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30 Stockton between Van Ness Avenue and Market Street (30 Stockton, 45 Union-Stockton, 8X/AX/BX Bayshore Expresses)

Corridor Overview

Picture of 30 Stockton bus on Stockton StreetMuni’s 30 Stockton bus route carries about 28,000 daily customers on an average weekday. The route’s study corridor is 2.2 miles long and includes Van Ness Avenue, North Point Street, Columbus Avenue, Stockton Street, Sutter Street, and Kearny Street.  Portions of the 45 Union-Stockton and 8X/AX/BX Bayshore Expresses also travel through the study area and would benefit from the proposed improvements.

Within the study corridor, the 30 Stockton serves over 17,600 customers.  Combined with the 45 Union-Stockton and the 8X/AX/BX Bayshore Expresses, within the study corridor the routes serve over 27,500 customers during an average weekday.

Within the study area, the 30 Stockton operates at an average speed of 5.6 miles per hour during peak periods. The main sources of delay are closely spaced bus stops, narrow traffic lanes in Chinatown, and traffic congestion.

Travel Time Reduction Proposal Overview

In order to reduce transit travel times and improve reliability, the SFMTA proposes a toolkit of measures within the study area. The proposals include:

  • Increasing bus stop spacing from one block to two blocks. Currently, the 30 Stockton stops at almost every block on Columbus Avenue and on North Point Street. This proposal moves towards at least a two-block spacing throughout the route. By stopping fewer times, the bus would take less time to move through the corridor.
  • Optimizing bus stop locations at four locations. Relocating bus stops from the near-side to the far-side of intersections would allow buses to take advantage of planned transit signal priority improvements.
  • Adding transit bulbs at 11 locations. Transit bulbs are sidewalk extensions alongside bus stops that allow buses to pick-up and drop-off customers without having to pull out of the travel lane into a bus stop and then wait for a gap to merge back into traffic. Transit bulbs enhance the ability of buses to take advantage of planned all-door boarding and provide space for transit shelters and other customer amenities.
  • Extending existing transit bulbs at four locations. Transit bulbs in the southbound direction on Stockton Street are currently sized for one articulated 60’ bus. Often times due to the high frequency of transit service in this direction, two or more buses will arrive at a stop at the same time, delaying the second vehicle as it waits to service the stop.  With a longer transit bulb, up to two articulated 60’ buses would be able to serve the stop at the same time, reducing delays.
  • Adding transit-only lanes at three locations. In areas of high traffic congestion, transit-only lanes can save significant travel time for the 30 Stockton by giving the bus its own exclusive lane.
  • Widening travel lanes on Stockton Street between Broadway and Columbus Avenue.  Within this two block segment of Chinatown, the travel lanes on Stockton Street are too narrow to allow large vehicles such as buses or delivery trucks to pass one another in opposite directions without one of the vehicles coming to a complete stop.  For example, when a 30 Stockton bus is headed northbound within this segment, it generally has to drive over the double yellow line due to the narrow lane widths. If a large vehicle such as a bus or delivery truck is headed in the opposite direction, one vehicle must stop to let the other pass by.  This condition has made Stockton Street between Broadway and Columbus Avenue the slowest segment of the route. By widening the travel lanes through parking removal on the east side of the street, delays to transit would potentially be reduced.

Together, the proposed changes are anticipated to reduce the travel time of the 30 Stockton by about 3.5 minutes in each direction (seven minutes total) within the study area (15 percent reduction), improving the average operating speed to 6.6 miles per hour and improving service reliability. Transit signal priority improvements are anticipated to save an additional two minutes in each direction. Other changes such as operational improvements and network enhancements would further improve travel times along the corridor and add valuable customer amenities such as NextBus displays. The travel time savings would also reduce operating costs on the line and allow for service to be cost effectively increased.

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