Last month on January 11 we hosted a walk audit of the Central Richmond area with Supervisor Chan, Self-Help for the Elderly and the SFMTA. A walk audit is an opportunity to survey an area on foot and discuss uses, needs and areas of improvement. The specific purpose of our event was to do outreach with Chinese seniors in the Richmond District to talk about their transportation needs to better inform the city’s Active Communities Plan.
The rain stopped just long enough for us to have a beautiful sunny Thursday afternoon as we walked around Geary Blvd with 15 seniors. We started at Self-Help for the Elderly’s Richmond location, the Jackie Chan Senior Center. We walked a few blocks east down Geary and then crossed to the other side and looped back around. We stopped periodically to discuss transit accessibility, sidewalk conditions, connections to other parts of San Francisco, intersection safety and more.
The walk audit was hosted in Cantonese and English with Supervisor Chan doing much of the translating herself. Some discussion points were the connections with Muni, difficulty crossing Geary and Slow Streets. The Geary Improvement Project came up several times as the SFMTA is slowly implementing aspects of that project. SFCTA staff also came out to discuss the ongoing District 1 Mobility Study that seeks to identify and develop “near- and long-term strategies to improve transit reliability and safety” in the district.
It was great to engage with Richmond seniors, Supervisor Chan and SFMTA staff all together to discuss how we can all collaborate to create safer streets. If we plan our city for children and seniors walking and rolling – two often marginalized and overlooked groups – then our streets will be safer for everyone.
The feedback gathered from this event will be added to the SFMTA’s outreach data for the Active Communities Plan and will be taken into consideration as they draft the network. We are expecting updates on a draft plan in just a few weeks. To stay informed about the Active Communities Plan, join our mailing list!