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2nd Street Bicycle Plan – Design Approval Hearing on Friday at 9am

The Rincon Hill Neighborhood Association supports the Bicycle Plan and the creation of a safer environment for bicyclists in San Francisco. However, the currently proposed design for 2nd Street as part of the San Francisco Bike Plan did not seek input from the affected neighborhoods (Rincon Hill, South Park, and South Beach) and appears to be a recipe for greater traffic congestion, increased air pollution, and additional dangers for pedestrians IF the SF MTA does not also improve the streetscapes in our neighborhoods to coincide with traffic flow alterations on 2nd Street. There were community meetings in MAY 2009, after public comment periods were closed and the SF MTA Bike staff frankly seemed to give a damn about our opinions on the designs … the meetings emitted the message that “This is what we’re going to do to 2nd Street” … they may as well have appended “Whether you like it or not!”

In a nutshell, 2nd Street will lose one northbound lane and one southbound lane and left hand turns will be prohibited at most intersections while traveling northbound and all intersections while traveling southbound. Sounds like Market Street, no? Suggestions from area residents to add a utility lane for turns, to add smart signals to allow for left turns, and other recommendations that might help alleviate the significant negative impacts on residents of Rincon Hill, South Beach, and South Park and suggestions to improve pedestrian safety seem to be falling on deaf ears at SF MTA thus far. We’re asking the SFMTA to LISTEN to residents of the affected neighborhoods and to DO THEIR JOB to protect the interests of pedestrians, the public safety of residents by making sure emergency response vehicles can reach Rincon Hill, South Beach, and South Park residents, and to not add to the traffic congestion already present in our neighborhoods – we’re not asking to squash the Bike Plan by any means as we are bicyclists and pedestrians ourselves. The ability to walk to work is the primary reason many of us choose to pay the high costs to live in these neighborhoods that are still developing. However, our already lousy air quality thanks to 280,000 vehicles a day crossing the Bay Bridge shouldn’t be intentionally degraded further by creating more traffic congestion in our neighborhoods. The SF MTA is not taking the next step to consider the unintended consequences of the changes proposed for 2nd Street.

If you’re concerned about these changes, please try to show up at the 9am SF MTA Board meeting on Friday at City Hall in Room 400. Of course the meeting is scheduled at a time that is very difficult for working residents to attend, forcing us to take time off of work or otherwise sacrifice personal resources in order to tell the SF MTA Board that they haven’t done their job.

Here’s the agenda item for 2nd Street:

APPROVE: Project 2-1 2ND StREET bicycle LANES, KING ST. to MARKET ST.

CLASS II BICYCLE LANE – ESTABLISH: 1) 2nd Street, northbound, from King Street to Market Street; and 2.) 2nd Street, southbound, from Market Street to Townsend Street.

TOW AWAY NO STOPPING ANYTIME – ESTABLISH: 1) 2nd Street, east side, from Mission Street to 100 feet southerly; 2) 2nd Street, east side, from Folsom Street to 100 feet southerly; 3) 2nd Street, west side, from Mission Street to 100 feet northerly; 4) 2nd Street, west side, from Howard Street to 100 feet northerly; 5) 2nd Street, west side, from Harrison Street to 100 feet northerly; and 6) Hawthorne Street, west side, from Folsom Street to 113 feet northerly.

NO LEFT TURN EXCEPT FOR MUNI – ESTABLISH: 2nd Street, southbound, at Mission Street.

NO LEFT TURN – ESTABLISH: 1) 2nd Street, southbound, at Natoma Street; 2) 2nd Street, southbound, at Clementina Street; 3) 2nd Street, southbound, at Folsom Street 4) 2nd Street, southbound, at Harrison Street; 5) 2nd Street, southbound, at Bryant Street; 6) 2nd Street, southbound, at Brannan Street; 7) 2nd Street, northbound, at Minna Street; and 8) 2nd Street, northbound, at Mission; and 9) 2nd Street, northbound, at Howard.

RIGHT TURN ONLY EXCEPT BICYCLES – ESTABLISH: 2nd Street, northbound, at Market Street.

LEFT LANE MUST TURN LEFT – ESTABLISH: Hawthorne Street, southbound, approaching Folsom Street.

WHITE ZONE, DURING BUSINESS HOURS – ESTABLISH: 2nd Street, east side, from 21 feet to 61 feet north of Minna Street.

YELLOW ZONE, 9AM TO 2PM, MONDAY THRU FRIDAY, 5PM TO 11PM, MONDAY THRU SATURDAY – ESTABLISH: 2nd Street, west side, from Natoma Street to 46 feet southerly.

YELLOW ZONE – ESTABLISH: Hawthorne Street, west side, from 113 feet to 158 feet north of Folsom Street.

Other changes of interest that I’m not alarmed about because I don’t believe they’ll degrade the quality of life and public safety in Rincon Hill:

RATIFY: PROJECT 2-5 BEALE STREET BICYCLE LANE, BRYANT ST. TO FOLSOM ST.

BICYCLE LANE – ESTABLISH: Beale Street, west side, southbound from Bryant Street and Folsom Street.

TOW AWAY NO PARKING 3:30 PM TO 7:00 PM MONDAY TO FRIDAY-ESTABLISH: Beale Street, west side, from Bryant Street to 50 feet northerly.

TOW AWAY NO STOPPING ANYTIME – ESTABLISH: Beale Street, west side, from 115 feet to 230 feet north of Bryant Street.

90 DEGREE PARKING-REVOKE: 1) Beale Street, east side, from 300 feet to 353 feet south of Folsom Street; 2) Beale Street, east side, from 620 feet to 764 feet south of Folsom Street; and 3) Beale Street, west side, from Bryant Street to 630 feet northerly (north end of Harrison overpass).

APPROVE: PROJECT 2-7 FREMONT STREET BICYCLE LANE, FOLSOM ST. TO HARRISON ST.

BICYCLE LANE – ESTABLISH: Fremont Street, southbound, from Folsom Street to Harrison Street.

RATIFY: PROJECT 2-9 HOWARD STREET bicycle LANe, THE EMBARCADERO TO FREMONT ST.

CLASS II BICYCLE LANE – ESTABLISH: Howard Street, westbound, from The Embarcadero to Fremont Street.

Bus Stop, Tow Away, No Parking, 6AM to 10AM, Monday through Friday – ESTABLISH: Howard Street, south side, from Spear Street to 90 feet easterly.

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