Sunday, September 28, 2014

Buffered Bike Lane in Golden Gate Park - WORST IDEA EVER!

Buffered bike lanes in Golden Gate Park force motorists to deal with slower speeds and dooring.  A problem previously endured by bikers.
Image found here.
When you go into a park riding a bike is probably the last thing on your mind.  You're most likely wondering how you're going to be driving and parking your car in mother nature's green bosom. Well, some idiots at the SFMTA decided that they would try to make cycling safer in San Francisco, while protecting nature's most precious resource, car parking.  Golden Gate Park is not only home to ponds, windmills, and buffalo, but it's also home to 10,000 parking spaces.

Golden Gate Park: Home to 53 species of mammals, 250 species of birds, 20 species of reptiles and thousands of varieties of parking spots.
image found here
The SFMTA came out with a report stating that these modifications made pedestrians, cyclists and even drivers feel safer.  Motorists certainly applaud the efforts of the SFMTA to not remove the ten thousand parking spots in Golden Gate.  Some motorists complained about parking in the new configuration. Agnu Dillford exclaimed, "How are you supposed to know where to park?  Where it says parking?  Where all the other cars other are parked?  Do you park on the asphalt that has the picture of a bike and forward moving arrows?  It's so confusing!"

"Wait, do I park where all the other cars are parked, or do I park in the lane with the arrows and pictures of bikes?"
image found here.
Some people are not happy with the design, mainly because drivers can no longer enjoy road domination for nearly a mile.  Transportation nation claims, "For cars, average speed has dropped about two or three miles per hour since the road was striped."  Drivers are forced to slow down their car in one of the largest urban parks, surrounded by nature.  Motorist Lita Ward said, "I've had several incidents where I've nearly collided with people getting out of their cars, that are crossing the bike lane into the sidewalk area,”  Because of the changes, cars have to slow down and be mindful of dooming (when someone opens up their car door and hits your vehicle), a problem that was previously confined to people riding bicycles.

Just a few blocks down Golden Gate Park and natural street order is restored.  Cyclists contend with speeding cars and the threat of dooring.  The way nature intended.
And while the first few blocks of Golden Gate Park remain an absolute nightmare, the rest of streets remain a glorious testament to car domination. Aside from the few strips of buffered bike lanes, motorists also have to contend with "Car Free Sundays" when less than a 4th of the space in Golden Gate is devoid of nature's greatest gift, car traffic and parking.

Car Free Sundays.  Nature must be rolling in her grave.
image found here.  

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Prop L Sounds the Parking Alarm - "We Need More Space to Not Move Vehicles"

There's a real first world problem in San Francisco.  Per person, a car takes up 10 times more space than a bike, 15 times more than a train, and 30 times more than a pedestrian,  So obviously you need lots more room for them.  If you live in the population dense city of San Francisco, you're probably asking yourself "why isn't there more free space to not move vehicles?" The car balance loving supporters of Prop L have brought attention to this highly important issue.
The balanced use of a street should be to idle cars 95% of the time.  
Their website states "From 2009 to 2013, the MTA abolished over 4,000 street parking places" out of 441,950 spaces.  That's still more than the entire length of the California coast.  Did you hear that? The SFMTA "abolished" 00.90% of parking?  To help put that into perspective check out the picture below.

These 4,000 spots were once used to not move a car 95% of the time, for free.  And just what are they doing now?
  • Bus bulb-outs and extra bus stop room to accommodate double loading and capacity.
  • Car Share programs for people who want to get rid of their car or currently don't own one.
  • The 3 actual bike dedicated bike lanes in San Francisco.  
  • Parklets for pedestrians to enjoy more space around their favorite shops and restaurants
  • "Safety"- like "Daylighting" Street corners for pedestrian visibility.  

Can you believe the SFMTA would abolish a parking space like this just so pedestrian can avoid vehicle carnage?
image found here.
Car dominated balance supporter Brandon Carlson exclaimed, "Since when did the Municipal Transit Association get it in their thick head that street space should actually move something? What kind of planet are they on?"  Prop L supporters believe that removing a fraction of a percent of space for parking is nothing short of madness.  Their hope is that when you think of gridlock in SF, you think of blaming the streets that lost car storage in favor of moving people and keeping them safer.

Space utilized to move people more than 5% of the time?  Disgusting.
image found here.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

60 Percent of SFMTA's Budget Spent Dealing With Incorrigible Assholes

At first glance you would think the SFMTA's budget is rather generous, but if you drill down deeper you'll find that much of the budget is spent on simply dealing with assholes.   SFMTA's plans to improve Muni and help decrease congestion often crash land into a sea of assholes.  They spend much of their funds meeting with assholes, trying to meet their incredulous demands to the point of ruining the very transit the assholes never intend on using.  Dealing with these assholes who are stuck in the 50s is very costly.

The SFMTA has come up with many innovative and creative approaches to enhancing transit in the area which is immediately halted by assholes.  A few examples:

1. Let's build underground tunnels.

Asshole Response:  Noo!!! That will cost money you can't do that!  You spend too much money!!!

2. Ok... well how about we build a less expensive BRT transit system.  

Asshole Response:  Noo!!!  We'll lose parking, or a traffic lane, and that will hurt merchants!!! Even if most people come by other modes of transit NOOOO!!! 

"Does this look like the face of compromise?"  Don't @#$# touch my parking or car lanes!
image found here.  
3. Ok Ok, how about we follow our TEP plans that took years to develop, included tons of input from the community, and approval from the Board of Supervisors.

Asshole Response: Noo!!!! Why wasn't I informed about the TEP project?!?  Why wasn't my input included?  Start from scratch lets do this all over.  Don't make transit only lanes and don't you dare remove a parking space to make traffic actually move!

4. Ok how about we just keep doing what we're doing.

Asshole Response: You guys don't do anything!  Make Muni better like you're supposed to!!!  Make it so we don't have car congestion! You're wasting our money!!!

You can bet that if it's putting a safe bike lane on Polk street, improving pedestrian conditions on Potrero street, or stopping deaths on Masonic Avenue, there's going to be a hefty price to pay dealing with assholes.  

"Say NO to wider sidewalks?  Well this is going to cost half of this year's budget."
Found here.
Much of the money is divided up between pacifying assholes from ENUF and "Meter Madness" who consistently bitch and complain about any change that could ever possibly happen to Muni.  In their last article they griped about the potential of a "smart app" that should have been around 5 years ago. Their response to such endeavors was a resounding "How many ways can you say “Privileged?"  And their comments on the problem of cars blocking thousands of pedestrians every day in crosswalks? Well "If SFMTA really cared about clearing intersections they would do a better job of timing traffic signals." Dealing with this kind of bullshit as an expensive undertaking.  
"The SFMTA needs to get us where... we need to go not tell us how to... there?"  What does that even mean? Oh Christ this is going to cost us" - SFMTA
Image found on this asshole's site

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Deer on Golden Gate Bridge Forced Drivers to Endure The Horror of Waiting for Deer to Live

Car drivers are accustomed to swapping time for life, as fast reckless driving claims thousands of lives on California's roads and highways.  But what happens when Bambi gets in the way of your precious car commute?   A pair of deer on the Golden Gate bridge snarled traffic in and out of San Francisco during a Friday evening commute, for several minutes.  Drivers were forced to endure the beauty of nature and the agony of waiting minutes in order to allow the deer to live.

The deer not only stopped traffic but they forced drivers to come to grips with the idea that their time might not be as valuable as a deer's life.
image found here.
Veronica Drier exclaimed, "Oh God it was an absolute nightmare on the bridge!   I was missing my Friday night shows and are two deer reaaaallly worth that?  If they were pedestrians or bikers I would have honked my horn and drove around them haphazardly, but I knew cameras were around so I was on my best behavior and just raged in my beautiful new car."

Horrible, horrible majestic beauty robbing minutes of time from car commuters.
image found here.
Kent Burkman, one of the unfortunate souls trapped for minutes behind the deer, commented, "It was agonizing to spend minutes more than usual on my hour long commute.  Seeing those deer on the bridge made me realize how fragile everyone is on our roads and highways, and made me think maybe I should try to relax and be more mindful of my driving. That just made me angrier.  Goddamn those deer."  

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

In Effort to Make Street Sewers Safer - Traffic Engineers Hire Snake Handlers

How do you make insanely dangerous things safer?   It's as easy as 1,2, a 3c(b) + d(b) < a 2k + b
picture on the left here. picture on the right found here.  
Traffic Engineers have long wondered how to make huge six lane highway-like streets within their cities safer. They've been baffled at how to make motorists obey the posted speed limits and abide by traffic lights, without going on a "road diet", installing bike lanes, or making the area less car dominant.  "My team and I thought about what other kinds of incredibly dangerous and avoidable activities were out there, and how people apply try to apply safety measures", said Kevin Wright, local traffic engineer.  "It seems all but impossible", he admitted. "Then one of our teammates shouted 'Snake handlers!'"  We couldn't believe how long it took us to realize they could definitely help us out.

Snakes and cars are dangerous, but there's a proper way to handle them.  (he's dead.)
Image on left found here.  image on right found here.
Kevin commented, "while talking to the snake handlers we saw a lot of commonality.  There's a lot that can go wrong on a street-freeway, and believe me it does. As soon as their group got back from the emergency room, they gave us a lot of great safety tips that we can apply to our city's street-sewers."

Snake Handling <Street Sewer Safety> Tips 

1.  <Pedestrians> Avoid “big” movements. Be as subtle as possible.
2. <Pedestrians> Remember snakes<cars> don’t have human emotions so when it strikes at you it is trying to defend itself not <and to>teach you a lesson.
3. <Pedestrians> Keep a Safe Distance.  Move slowly and deliberately.
4. When you get bit <struck>, seek medical attention immediately.  
5. Tell your family you love them anytime you handle a snake <walk to the store>

With proper safety procedures, only a lots of people die instead of tons.
images found here 
Kevin added, "With the help of the survived snake handlers, I think we can make a lot of remarkably modest changes to our streets, by focusing on forcing as many cars through as we possibly can and THEN applying safety.  "I mean you could just remove a few lanes of traffic or prohibit cars entirely, but this isn't Amsterdam for Christ's sake."