News Releases
The latest news and announcements from Mayor London N. Breed


Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Contact: Mayor’s Office of Communications, 415-554-6131


Changes include expedited implementation of the Valencia Street bike lane and quicker action from Rapid Response Teams following traffic collisions

San Francisco, CA – Mayor London N. Breed today announced new measures aimed at quickly implementing safety improvement projects to protect bicyclists and pedestrians in San Francisco.

Mayor Breed will be closely analyzing all pending Vision Zero street safety projects planned for high-injury corridors and directing the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) to implement these projects on an expedited schedule, beginning with the Valencia Street bike lane. She also tasked the SFMTA with making recommendations on major process overhauls that can be enacted to ensure Vision Zero projects move forward without delay, and issued clear guidelines for the SFMTA’s Rapid Response teams to quickly and effective respond to serious incidents.

“Even one pedestrian death is too many, but recently we have seen a number of sadly preventable injuries and fatalities on our streets. I am tired of waiting for months, and often years, for important Vision Zero projects to be implemented when we know they are urgently needed to protect pedestrians and bicyclists,” said Mayor Breed. “I will be personally reviewing all pending Vision Zero safety proposals on high-injury corridors and directing the SFMTA to move more quickly on these projects. We do not have time to waste."

High-injury corridors represent just 13% of San Francisco streets where 75% of all serious injuries and fatalities take place. The City has a stated Vision Zero goal of eliminating all traffic fatalities by engineering safe and livable streets in order to eliminate all pedestrian deaths.

“No one should die on our streets just trying to get around. Vision Zero is the right goal for our growing city right now and we must keep pushing forward to meet it,” said Ed Reiskin, Director of Transportation for the SFMTA. “Mayor Breed’s leadership and continued dedication to the safety of all those on our streets is essential to ensuring San Francisco meets its goal of zero traffic fatalities.”

The first project that Mayor Breed is directing to be expedited is a fully parking-protected bike lane on Valencia Street stretching from Market Street to 15th Street. These first four blocks of Valencia have the highest ridership counts on the corridor and also the highest injury rates. There has been a year-long community outreach process to receive feedback on this project and Mayor Breed has directed it to be implemented in the next four months to serve as a pilot to inform changes through the rest of the corridor.

“Ensuring the safety of pedestrians and cyclists is critically important, and along with those who walk and bike this corridor every day, I’m thankful that this critically important project will now be implemented a year ahead of schedule,” said Supervisor Rafael Mandelman.

“I’ve been working on improving safety on the busy Valencia corridor. I was successful in convincing Lyft to move pick-ups and drop-offs to the side streets to reduce car-bike conflicts,” said Supervisor Hillary Ronen. “While this was an important step to improving safety for riders, I remain 100% committed to protected bike lanes, and am delighted that the project will launch its first phase of construction this spring.”

“I want to thank Mayor Breed for her leadership in expediting the protected bike lane on Valencia Street, which is one of the most biked and most dangerous corridors in San Francisco,” said Brian Wiedenmeier, Executive Director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition. “This kind of quick action is exactly what we need in order to achieve Vision Zero by 2024 and help more people choose to bike in the City.”

Additionally, Mayor Breed announced clear guidelines for the SFMTA’s Rapid Response Team, which is tasked with responding to incidents of serious injury or fatalities. Within one hour of an incident, the SFMTA will be notified by the San Francisco Police Department. The Rapid Response team will continue to respond within 24 hours to analyze the location for any necessary safety improvements, and then implement appropriate near-term safety improvements within the following 72 hours. The SFMTA will work to design and implement longer-term safety improvements on an expedited, high-priority schedule and will regularly update Mayor Breed on Rapid Response Team deployment and safety implementations.

“After a serious crash, the City should respond quickly to identify the problem and make the changes needed to prevent future crashes,” said Cathy DeLuca, Walk San Francisco's Policy and Program Director. “We are glad that Mayor Breed is setting clear guidelines for the SFMTA’s Rapid Response Team to follow. We look forward to swift action to make the streets safe for everyone who walks in San Francisco.”