Monday, November 30, 2009


A not-so-gentle reminder that you're not even safe on the sidewalk.

Quote of the Day

"Adding highway lanes to deal with traffic is like loosening your belt to cure obesity." -Lewis Mumford (via comment on The Overhead Wire)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Quote of the Day

More transit means more pedestrians, more people who pay attention to the shape and design of the city up close. That, in turn, means a growing constituency for shared space in Los Angeles and new interest in our long-neglected streetscapes and public sphere.

To put it another way: Transit and the life of the street are inextricably intertwined, and a boost to one is almost always a boost to the other. -

30 Years in Review

Hat Tip to The Overhead Wire for posting this video:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Article 5: Section 96

This is a personal response to the bicyclist who literally hit me on my walk to work today, as well as his friend. It is illegal to ride your bike on the sidewalk in San Francisco. You asked me to show you the law, here it is:


It shall be unlawful to ride a bicycle upon any sidewalk area, except at a permanent or temporary driveway or on bikeways heretofore or hereafter established by resolution of the board of Supervisors; provided, however, that juveniles under the age of 13 and riding a sidewalk bicycle, exercising due care and giving the pedestrian the rightof-way, may ride and operate their sidewalk bicycles upon the sidewalk, except such sidewalks as are in front of schools, stores, or buildings used for business purposes.

(Amended by Ord. 394-78, App. 8/29/78)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Better Practices

Somewhat recently, Streetfilms did a short piece on where we plant our street trees. Specifically, why don't we plant them in the road?

Without question, street trees fundamentally improve the pedestrian experience along city streets. Their canopies provide shade and shelter from the wind and rain, but they take up a small amount of valuable street space. This space is almost always taken from the sidewalk. Pedestrians can maneuver around tree trunks better than cars, so this makes some sense.

But cities around the world (the Streetfilms piece is about Melbourne, Australia) and those close to home are trying something that might be a lot better, at least along streets with narrow sidewalks.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

SF is a Cheaper Place to Live than the Suburbs

Well I could have told you this! I cringe when I hear people say San Francisco is such an expensive place to live. Yes, rents are higher on average and there are a lot of pricey restaurants around. But, as the Urban Land Institute reports today, you will save around $500 per month if you move from Livermore to SF.

This is something a lot of us know implicitly. I lived for almost three years making no more than $18,000 per year and I always knew I could only do that in a place like SF, where I didn't need a car. Sure, my rent was around $75 or $100 per month higher than friends' in the East Bay, but they ate through those savings and then some on insurance, gas, and maintenance of their cars - to say nothing of parking.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Muni Announces Upcoming Service Changes

The SFMTA has released its planned changes to Muni service. The changes are scheduled to begin on December 5th. Click the link to view each of the changes, including maps of affected routes.