Super Bowl Host Committee Backpedals On Plans For Muni Wire Removals [Updated]

Rendering: Super Bowl City on Market Street. (Courtesy NFL Super Bowl 50 Host Committee)
By Geri Koeppel - Published on November 18, 2015.

We just got word that the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee has had a change of heart: It is no longer expected to ask Muni to remove overhead wires for the F-line streetcars and buses during the giant Super Bowl City party, which will take over Justin Herman Plaza and the foot of Market Street for a week leading up to game day on February 7th, 2016.

"Yes, after months of planning we are now confident we can configure Super Bowl City in a manner that avoids the removal of any Muni wires," said P.J. Johnston, a spokesperson for the Host Committee.

We reported earlier that the plan has been controversial, with some people concerned about disruptions to transit lines, and supervisors asking for more details about the plans. We had asked SFMTA and the Host Committee for answers, but were told no plans have been finalized. We'll follow up with another story as this unfolds.

Update, 12:25pm: District 6 Supervisor Jane Kim sent this statement:

I’m gratified that the Super Bowl 50 committee took another look at the idea of removing overhead Muni wires for the Super Bowl festival and decided not to pursue that idea. The impact on commute times and work productivity for the folks that make San Francisco work would have been so burdensome not to mention the possible consequences for bicyclist and pedestrian safety. These were my greatest concerns so I’m happy that this was resolved.

Update, 12:49pm: Johnston sent this statement to provide further details on why the Host Committee decided not to ask for the removal of Muni wires:

The decision was made in order to minimize any disruptions to service. Plans for hosting this free public event on Justin Herman Plaza and the first few blocks of Market have been public for months. Temporary structures are part of the plan. We were working with MTA to see if any wires needed to be temporarily taken down; we've now determined we can configure  things so we don't have to take them down. 
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