Page Street is one of the City's most important and popular east-west active-transportation corridors. The SFMTA implemented the Page Street Bikeway Improvements pilot in spring 2020, which included restrictions on freeway-bound traffic and bikeway upgrades between Webster Street and Octavia Boulevard. In response to the pandemic, the SFMTA also added temporary measures to limit non-local traffic westward to Stanyan Street. Separately, a capital project is constructing sidewalk extensions, rain gardens, and a raised intersection between Webster and Gough streets.
The unified Page Neighborway project combines:
- Existing freeway-access restrictions and bikeway upgrades approaching Octavia Boulevard
- Existing restrictions on non-local traffic (entire corridor)
- New eastbound and westbound traffic diversion at signalized intersections
- A framework for ongoing community art and placemaking along the corridor
- An evaluation focusing on broader neighborhood circulation, including on Haight, Oak, Fell, and side streets
After over two years of outreach and evaluation, the SFMTA recommends approving existing through-traffic and turn restrictions between Stanyan Street and Octavia Boulevard. Following recently approved changes at Stanyan and Masonic – intersections not previously addressed – staff also recommend adding eastbound and westbound traffic diversion at Divisadero Street.
Establishing this post-pandemic configuration would kick off further outreach to neighborhood and community groups to consider other changes on and adjacent to Page Street, including more permanent roadway designs.
The project team will seek feedback on proposals to add turn restrictions at Page & Divisadero and remove the temporary emergency approvals for existing traffic restrictions at an Engineering Public Hearing on Friday, August 19th, at 10am. No decision will be made at the public hearing, and the recommendations with be presented to the SFMTA Board of Directors in the fall. Read our recent project update to learn more.
Recent outreach takeaways
Since implementing the measures in 2020, SFMTA staff have engaged Page Street stakeholders, attending over a dozen meetings with neighborhood associations, schools, faith-based organizations, and other community groups along the corridor, as well as in-depth correspondence with individuals. These efforts included a walk-through organized by District 5 Supervisor Preston's office in which community members provided in-depth feedback on the project. SFMTA staff also met with the Second Union Missionary Baptist Church leaders to discuss and reflect on their access needs and experience with recent Page Street changes. We thank folks for walking the streets with us and taking the time to meet online.
Almost 900 people responded to the Page Street Bikeway Improvements survey (complete summary). 77% say their sense of safety and neighborhood livability have increased. Approximately 85% of respondents support permanently limiting through traffic on Page Street; 75% strongly support it.
From this feedback, frequent comments include:
- A desire for traffic diversion barriers to be more substantial and self-enforcing
- Ideas for calming bicycle traffic, particularly at crosswalks and intersections
- Consideration of how to improve neighborhood circulation for people driving
Recent data takeaways
The effects of COVID-19 on traffic patterns regionally have been significant and unpredictable, posing challenges for evaluation. Despite the evolving landscape, SFMTA data and observations collected pre-COVID, in 2020, and fall of 2021 show:
- Vehicle speeds and volumes have decreased on Page Street, including near the several schools along the corridor
- The length of freeway-bound vehicle queues on Oak and Haight streets are similar to 2019 (before restrictions on Page Street)
- The prevalence of intersection/crosswalk blocking has not worsened
Page Street capital project
Separate from the consideration of traffic circulation, a capital project has been underway since 2018 to add pedestrian safety and green infrastructure to Page Street east of Webster Street. In 2018, the SFMTA Board of Directors approved capital improvements at three intersections – Gough, Laguna, and Buchanan streets. This work will include six sidewalk extensions (four of which will consist of landscaped rain gardens) and San Francisco's first 'raised' or traffic-calmed intersection at Page and Buchanan streets.
The project costs approximately $2.5 million and is funded with developer impact fees, Prop AA funds, proceeds from the sale of Central Freeway parcels, and other SFMTA revenues. Ongoing maintenance for the landscaped rain gardens (also known as 'green infrastructure) will be provided by the SF Public Utilities Commission.
Construction of these improvements is currently underway and expected to be complete by the end of fall 2022.
Background & context
Page Street is an important corridor for the Haight-Ashbury, Lower Haight, Hayes Valley, and surrounding neighborhoods. It is also a designated Green Connection in the San Francisco General Plan because of its connectivity to schools, parks, and other destinations. It is also a popular east-west bicycle route, where, as measured before the pandemic, there are 1.5 times more people on bikes than in cars headed downtown in the morning.
San Francisco has changed much over the past decade. The impacts of the sharp growth in economic activity, the addition of thousands of new residents, and the resulting increase in vehicle trips citywide over the past decade have disproportionately affected neighborhoods along routes to the freeways. People driving towards Octavia Boulevard to access the Central Freeway are increasingly queueing on residential streets and transit-priority corridors, including Page and Haight streets, instead of remaining on arterial streets. The ensuing congestion reduces traffic safety and quality of life on these streets. While the SFMTA has made recent changes to improve safety and additional sidewalk changes are under construction, more is needed to directly address the impacts of chronic vehicle congestion.