L Taraval Rapid Project

Project Overview

Riders exiting L Taraval train

After engaging with the community to shape proposed changes approved in September, early enhancements are coming to make Taraval safer for everyone who depends on it, including the Muni riders who make 30,000 trips on the L Taraval each day. This is all part of a much-needed rehabilitation on Taraval Street that will replace infrastructure like the worn rails, overhead wires and sewers, as well as repave the entire street.

Starting in January 2017, you’ll begin to see a variety of changes along the L Taraval – from new paint on the street to enhanced signage reminding drivers to stop for loading Muni passengers. We appreciate all of the great input we’ve received during this process. All of these improvements are there to make you, and other pedestrians, safer!

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Project Details

What's coming to Taraval Street We're making Taraval safer and Muni's L more reliable.

As part of the L Taraval Rapid Project, roadway changes will roll out in early 2017 to enhance safety for people getting on and off Muni and make the L more reliable. These include:

  1. Clear Zones at Train Stops
  2. Painted Safety Zones at Sidewalk Corners
  3. Parking Changes
  4. 6-Month Boarding Zone Pilot
  5. Transit Stop Removal
  6. Transit Only Lanes

The permanent features like concrete pedestrian bulbs and boarding islands will roll out starting 2018

Improvements coming in January 2017

1) Clear Zones at Train Stops

Newly striped clear zone on Taraval
Newly striped clear zone on Taraval at 32nd.

Clear zones are painted markings on the street that provide a separation between streetcars and the traffic lane. Clear zones make the street safer by giving pedestrians a safe space to step off Muni.

To enhance safety along Taraval Street, clear zones will be installed at eight intersections:

  • Westbound only (north side of Taraval Street): 26th, 30th, 32nd, 40th and 46th avenues.
  • Both directions: Taraval Street at 19th, 42nd and 44th avenues.

The law requires cars to always stop behind trains where passengers get on and off Muni in the street, including at all clear zone locations. Do not pass until the doors are closed.

2) Painted safety zones at sidewalk corners

Painted safety zpme
Example painted safety zone on 16th Street

Safety zones at sidewalk corners help make pedestrians more visible to drivers when crossing the street. Painted safety zones will temporarily extend the sidewalk until permanent, concrete pedestrian bulbs can be installed.

To enhance safety along Taraval Street, painted safety zones will be installed at six intersections, including: 20th, 21st, 22nd, 24th, 33rd and 38th avenues. Concrete pedestrian bulbs will be installed with the larger project starting 2018.

3) Parking changes

Enhancing safety to make you and other pedestrians safer will require some parking along Taraval Street be converted into a new travel lane. Parking along the following blocks will be removed:

North side of Taraval Street:

Street block Parking spaces removed
18th – 19th Seven spaces
25th – 26th Nine spaces
29th – 30th Seven spaces
31st – 32nd Eight spaces
39th – 40th Four spaces
41st – 42nd Seven spaces
43rd – 44th Five spaces
45th – 46th Eight spaces

South side of Taraval Street:

Street block Parking spaces removed
19th – 20th Nine spaces
42nd – 43rd Ten spaces
44th – 45th Seven spaces

You will start to see meters or time limits at the first few spaces on some side streets just off Taraval to encourage turnover. Angled parking was proposed for some blocks of Santiago and Ulloa streets to offset parking removed on Taraval. This change is on hold pending further SFMTA review and resident outreach during the 6-month boarding zone pilot.

4) 6-month boarding zone pilot

Pilot boarding zone on Taraval at 22nd
Pilot boarding zone on Taraval at 40th Avenue.

The 6-month boarding zone pilot will include visible painted street markings and new signage at five transit stops along Taraval Street, along with a robust evaluation of driver compliance to assess safety. The pilot will test the effectiveness of painted street markings and improved signage in getting drivers to stop behind loading trains. The pilot will also be paired with an education and enforcement campaign.

Painted boarding zones will be installed at the following five intersections in the eastbound direction: Taraval at 26th, 30th, 32nd, 35th and 40th avenues. Parking at these locations will be retained during the pilot.

SFMTA will be evaluating driver compliance in stopping behind loading trains at the five pilot locations over the next six months. If a compliance rate of 90 percent is not achieved, concrete boarding islands will be installed. Detailed explanation of evaluation metrics. 

5) Transit Stop Removal

Transit stop removal graphix

Eight L Taraval stops will be removed starting Saturday, February 25, 2017 to improve travel time and increase reliability.

  • In both directions: Taraval at 28th and Ulloa at 15th
  • Towards downtown: Taraval at 24th
  • Towards SF Zoo: Taraval at 17th, 22nd and 35th

Based on direction from the SFMTA Board and community feedback, the inbound 17th Avenue stop will be retained during the six month pilot period and SFMTA will study ridership patterns during that time. We will return to the Board in fall at the end of the evaluation period for their final decision on retaining the stop. 

6) Transit-only lanes

Transit only lane on Taraval between 45-44th avenues
Newly striped Transit-only lane on Taraval between 45th-44th. 

Transit-only lane markings will be painted along the track lane of Taraval Street in both directions. Drivers will be able to enter the lanes only to pass or make left turns. The SFMTA is committed to closely evaluating the transit-only lane to measure its impact on congestion and traffic flow for one year to identify any necessary adjustments or mitigations. 

Starting 2018

Graphic of Taraval changes starting 2018

  1. Rail track and overhead line replacement
  2. Water and sewer line replacement
  3. Surface repaving
  4. Curb ramp upgrades
  5. Concrete boarding islands and pedestrian bulbs
  6. Traffic signals

What do I need to know?

I'm a driver. What do I need to know?

  • It’s the law to stop for streetcar passengers. At every clear zone and pilot location, it’s illegal to pass loading streetcars. Next to concrete boarding islands, you may pass at 10 MPH.
  • Parking on some blocks of Taraval Street will be removed.
  • The track lane on Taraval Street will now be dedicated to Muni. You can enter the lane when making a permitted left turn, but otherwise drive in the right lane.

I ride the L. What do I need to know?

  • The new clear zones and upgraded boarding zones are designed to keep you safe while getting on and off Muni. However, do not stand and wait for Muni within the zones or you could risk being hit.
  • Take note of which stops are being removed starting Saturday, February 25, 2017.



January 2017:

  • Parking changes made
  • Street painting installed for clear zones, boarding zones, safety zones and transit-only lane
  • New signage installed

February 2017:

  • Transit stops removed (Saturday, February 25, 2017)
  • Pilot period begins

May 2017:

  • Half way through the pilot program – midway analysis takes place

August 2017:

  • Pilot ends, final results shared


  • Construction begins



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We will send you e-mail or SMS updates whenever the following are posted for the L Taraval Rapid Project:

  • Upcoming meetings
  • Project updates

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