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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