SFMTA to create emergency transit-only lanes for 3 key corridors

Photo: SFMTA
By Camden Avery - Published on July 01, 2020.

The SFMTA's board of directors voted yesterday to approve three "temporary emergency transit lanes" exclusively dedicated to bus, emergency vehicle and taxi use.

Off-limits to privatecars, the protected lanes are meant to speed buses on heavily used corridors, as San Franciscans start returning to the roads in greater numbers. They'll be marked with easily removable stenciling and white stripes.  

The bus lines affected are the 14-Mission, 19-Polk, 43-Masonic and 44-O'Shaughnessy. They serve a diverse set of neighborhoods: Ingleside, the Outer Mission, Excelsior, Visitacion Valley, Bayview, Mission, SoMa and the Tenderloin.

The exact scope of each zone is yet to be determined, but won't exceed the zones marked red on the map below.

The red zones include Mission, Seventh and Eighth streets in SoMa; Presidio and Masonic avenues in Laurel Heights/Lower Pacific Heights and the Haight; Woodside Avenue near Forest Hill; and Bosworth Street in Glen Park.

The lanes are set to be removed 120 days after the city lifts its emergency shelter-in-place order, with a public approval process required to extend them. 

The maximum potential extent of the new protected temporary lanes is pictured in red. | Image: SFMTA

With ridership down and private vehicle traffic sparse citywide, Muni's bus lines have been able to increase frequency and save time during shelter-in-place. Officials hope that the new emergency lanes will keep that dynamic going. 

Spokesperson Kristen Holland said that the agency plans to step up bus service frequency over the course of the summer, with rail service set to return in mid-August. Some bus routes that are currently offline may resume then as well. 

"We will do everything we can to bring back service as demand increases," she said. 

20 minutes ago
San Francisco

730 Stanyan 'Safe Sleeping Village' residents already packing up ahead of site closure

The Haight’s safe sleeping site at 730 Stanyan St. is slated to close on June 30, 2021, but work to relocate residents is already well underway. Read More

About 19 hours ago
San Francisco Mission Outer Richmond

The Mission's Roxie Theater reopens May 21 with 'Cinema Paradiso'; Balboa reopens with Godzilla fest

At long last, the Mission District's beloved indie movie house, The Roxie Theater (3117 16th St.), has a reopening date and a reopening movie: 'Cinema Paradiso' (1988). Read More

May 12, 2021
San Francisco North Beach

Tosca Cafe reopens its historic dining room for the first time in two years

After nearly two years of being totally dark, the 102-year-old Tosca Cafe (242 Columbus Ave.) is opening its doors again this week, having undergone its second light remodel and refurbishing in the last decade. Read More

May 11, 2021
San Francisco Union Square

Feinstein’s at the Nikko reopening May 20, Katya Smirnoff-Skyy, Justin Vivian Bond scheduled

You’ll need a vaccination card for admission to the newly reopened Feinstein’s, but the Hotel Nikko’s cabaret theater has booked stars worth getting the shot for. Read More