The Suggestions, derived from San Francisco’s Experience Implementing Curbside Management Strategies and Research, Provide Useful Detail on How Implement Curbside Management Strategies According to the Surrounding Land Use.
San Francisco sought to implement curbside management strategies that aimed to support wider goals such as curbing pedestrian deaths, a transit first policy to speed up public transportation, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and improving equity and accessibility. San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority (SFMTA) looked to review existing regulation and conditions, best practices, collect data, conduct outreach, and develop curb prioritization to deploy strategies advancing six key objectives introducing new tools, policies and legislative changes, process improvements, and design standards.
The six key objectives were:
- Advance a Holistic Planning Approach
- Accommodate Growing Loading Needs
- Increase Compliance with Parking and Loading Regulations
- Improve Access to up-to-date Data
- Rationalize Policies towards Private Users of Curb Space
- Promote Equity and Accessibility
In the context of Equity and Accessibility, the study noted that there was currently a lack of passenger loading zones in the city. The current blue zones supporting passengers with disabilities was the previous focus of SFMTA; however, accessible passenger loading zones were projected to be able to serve a greater number of people versus the one-person blue zones. In addition, many of the current SFMTA MUNI bus stops were located at “flag stops” where a bus or train can stop adjacent to a parked car impeding navigation and posing accessibility issues.
The following recommendations came from the process for Addressing Equity and Accessibility with Curbside Management:
- Maximize accessibility when siting passenger loading zones. This includes taking into account aspects such as grade, street furniture, curb ramp presence, amongst others.
- Establish paratransit zones at popular paratransit loading destinations to make sure those with disabilities can get to critical destinations, such as dialysis centers.
- Avoid creating new flag stops, and convert flag stops to bus zones on the curb. This equitably allocates curbs because far more people can be served via a bus stop versus parking.
- Develop guidelines such as Ridership Threshold when a curbside bus zone is required.