Mayor's office, SFMTA, and Rec & Park Announce Golden Gate Park Traffic Safety Improvements
10 New Speed Humps Completed in Support of Mayor’s Vision Zero; Study on Long-Term Traffic and Safety Improvements to Begin in December
Today Mayor Edwin M. Lee joined the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), San Francisco Public Works and the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department to install one of the last of nine new speed humps and a raised crosswalk on John F. Kennedy Drive in Golden Gate Park. These safety improvements are a result of Mayor Ed Lee’s Vision Zero and the City’s focus on improving San Francisco street safety for all modes of travel.
“Our City’s parks, especially our beloved Golden Gate Park, should be a safe place for families and visitors to enjoy, said Mayor Ed Lee. “The completion of the new speed humps will decrease vehicular speeding and help us uphold our commitment to Vision Zero and eliminating all traffic fatalities by 2024. With more than 13 million visitors each year, we need to make sure the park’s streets are safe for everyone.”
The speed humps on JFK Drive have been placed west of Transverse Drive, a frequent kickoff point for park parades and running events, then continue west to the Chain of Lakes, and up near the scenic Great Highway at the edge of the park. These safety treatments build upon recent Golden Gate Park improvements like new speed limit signs put up by the Recreation and Park Department, which oversees the park’s roads. There has also been increased speed enforcement by the San Francisco Police Department.
“City safety data shows that along JFK Drive, people regularly drive well over the speed limit by day, and even faster at night,” said SFMTA Director of Transportation, Ed Reiskin. “Golden Gate Park was built for people to enjoy being in, not to speed through. We’re pleased to be working with Rec & Park to help make the park safer and more enjoyable. Throughout the city, we have been using speed humps to great success in residential neighborhoods, reducing the number of vehicles traveling between 35 – 40 MPH by 73 percent.”
Research has shown that lowering speeds – from 40 mph to 20 mph, for example – dramatically improves the likelihood someone will survive a collision. If someone is hit by car going 20 mph, they have a 90 percent chance of survival.
“With so many opportunities for recreation in our beloved Golden Gate Park, it’s important that all visitors and travelers can walk, bike, drive, and play safely,” said Phil Ginsburg, SF Rec & Park General Manager. “I want to thank the Mayor for his leadership, and the SFMTA and San Francisco Public Works for their partnership in making this park a safer experience for all.”
Furthermore, JFK Drive is on the city’s high-injury network, where just 12 percent of city streets have 70 percent of San Francisco’s severe and fatal traffic collisions. Tragically, in June a woman biking – Heather Miller of San Francisco – was killed on JFK Drive near 30th Avenue in a criminal act, a hit-and-run by a driver who was speeding in a stolen car.
In addition to the speed humps, the Recreation and Park Department and SFMTA are now studying long-term improvements to roadway safety and traffic circulation in Golden Gate Park. The city is starting a dialogue with community members this winter to identify solutions that reduce speeds and better manage vehicular traffic while maintaining access to Golden Gate Park destinations. Interested members of the public can take part in the conversation at a community open house on Saturday, December 3 at the San Francisco County Fair Building from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
San Francisco adopted Vision Zero as a policy in 2014, committing to build better and safer streets, educate the public on traffic safety, enforce traffic laws, and adopt policy changes that save lives. The result of this collaborative, citywide effort will be safer, more livable streets as San Francisco works towards the Vision Zero goal of zero traffic fatalities by 2024. For more information, go to: www.visionzerosf.org.