N Judah Rapid Project

Project Overview

N Judah Light Line

As part of Muni Forward, SFMTA has identified Muni’s N Judah corridor as being a part of its proposed Rapid Network. In most cities, a Rapid Network is transit service with dedicated lanes and vehicles that allows transit to move swiftly on the street. With our Rapid Network, we intend to build transit priority lanes with efficient stop spacing to move vehicles quickly along their routes. We’ll also create better boarding zones to make it safer and faster for passengers to get on board, and make it easier to find our stops and shelters with improved signage.

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Project Details

N Judah Rapid Proposal Overview

N Judah Rapid Proposal
What's included in the N Judah Rapid Proposal?

Several changes are proposed along the N Judah corridor, including:
  • Replacing all-way STOP-controlled intersections with traffic signals or traffic calming measures at eight intersections. Currently, the N Judah is delayed by having to come to a complete stop at multiple intersections with stop signs. These stop signs could be replaced with traffic signals equipped with transit signal priority. This would reduce delay at intersections because the signals could be programmed to hold green lights for approaching trains. Alternatively, traffic calming measures such as corner bulbs, raised crosswalks, and sidewalk extensions could be installed to provide improved pedestrian safety by reducing the roadway crossing distance, making pedestrians waiting to cross the street more visible to approaching motorists and reducing the speed of motorists turning from cross streets. Traffic calming measures would have a similar effect of reducing intersection delays for trains, by eliminating the need for the train to come to a complete stop.
  • Optimizing transit stop locations at four intersections. Relocating transit stops from the near-side to the far-side of intersections at existing traffic signals would allow streetcars to take advantage of planned transit signal priority improvements. At all-way STOP-controlled intersections, transit stops would be relocated from the far-side of the intersection to the near-side, eliminating the need for streetcars to stop once for the STOP sign and again for customers to board the train. One of the relocated transit stops at Sunset and Judah would require new boarding islands and extend into the intersections of 36th Avenue and 37th Avenue. The boarding island would block through traffic and drivers would only be allowed to turn right at these intersections.
  • Increasing transit stop spacing from two to three blocks to three to four blocks. Currently the N Judah stops every two to three blocks within the study area. This proposal moves toward a three to four block spacing for most stops. By stopping fewer times, the train takes less time to move through the corridor.
  • Adding transit bulbs at five intersections. Transit bulbs are sidewalk extensions alongside transit stops that allow passengers to get on and off without having to walk between parked cars and cross a lane of traffic. Transit bulbs enhance the ability of streetcars to take advantage of all-door boarding. Transit bulbs provide space for transit shelters and other customer amenities. Transit bulbs also improve pedestrian safety by reducing the roadway crossing distance, making pedestrians waiting to cross the street more visible to approaching motorists, and reducing the speed of motorists turning from cross streets.
  • Extending boarding islands at 13 intersections. Boarding islands are dedicated waiting spaces for customers located between travel lanes. Extending existing boarding islands would cover the full length of two-car trains and allow for passengers to be picked up and dropped off without having to walk between parked cars and cross a lane of traffic when the train arrives. Together, the proposed changes are anticipated to reduce the travel time of the N Judah rail service by about 5 minutes in each direction (10 minutes total) within the study area (19% reduction), improving average operating speed to 9.5 miles per hour and improving service reliability. Other changes such as transit signal priority improvements, operational improvements and network enhancements would further improve travel times along the corridor and add valuable customer amenities such as NextBus displays. The travel time savings would also reduce operating costs on the line and allow for service to be cost effectively increased.

Fast Tracked Segment

Note that approval and implementation of the following segments of this Rapid Proposal are being fast-tracked:
  • Irving Street between Arguello Boulevard and 9th Avenue
  • Judah Street at 28th Avenue
Specifically, these segments are proposed for fast-tracking for the purpose of coordinating with an already-scheduled repaving project and with the Sunset Tunnel Rehabilitation Project, which are anticipated for initiation between the Spring and Fall of 2014.

Related Projects

On March 28, 2014, the SFMTA Board of Directors approved and legislated many of Muni Forward's proposed service and route changes, including service adjustments for the N-Judah. These adjustments include route restructuring, frequency improvements, and vehicle type changes, which will direct resources where they are needed most, reducing crowding and improving connections to regional transit.

Irving Street Streetscape Changes

Proposals for Connecting Rapid Network Routes


PDF N Judah Map119.05 KB


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