Mayor London Breed Announces Expansion of Bike Lanes in San Francisco and Increased Enforcement to Protect Bicylist Safety
To celebrate Bike to Work Day, Mayor Breed announces that San Francisco will double its pace to create 20 miles of new protected bike lanes over the next two years and increase citations against traffic violations to prevent collisions and increase safety.
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today announced that San Francisco will double its pace on the creation of new bike lanes to create 20 miles of new, protected bike lanes over the next two years to help create a connected bike lane network in the City. Additionally, she has asked the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) to increase citations related to blocked bike lanes by 10% over the next six months, beginning immediately.
The announcement comes on Bike to Work Day, which Mayor Breed celebrated along with bicyclist advocacy groups and community members by riding an electric bike to City Hall from the Mission on the newly-finished protected bike lane on Valencia Street. Mayor Breed directed the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) to expedite the construction of that project in September of last year.
“Since 2006, bicycling in San Francisco has almost tripled. As our city continues to grow, we know we need more protected bike lanes, not only to keep people safe, but also to encourage more people to bike in the City and reduce congestion. That is why I am directing the SFMTA to double our pace of creating new bike lanes in San Francisco,” said Mayor Breed. “While we work to create the bike infrastructure we need, we also need to make sure that we’re keeping cars and trucks out of the bike lane so that bicyclists are not forced into traffic.”
The SFMTA goal of 20 miles of on-street protected bike lanes within the next two years would increase dedicated bike infrastructure throughout the City and help create a more complete protected bicycle network. In 2017-2018, SFMTA built protected bike lanes at a pace of just over 5 miles per year. The increased production will be possible in part due to Mayor Breed’s efforts to streamline the process to deliver safety projects, which she announced in March, and will be heard by the SFMTA Board later this month.
In the last six months of 2018, the SFMTA reported roughly 27,000 citations for infractions related to blocking bike lanes. Mayor Breed’s ask to the SFMTA will increase these citations by 10% in the next six months based on 311 data, in order to better keep these lanes clear.
“On San Francisco's biggest biking day of the year, Mayor Breed has issued a bold challenge to the SFMTA to quickly close the gaps in our citywide protected bike lane network,” said Brian Wiedenmeier, Executive Director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. “Building out our infrastructure is the best way to improve safety and make it easier for people to bike to work, school or wherever they may need to go. We will need more of this kind of leadership moving forward if we want to grow the number of people biking, achieve Vision Zero by 2024 and meet our ambitious climate goals.”
Earlier this week, the SFMTA released an evaluation of street safety improvements, showing the beneficial effects of improved infrastructure programs in San Francisco. Of bicyclists who were surveyed about the new Folsom Street, 83% reported increased comfort after the completion of the project. Turk Street saw a 287% increase in bike counts following a bike lane being installed. Additionally, projects helped slow traffic, such as an observed 18% decrease in vehicle speeds on Vicente Street following the introduction of new bike lanes and speed humps.