Today, the City announced its plan for a Folsom Street pilot which includes a buffered bikeway, reduced pedestrian crossing distances and traffic calming and lane reduction between 4th and 11th Streets. The important safety improvements are set to be on the ground by the end of the year.
This is great news for the huge number of people who bike, walk and live along Folsom Street, one of SoMa’s busiest thoroughfares. For years, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and Walk San Francisco have been calling on the City to calm Folsom Street and make it safer for people biking and walking. Our advocacy kicked into high gear in August, when 24-year-old Amelie Le Moullac was hit and killed while biking on Folsom at 6th Street.
More than 800 people signed our letter to Mayor Ed Lee, asking him to prioritize a redesign of Folsom Street so that no more lives are lost on this bustling corridor. We are pleased that the Mayor and SFMTA have acted swiftly in ushering in this redesign.
In the last five years, the number of people biking in SoMa has increased 98% and Folsom Street ranks as the number 6 busiest bicycle route in the city. For far too long, these huge numbers of people biking have had to pedal next to fast moving traffic, with no buffer. We are proud that our advocacy has resulted in a quick plan to mitigate this.
Your SF Bicycle Coalition will now continue our advocacy to make sure the City sticks to their timeline of implementing this pilot by the end of year. And we will continue our calls to also include a pilot on Howard Street, so that you and those you love have a safer commute both East and Westbound, as well as pushing for a safe bikeway from 4th to the waterfront on Folsom. Along with the City, we will be studying how well the Folsom Pilot works and will use this pilot to advocate for more permanent solutions to creating safer SoMa Streets.
If this pilot will improve your commute, we invite you to join the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and support our tenacious on-the-ground advocacy. Our member support is what has enabled us to step up this quick campaign on Folsom. You can join at www.sfbike.org/join.