Saturday, January 18, 2020

The Page Street bike project: An "improvement"?

Image result for Page Street pictures
FROM: Mary Miles (SB #230395) 
Attorney at Law for 
Coalition for Adequate Review
San Francisco, CA 94102 
(415) 863-2310 

TO: Angela Calvillo, Clerk, and 
San Francisco Board of Supervisors 
Room 244 City Hall 
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place 
San Francisco, CA 94102 

DATE: January 17, 2020 

RE: BOS File No. 191309 



This Appeal is of the San Francisco Planning Department's environmental determination at File No. 2019-015182ENV on the "Page Street Bikeway Improvements Pilot Project" ("Project") approved by the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board of Directors ("MTA") on November 19, 2019, in violation of the California Environmental Quality Act ("CEQA") (Pub. Res. Code ["PRC"] §§21000 et seq.) The MTA Board Resolution No. 19111942 is attached hereto as Exhibit A. 

The Planning Department's backdated, publicly unavailable categorical exemption ("Categorical Exemption") is attached as Exhibit B. Attached as Exhibit C is the MTA staff memorandum dated September 4, 2019 from Mark Dreger to Laura Lynch, author of the Planning Department's Categorical Exemption. Attached as Exhibit D is a November 12, 2019 MTA "Sustainable Streets" memorandum on the Project. 

The Project proposes to physically block public access to several blocks of Page Street, a public street that carries 5,400 vehicles per day to Octavia Boulevard and the freeway, to the Civic Center, downtown and other destinations, including 3,800 traveling eastbound in the a.m. peak commute to reach the freeway system via Octavia Boulevard. (Exh. C, p. 2.) The Project proposes diverting those 5,400 cars in a convoluted series of forced turns at stop signs to force travelers to merge onto the already severely congested Oak and Fell Street corridors that each carry 30,000 vehicles daily to and from Octavia Boulevard, the City's center and other destinations. 

The Project also forces turning on adjoining and parallel streets, including Webster, Buchanan, Haight, Laguna, and Octavia Blvd., and blocks left turn access from Page to Franklin Street, forcing travelers on Page Street to turn right onto Market Street and travel in a mile-wide circle to reach employment hubs in the Civic Center and destinations east of the Page/Franklin intersection. The Project will also permanently remove 29 parking spaces on Page and 7 on Haight Street, having already removed more than 100 spaces in the Project area. The Project will also block turning to and from Haight, Webster, and Buchanan Streets to and from Page Street. 

MTA claims its latest segmentation of this Project is categorically exempt from environmental review under 14 Cal. Code Regs. ("CEQA Guidelines") §15306. The Project is not exempt under that or any other provision because of its significant impacts, its long duration, and because its purpose is not to collect data, but to implement a permanent Project, and because its implementation has been publicly funded, all of which disqualify it from a "Class 6" categorical exemption. 

Since it will clearly have direct, indirect and cumulative impacts on transportation, air quality, GHG, public safety (including emergency vehicle access), and energy consumption the Project is not exempt under CEQA. (See, e.g., PRC §§21001; 21083.05, 21084(e); Guidelines §§15064, 15065(a).) 

The claim that the Project's purpose is to collect data is false, since the City already has abundant data on Page Street and the entire area from numerous studies since 2005, when the Central Freeway overpass was removed and replaced with Octavia Boulevard. 

The Project's claim that it needs to count cars on Page Street after the Project prohibits their entry reveals the pretense of MTA's claim of a "pilot" project exemption. Project documents admit the Project is intended as a permanent installation, not a temporary "pilot" to collect data. This Project clearly does not qualify for a categorical exemption under Guidelines section 15306, because it will have significant impacts, because it has been publicly funded, and for other reasons provided here and in public comment. 

MTA's attempt to evade its obligation to conduct environmental review must be rejected, and the Project approval must be reversed to comply with CEQA's requirements to conduct an initial study and prepare an environmental impact report to disclose the Project's significant impacts. 

MTA persists in punishing drivers for the congestion it has created in the Project area on behalf of bicyclists. As City's data shows, the mode share of bicyclists has declined in San Francisco since 2017, and is now less than three percent of all travelers in San Francisco.[1] During the same time, San Francisco has become one of the most congested cities on the planet, even though it is a relatively small urban area compared with other metropolitan areas.[2]

The Project typifies MTA's failure to create solutions to significant transportation problems facing the public and to instead focus on bicycling "improvements" that worsen congestion. MTA's agenda is based on the unsupported belief that by making driving and parking more difficult, it will compel people to stop driving and ride bicycles, a myth that has dominated the City's transportation policy for two decades, resulting in unmitigated congestion for the vast majority of travelers. 

The Board should drop the pretense that this Project is a temporary "pilot," grant this Appeal and remand the Project for further environmental review as a permanent project as required by CEQA. 


In 1999 voters passed a ballot measure (Proposition I) to demolish the Central Freeway overpass over Octavia Street that accommodated 90,000 travelers per day entering and exiting the 101 and 280 Freeways. The overpass carrying travelers directly to and from Oak and Fell Streets was damaged in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. (See, e.g., Caltrans alternatives analysis, Dec. 1, 2000.) As Caltrans noted, those Freeways provide critical access to downtown, the East Bay, the airport, Silicon Valley and South Bay destinations. 

As a replacement for the overpass, a ground-level six-lane system was designed with direct access to and from the freeway via Octavia Boulevard at Market Street. However, acceding to the demands of bicyclists, the City instead closed off access to and from Market Street to the freeway ramp and created bicycle lanes on Market Street, two blocks from the Page Street Project. (See Board of Supervisors Res. No. 508-04, 8/25/04, File No. 040912.) That action caused immediate significant congestion for thousands of travelers trying to get to the freeway from areas west of Octavia who had to travel a circuitous route to 13th Street/South Van Ness Avenue to get on the freeway instead of the originally designed direct access to and from Market Street. 

In 2005, the new Octavia "Boulevard" opened, with only four lanes (as opposed to six lanes on the former overpass) entering and exiting the freeway system. Although Octavia Boulevard has six lanes, two lanes are "frontage" streets and bicycle lanes that do not access the freeway. Unlike the former overpass, traffic on Octavia Boulevard is now stopped five times by signal lights at Market, Haight, Page, Oak, and Fell Streets, resulting in queuing on all of those streets. Since the four Octavia Boulevard lanes leading to and from the freeway carry only 45,000 travelers per day, as opposed to the 90,000 using the former overpass, traffic backs up, with significant congestion and queuing on all the above streets, with increased congestion on freeway access up to a mile away on Van Ness Avenue. 

Shortly after it opened, the City acknowledged the failure of Octavia Boulevard but refused to address it. On March 2, 2006, MTA (then the "Department of Parking and Traffic") released its "Octavia Boulevard Operation: Six Month Report," which documented that Octavia Boulevard had already exceeded its maximum capacity (half that of the former overpass), resulting in increased congestion on Octavia and surrounding streets. (Id., p. 2.) 

Vehicles were queuing on Oak, Fell, Page, and Haight Streets during morning and evening commutes. (Octavia Boulevard Operation: Six Month Report, pp. 2-4, 6-8) Traffic was also backed up on the freeway itself. (Id.) Congestion was noted not only during peak commute hours but also on weekends. (Id., p. 3) That Report concluded City would do nothing about the Octavia Boulevard planning failure. 

In 2008 this Board adopted its Market-Octavia project that rezoned thousands of parcels in the area to promote high-rise high-density development, with no mitigation of transportation and parking impacts in the Project area, claiming that the project's 10,000 new residents would not use cars if the new developments had no parking. That project also removed thousands of existing parking spaces. 

In 2013, the City approved a Van Ness Bus Rapid Transit Project that worsens congestion throughout the area by permanently removing two travel lanes and most of the parking on Van Ness Avenue/Highway 101, and permanently eliminating turns to and from Van Ness Avenue that formerly allowed travelers access to and from the west side of the Van Ness corridor. 

Other studies followed MTA's 2006 Report that repeated its conclusion that the lack of capacity of Octavia Boulevard had produced significant congestion and queuing, not only on that street but also on Fell, Oak, Page, Haight, and Market Streets, on Van Ness Avenue, and on the freeway itself. (See, e.g., San Francisco County Transportation Agency, "Central Freeway and Octavia Circulation Study" (September, 2012); see also, MTA Public Records Act/Sunshine Ordinance responses, 2005 through 2020; environmental impact reports and appendices on projects in the area since 2005.) 

Like the 2006 study, those studies acknowledged the congestion but proposed nothing to mitigate it, and MTA instead makes congestion worse with this Project. Instead of creating solutions to the congestion problem, MTA again focuses only on "bicycle improvements," removing parking, obstructing traffic, and further reducing street capacity, imagining that cars will disappear and bicycles will replace motor vehicles as the dominant mode of regional transportation. That clearly has not happened. (Fn. 1, ante.) 

As the studies since 2006 show, MTA's assumption is false that traffic on Page Street is a recent development that will be solved by blocking vehicle access to Page Street and diverting 5,400 vehicles per day to Oak and Fell Streets. Those studies, as well as updated data (provided this commenter in several Public Records Act/Sunshine Ordinance requests) obviate any need for further data-gathering by the proposed "pilot" Project here. 

As noted, MTA's claim that it needs to count vehicles after closing off streets to vehicles is patently absurd, since that information is readily available and can be extrapolated from existing data, including the data cited in the categorical exemption and MTA documents for this Project. 

Also false is MTA's claim that bicycle volumes exceed vehicle volumes on Page Street and other streets in the Project area.[3] In fact, MTA states that Page Street east of Webster Street carries 5,400 vehicles per day (Exh. C, p. 2) while "the most recent observation recorded 363 bikes in the morning peak hour approaching Octavia Boulevard" on Page Street. (Exh. D, p. 3) 

MTA provides no data comparing total daily bicycle counts with total daily vehicle counts or detailed information on where and when it collected the data, though that information is available and has been requested by this commenter. Contrary to MTA's false claims, daily vehicle volumes clearly surpass bicycle volumes on Page and other streets in the Project area, as shown by MTA's own data. 

MTA's data also shows that Haight Street carries 5,000 vehicles daily, as does Webster Street. MTA's data shows that Fell and Oak Streets each carry 30,000 vehicles per day, and have far exceeded capacity since 2006, causing queuing on those streets in both directions to and from Octavia, and queuing even on the freeway. (Exh. C, p. 3.) The Project's plan to divert 5,400 more vehicles daily from Page Street onto those overburdened roadways is irresponsible and will plainly cause significant impacts by worsening existing congestion and creating air quality, GHG, and other impacts. 

MTA's claims of "elevated numbers of injury traffic collisions" and a "high concentration of collisions involving people bicycling and walking" (Exh. A, p. 2) are also unsupported. MTA's collision data shows no increase in collisions on Page Street from 2014 to 2019, and shows that most bicycle "collisions" were caused by bicyclists themselves. [4]

MTA's "safety" claim is also irrelevant, since CEQA analysis is not about impacts of existing conditions on future users, or alleged benefits of the Project for three percent of travelers who bicycle, but about the impacts of the Project on the environment. (e.g., PRC, §21060.5) The environment protected by CEQA is everyone's, not only bicyclists.' (e.g., PRC §21000) 

Procedural Objections 

Appellant objects to MTA's November 19, 2019 hearing on this Project without making the environmental determination publicly available in advance of that hearing. The Categorical Exemption document was not publicly available or posted on either the Planning Department's or MTA's website, and was only made available after a Sunshine Ordinance/Public Records Act Request. The failure to publicly provide these basic documents in advance precludes meaningful participation in proceedings on this Project in violation of CEQA, which also requires an agency to consider the environmental documents supporting a project before approval. (See, e.g., SF Admin. Code §67.7(d); Laurel Heights I, supra, 47 Cal. 3d at p. 394.) 

The right to public comment is also undermined by the Board's time constraints requiring public comment to be submitted eleven days in advance of hearing an appeal for distribution to the Board. CEQA allows public comment up to and including the date of the hearing or final disposition of the Board. (e.g., Bakersfield Citizens for Local Control v. City of Bakersfield ["Bakersfield"] (2004) 124 Cal. App. 4th 1184, 1199-1202; 14 Cal. Code Regs. ["Guidelines"] §15202(b); PRC §21177(a).) 

Appellant is not subject to "exhaustion" requirements where the lead agency does not conduct public proceedings before its environmental determination. (See, e.g., Azusa Land Reclamation Co. v. Main San Gabriel Basin Watermaster ["Azusa"] (1997) 52 Cal.App.4th 1165, 1209-1210.) As demonstrated by this Board's consistent denial of CEQA appeals, exhaustion of administrative remedies is not required, because such appeal is futile. Exhaustion is also not required for preemption, constitutional, general plan consistency, or other issues unrelated to CEQA, because no opportunity is available for administrative review of those issues before elected decisionmakers. 

Appellant also objects to the requirement to pay $640 in advance to file an appeal to this Board, which is prohibitively expensive and beyond the means of most people. An appeal should be allowed regardless of payment, which should not be required pending decision on an application for fee waiver. 



A. The Project Does Not Qualify For A §15306 Exemption Or Any Other Exemption 

The agency bears the burden of showing with substantial evidence that a proposed project fits within a categorical exemption. (Azusa, supra, 52 Cal.App.4th at p. 1192; Save Our Big Trees v. City of Santa Clara (2015) 241 Cal.App.4th 684, 705.) Exemptions are construed narrowly and may not be expanded beyond their terms or CEQA's statutory purpose. (County of Amador v. El Dorado County Water Agency ["County of Amador"] (1999) 76 Cal.App.4th 931, 966; Save Our Carmel River v. Monterey Peninsula Water Management Dist. (2006) 141 Cal.App.4th 677, 697.) Strict construction "'also comports with the statutory directive that exemptions may be provided only for projects which have been determined not to have a significant environmental effect."' (County of Amador, supra, 76 Cal.App.4th at p. 966.) 

Here the City's agencies fail to meet their burden to provide substantial evidence that the Class 6 exemption under Guidelines §15306 applies to this Project. 

1. The Section 15306 Categorical Exemption Does Not Apply To The Project 

Guidelines, section 15306 states: 

Guidelines §15306: Information Collection. 
Class 6 consists of basic data collection, research, experimental management, and resource evaluation activities which do not result in a serious or major disturbance to an environmental resource. These may be strictly for information gathering purposes, or as part of a study leading to an action which a public agency has not yet approved, adopted, or funded. (emphasis added) 

This Project is not about "basic data collection," since, as shown by MTA's documents and past studies, the data is already available, including traffic counts on Page and surrounding streets that have been available since 2006. 

The Project is not about "research," but about installing permanent barriers to travel on public streets. (Exh. C, p. 1.) 

The Project will clearly result in a "serious or major disturbance to an environmental resource," transportation, since it will have significant impacts on Page and surrounding streets. 5,400 vehicles now traveling on Page Street to Octavia Boulevard and other destinations will be diverted to other nearby streets that are already congested, affecting thousands of travelers. Residents on Page and other streets will also be affected by increased congestion, since the Project's barriers and convoluted diversions will hinder access to their homes. 

The stated purpose of the Project meets neither of those described in Guidelines section 15306. It is not for "strictly information gathering purposes." (Guidelines, §15306.) Instead, MTA states its purpose is to "improve traffic safety for people bicycling and walking on Page Street," to "allow the right-of-way to be allocated for other users of the street," and to convert parts of Page Street to a "protected bikeway" for exclusive use of bicyclists from Webster Street to Octavia Boulevard. (Exh. A, MTA Res. 191119-142, pp. 2-3.) 

MTA also states the Project's purpose is to "reduce the use of Page Street between Webster and Gough streets as a conduit for greater than desired commuter traffic accessing the Central Freeway." (Exh. C, p. 1.) The same document states the Project's purpose is "to determine the feasibility of permanent or modified traffic changes to achieve stated goals." (Exh. C, p. 2.) MTA announced on its web site on December 31, 2019 that it would also prohibit vehicles on Page Street to install a bicycles-only conduit to its "car-free Market Street" bicycle project with no environmental review. (See

MTA states that the Project "would allow SFMTA to temporarily implement and study the proposed changes to assure they work in the long-term and to inform possible modifications." (Exh. C, p. 8.) In fact, every "pilot" project implemented by the City has resulted in the project's permanent implementation with no CEQA review. 

Nor is the Project "part of a study leading to an action which a public agency has not yet approved, adopted, or funded." (Guidelines, §15306 [emphasis added].) The Project has been approved and adopted by MTA as a physical installation, and it has also been funded, including installing physical barriers, signs, a "Class IV protected bikeway," and "roadway striping," and other physical changes that MTA states will take "two to four weeks" to install. (Exh. C, p. 11.) The Project instead is a permanent installation, with MTA evading CEQA's requirements of environmental review and mitigation of its impacts. 

The Project therefore does not qualify for a Class 6 Exemption. 

2. The Project Is Not Categorically Exempt Under Any CEQA Provision 

MTA has failed to consider the Project's direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts affecting transportation, air quality, GHG, public safety (including emergency vehicle access), energy consumption, and other impacts. In view of those impacts, the Project is not exempt under CEQA. (See, e.g., PRC §§21001; 21083.05, 21084(e); Guidelines §§15064, 15065(a).) 

PRC section 21099 does not excuse City's failure to identify and mitigate the Project's impacts. Section 21099 provides that the state's Office of Planning and Research shall prepare proposed revisions to CEQA Guidelines on criteria for determining significance of transportation impacts, and those new Guidelines "may include, but are not limited to, vehicle miles traveled," which will clearly increase due to the Project's diversion of 5,400 vehicles. 

PRC section 21099 also states that it "does not relieve a public agency of the requirement to analyze a project's potentially significant transportation impacts related to air quality, noise, safety, or any other impact associated with transportation," and "shall not create a presumption that a project will not result in significant impacts." (PRC §21099(b) [emphasis added].) 

MTA's claim is false that the Project is exempt from CEQA as an "active transportation" project or a "minor transportation project" under Section 21099 (Exh. C p. 8), because closing a public street and creating significant traffic congestion throughout the area is neither. 

Moreover, even if the Project's goal of bicycle "improvements" were an "active transportation" project, the impacts of the whole Project, including blocking travel on Page Street and diverting thousands of vehicles, are not just about bicycle "improvements," but also and independently about impacts on transportation, air quality, GHG, public safety (including emergency vehicle access), and energy consumption that require analysis and mitigation under CEQA. 

Since the Project will clearly have significant impacts, no categorical exemption can apply. 

3. Exceptions Under Guidelines §15300.2 Also Apply To This Project 

Even if the Project qualified for a Class 6 categorical exemption, which it does not, CEQA's exceptions to categorical exemptions under Guidelines §15300.2 also apply to this Project. 

MTA and the Planning Department fail to address cumulative impacts that preclude any exemption under Guidelines §15300.2(a)(3), particularly whether "successive projects of the same type in the same place, over time" and predictably resulting from the Project's goal to implement the "pilot" as a permanent installation. The piecemealed implementation of past, present, and future plans on Page and nearby streets highlight why that failure precludes any further actions on Page Street without environmental review and mitigation of the impacts of the whole Project. 

The Project's cumulative impacts trigger the Guidelines section 15300.2 exception, invalidating the categorical exemption. "[C]ategorical exemptions from CEQA…cannot be found if 'the cumulative impact of successive projects of the same type in the same place, over time is significant." (East Peninsula Ed. Council, Inc. v. Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School Dist. ["East Peninsula"] (1989) 210 Cal.App.3d 155, 171; Guidelines §15300.2(b).) 

Also, the narrow width of Page Street, the large vehicle volumes, and the proposed closing of the Street and diverting thousands of vehicles daily to other nearby streets that are also already extremely congested present an unusual circumstances exception under Guidelines §15300.2(c). The same exception applies to the location of the Project in an area in the center of San Francisco that has historically served access to the freeway, to the Civic Center, downtown, and south of Market employment hub. 

Congestion was exacerbated by the Central Freeway overpass replacement, by prohibiting freeway access to and from Market Street, by the Market-Octavia Project, and by other projects that have generated additional traffic that cannot be accommodated and will be worsened by the Project's diverting 5,400 cars from Page Street to Oak and Fell Streets, which are already over capacity. 

B. MTA Has Failed To Analyze The Project's Cumulative And Other Significant Impacts And Has Improperly Piecemealed The Project 

Without providing a coherent or accurate description of the whole Page Street Project, MTA has improperly piecemealed implementation of this Project under many different names ("bikeway," "neighborway," "green corridor," "bicycle boulevard,"etc.) (Exh. C, pp. 11-12.) Examples include placing a bicycle lane in the middle of Page Street from Buchanan Street to Octavia Boulevard; removing access to northbound Franklin Street from eastbound Page Street, creating a bicycles-only conduit to its "car-free Market Street" project; removing more than 100 parking spaces in increments (and 36 more parking spaces for this Project); and now with this Project, the extreme action of closing Page Street to vehicle traffic, forcing turns to and from adjoining and parallel streets, and obstructing access from Page Street to the freeway via Octavia Boulevard. (Exh. C, pp. 11-12.) 

Such piecemealing violates CEQA, both because it evades environmental review of each increment, and because it evades environmental review of the whole Project's cumulative impacts. 

The term "cumulative impacts" refers to two or more individual effects which, when considered together, are considerable or which compound or increase other environmental impacts and can result from "individually minor but collectively significant projects taking place over a period of time." (See Guidelines §15130(a)(1); 15355(b); Bakersfield, supra, 124 Cal.App.4th at p.1214.) "Proper cumulative impact analysis is vital," because "the full impact of a proposed project cannot be gauged in a vacuum." (Bakersfield, supra, 124 Cal. App.4th at p.1214.) "'[C]onsideration of the effects of a project or projects as if no others existed would encourage the piecemeal approval of several projects that, taken together, could overwhelm the natural environment and disastrously overburden the man-made infrastructure and vital community services. This would effectively defeat CEQA's mandate to review the actual effect of the projects upon the environment.'" (Id. at pp. 1214-1215.) Omitting other projects or segments causes an unduly narrow cumulative impacts analysis and prevents accurate identification of impacts and their severity. (Kings County Farm Bureau v. City of Hanford (1990) 221 Cal. App. 3d 692, 723.) 

The cumulative impacts analysis must occur at the preliminary stage before any determination that a project is categorically exempt. (East Peninsula, supra, 210 Cal.App.3d at p. 171; Orinda Ass'n v. Bd. of Supervisors (1986) 182 Cal.App.3d 1145, 1171 [whole project must be analyzed at preliminary phase]; Guidelines §15060(c)(2).) A cumulative impacts analysis must set forth existing conditions and compare those conditions with the effects of past, current, and probable future projects. (Guidelines §15065(a)(3).) The cumulative impacts analysis must also show other current and anticipated future projects in the cumulative area that will also affect transportation, public safety, air quality, GHG, energy consumption, and other Project impacts. 

That analysis did not occur here: There is no analysis of cumulative impacts on transportation or of any impact on parking, air quality, GHG, and energy consumption in City's documents, even though this Project has "possible environmental effects" that are "cumulatively considerable," meaning "that the incremental effects of an individual project are significant when viewed in connection with the effects of past projects, the effects of other current projects, and the effects of probable future projects." (Guidelines §15065(a)(3).) 

Claiming a variety of exemptions for segments of the Project also violates the law, because CEQA requires that any exemption must apply to the whole Project not just a piece of it. (Association for a Cleaner Environment v. Yosemite Community College Dist. (2004) 116 Cal.App.4th 629, 640; see also, e.g., Poet, LLC v. State Air Resources Board ["Poet II"] (2017) 12 Cal.App.5th 52, 79-81 [failure to include whole Project in baseline held an abuse of discretion invalidating project approval]; County of Amador, supra, 76 Cal.App.4th at pp. 953-954.) 

City's failure to analyze and mitigate the Project's cumulative and other impacts violates CEQA, because it evades review of the whole Project and precludes public understanding of the impacts of the whole Project. The whole Project must be accurately described, reviewed and its impacts mitigated to comply with CEQA, which the City's agencies have failed to do. 


The Project proposes closing vehicle access to a public street, which is preempted. (See, e.g., Rumford v. City of Berkeley (1982) 31 Cal.3d 545.) 


The Board should grant this appeal, reject the Planning Department's Categorical Exemption, and reverse the MTA's approval of the "Page Street Bikeway Improvement Pilot Project," and should order environmental review of the whole Page Street Project and mitigate its impacts to comply with CEQA. 

DATE: January 17, 2020 ________________________________ 

Mary Miles 
Attorney for Appellant 

[1] See Fehr & Peers: 2013-2017 Travel Decision Survey Data Analysis and Comparison Report, July 2017, p. 15, showing decline in bicycle mode share in San Francisco from 3% in 2014 to 2% in 2017] 

[2] See, e.g., Michelle Robertson: "SF has the worst commute in the U.S., and it may have cost the city $10.6 billion last year," San Francisco Chronicle, February 7, 2018

[3] Without providing support, MTA states that "Page Street experiences very high bicycle volumes, often exceeding the number of vehicles…in the morning commutes." (Exh. A, p. 2.) MTA claims that 293 vehicles were "observed in the AM peak hour on eastbound Page Street approaching Octavia Boulevard." (Exh. D, p. 3.) That number is not credible in view of MTA's 5,400 average daily motor vehicles on Page Street (Exh. C, p. 2); nor does MTA support that number with the actual data or locations where counts were made (which were requested by this commenter). Counting vehicles at only one intersection does not result in an accurate count, since vehicles stop at stop signs and are queued for several blocks, while bicycles do not stop at intersections, do not travel in single file, and are not queued for several blocks. 

[4] MTA admits that Page Street is not on its "High-Injury Network," but claims that 11 "collisions" occurred in the area involving bicycles and three involving pedestrians between 2014 and 2019 (six years). (Exh. D, p. 3.) MTA's collision data provided in response to a Sunshine Ordinance Request, though incomplete, shows that of eight bicycle "collisions" in the Project area from 2014-2017, bicyclists were at fault in six, with fault not assessed in one, and fault assessed to a motorcycle in the other. (MTA response dated May 29, 2018 to IDR 0428-052118.)

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Trump's new lawyer

Starr looks down at his phone.
From Slate:

Kenneth Starr is the former independent counsel who uncovered a lot of details around Lewinsky and Clinton’s affair, put them in a 435-page report that led to Clinton’s impeachment, and then became a Fox News host who opposes impeaching Trump for attempting to bribe a foreign power into helping him cheat in the 2020 election. 

In defending Trump on TV this time around, Starr has argued against the “evils of impeachment,” saying “impeachment has become a terrible, terrible thorn in the side of the American democracy and the conduct of American government since Watergate.”

In between being really pro-impeachment and really anti-impeachment, Starr spent some time as the president of Baylor University, a job he lost after a report demonstrated that his administration showed a “fundamental failure” in responding to sexual assaults, including an epidemic of cases involving players on the school’s football team. 

Presumably, Trump hired him for his gravitas and to lend historical perspective to the case, but it also could be because he just has a thing for defending sexual predators...

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