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West Portal Transit Delay Reduction Pilot Starts this Week

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

trains at West Portal

West Portal Station is a key node in the Muni rail network, where three lines (K, L and M) and approximately 80,000 daily customers connect to the Twin Peaks Tunnel and the subway running beneath Market Street.  After outreach to the community, the SFMTA Board voted on Tuesday, May 21 to approve a pilot project aimed at decreasing transit delays and improving safety.

The intersection at West Portal is very complex, often leading to delays that affect Muni, vehicles and pedestrians. Based on data and observations, SFMTA staff came up with several recommendations and shared them with stakeholder groups including local merchants, neighbors and transit customers. After receiving feedback and some additional ideas, staff made considerable changes to the plans that were incorporated into the approved pilot.

 These changes will be implemented by SFMTA crews beginning June 5th and may take several days to implement.  As always, please drive with caution and be on alert for changes in traffic conditions.

 Pilot Changes Beginning Week of June 3rd

Most of the pilot elements at West Portal will be in effect only on weekday mornings from 6 a.m. - 10 a.m. The morning commute hours are a key time to keep trains moving efficiently here and throughout the Muni system.

Traffic Changes, Monday - Friday 6 a.m. - 10 a.m.

  • New Muni & Taxi Lane on northbound West Portal between Vicente & Ulloa 

  • No-Left-Turn from northbound West Portal to westbound Ulloa

  • No-Left-Turn from southbound Lennox to eastbound Ulloa

Traffic Change at All Times

  • No U-Turn from northbound West Portal Ave at Ulloa

Ulloa and West Portal Intersection map
Diagram of proposed changes at West Portal and Ulloa that includes a northbound weekday morning transit-only lane and turn restrictions to reduce conflicts with Muni.

Changes to the 48 Quintara/24th Street line starting Saturday, June 8

Many Muni customers transfer at West Portal from the 48 Quintara to inbound K, L or M trains. Moving the inbound stop for the 48 Quintara would require that transferring customers only need to cross one street instead of two -- making the intersection safer and reducing conflicts between pedestrians, trains and cars.

West Portal map

The current route for both inbound and outbound routes of the 48 Quintara/24th Street on weekdays. Note: The weekend and evening 48 routing uses Wawona to turn around towards the terminal.

West Portal map

The outbound route will stay the same, however, the inbound route will shift and the inbound stop at Vicente and West Portal Avenue will be discontinued. Note: The 48 route that operates on evenings and weekends will still use Wawona to get to the “Drop-off/layover” location on Ulloa and West Portal where the bus operators take a quick break.

Additional Loading Zone Changes in the Area

West Portal graphic
Map showing proposed changes to parking and loading on Ulloa Street.

During the outreach process, staff also heard general concerns related to the lack of commercial loading space in the area for many merchants, particularly for large trucks. In response, SFMTA is proposing to extend the commercial loading zone on the south side of Ulloa Street between West Portal and Claremont. This proposed larger zone will allow larger trucks a safer place to load out of traffic.

To accommodate the increased commercial loading zone, the existing green (short-term) parking meter would be relocated to the adjacent off-street parking lot.

In addition, on Ulloa just east of West Portal, a new passenger loading zone will be in effect from 7 a.m. - 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, as this location will no longer be used by the 48 Quintara during these times.

More Information

For more details on the project including the data collection plan for the pilot evaluation, please visit our webpage. There you can also sign up for email updates on the project.