SFMTA & Mayor London Breed need to remove cars from Market Street now

On Wednesday May 1st, from 5-6.30pm we will send the message to our mayor, to our city supervisors and SFMTA:  Remove Cars from Market Street Now!

Together with San Francisco Transit Riders, Walk SF & SF Bike, @PeopleProtected we will form a continuous line of advocates in yellow shirts using the crosswalk of Market @ Montgomery. By actively using the crosswalk we will implement the westbound turn restriction that is part of the Better Market Street project and should be implemented now. There will be music, friendly faces, and high impact. By removing cars from westbound market during Wednesday evening’s rush we will speed up bus service and make walking & biking market more safe.

Half a million people walk on Market Street every day. 75,000 people ride a Muni bus on Market street every day. Market Street is the #1 bike route in San Francisco travelled by thousands of cyclists, skateboarders and scooter riders daily. Yet Market Street is a High Injury Corridor – it’s one of San Francisco’s most dangerous streets on which to walk or bike.

Buses on the busiest transit street in San Francisco should never wait behind a turning car.

The 500,000 people walking Market street every day should not fear the danger of distracted drivers.  

Thousands of cyclists should not be squeezed to the curb by people in private SUVs.

San Francisco’s main street should not be a high injury corridor

The City has a plan, Better Market Street, to rebuild all of Market Street and add protected bike lanes, improve sidewalks, consolidate bus stops and restrict private vehicles. However, city agencies have already spent a decade planning this new street and construction will take up to a decade once it begins. SFMTA needs to immediately add additional vehicle restrictions to Market Street to improve the safety and efficiency of the street. These restrictions are long overdue.

Background: Delays and half measures on San Francisco’s Market Street

In the Summer of 2013, Public Works repaved the outer lanes of Market Street to improve bicycling conditions. Market Street was expected to be reconstructed from 2017 – 2019. By the summer of 2015, the timeline for a new Market Street was slipping, so SFMTA enacted turn restrictions and forced tuns for private vehicles to improve safety and bus speeds. Overnight, the street improved; people on bikes had some extra room, people walking were safer and buses sped up.

However, forced turns off Market Street for private vehicles were only implemented on eastbound Market. Westbound Market had some new turn restrictions, but no forced turns. Therefore, Uber and Lyft apps still allow pickups on Market Street and the turn restrictions simply force the drivers to enter Market from a street where turns are not restricted and drive on Market longer than necessary. Your morning bike or bus ride eastbound on Market is so much more pleasant than your evening westbound commute because of the inconsistency of these private vehicle turn restrictions.

Additional turn restrictions for Market Street should not be controversial, as so few drivers use this street today. A peak of 300 vehicles per hour drive westbound on Market between Fourth and Fifth streets (this includes taxis and commercial vehicles); however, over 600 bicyclists per hour ride westbound on Market between the same stretch. Muni runs 23 bus routes on Market Street, which carry thousands of riders an hour. Restricting cars on Market Street is the most efficient use of this very crowded street.

Join us to demand that private cars be removed from Market immediately.

Meet at Market & Montgomery st. Wednesday May 1st between 5-6.30pm

Help out: You can help by spreading the word, bringing friends from work, and making homemade signs that say “Cars off Market Now” “No Cars on Market”

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