What’s Next for Slow Streets?

Last Tuesday, the SF Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) Board voted unanimously to expand Slow Streets — adding 14 new corridors to help San Francisco residents remain socially distant while biking and walking throughout the city.

But that’s not the only story here.

At the virtual SFMTA Board meeting on July 21, dozens of callers echoed one, unified message: The Tenderloin needs Slow Streets, too.

“Saying Slow Streets isn’t the right tool for the Tenderloin is unacceptable,” said Claire Amable, our Tenderloin community organizer. “Parents have nearly broken down in tears because they work two jobs, live doubled up in a studio, and can’t take their kids to the park because it’s too crowded and small. I’ve had to explain to my five-year-old niece why we go to Golden Gate Park to play because our neighborhood doesn’t have enough space.”

After hundreds of our members flooded SFMTA Board inboxes with demands for Slow Streets in the Tenderloin, City agencies were finally able to move forward with the proposal for Jones Street — just hours prior to the SFMTA Board meeting. The Jones Street project will allow pedestrians to safely socially distance by converting current roadway space for drivers into walking space. We’re thrilled that construction is expected to begin as soon as next week.

Our members, along with the Tenderloin Traffic Safety Task Force, have been pushing for these changes on Jones Street since Slow Streets was first announced three months ago. And while the Jones Street sidewalk expansion is huge progress, it isn’t enough. Nearly every block in the Tenderloin is over-crowded. It’s time that our City agencies like the SFMTA and the SF Fire Department come together and implement urgent change on our streets to give space for people to bike and walk safely in our city’s densest neighborhoods.

As we continue to advocate for the expansion of Slow Streets in all neighborhoods, we need your help. Sign up for updates to make sure you get the latest on Slow Streets  and how we can push for more in the Tenderloin.

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