Posts Tagged ‘transit’

A Few of the Problems With Scott Wiener’s Announcement of a Massive Increase in Bay Area Bike Share (BABS)

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

[UPDATE: Oh, another press release has arrived – see it after the jump. I don’t know, maybe if I got hundreds of thousands of dollars a year from SFGov, I’d fall into the Reality Distortion Zone as well, who knows. In the meantime I’ll just try to make SFGov better, and I’ll leave my pompoms with the mothballs]

The news of the day:

We’re moving forward w massive expansion of in , 4 other cities. Huge step forward 4 :

All right, I’ll bite.

1. Just listen to yourself, Scott Wiener:

“Forward … massive … huge … forward”

Are you running for re-election 24-7?

2. So what do words mean? If I pay $9 for the privilege of riding a super-heavy bike for less than a half-hour, how is that “transit?” Let’s see here, transit, of course, is:

“…a shared passenger transport service which is available for use by the general public, as distinct from modes such as taxicab, carpooling or hired buses which are not shared by strangers without private arrangement. Public transport modes include city buses, trolleybuses, trams (or light rail) and passenger trains,rapid transit (metro/subways/undergrounds etc) and ferries. Public transport between cities is dominated by airlines, coaches, and intercity rail. High-speed rail networks are being developed in many parts of the world.

So bikes isn’t transit, d’accord? D’accord.

3. Isn’t your vaunted “Motivate” company really just Alta Bicycle Share? Don’t they have / had / will have a lot of workers’ rights / union organizing problems? Oh yes, yes they do / did / will! And yet, Scott Wiener goes after Google / Rebecca Prozan for what, what exactly? Imagine the blowback if Google or Facebook or Apple or one of its contractors started firing employees for union organizing? Well, let’s take a look at Motivate / Alta right here – and this is its side of the story. Take a look, take a look right here at your vaunted “partner.”

4. Does a “public-private partnership” imply a massive advertising deal is coming our way? Enquiring Minds Want To Know. I hope your partner’s “advertising partner” will be Coke, cause, you know, Coke Adds Life, right?

5. How often do the existing bikes get used these days? Not that much, right? And has traffic in San Francisco actually “improved” since Alta’s bike share thing came into SF? I don’t think so. I think it’s gotten worse, actually.

6. And is Scott Wiener really claiming credit for Bay Area Bike Share “oversight?” Well, how’s he doing? Not so hot, based upon its abysmal 2-star rating on Yelp, right? (And Yelp gives you one star just for showing up – like a two star restaurant won’t be in business very much longer. Of course, a fee and tax payer backed bike share program can last forever, right?) And these poor reviews don’t factor in the tens of millions of dollars the existing small program already costs us. What’s the public subsidy per ride? It’s pretty massive. And yet, people don’t seem to like it all that much. Mmmm… How many bikes could we just buy for people and give away for that same amount of money?

7. Oh, this isn’t your deal Scott Wiener? You’re simply “applauding” / patting your self on the back?

So Scott Wiener, to review, BABS isn’t transit, it isn’t very good, it’s costs us a lot of money already and the private part of your new public private partnership has a record of being quite hostile to organized labor.

Oh well.

SUPERVISOR WIENER’S STATEMENT APPLAUDING NEW PROPOSAL TO EXPAND BAY AREA BIKE SHARE

Proposal announced today by the Mayors of five Bay Area cities and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission – on which Supervisor Wiener serves — will expand the regional bike share network through a public-private partnership

San Francisco – Today Supervisor Scott Wiener released the following statement after the Mayors of San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Berkeley and Emeryville announced a proposal to partner with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) to expand the Bay Area bike share program by entering into a public-private partnership with Motivate:

“I applaud this proposal to dramatically expand bike share in San Francisco and the Bay Area,” said Supervisor Wiener, who serves as a Commissioner on the MTC. “A robust and sustainable bike share network is a key part of being a Transit First city and will allow us to reap the benefits of bike share, including reducing traffic, improving public transit, and stimulating the local economy. I’ve been an active supporter of bike share at both the MTC and the Board of Supervisors, and I will continue to work to bring this critical transit program to more neighborhoods in San Francisco.”

Supervisor Wiener has been involved in Bay Area Bike Share for several years, including oversight hearings and workings with the MTA, MTC, and other stakeholders to ensure a full rollout of the program.

Motivate’s proposal includes expanding the number of bikes in San Francisco to 4,500, up from the current 328. The number of bikes regionally would increase to 7,000 from 700. This expansion would not be funded by public tax dollars. The MTC’s Administration Committee will consider the proposal at its next meeting on April 8th, after which it will go to the full Commission. New stations are slated to be installed starting in 2016.

(more…)

Despite Its “Transit First” Policy, the SFMTA Will Vote to Make Parking Easier for Western Addition Residents on March 3rd – “Area Q”

Monday, February 23rd, 2015

Perversely, the less efficient our dull-witted SFMTA becomes, the more money it gets. Case in point is the new Area Q Residential Parking Permit area for the NoPA / Alamo Square part of the Western Addition – the MTA will approve its establishment on March 3rd, 2015.

It’ll go a little something like this:

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Supposedly, the SFMTA doesn’t care about this issue, since it’s “revenue-neutral” for it, but IRL, the SFMTA just loves this idea. The SFMTA wants to “manage” more and more and more always always always, despite its demonstrated incompetence at performing its core function, which is moving people around.

SFMTA “work rules” make the SFMTA inefficient. (I wonder if they have a list of all these rules.) So the less efficient it becomes, the more money it gets, perversely, in annual RPP revenue. (If the SFMTA operated a McDonalds, a Big Mac would cost $20 and take a half-hour to prepare, cause you know, cost-plus pricing, and you know, “work rules.”)

Anyway, the SFMTA wants to makes things easier for certain people to keep cars on the streets of San Francisco, so that’s a big clue on how it’ll vote come March.

What it actually wants is an annual household SFMTA tax levied on everybody, but this will have to do until that time comes…

Ah, the Sunset District: Home of Chain Stores, Unreliable Transit, and Oppressive Fog

Monday, February 16th, 2015

I used to live in the Sunset Part of the Sunset / Parkside

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Not much has changed.

Anyway, the Kragen Auto Parts is owned by a different chain these days..

Chill Techbro Zooms Uphill on the Streets of San Francisco on His Electric Skateboard Like It Aint No Thang

Friday, January 30th, 2015

A modern day warrior
Mean, mean stride
Today’s Tom Sawyer
Mean, mean pride

Though his mind is not for rent
Don’t put him down as arrogant
His reserve a quiet defense
Riding out the day’s events
The Projects

Balance, control and effortlessnessness – this Bro knows how to get around the Big City in a way that’s faster and cheaper than MUNI, America’s Slowest Big City Transit System.

Woosh, quiet and swift, passing cyclists and #5 Fultons on McAllister, in the Western Addition:

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The world is, the world is
Love and life are deep
Maybe as his eyes are wide

Exit the warrior
Today’s Tom Sawyer
He gets by on you
And the energy you trade
He gets right on to the friction of the day

Depeche Mode: Miniskirted Urbanist Poses on Haight Street’s Brand-New Red Lane – The Glamour of Transit

Monday, January 12th, 2015

By Vivian Ho:

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Click to expand

Or minidress? IDK.

(And I might add that the photographer’s assistant with the screen isn’t actually doing anything except making the scene just a skosh darker. I mean, if you yourself aren’t casting a shadow, due to fog / clouds, then your screen isn’t really doing all that much neither. Time might have better spent looking out for bus or car drivers…)

From This Angle, the Church Street Safeway Looks Kind of Stubby – Why Don’t They Build a Massive Apartment Building Above It?

Friday, January 9th, 2015

Just asking.

Of course, the whole place would be a tear-down. Then you rebuild with a brand-new Safeway gro sto below and then a bunch of housing units above. It’d be like a Hayward-style transit village. See?

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Just asking.

An Update on CAR2GO Car Sharing in SF: The Giant FREE PARKING Logos are Gone

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Read all about it. So how does this work, you see a car and then you use it to get wherever and then you park it legally and then you’re done with it? Mmm…

As seen on Fell in December 2014:

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All right, I’m making this an ASSIGNMENT DESK.

So, what is CAR2GO. Why didn’t the corrupt SFMTA approve of it back in 2013, when it greenlighted a bunch of other transportation schemes? What happened to the FREE PARKING words on the sides of the cars? (One imagines that could be a touchy issue for those in the City Attorney’s Office.) What’s the status of it now in the 415?

So many questions!

$2.99 per Gallon Gasoline has Come to SF – And $1.99 Gas in the Rest of ‘Merica – SFMTA’s Reason to Drive?

Monday, December 1st, 2014

How much is a gallon of gasoline at the Fell Street ARCO station right now? $2.99

And how about the rest of America? Well, some places are at $1.99 and there are more coming soon.

Hey, remember when the SFMTA used to talk about how people should take MUNI because a one-way fare was less than a gallon of gas? I do. Not too forward-looking, huh?

And remember this ad campaign, to teach stupid car drivers about how gasoline actually costs money?

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I do.

The SFMTA has stated that increasing gasoline prices are a reason to take MUNI, so, conversely, would falling gasoline prices be a reason to NOT take MUNI?

Think on that.

IMO, the SFMTA needs to deal with its numerous problems honestly.

IMO, the SFMTA isn’t even coming close to doing this.

IMO, the SFMTA isn’t even close to offering, in its words, EXCELLENT TRANSPORTATION CHOICES.

IMO.

JMO

IMO, MUNI’s service is worse than a quarter-century ago, despite the dramatic growth in its budget and its fare prices.

So, real gas prices are historically low and the SFMTA’s prices are historically high.

Just saying.

Here’s Why “Evil Republican Billionaire” Sean Parker is Four Times LESS Evil Than What the SFMTA Crowd is Saying

Friday, October 31st, 2014

Well, here’s the latest from the I HEART THE SFMTA NO MATTER HOW TERRIBLE IT MIGHT BE crowd on Sean Parker and Prop L.

The thing is, poor, sensitive* Sean Parker actually is the number one booster of Prop A, the billion dollar general obligation bond what the I HEART THE SFMTA NO MATTER HOW TERRIBLE IT MIGHT BE crowd really really wants passed.

Check it – he’s listed number one, owing to his $200,000 donation:

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Prop A is real life – it will take tens of millions of property tax dollars and, through “pass-throughs,” it just might raise your rent to the tune of thousands and thousands of dollars over the years. By that, I’m not saying that rents will go up generally, I’m saying you the renter will have to pay a surcharge to your landlord on top of the rent you already pay, despite your rent control.

OTOH, Prop L will have no effect whether it gets 49% or 51% of the vote. Of course, if it wins in a landslide, it will make life a bit more difficult for some activists. But if it loses in a landslide, it will be a useful talking point for those very same activists.

IMO, the SFMTA is afraid of any vote where it can’t control the selection of the voters. It’s grown accustomed to claiming widespread “community support” for all of its efforts. The SFMTA uses this sample bias to make itself feel better, and to help it to grow more and more, which is its number one goal.

So, stop abusing poor, sensitive Sean “Park”-er. He’s on your side, you “livable streets” people.

*He canceled his honeymoon after his stupid illegal wedding made the news? What he should have said was, “I’m sorry, I screwed up – I’ll try to make things better.” And then go on and pay the millions and millions he was going to pay anyway. See? Simple. Instead, his billionaire type friends “supported” him by telling him how “wronged” he was. Oh well. 

Horrible SPUR Organization Supports the Billion Dollar “Prop A 2014,” But How Did “Prop A 2007″ Work Out?

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Work with me here, people.

Here’s what SPUR, San Francisco Planning and Urban Renewal, promised for Prop A 2007

“…the strengthening of the MTA’s independence, the included labor reforms, the infusion of cash and the mandate to address global warming all make this a very important reform of the Municipal Transportation Agency and a positive step toward the improvement of Muni service. SPUR recommends a “Yes” vote on Prop. A.

But here’s how things worked out IRL:

Muni’s mismanagement of Prop. A may hurt future funding tries by Will Reisman

Where the SFMTA’s Prop. A money has gone by Will Reisman

Now here we are in 2014. Here’s what SPUR, those horrible people behind Redevelopment, is saying about Prop A 2014:

“The city has done the hard work to gather stakeholders, assess needs and prioritize transportation expenditures.”

So, handing a blank check to the SFMTA for it to waste has something to do with “hard work?”

Really?

Hey SPUR, what about Prop A 2007? Weren’t you all wrong, so very wrong, about that?

So why would you expect Prop A 2014 to work out any better?