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Statement from Supervisor Campos & SFMTA re: Mission Street Improvement Project Update

Monday, June 13, 2016

District 9 Supervisor David Campos and Ed Reiskin, Director of Transportation for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), today announced a series of activities to gather additional feedback on the Mission Street Improvement Project, which established bus-only lanes on Mission Street from 14th Street to 30th Street. The activities include a community hearing, merchant walks in the project area, and a survey of residents and visitors on Mission Street. The community hearing, to be held on June 20 at 6:00 PM at the Mission Cultural Center (2868 Mission Street), provides an opportunity for community members to discuss their experiences and suggestions for improving the project.

 

“My office and the SFMTA received a wide range of feedback from stakeholders – some of it positive and some of it focused on impacts to local merchants. While I wholeheartedly support the goal of improving Muni reliability and speed, I want to make sure that the project works for everyone and takes into account the unique aspects of the Mission,” said Supervisor Campos.

 

With eight full weeks of post-implementation results, Muni reliability has improved and travel time has dropped and continues to drop. Furthermore, Muni has seen only one collision in this corridor since late March. Prior to project implementation we experienced three to four per week, which hampered reliability and forced buses out of service. While construction was only recently completed, there has been a significant amount of positive feedback from Muni riders and neighborhood residents. The feedback ranges, but is focused on the appreciation of an improved Muni experience and a feeling of Mission Street being a safer place to walk – primary goals of the project.

 

In addition to the positive feedback, there have been concerns from local and regional drivers who were finding it difficult to directly access Mission Street. Merchants expressed concern that this difficulty was causing a decrease in sales, while other merchants say they have not experienced any impacts.

“Fulfilling the promise of San Francisco’s Transit First policy and Vision Zero goal requires tradeoffs. The tradeoffs must be considered thoughtfully and they must evolve overtime to ensure we get the most from our City Streets. The regional importance of Mission Street as the cultural center of the Latino community makes it all the more important to enhance access to this corridor. As with any change, adjustments are initially difficult and can be disruptive, but in the long-run changes like those implemented on Mission Street will increase sustainable transportation for San Francisco,” said Supervisor Campos.

 

Each day Mission Street carries over 65,000 Muni riders and only about 8,000 cars travel along Mission Street. The existing roadway design did not enable safe, reliable or quick Muni service. “The goals of the new design are founded on San Francisco’s Vision Zero effort to eliminate all traffic fatalities by 2024 and SFMTA’s program to dramatically improve Muni reliability and reduce travel time for Muni riders. To achieve these goals requires significant changes to how we travel to, from, and through Mission Street,” said Ed Reiskin.

 

“The SFMTA did not intend to impact businesses and I share merchant concerns about ensuring vibrant commercial activity in the short- and long-term. With our continued work together on this project, I believe we will be able to tweak the project in a way that works for everyone,” said Reiskin.