octavia Blvd itself is a traffic bottleneck (as evidenced by the almost always traffic-free on-ramp just south of Market and also by the generally traffic free part of westbound Fell starting at Laguna) AND Octavia Blvd also creates bottlenecks on your east-west streets such as Haight, Page, and Oak. And of course the OB is mostly just two lanes as opposed to the three lanes of the former Central Freeway. Say what you will about planning and whatnot, it boggles the mind how anybody could think that first sentence could possibly be true IRL. But don’t trust me – ask corporate shuttle bus drivers. Ask ’em if they might possibly prefer a way to pass over Market during the Evening Drive. I’ll tell you, outbound Central Freeway never ever backed up, and inbound well sure, at the light on westbound Fell at Laguna, sure it backed up a bit, but the backup was on the freeway, where it belonged.)

How “M Squared” Construction Tells People to Move Their Cars

Tuesday, February 27th, 2018

They put an orange cone atop your ride:

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I suppose they could have you towed, but then there’d be the issue of whether they gave proper notice, which they might not have given in this case.

SFMTA MUNI workers too will cone your car if they think you’ve (somehow) stolen their space…

Textbook Traffic Calming Seems to Irk Some SFMTA Employees, Ones Stuck at an SFMTA-Created Bottleneck, Oak and Octavia – Extra Parking Spaces vs. Flow

Monday, February 26th, 2018

PCO RTB – Parking Control Officers Return(ing) To Base.

Here’s the Polk Street version – just take the bike lane, easy-peasy. Not looking for violations, just repositioning:


But Oak, the Great Eastern Way, a Freeway Substitute, well for some reason, our SFMTA decided to offer street parking to our tech-heavy newcomers living in expensive new units in a now-fashionable part of the Western Addition. See? No bike lane = stuck on Oak like everybody else:


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Just saying…

Mystery Shroom, Masonic

Thursday, January 11th, 2018

Don’t know what this new thing does, or what it emits. Might make a nice street stool though:

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Thank goodness I have protection

More Trouble for Our Hidebound SFMTA: Its Magic Cure-Alls, Traffic Circles, are Causing Problems on Euclid These Days

Monday, January 8th, 2018

These things are new. Some don’t like them, for various reasons. Anyway, these changes on Euclid have generated boo-coup calls to 311, and what’s new this week is that non-SFMTA members of Our City Family are looking into them, like today, at City Hall.  Perhaps crosswalk lines could be moved, that kind of thing.

That’s the update.

Ah, late 2017:

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Euclidian geometry:

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The Brand-New Traffic Circles of Euclid Avenue – Going in Right Now – Hey, How Come the SFMTA No Longer Allows Neighbors to Vote on These “Improvements?”

Friday, December 15th, 2017

Well, last part first. Our SFMTA used to allow residents living near the sites of proposed traffic circles to have a little mini-election. The problem with that was that the SFMTA got its ass handed to it when all the “trial” circles it had just installed on Page and Waller got voted down, by like a three to one ratio, in five separate votes.

Guess what, the SFMTA Project Manager, the Lord of these rings, whose job it was to push this unwanted project through, was “sad” due to this result.

Anyway, flash forward to 2017 and now some neighbors in Jordan Park are finally just encountering construction of these ring things, and man are they pissed. They’re calling 311 to register their vote (in a different, less effective way).

Here it is, as laid out in October 2017:

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And here’s how things look today:

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Euclidian geometry:

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I guess the idea these days is that residents are supposed to petition the SFMTA for changes in their area, but this looks like a so-called “area-wide” traffic clamming (I just can’t myself to use the actual Orwellian word that’s popular these days, you know the one for sometimes unpopular projects) project to me, as opposed to being a “block by block” project.

I don’t get it man.

But I’ll let the SFMTA explain, as seen live on their site today. What do you make of this, Gentle Reader?


Previously, the SFMTA used to consider traffic calming from an “area-wide” perspective. The area-wide process was developed as a way to look at multiple locations in the same neighborhood together, to consider traffic calming from a community perspective. The boundaries of area-wide projects were drawn to incorporate all residential streets between arterials, major collectors, and/or commercial streets. However, the process was viewed by SFTMA staff and residents as being time-consuming and resulting in unpredictable construction timelines. Often times, the more complex and expensive measures recommended through an area-wide planning process were not constructed, and the long timeline often resulted in changing community priorities that weren’t reflected in the area-wide traffic calming plan. Finally, due to the fact that the area-wide approach to traffic calming tended to involve only the most dedicated members of a community, many believed that the area-wide process did not necessarily reflect the views and concerns of all neighbors.

A resident-driven, block-by-block approach to traffic calming that relies on a data-driven approach ensures that resources are allocated to those streets in which demonstrated speeding and traffic-related concerns exist, and where there is broad resident acceptance for traffic calming.”

So I really don’t get what the SFMTA is saying here, what with the passive voice and the lack of examples given. What kind of people are “the most dedicated members of a community?” Is that an insult? A compliment? IDK.

Hey, are they going to take out some of the stop signs on Euclid? IDK.*

Anyway, there you have it.

*That was the problem with the circles on Page, for example – the taking out the stops signs part. You could hear a car coming from a block away. As a pedestrian, it was paralyzing, ’cause you didn’t know what the driver would do. Like would the driver do a California stop and proceed cautiously, or simply treat the circle like a chicane and come through at 25 MPH?** So I’d just wait until I couldn’t hear any cars coming from a block away in both directions and only then cross over Page. I much prefered the regular four way stops. (And I think the whole idea was so that bike riders wouldn’t have to worry about getting tickets for blowing stop signs.)

**Oh, I just came across this, in the less ideological part of the Streetsblog, you know, in the Comments section: “As a pedestrian, the Page/Waller circles were ‘unsuccessful’ because I defacto had to yield to cars. As a car driver, the things were frickin great because I didn’t have to stop and could blast through at 25MPH. /s Are you actually out-and-about in this city, or are you just reading about it in Dutch traffic manuals?

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…

Look Who’s Driving Down the Bike Lanes of Polk Street Now: That’s Right, It’s SFMTA Employees at the End of Their Shifts – Mercy Me, We Got Ourselves a CONVOY

Monday, November 13th, 2017

I still haven’t figured out how the SFMTA wants drivers to travel south from your greater Pacific Heights, Cathedral Hill, 101 Corridor, Polk Gulch, TenderNob, Twitterloin area. My latest theory is Hyde through the Tenderloin, but what I know is that Gough, Van Ness, and Polk ARE NOT the way to go.

And guess who else knows this, our SFMTA. See?

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These PCO’s aren’t handing out tickets, they’re repositioning after handing out tickets. So to get around, they simply drive their gas-powered Cushmans south on the new green bike lane through Polk Gulch, block after block:

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That’s your SFMTA

Lyft Driver Fed Up with the SFMTA’s New Polk Street Layout Drives the Wrong Way to Escape

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017


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Not sure how the SFMTA wants people to travel south on the weekends. Gough is no picnic, Van Ness is worse, and Polk is a parking lot, so I suppose Hyde, which used to have timed lights and now not as much, is left to pick up the slack…