Saturday, September 9, 2017

Proposed PSAC Resolution Requesting Masonic Avenue Medians at the Intersection with Geary Boulevard and Other Pedestrian Safety Improvements

Whereas construction has started on pedestrian and bicycle safety improvements for Masonic Avenue from the south side of Geary Boulevard to Fell Street including safety medians with traffic calming and tree plantings, and Geary Boulevard is part of the Geary Corridor Bus Rapid Transit Project being designed for transit and pedestrian safety improvements but crossing the north side of the Masonic Avenue and Geary Boulevard intersection currently requires a pedestrian to cross a wide busy street without a median and this intersection is not included for a Near-term pedestrian safety improvement; while Geary Boulevard at Masonic Avenue includes wide medians for pedestrian crossing on the east and west sides, and

Whereas even intersections with well intentioned walking countdown signal lights set for a pedestrian crossing speed of 3.5 feet/sec. per the San Francisco standard, cannot be crossed completely by a growing segment of our elderly population and properly designed medians and adequate traffic signal provisions are essential for these people to cross wide busy streets half way and wait safely, and

Whereas a properly designed safety median should meet minimum pedestrian safety requirements and include a protective “thumbnail” and a supporting hand rail and a bench where practical, and

Whereas Geary Boulevard has frequent Rapid and Local bus service with largest the bus ridership in the Nation, but it also a thoroughfare with high amounts of auto traffic, and the Masonic Avenue bus is an important north south neighborhood connecting transit route, and reliable and fast as practical bus transit is an important component of San Francisco’s Transit First Policy which reduces auto traffic and improves pedestrian safety, and

Whereas many high traffic San Francisco streets have traffic signals designed to move traffic expeditiously and require pedestrians to request a pedestrian crossing countdown signal, timed for a pedestrian crossing speed of 3.5 feet/sec, in order to provide more time for traffic, but they also include a delayed green light crossing light to prevent right turning cars from reducing essential pedestrian crossing time, and

Whereas the San Francisco Bay area is the center of autonomous car design and pedestrian detection devices are included in every autonomous car to stop the car when pedestrians are detected, and this equipment is being tested in the Bay Area, now

Therefore the Pedestrian Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC) Resolves that a properly designed median for the north side and south side crossing of Masonic Avenue be included as a near-term pedestrian safety improvement for the Geary Corridor Bus Rapid Transit Project, and

Further Resolves that a pedestrian request crossing countdown signal, timed for a maximum pedestrian crossing speed of 3.5 feet/sec be provided along with a delay for right turning traffic, to allow the complete crossing of Masonic Avenue, north and south of Geary Boulevard, and


Further Resolves that a pedestrian request crossing countdown signal, timed for a maximum pedestrian crossing speed of 3.5 feet/sec be provided along with a delay for right turning traffic, to allow the crossing of each section of Geary Boulevard east and west of Masonic Avenue; along with a pedestrian detection device interlocked with the traffic signal for each half of surface Geary Boulevard to delay the green light for east or west bound traffic until all pedestrians have cleared the crossing section as a way to be sure that even the slowest walking pedestrian can cross safely with minimum impact on transit.

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