Geary temporary transit lanes approved to become permanent
On July 20, the SFMTA Board of Directors unanimously approved making the emergency transit lanes on segments of Geary Boulevard in the Richmond permanent. The decision came after a thorough evaluation of the transit lanes, including a survey which showed general support for the lanes from both the public and 38 Geary bus operators.
We heard 110 public comments about whether to make the project permanent via email, phone and during the July 20 public hearing. Of those comments, 96 were positive about maintaining the transit lanes, 5 were neutral, and 9 were unsupportive. Some common themes we heard were:
- Transit lanes are making a noticeable difference, have shortened 38 Geary travel times, and have been helpful for essential workers such as hospital employees and those returning to the office or school.
- Comments about the positive environmental impact of getting more people out of cars and benefits for emergency vehicles using transit lanes.
- Requests to build on the project, including: extending transit lanes into the Central Richmond area where there is currently a gap and/or out to Ocean Beach; and further amenities such as red paint, permanent bulb-outs and safety improvements.
- Requests that transit lanes only be used by public transit, not private buses.
- Concern about making lanes permanent without further/ongoing evaluation.
Next steps: Outreach on the revised Geary Boulevard Improvement Project design
The Geary Boulevard Improvement Project (Phase 2 of Geary BRT) had previously envisioned transit lanes in the center of the street between Arguello Boulevard and 28th Avenue. The SFMTA is now recommending a revised side-running transit lanes design, which could include additional transit lanes west of Park Presidio, bus stop modifications and safety improvements. We are planning to conduct outreach to seek input on these changes beginning this fall.
Please ensure you are subscribed to Geary Boulevard Improvement Project updates to receive notifications about how to share your feedback, or visit the project page at SFMTA.com/ImproveGeary.