SFMTA Completes Safety Improvements on Key Marina Corridor
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency today announced the completion of improvements on a section of Bay Street in the Marina District to make the street more safe and comfortable for all users.
The Bay Street Road Diet and Cycletrack Project brings a more organized street configuration to Bay Street between Laguna and Fillmore streets with an eastbound parking-separated bicycle lane and a buffered bicycle lane in the westbound direction. The eastbound bike lane is the first in the city to be separated from motor traffic by a lane of back-in angled car parking spaces to create safer parking movements.
“This project on Bay Street is critical to making our streets safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders and drivers. We are making pedestrian safety improvements across our city to make our roads safer for everyone,” said Mayor Ed Lee.
With traffic calming measures like speed humps, more visible crosswalks, and a narrower roadway, Bay Street’s new design encourages motorists to drive more slowly and yield to people walking and biking. The redesigned section fronts Marina Middle School, Moscone Park and Recreation Center, and is near Marina Branch Library as well as a senior assisted living facility.
“The improvements along Bay Street are the result of a strong community process that will make Bay Street safer whether you’re a pedestrian, bicyclist, or driver,” said District 2 Supervisor, Mark Farrell. “Tragic collisions like the one that occurred on Bay Street by an alleged drunk driver just over a month ago reinforce the need for safer street designs across San Francisco, and I thank the SFMTA and neighbors for working together to make Bay Street safer for everyone.”
“Bay Street is no longer a raceway,” said Jack Purl, a Bay Street resident. “The new crosswalks and bicycle lanes are much better and safer. Most importantly, traffic is slower.”
The Bay Street improvements were developed with input from neighbors and other community members, who voiced concerns about speeding and the need for safety and traffic calming measures in this busy corridor. Prior to the redesign, an SFMTA traffic analysis found that the majority of motorists on this section of Bay exceeded the 25 MPH speed limit, with speeds between 30 and 35 miles per hour regularly observed.
The configuration changes to Bay Street were approved by the SFMTA Board of Directors in late 2013. A speed hump was added to the project in 2014 after a majority of neighbors approved them in a ballot vote, and the SFMTA also installed a stop sign at Bay and Buchanan Streets to address community safety concerns.
“With this project, we’ve transformed a wide road into a safer and more inviting environment for our families, students and seniors to cross the street and get to their destinations by bike,” said SFMTA Director of Transportation Ed Reiskin. “However, these improvements are also at a site where we had a tragic alleged drunk driver collision with two children this year. This and other traffic-related tragedies, whether caused by speeding, driving under the influence or inattention, have lasting impacts on our families and communities. In addition to our design changes, we need everyone to drive responsibly in order to make our streets safe.”
Bay Street is one of the city’s most recent streets to receive a parking-separated bike lane, which is placed between the sidewalk and a lane of car parking to provide a safer and more comfortable environment for riders of all ages. This configuration, which was recently recognized in the Federal Highway Administration’s Separated Bike Lane Planning and Design Guide, provides strong physical separation between people biking and driving, eliminates the hazards posed by double-parked vehicles and open car doors, and allows bicycle riders to travel at a relaxed pace. Bay’s parking-separated bike lane is the city’s first to be implemented with the added safety of back-in angled parking, which provides drivers an unobstructed view of vehicle traffic when pulling out of a parking spot.
The Bay Street safety improvements are in support of the city’s commitment to Vision Zero, the City’s goal to eliminate fatal traffic collisions by 2024. The project was implemented in coordination with San Francisco Public Works to cost-efficiently combine road repaving and re-striping work, funded primarily by the Proposition B Road Repaving and Street Safety Bond approved by voters in 2011.