Mar 26, 2012

Fresh Paint on JFK Drive

We've been waiting since January, patiently watching the pouring of curb ramps and the raising of storm drains, but now finally there's some real stripings down on JFK Drive. The JFK Cycle Track Project, now three months into construction, has finally reached its final stage – paint!

Crews took advantage of a final day of dry weather today to stripe the parking-buffered bikeway from Kezar Drive to Conservatory Drive West (about a third of the project's length). A few final touches are left – like the blue paint for disabled parking and some buffer hatchings – but the SFMTA in a Facebook post calls this section "substantially complete". It didn't take long for people to take notice. Where possible, people are already bicycling in the new track – it's just going to take awhile to train people to park their cars away from the curb. The SFMTA is asking everyone to pay extra attention on JFK Drive in the coming weeks as they finish the stripings. Parking control officers and volunteers will be out to help people get used to the changes.

It's going to take some time for people to get used to San Francisco's first parking-buffered bikeway. The biggest change will be parking to the left of the bikeway and buffer area (instead of by the curb).

To facilitate this, I'm passing on the following graphic from the SFMTA to help inform people of how to use the new JFK Drive...

I'm going to wait until the cycle track is entirely complete and people learn how to use it, but I'm pretty sure I'll be able to confidently label this a fully 8-80 facility. Just look at this family already enjoying the new bikeway!

Dad riding home with his kids from school. Check out how confident both of them look!

Photos continue after the break...

This shot reminds me of a certain rendering from the SF Bicycle Coalition's Connecting the City vision.

A new "mixing zone": drivers turning right yield to straight-going bike riders. Everyone seems to be taking to it well.

Drivers coming off Fell St are now going to have to slow down a lot more as they enter JFK. Very soon there will be parked cars in the white box, narrowing the perceived width of the roadway. In fact, the entire JFK Drive is going benefit from traffic calming – the driving lanes shift from side to side as parking moves from one side of the street to the other.

Parking away from the curb is actually pretty simple, but I think it's going to take a little getting used to. The colored paint on the curb still corresponds to the type of parking permitted – just remember to park in the box instead of next to the curb.

Another piece of the Bay to the Beach route complete!

It's one thing to talk about a bikeway on JFK Drive and to see some engineer drawings, but it's quite another thing to actually experience it on the ground. A lot of people have been working hard to make this bikeway possible, so cheers all around!

And stay safe out there everybody! Until crews finish painting (which will be delayed by the approaching storm) the stripings may be a bit confusing. Keep your head up and be courteous to each other as we all adjust.

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