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Release date: April 11, 2013

*** Press Release ***

Note: Photo showing Safe Hit Posts (.pdf) attached

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which manages all surface transportation in the city, today announced the installation of plastic traffic channelizers (“safe hit “or “soft hit” posts) on Fell Street from Scott to Baker Streets as part of the Oak and Fell Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project.

In addition to carrying tens of thousands of cars each day, Fell Street and Oak Street are vital links in San Francisco's bicycle network, connecting the Panhandle bike path and the “Wiggle” bicycle route that serve thousands of cyclists. Fell and Oak Streets are the flattest, most direct connections between Market Street and the Panhandle path, Golden Gate Park and western neighborhoods.

The final design for the Fell Street bikeway, which was developed with extensive community input, calls for raised median barriers along portions of Fell Street where there are no driveway conflicts. While the design of concrete elements is underway and final project completion is slated for later this year, the SFMTA has installed interim plastic safe hit posts to better define the bikeway and reduce vehicle encroachment.

Safe-hit posts are physical barriers that deter vehicles from infringing upon the bicycle lane. The solution was chosen due to the positive experiences cyclists have had with safe hit posts on streets such as Market, Division, Alemany and Laguna Honda, which have reduced vehicle blocking and driving in the bike lanes. These bike lane enhancements are designed to allow driveway access, street cleaning, garbage pick-up or other necessary activities.

“Forward-thinking projects like the Oak and Fell Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project are crucial to the SFMTA’s continued implementation of San Francisco’s Transit First Policy,” said Tom Nolan, Chairman of the SFMTA Board of Directors. “With more San Franciscans utilizing a bike as part of everyday life, it’s imperative that we ensure their safety while also providing a comfortable and convenient travel experience.”

“The Oak and Fell Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project is an essential component in both San Francisco’s bicycle network and in the SFMTA’s strategic vision to support and encourage bicycling as an important commute option,” said Ed Reiskin, SFMTA Director of Transportation. “The installation of safe hit posts on Fell Street demonstrates the agency’s commitment to finding effective solutions to ensure the safety of those who ride a bike on busy roads, such as Fell Street, while we continue to coordinate the completion of the ultimate project.”

In response to safety concerns raised by residents and those who walk and bike along Oak and Fell Streets, the SFMTA created the Oak and Fell Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project to address a critical gap in the bicycle route network, improve pedestrian safety and enhance overall neighborhood livability. In November 2012, after an extensive community outreach process, the SFMTA constructed the first phase of the project, using buffered bicycle lanes, green pavement and bike boxes to make this critical east-west connection a more comfortable place for people on bicycles. The project also proposes pedestrian safety elements such as corner bulbouts, crosswalk enhancements, traffic signal re-timing and daylighted intersections to improve the visibility of pedestrians.

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