Connecting the City

Crosstown Bikeways for Everyone!
A Project of the
San Francisco
Bicycle Coalition

North South Bikeway

What could the North South route look like?

Connecting our Small City

Judy and John retired a couple of years ago. They still live near San Francisco State University, where Judy taught for nearly 20 years. They can’t imagine selling their house of 30 years and love being close to the ocean and feeling connected to heart of the city. They’re aging baby boomers and enjoy being able to keep fit by using their bikes to run their weekly errands including meeting their book club once a week downtown.

Unique San Francisco Neighborhoods

On this bright morning in the not‐too‐distant future, John and Judy hop on their bikes to head downtown. They start their journey on a bike pathway that runs parallel to the BART line and connects to a reimagined San Jose Avenue that has a fully separated bikeway that links to the Glen Park and Balboa Park neighborhoods and onto downtown. They quickly connect with Valencia Street, where a nice raised green 14‐foot‐wide bikeway, full of lots of other people biking, leads them down the middle of the street — in this designated space, they are safe from opening car doors and double‐parked trucks. They hop off the bikeway to enjoy a leisurely breakfast and watch the streams of people biking by — kids on their way to school, professionals headed downtown and many more people running errands. After breakfast, they continue down Valencia Street and onto the separated Market Street bikeway and over to the library. They easily park their bikes in the on-street bike racks and head into meet their book club. After the club, they continue in the bikeway along Polk Street’s thriving commercial corridor, with its parklets where restaurants extend into the streets, calmed traffic and improved intersections that make the street safer for the large numbers of people walking and biking. They spend the afternoon shopping for something special for their granddaughter’s new dorm room at college.

Thriving Commercial Corridors

Along this route from San Francisco State University to Aquatic Park, John and Judy get to experience the unique flavor of key San Francisco neighborhoods and diverse local shops and restaurants that are benefiting from how easy it is to get around the city and stop and shop by bike. They have also been able to travel across the city in a healthy, stress-free and affordable way.

What’s in the works for the North South bikeway?

  • Polk Street Contra-Flow Bike Lane: The SF Municipal Transportation Agency is designing a “contra-flow” separated bike lane along the one-way stretch of Polk Street to create a safer, more direct connection to the existing Polk Street bike lanes for people bicycling up from Market Street. This work will create an important connection for Connecting the City’s Polk Street bikeway. Meanwhile, we are calling upon the City to pilot a temporary separated bikeway the length of Polk Street during the 2012 and 2013 America’s Cup events.
  • Glen Park Community Plan: The San Francisco Planning Department is already looking at ways to make San Jose Avenue, from Randall to Monterey, safer for people walking and bicycling and to improve this transit-rich neighborhood. Projects include a trial of a separated bikeway along San Jose Avenue and traffic calming. Learn more about the Glen Park Community Plan.
  • Improving Biking to College Campuses: The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is working with City agencies and stakeholders to coordinate resources for projects to create a bikeway connection from Phelan Avenue to Lee Street and Holloway Avenue. These improvements will create a safer link for people bicycling to San Francisco State University and City College.

Stories about the North South route

  • A San Francisco Mom Imagines Biking with Her Family

    Jan 142011

    Growing numbers of people, like this mom and her family, are already biking to the park and at events like Sunday Streets, but in the not too distant future this family and many others will also feel confident and safe biking to school, the library and the grocery store. Why? Because of Connecting the City, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition’s visionary plan for 100 miles of bikeways that are designed for everyone, from an eight-year-old child to an eighty-year-old grandmother. Watch this new video and hear how one San Francisco mom imagines biking with her family.

    Are you ready to help make this vision a reality? If you answered yes, then please share this video by email, facebook or twitter with your friends, neighbors or co-workers, and help us spread the word about this visionary plan — it’s time to start Connecting the City!

  • Connecting the City’s bikeways will help more people, like this retired Ingleside couple, spend a day traveling around our city in a healthy, affordable and stress-free way.

  • South on Polk at vallejo

    Image © WoodsBagot
    Polk Street’s bikeway runs through the heart of a thriving commercial corridor, where calmed traffic and improved intersections make the street safer for the large numbers of people walking and biking to the local businesses, shops and restaurants.

  • Valencia Street’s raised, green 14‐foot‐wide bikeway creates a space where people on bikes are safe from opening car doors and double‐parked trucks. The wide sidewalks and ample bike parking create a vibrant commercial district where people can easily stop to shop, play and eat.

  • The Still pathway will create a safe and comfortable shared path, running parallel to the BART line, for people walking and bicycling from Glen Park to Balboa Park, with the potential to extend all the way to the Daly City BART station.