Gaining Ground on San Jose Avenue by Jon Winston

After more than a year of grassroots community meetings in the South West Mission, the San Jose Avenue traffic calming and bike lanes project is gathering steam. SF Supervisor Mark Leno, who has promised to be at the forefront of this endeavor, has introduced a resolution to the full Board of Supervisors to make San Jose Ave. a safe, beautiful, multi-use boulevard. This general resolution was supported by the Board, paving the way for more specific legislation. Lowering the speed limit on Guerrero to 25 mph, introduced by Supervisor Leslie Katz, has already passed the Board.

The next flurry of new laws will include the bike lane phase of the project. At this writing, engineers from the Department of Parking and Traffic are drawing up bike lane designs for the freeway-like portion of the avenue leading into Glen Park, known as the Bernal Cut. In the southbound direction, a car lane will be removed to make room for a bike lane and, possibly, a widened sidewalk. Bicyclists will reach the lanes by following a new "southern wiggle" along the already calm 29th St. and Dolores St. The northbound side of the Bernal Cut will have a five to seven foot wide striped shoulder which will be off limits to cars and will function as a bike lane.

In the next phase, we hope to lower the speed limit on this stretch of San Jose Ave. so that we can legally designate this a true bike lane. We are also asking for signage and stencils making it obvious that bikes may take the lane going down the hill to Tiffany St.

Phase three, which is still being worked out by the San Jose Ave. Coalition and city departments will involve new landscaping, lighting, and other traffic calming measures for the entire section of San Jose Ave. between Glen Park and Guerrero St. We'll keep you posted! For more details on the project, check out the link on the resource page.