Building Better Bike Access along the Northern Waterfront
Getting to America’s Cup by Bike
The America’s Cup races are coming to San Francisco. In 2012 the America’s Cup World Series season two will bring regattas to San Francisco’s northern waterfront from August 21st-26th and again from October 2nd-7th (overlapping with Fleet Week). In 2013 there will be events from July through September culminating in the America’s Cup Match (Finals) from September 7th-22nd 2013.
Bike Improvements with the 2012 America's Cup events
This October 2012, thousands of visitors and residents will be attending the Amercia's Cup races, Fleet Week, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass and other fun events across the city. The city is encouraging everyone to take MUNI, walk and bike as much as possible and with the advocacy of the SF Bicycle Coalition, there will be some biking improvements to make biking easier the weekend of October 5-6:
The SF Bicycle Coalition has been working with the city to pilot bike improvements during the America's Cup events and during the weekend, the SFMTA will be testing a phsyically separated bikeway on northbound Embarcadero from Washington Street to Bay Street by removing one automobile travel lane and adding barricades. The temporary separated bikeway will be northbound only, and will continue on to Bay Street where parking will be temporarily converted to a separated bikeway.
In addition, valet bike parking at Aquatic Park and the Marina Green will give you trusted place to store your bike during the events this weekend.
The SF Bicycle Coalition will be out taking photos of the temporary bikeways and asking folks what they think about it - stay tuned for a report of what we saw next week.
Building Better Bike Access along the Northern Waterfront
The America’s Cup is a big opportunity to make San Francisco’s northern waterfront better for bicycling and to improve bike access to popular destinations such as Crissy Fields, Marina Green, Pier 39, the Ferry Building and points southeast along the Embarcadero. The events have focused the attention of the City and private funders on these areas as they strive to minimize traffic impacts for residents and maximize ease of mobility for residents and the tens of thousands of tourists expected to visit the city during the events.
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is especially focused on ensuring that the City works to create safe routes on Polk Street and the Embarcadero, both key pieces of our vision to Connect the City via a network of safe, comfortable bike lanes, accessible to all residents no matter their age or ability level.
The SF Bicycle Coalition’s goal is encouraging the City to make bicycling one of the best ways to get to the races, and to test out some innovative new designs during the America’s Cup races and learning from the experience, move towards permanent projects that will benefit locals who bike long after the yachts have sailed on.
The City has developed a “People Plan” for transporting the spectators and participants to and from the northeastern waterfront for the 2012 World Series and 2013 America's Cup sailing regattas on San Francisco Bay. The People Plan calls for the event to be safe, efficient, sustainable and showcase the city’s adaptability. The Plan notes that ensuring that bicycling is a viable transportation option for event viewers would advance each of these goals.
Specifically the People Plan calls for the following actions to ensure that bicycling is a real transportation option for event viewers.
“In order to encourage bicycling as an option for travel to, from, and between America’s Cup events, bicycle rentals—including San Francisco’s pilot bike sharing program— will be located at key locations along the waterfront, as well as near regional transit hubs and in city-promoted parking locations. Safe and secure bicycle parking will be provided by on-street corrals, permanent sidewalk bicycle parking facilities, and bicycle stations.
The City of San Francisco requires that secure, monitored bicycle parking services are provided at all large public events that involve street closures. The demand for bicycle parking will be monitored so that additional capacity can be added as necessary, i.e., as a means of reducing car trip demand. Furthermore, event publicity will include information on locations of bicycle sharing and bicycle renting opportunities and secured bicycle parking. America’s Cup will work with public agency and non-governmental partners to explore the expansion of existing bicycle parking facilities that are already oversubscribed, such as the Caltrain bike station.”
The original People’s Plan also calls for a temporary “multi-use” pathway on the Embarcadero that would take one travel lane and convert it to a two-way bikeway on event days.
The SF Bicycle Coalition is keeping a close eye on these promises and working closely with the City to ensure that safe bicycle access to viewing locations is provided via the Embarcadero and Polk Street as well as the streets adjacent to the Marina Green area.
The SF Bicycle Coalition has already provided valuable input to the City and event organizers to ensure that bicycle information was included on their transportation maps for the events. These maps will be distributed to hotels downtown and near the events and widely broadcast via the City, America’s Cup and 511 websites and social media. They are part of an effort to reduce private vehicle traffic and encourage transit, walking and bicycling during the events. The map can be viewed here [link to map].
The SF Bicycle Coalition will also be providing valet bike parking for the August 2012 events and we hope to continue to provide this service for the duration of the America’s Cup events in San Francisco.
Bicycling is a fun and easy way to get to America’s Cup viewing spots!
Bicycling will be one of the quickest and most fun ways to get to the America’s Cup viewing locations. You can make a day of it and explore more of the city by bike as well! San Francisco has added over 20 miles of new bike lanes since 2010 and bicycling is up by 71% in the city.
This page has the information you need to plan a route, park your bike and keep safe on city streets. It also has tips for bringing your bike on transit or finding a bike if you need one.
Route Planning and Maps
San Francisco Bicycle Map
Find out where to purchase a copy of the San Francisco Bicycling and Walking Map
Regional Bicycle Maps
Plan your route to San Francisco from the greater Bay Area http://www.sfbike.org/?maps
Download the City’s official map of transit and bicycle routes to America’s Cup viewing location.
Online Bike Maps and Route Planners
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition will provide free valet bike parking for America’s Cup events August 21-26th from 11 am – 7 pm, weekdays and 10 am – 9 pm on Saturday August 25th and 10 am 7 pm on Sunday August 26th at Mariana Green.
Get tips for how to lock your bike securely: http://www.sfbike.org/theft
Bikes on Transit
Coming from further away? Learn how to bring your bike with you on local and regional transit.
Bike Safety and Rules of the Road
We want to make sure you arrive safely. Below are a list of bicycle safety tips and laws.
San Francisco Bicycle Coalition’s Rules of the Road, these include the basics of traffic laws that apply to people on bikes, as well as some strong suggestions for keeping safe on the streets: http://www.sfbike.org/bikelaw
Preparing for your rideIf it’s been a while since you’ve ridden give your bike a quick once-over to make sure it’s road-ready, or take it to a local shop for their help.
- Check the brakes. Make sure they work or get them tightened. If they don't work, don't use the bike.
- Pump up your tires (inner tubes) to the recommended pressure or until they feel very hard. This is the best way to avoid flats. You can use pumps at most gas stations and all bike shops.
- Raise the seat so that your knee is slightly flexed when the pedal is at its lowest point.
If you’re not used to riding in San Francisco here are few local tips.
- Avoid car doors. Stay at least four feet from the nearest parked car. This will keep you safely outside of the zone of an opening car door.
- Cross the tracks at 90 degrees. Try to cross Muni / streetcar tracks at 90 degree angles whenever possible.
- Do the Wiggle. If you’re exploring beyond the AC venue sites, you might keep The Wiggle in mind. It’s the flattest route between Downtown (Market Street) and Golden Gate Park (and the Sunset and Richmond neighborhoods). This zig-zagging bicycle route is beloved by San Francisco’s bike commuters and is signed with bike route signs that read 30/The Wiggle. MTA also recently began installing bright green “sharrows” on the pavement along the route to help newer riders find their way.
Don’t have your own bike? Rent a bike for the day.
Parkwide is the official bicycle rental concession for the San Francisco Parks Department. They have several locations along the northern waterfront.
There are also a number of other bike rental companies in San Francisco. Here is a brief list of options. These listings do not imply endorsement of any of these companies. Please call to confirm locations and rates.
Pedicabs can also be hailed at several locations along the northern waterfront including near the Ferry Building and near Fishermen’s Wharf.