San Francisco decides on first group of Slow Streets to make permanent


Photo by Amy Graff

People walk by a mural created by street artist Amos Goldbaum on a block of a slow street in Sanchez and 24th Streets in San Francisco, California, March 5, 2021.

People walk by a mural created by street artist Amos Goldbaum on a block of a slow street in Sanchez and 24th Streets in San Francisco, California, March 5, 2021.

Douglas Zimmerman / SFGATE

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Association voted Madi to make four streets slow permanently, begin the process of determining which city street will be left without vehicles beyond the COVID-19 emergency order.

Multi-block stretches of Golden Gate Avenue in the North of the Panhandle neighborhood, Lake Street in Richmond, Sanchez Street in Noah Valley and Shotwell Street in the Mission District are the first corridors the board decided to welcome cyclists and pedestrians for the long term. SFMTA said, design work is being done for the four permanent streets to improve safety. Wayfinding signs and walkways will be added on Sanchez and new car turning restrictions will reduce traffic on Shotwell, for example.

SFMTA director Jeffrey Tumlin shared the news on Twitter with write, “Some #SlowStreets have attracted more people than we would expect, representing the full demographics of their neighborhoods, across age, ability, ethnicity, gender, and fitness level.”

San Francisco launched the Slow Street program in April 2020 amid the pandemic, finally closing 31 streets to traffic and providing residents with safe space to walk, bike and social distances. People living on the streets and emergency vehicles are still accessible.

SFMTA you say it will assess all Slow streets “for a pandemic future” to develop a network of pedestrian and cyclist-friendly corridors that last beyond the pandemic. The process includes surveying residents who live within a quarter-mile of a slow street and collect pedestrians, bicycles and car counters.



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