[Carfreeliving] Market and Octavia
Coffin, Richard S.
Coffin at jacobssf.com
Fri Feb 3 15:40:27 MST 2006
DO NOT waste your time directly engaging Mr. Anderson or PROSF. He has
made it clear that he does not support safer streets for transit, bikes,
pedestrians, or even cars for that matter. I have talked to Mr.
Anderson a few times and he is not rational about the "rights" of road
users in San Francisco. He has the fundamental belief that the streets
are too dangerous for bikes and therefore, no one should ever bike on
city streets. Period. Ever. "Every cyclist is crazy." He was one of
the few opponents to the popular safety improvements at San
Jose/Guerrero last year.
You will notice his blog has no comments, that's because no one cares.
I sent the following to Ross as a general heads-up if this issue arises.
And cc:'d Dufty and Daly, whose Districts all intersect at this
location. Not sure where the "6-month" review is at.
Dear Supervisor Mirkarimi:
You may have received some recent correspondence from other constituents
concerned about the intersection of Market and Octavia. To date, I am
unaware if there are any staff reports issued on the safety and
operations status; however, I was one of the numerous concerned citizens
who worked hard with Matt Gonzalez and his staff in late 2004 to get the
right turn from E/B Market onto the New Freeway eliminated for both an
improved street environment for pedestrians and improved safety for
cyclists. Actually, it was a restoration of the original boulevard
design from the changes made by ISCOT; thanks to the taxi representative
who sought access everywhere all the time and one DPT staff member who
believed that having a dedicated auto turn lane would be safer for bikes
and pedestrians despite the increased high-speed traffic that would use
this route if the turn onto the freeway was accommodated.
The so-called "false sense of security" phenomenon may be real and can
increase danger in any life situation; however, all other transportation
advocates feel that the benefits of reduced traffic volumes, shorter
pedestrian crossings, and a simpler intersection configuration
outweighed theses risks.
Therefore, in light of the continued violation of this ban by vehicles,
I ask you to consider the following:
1. Support the SFBC push to get DPT et al. to implement colored
bike lanes or other creative safety markings across this intersection,
(Caltrans likely still needs to approve these for the city of SF use)
2. Encourage SFPD enforcement of the right-turn ban, especially at
3. Encourage DPW/DPT to install more descriptive and larger
signage; both at the banned turn and back at Duboce and other locations
where drivers SHOULD be turning to access the freeway.
4. Educate cyclists to the dangers of vehicles making unexpected
right-turns here and throughout the city (illegal turns from Market
Street downtown occur routinely and are incredibly dangerous to bikes
and pedestrians) Many of the bike skills classes offered by the SFBC
already do this, and co-sponsored safety brochures by TA/DPT also
include this info; however, more education might increase the awareness.
The SFBC could possibly get a mini-grant from DPH to do this and I have
copied Mr. Andy Thornly, program director of the SFBC on this issue.
5. Consider asking DPW to install a new sign at the intersection
saying "Cyclists Caution! Watch for illegally turning vehicles!" which
would serve the dual purpose of educating cyclists and vehicles
attempting to still violate the banned movement.
As always, I thank you for your continued support of a safer, healthier,
and more equitable transportation system in San Francisco through
increased walking, cycling, and transit use.
Richard S Coffin, PE
Former President, Walk San Francisco
From: Rob <rmajora at comcast.net <mailto:rmajora at comcast.net> >
To: Ross Mirkarimi <Ross.Mirkarimi at sfgov.org
<mailto:Ross.Mirkarimi at sfgov.org> >
CC: PROSF <home at prosf.org <mailto:%3Chome at prosf.org> >
Subject: Right Turn onto New Market Street Freeway Ramp
Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2006 14:36:00 -0800
You probably remember last year's kerfuffle over the ban on making a
right turn onto the new freeway ramp on Market St. across from the new,
unimproved Octavia Blvd. It turns out that your predecessor carried a
resolution on behalf of the cycling community to put this ban in force
in 2004, much to the annoyance and inconvenience of city drivers. As the
media accounts noted at the time, the no-right-turn ban is a six-month
trial. The text of Resolution 508-04 confirms this:
"Further resolved, that the Department shall collect data related to
traffic, bicycle, and pedestrian safety and flow during the first six
months of the opening of the freeway ramp, and shall make adjustments to
and shall implement any additional traffic control devices and signage
as necessary to maximize the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists
through the intersection, and the Department shall report its findings
to the Board of Supervisors at the end of that period."
The six-month trial will soon be over. Can we assume that DPT has
been diligently collecting data on this experiment and will soon
announce its findings? We can only hope that the city, with your
support, will end this preposterous inconvenience to the city's 464,000
drivers and jackhammer up the huge bulb-out that actually makes this
intersection more dangerous to city cyclists.
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