“What do we want?”
“Protected bike lanes!”
“When do we want them?”
Earlier this afternoon, more than 200 bicycle advocates swarmed the steps of City Hall to demand urgent action and safe streets now. Along with a chant led by Supervisor Matt Haney, speaker after speaker called on our City to deliver protected bike lanes immediately, without delay.
“We need real citywide change. We need proactive, transformative changes,” said Janice Li, Advocacy Director at the SF Bicycle Coalition, as she called out the failures of elected officials and City agencies to act urgently to end the epidemic of fatal and serious traffic collisions. “This is about life or death, and our city’s failures have meant death, time after time.”
Supervisor Haney expressed his impatience. “There are things that are complicated in our city. This one should not be,” he said, referring to the immediate implementation of protected bike lanes. “What we are demanding is quite simple: fully protected bike lane infrastructure, and for those to be approved and implemented quickly.”
Supervisor Haney joins the SF Bicycle Coalition in their three demands, and over 300 people have emailed Mayor London Breed, the Board of Supervisors, and the SFMTA Board of Directors in support of the following:
- Protected bike lanes for the full length on Howard and Folsom streets
- Fast-tracked progress on our bicycling high-injury corridors citywide in the next year
- A streamlined approvals process for protected bike lanes.
After a solemn moment of silence to remember Tess Rothstein, the woman hit and killed while biking on Howard Street on the morning of March 8, two of her friends spoke in her memory. Sasan Saadat recalled how Tess encouraged him to ride a bicycle, and as a housemate of hers, he shared that Tess “created a home with warmth and light.”
The rally was organized by the SF Bicycle Coalition, in partnership with grassroots advocates at People Protected Bike Lane, Our Bikes and YIMBY Mobility. Supervisors Vallie Brown, Rafael Mandelman and Hillary Ronen were also present to stand in solidarity. After the rally, dozens of people headed into City Hall to speak at the SFMTA Board of Directors where over 40 people expressed their grief and demanded action. Supervisor Haney joined, where he reiterated the remarks he made at the rally.
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A letter written by close friends and family of Tess Rothstein was shared with Mayor London Breed, the Board of Supervisors and the SFMTA Board of Directors. The point of contact is Eva Orbuch, who joined in today’s City Hall rally. Read the letter here.