San Francisco's bike lines have become Uber's pickup/dropoff zones (and the cops don't care)


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/07/15/san-franciscos-bike-lines-ha.html


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#2

In contrast, San Francisco reviews footage from cameras specially mounted on every single one of its MUNI buses to issue expensive tickets to any car that enters or pulls over in a bus lane, including Uber and Lyft drivers. This likely has the perverse effect of making “ride share” aka unlicensed taxi drivers aka Uber and Lyft drivers favor blocking bike lanes and endangering cyclists. Even if they do somehow manage to get ticket by SF’s bike hostile cops, the ticket will still be cheaper than a bus lane ticket.

(Also, that same camera footage used to issue bus lane violations could also be used to issue tickets for stopping in bike lanes along MUNI routes - perhaps cyclists should lobby for that? Though I’m not really in favor of post hoc traffic enforcement by video recording…)


#3

Is the issue that the cars are stopping in the bike lane at all? Or that they’re staying there for longer than a few minutes? If the former, I wonder how anyone gets picked up by a taxi/uber if the entirety of their block is circumscribed by bike lanes and there are no parking spaces available? I run into this all the time riding in Boston, but I figure that sometimes deliveries and pickups necessitate pulling over to the curb or as close as can be gotten…?


#4

Are you still under the impression that cops are supposed to uphold the law as it is written? You see, that may be your problem. A cop is the law and the law is whatever mood they’re in. Kill you is fine, but protecting people rights…not so much. It’s complicated.


#5

I live in SF. Have a car, take MUNI, walk, take cabs and Lyft. We need to accept balance, and proscribing bike lanes, and the new phenomenon of lane-devouring expanded-sidewalk “parklets,” doesn’t do this. This article says that many of the observed cars have Uber or Lyft emblems, which is a way of declining to mention that many don’t, and are picking up laundry, dropping off moms at the dentist, or engaged in other transitory activities. The vision of a perfectly safe city in which all streets have bike-only and bus-only lanes with perfect enforcement is one where small businesses that depend on street traffic will disappear and turning vehicles will still collide with bikes (unless riders and drivers also become perfect). As we’re seeing in some of the extreme proposals to deal with “terror” attacks, making a society safer in some ways makes it more dangerous in others, and not better in any of them.


#6

Probably if the bikers started carrying air horns this problem would get resolved pretty quickly…


#7

#8

It’s true- the double parking problem is not limited to only taxis/ubers. There’s also UPS drivers, and the private citizens you mentioned. We need some more drop-off loading zones, plus a parking enforcement personnel that aren’t also responsible for stopping violent crime. Personally, I would love some more public-trans-only streets like lower market, and I say that as a car driver.


#9

This all applies pretty much identically to Manhattan as well, although we have more yellow cabs than Uber/Lyft. I’m kind of with @jeffreyrodman in that I don’t know that you can really eliminate it. Sometimes cabs will stop in the nearest driving lane rather than pulling over onto the bike lane, but then you have their oblivious passengers crossing and blocking the bike lane which isn’t really an improvement. The road is a shared space, as a bicyclist I have to participate in that.


#10

Eh, I regularly see cops parked in bike lanes (so they could stop and have a nice long chat and hang out), so I wouldn’t expect anything else.


#11

after driving in the USA when i go there

Two groups of people i can’t sympathize with
cyclists & Taxis


#12

I don’t even bother riding in bike lanes known to be clogged with parcel carriers, Uber drivers, etc. Driver behind me doesn’t like it? Tough shit. Pass me on the left.


#13

Did San Fransisco somehow escape this identical problem with traditional taxis?!?


#14

Having ridden in the city back during the 90’s, I’m going to say no.


#15

Yes, because the bike lanes are new. So, only because they didn’t have bike lanes.


#16

I was just wondering about that…


#17

I don’t know about US law, but around here you would stop the car in the car lane, without infringing on other people’s lane.


#22

Uber should wait -over- the kerb 11.5 feet (pink triangle fur, lights) and Lyft 6 stories up (and have tractor beams.) Tell me it doesn’t take 00:10:00.00 to pick up your dry cleaning…oh, to pull back into traffic takes 6 minutes?

When did bike parkour fall off the train, anyhow? Jackie Chan had like 20 lined up then just up and choreographed escalator stuff, right?


#25

Well, apparently that wasn’t really much of a problem…


#26

pjcamp, when motorists also obey the law without fail, you’ll have a point. Until then, you’re the one being all high and mighty about obeying the law. I see motorists flouting traffic laws on a routine basis. Those people are probably the same type of people who flout the law when they ride their bikes.

Awful people are awful no matter what mode of transportation they prefer, and tarring all bicyclists with the same feather is grossly unfair. I suggest you examine your position for confirmation bias. I think you’ll find you notice the scofflaws and ignore all the riders who generally ride in a safe and courteous manner.