Friday, July 16, 2010

Target and "calming" Masonic Avenue

This Bike Nopa picture shows what "calming" Masonic means

According to BikeNopa, Supervisor Mirkarimi's office is getting the word out to the anti-car groups in District 5 about a "Target Community Meeting" on Wednesday, July 21, at 6:30 at the site of the old Mervyn's Department Store at Geary and Masonic:

At the Thursday evening NOPNA meeting, [Mirkarimi aide]Vallie Brown said she emphasized to Target that many District Five residents were already concerned with the impact of Masonic traffic on the neighborhoods. "I told them the groups will want to review how the expected increase of traffic to a Target store will affect efforts to calm the street." Brown added that Target intends to install an "urban store" rather than a superstore. The distinction between the two seems pretty slim so far. "They said they wouldn't be selling lawn furniture or tires at their urban store." The Target representatives told Brown of a positive aspect of their project in addition to new jobs and a commercial outlet in a now-empty storefront. Target provides community benefits to nearby neighborhoods, including grants for local improvement projects.

As readers of this blog know, Masonic Avenue already works very well for more than 44,000 people every day, according to the numbers provided by the city at last month's workshop. For some time now, the city's bike people have wanted to "calm" Masonic, that is, take away traffic lanes and/or street parking to make bike lanes, which will effectively jam up traffic on that important north/south city street.

An earlier Chronicle story on Target's interest in the site.

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At 10:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I ride from the park over to california street and only as a last resort to I try Masonic. Even with it "calmed" i rather choose another street. While I don't mind doing some hill climbing generally speaking 80% of cyclists will not be doing Masonic northbound. That said, why on earth would anyone advocate slowing traffic other than merely to frustrate people that need to drive. These include delivery trucks, bus transit. This one does not make sense.

At 2:01 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

The people who claim to represent the city's cyclists are as much anti-car as they are pro-bike. Leah Shahum is on record as saying that she wants to slow traffic down enough to make it safe for six-year-olds to ride their bikes on city streets. I actually understated the number of people now served every day by Masonic when you add the people who use the #43 line, you get a total of almost 45,000 people who are well-served every day by Masonic Avenue as it is.

Even though Masonic has been removed from the priority list of the Bicycle Plan, the city still seems determined to do something stupid with it to push the fanatical agenda of the SFBC and their many enablers in City Hall. That agenda involves making it as difficult and expensive as possible to drive in SF, which is not only nutty but will damage the city's economy.

At 3:58 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

I'm sure you heard the news today about a car-bike accident in Alamo. The father was hauling his 6 year old daughter in a little cart behind his bike. He as riding the WRONG WAY ON A ONE WAY STREET, causing a car to hit them, causing minor injuries.

Can you fucking believe what he did? This is insane. I hope they are both ok, but he should be arrested for child endangerment and, of course, stupidity.

At 5:07 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

It's just a matter of time before a child is killed because of making children an accessory to, essentially, the ideology I call BikeThink. There was this case exhaustively covered by Streetsblog last year. They of course thought he and his kid were nothing but victims. When a couple of commenters suggested that maybe the father was irresponsible, they got a ration of shit from the true believers.


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