Our stance on the N-Judah Express (Nx)

June 8th, 2011

On June 13th, the SFMTA will begin express service for the N-Judah to supplement existing street car service during rush hour. During our May 23rd board meeting, we decided that while we applaud the MTA’s attempt to address over-crowding and early turn-backs, the $1.8m annual cost to run the express bus service is not the best use of money during a fiscal crisis.

We voted to recommend that instead of using the funds for additional service, Muni couple 3 car trains along the N-Judah line and run the existing service, which would increase capacity for a trivial additional cost. With the $1.8m that would have gone to the Nx bus, Muni could install and implement signal priority between Duboce & Church all the way to Carl & Cole, along with a signal at the UCSF garage and 19th Ave. All these changes could be made for less than $1.8m, and provide a long-term solution to the N’s on-time rate and capacity issues.

While Muni is going ahead with the Nx bus, SFMTA’s Transit Director John Haley will go ahead and pilot 3 car trains, which could be a small future victory for N-Judah riders.

Two-way Haight Street community meeting TONIGHT

May 10th, 2011

Riders on the 6 and 71 know how slow the inbound Haight Street commute is now, thanks to the multi-block detour inbound to avoid the one-way section of Haight. Today, the SFMTA is holding a community meeting (at 6pm-7:30pm at Caffe Trieste, 1667 Market) to discuss an obvious fix: restore two-way traffic on Haight, and bring the inbound buses back to that street. Details here. This is a no-brainer for improved transit – please express your support if you attend the meeting!

One suggested improvement: make the intersection at Haight and Octavia no turns from Haight in either direction. This would eliminate conflicts between freeway traffic and the buses.

Meeting on Duboce/Church track improvements TONIGHT

May 5th, 2011

From Supervisor Scott Wiener’s Facebook page: “This Thursday, come learn about the track replacement and streetscaping project for the Duboce/Church area. This project will greatly improve the transit stops and sidewalks in the area and will enhance pedestrian safety. It covers Duboce Street from Noe to Church and Church Street from Duboce to Market. The meeting is 6-7:30 p.m. at Davies Medical Center, Gazebo Room.”

Please attend this meeting and learn more about this important project – and urge SFMTA to include traffic signals with pre-empts to speed LRVs through this very slow area!

Treasure Island: good transit needed for any redevelopment

April 18th, 2011

The Planning Commission is considering redevelopment proposals for Treasure Island, the former naval base located in the middle of the bay, this Thursday. One key requirement for any redevelopment is much better public transit – not just the current 108 bus to downtown, but ferry service to downtown, bus service to Oakland, and better transit within the island. This could be paid for by extending the bridge toll to island drivers, eitehr in the morning rush (as proposed) or all day.

If you support better transit for Treasure Island and downtown SF, write the commission before Thursday to have your comments considered.

Muni’s on time rate slips from 72% to 71.1% this quarter

April 4th, 2011

Peaking at 75% in Q1 2010, Muni’s on time performance continues to fall short of the 85% on time rate which was mandated by San Francisco voters 12 years ago. John Haley, Muni’s operations chief, said that some of the calculations are skewed by lines that have timed transfers, and the lengthy K-T line’s inability to adjust it’s schedule when delays occur. Haley said that he will continue to work on improving on time performance; one of the ways he plans to do so is by focusing more on mechanical and electronic repairs that can prevent vehicles from suddenly failing while in service.