By the time Bike to Work Day rolls around this year, my ride home from work is going to be a little less stressful.
Every day on Market Street across from Valencia Street, I have to merge into the narrow, right hand traffic lane to continue on Market to the Wiggle Route. Delaying cars, even for just a few seconds, always worries me. I never know when the delayed party is going to be an easily antagonized impatient road rager. Fortunately, I've never had a problem at this spot, but I always have to ride a little faster than I would prefer, and I'm sure that my worrying isn't good for my health.
Now, thanks to the new towaway lanes approved at the Board of Supervisors last month, I'll be able to ride in my normal relaxed manner. Thanks to this simple proposal, some time has probably been added to my life.
Our next step is to get the bike-friendly configuration approved 24 hours a day instead of just three hours, and to make all of Market Street a safe and relaxing street for bicycle riding. We have asked the Department of Parking & Traffic to include in its 2001 budget funding for a study of Market Street bicycle safety. The goal of the study, we say, should be to design changes that will permit a continuous path of safe bicycle travel, with no gaps. The design should encourage bicyclists who wish to travel slowly, side-by-side. We predicted that this could all be achieved without prohibiting automobile access to any portion of Market Street, although limiting through-traffic on Market Street may be necessary.
The number of bicyclists counted at Market Street during the peak morning hours Ñ 228 per hour Ñ illustrates the great need for better accommodation of the fasting-growing mode of transportation on this key route.
We don't know whether this proposal is included in the Mayor's proposed budget. We may need SFBC members to press the Supervisors to add it in a budget amendment once the Supervisors get the Mayor's proposal. We're sure we can count on you.
Please take a moment to send a letter to the Supervisors asking them to include funding for a Market Street study in the upcoming budget: City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, SF, CA 94102. Fax: - 554-5163.