June 7, 2004
Important Transbay Terminal Hearing Tuesday
The exciting Transbay Terminal Project, which will create a regional bus and rail terminal linking Muni, Caltrain, BART, AC Transit and other buses at the site of the present Transbay Terminal, as the centerpiece of a livable, walkable neighborhood with 3,000 new housing units, will hopefully take one step closer to completion this Tuesday, June 8th as the Board of Supervisors considers approval of the project's Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement. The public hearing is currently scheduled for 4pm at City Hall, 2nd floor. If you can, please attend and speak in support of this truly transit-friendly project. Your 2 cents could make a difference!
Folsom Bike Lanes, Inner Geary Project Move Forward
Proposed bike lanes that would connect the existing Folsom St lanes to the 14th St bike lanes were approved with a positive recommendation at a DPT hearing last Friday. Thank you to SFBC members who spoke out in favor of these bike lanes, and to DPT staffer Mike Sallaberry for his diligent work to make this important connection happen.
The Inner Geary Transit project that would speed up Muni's 38 line service along Geary and O'Farrell Streets was met with heated testimony on both sides and was forwarded to the Municipal Transportation Agency without recommendation. The project includes lane reconfiguration, consolidation of bus stops, construction of bus bulbs, conversion of regular parking spaces to yellow zones, and installation of new parking meters. The SFBC supports the project because it will dramatically improve transit, and with a few tweaks (such as narrowing each car lane by a few inches), this plan could provide bike lanes on busy Geary Street.
The next steps for BOTH these projects are (as yet unscheduled, possibly separate) hearings before the Municipal Transportation Agency Board, then another hearing before the Board of Supervisors Land Use Committee, and finally a deciding vote by the full Board of Supes. This process will take months to complete, but stay tuned - we'll notify y'all when it's time to write letters & come to the hearings.
Bicyclists Bumped From Caltrain's Baby Bullet
Speaking of trains, many commuting cyclists who ride Caltrain up and down the Peninsula are noticing the hard way that the new "Baby Bullet" train service dramatically reduces bicycle carrying capacity, only a couple weeks after Bike to Work Day. This morning, at least twenty cyclists were denied access to the 8:37am train at the 4th and King Station, and more than a dozen more were turned away at 22nd Street. Similar reports from up and down the Baby Bullet line indicate that the new schedule was put together with little input from cyclists.
According to Chris Weeks, chair of the Caltrain Bicycle Advisory Committee (CBAC), the Committee has been telling Caltrain that the reduced bicycle capacity would be a huge issue, but their comments weren't adequately considered. He says that Caltrain is trying to encourage cyclists to keep a bike at both ends of their trip, yet without adequate attended parking or bike lockers, this is not feasible for most commuters who want to avoid bike theft.
The new Baby Bullet express trains only accommodate 16 bicycles, down from either 32 or 64 spaces on the regular trains. This is disappointing to many cyclists, who have waited for 2 years without weekend train service and were expecting an improved commute as a result.
TAKE ACTION NOW: Please write to Caltrain and demand that they add more bicycle capacity to their baby bullet trains, while we wait for them to provide improved bicycle parking at Caltrain stations. You can e-mail Caltrain decisionmakers via their web site at: http://caltrain.com/contact.html or call them at 1-800-660-4287
Railway Mural Unveiling Party Saturday
The artist behind the much-loved Duboce Bikeway Mural, Mona Caron, has just finished a new mural to be unveiled at a celebration party this Saturday, June 12th from 4-7pm. Her newest work "Market Street Railway Mural" also celebrates transportation history in San Francisco, this time, focusing on historic streetcars and the use of Market Street as genuine public space for bicyclists, celebrations, protests and more. Mona will be on hand to give tours of the mural, telling the true stories and identifying people included in this minutely detailed mural, which includes the building that hosts SFBC HQ! This lovely new mural is located on Church Street between 15th and 16th Streets. For more info about the celebration, call the mural coordinator at (415) 505-8255 and check out http://www.monacaron.com.
Help Review SF's Official Bike Policy @ 2 Meetings
Do you care about colored bike lanes or how police treat cyclists? These are just two of many issues covered in two upcoming meetings where you can comment on San Francisco's official bike policies.
The SF Bicycle Advisory Committee (BAC) is holding a special second meeting for public review and comment on the Bike Plan 2004 Policy Document tomorrow night with a focus on a review of the Supplemental Design Guidelines, including designs such as colored bike lanes, shared bus-bike lanes and more. This BAC meeting also is a forum for SF residents to review and comment on the Draft Policy Framework in general, including issues of enforcement, parking, education, planning policies, transit and bridge access, and bicycle promotion. Copies of the Draft Policy Framework are available at the Main and Park Branch libraries, as well as downloadable files (in Acrobat PDF format) at http://sfgov.org/bac. The BAC will take public comment on the Bike Plan 2004 Policy Framework throughout the month of June at any of its meetings, as well as via email or postal mail.
The special BAC meeting is happening Tuesday, June 8th 5:30pm, Park Branch Library, downstairs meeting room, 1833 Page Street at Shrader. The next regular BAC meeting, where you can also make bike policy comments, will be June 16th at 6:15 PM in Room 408 of City Hall. For more info, see http://sfgov.org/bac
Nudity or Housing - How About Both?
Long for a fun, social outdoor bike experience without necessarily being athletic? You'd love the SFBC's series of free cultural history bike tours, which continue this weekend with two tours: Saturday's Affordable Housing Bike Tour (showcasing new SOMA housing developments) and Sunday's Tales of the City Bike Tour (focusing on actual locations featured Armistead Maupin's popular book & film series).
Our "Tales of the City" tour leader is looking for a SFBC volunteer to help with that ride, which begins at Noon at "A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books" - if you can pass a signup sheet clipboard around in a crowd, you'd be perfect. Email email@example.com to help out.
Saturday's bike tour involves a tough choice: nudity or housing? Yes, the SFBC's "Affordable Housing Bike Tour" will meet at the same time & location as the "World Naked Bike Ride" (both start in Justin Hermann Plaza at 11am this Saturday, and both promise to be fun explorations of different aspects of San Francisco). We suppose you don't have to actually choose - nude riders can get a guided tour of SOMA affordable housing developments along with their clothed brethren. See the calendar at the end of this email or at http://www.sfbike.org/chain for further info on all of these fun bike events, including both of Saturday's gatherings at the foot of Market Street.
For info regarding nudity and legal issues in San Francisco, check out this article recently published in the SF Bay Guardian: http://www.sfbg.com/38/34/cover_naked_city.html (basically, as long as you're not being sexual, public nudity is legal - read the article for the full scoop).
Next Street Skills Bike Ed Course Scheduled
Have you taken the SFBC's Street Skills class yet? It covers all aspects of utility bicycling - how to perform a bicycle safety check, choosing a bike, dealing with cargo and clothing, bike parking, lighting, reflection, and foul-weather riding. Crash avoidance techniques will also be discussed. The SFBC BikeEd Urban Bike Training is great for cyclists new to urban riding or just needing a refresher course and some tips to navigate the streets of San Francisco. Gain confidence by knowing you are riding legally and safely. Recommended for those over 14 years of age.
The SFBC's next Street Skills course is scheduled for June 19th at Noe Valley Library from 10:30am - 2:30pm. The Noe Valley Library is at 451 Jersey (between Castro & Diamond) The best way to get there by bike is Valencia to 22nd, left on Chatanooga, Right on Jersey. Bring lunch if you want to see bike flicks while you munch, or you can easily find takeout lunch in the neighborhood. The class is free for San Francisco residents, but we encourage you to join the SFBC.
The course is free but you must register by e-mailing the course instructor, Bert Hill, at firstname.lastname@example.org
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