San Francisco Releases Updated Vision Zero Action Strategy to Prevent Traffic Deaths
Update includes focus on reducing street speeds under new state law and expanding Quick-Build projects to deliver safe street projects faster and more efficiently
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today announced the release of the updated Vision Zero Action Strategy, which lays out a citywide, multi-agency plan for creating slower streets and safer crossings. This strategy was developed by the City and County of San Francisco, co-chaired by the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency and the Department of Public Health, with leadership from the Mayor’s Office, the Board of Supervisors, and in coordination with local community groups, advocacy organizations, and residents.
In 2014, San Francisco adopted Vision Zero—a commitment to eliminate traffic deaths and reduce severe injuries. This updated Action Strategy expands on lessons learned since committing to Vision Zero in 2014 and commits to new approaches. These approaches include applying the City’s Quick-Build program across the High-Injury Network, where 75% of severe injuries and deaths occur, and implementing policies that reduce speeds, including under a new state law that allows the City to lower speeds on certain streets to 20 miles per hour.
"Too many have died on San Francisco streets, and too many struggle with the loss of loved ones or the lifelong challenges of severe injuries,” said Mayor London Breed. “The proven strategies being employed here to reduce bureaucracy to make quick and safe improvements and to slow speeds on our streets will help us to save lives and make our city safer for all. But this work is going to take more than transportation projects. We also need more housing near transit and jobs to encourage San Franciscans to shift their travel modes away from vehicle trips and toward sustainable options like biking, walking, and transit.”
“Everyone in San Francisco deserves safety. For the past seven years, we have committed to maximizing safety on city streets and eliminating traffic deaths. And with the approval of Assembly Bill 43 (Friedman) and expanding the SFMTA’s Quick-Build Program, we will continue collaborating with our City partners and urgently prioritizing these policies and strategies to end deaths and reduce severe injuries.” – Jeffrey Tumlin, SFMTA Director of Transportation.
The Updated Vision Zero Strategy can be read here.
In 2019, San Francisco launched a Quick-Build program to deliver safe-streets projects at one tenth of the cost of traditional capital projects, and in a fifth of the time. Through the Action Strategy, the City is committing to applying the Quick-Build toolkit on the entire High Injury Network—the 13% of city streets that account for 75% of severe injuries and deaths—by 2024.
More than 80 miles of safety improvements have already been completed or are in planning or construction on the High Injury Network. This Action Strategy commits the City to applying the Quick-Build toolkit on the remaining 80 miles of the High Injury Network by 2024.
This Action Strategy commits the City to developing a comprehensive speed management plan that not only reduces speed limits, but includes complementary tools like education, outreach, and traffic calming. A key first step in this effort is using AB 43 to implement 20 mph zones throughout the City starting in 2022. AB 43. Starting January 2022, the City will move to lower speed limits by 5 mph (from 25 mph to 20 mph, or 30 mph to 25 mph) in certain business activity districts. Even slowing traffic down by 5 mph can make a difference of whether or not someone survives a crash, and AB 43 will enable SFMTA to set speeds that promote safer streets for all along business corridors.
The Action Strategy commits to maintaining a focus on equity. A disproportionate number of San Francisco’s high-injury streets pass through low-income and disadvantaged communities, and the City is targeting safe-streets investment in areas that have been historically under-resourced. That means the City will 1) strengthen community engagement with community leaders to ensure safety projects reduce injury inequities and do not exacerbate existing ones and 2) complete safety projects first in areas where vulnerable users travel and in Communities of Concerns. Safety projects and programs can advance equity and repair historic injustices, and the City is seeking proven enforcement alternatives like speed cameras that can reduce bias in monitoring important safety laws.
"This strategy reaffirms the City’s commitment to Vision Zero and is focused on what can most quickly save lives. We’re grateful to the City for listening to communities and responding with a more aggressive plan for safer streets.” – Jodie Medeiros, Walk SF
The Action Strategy also commits to developing an Active Transportation Network, or a connected grid of Slow Streets that are low-car and car-free, by 2024. Supporting more people walking and biking on safe streets helps it to be safer for everyone traveling.