The New Valencia Is Shaping Up Quite Nicely

The construction crews have finished re-paving the street and have commenced painting the new boundaries for vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians.  At first glance, it might look a lot like the old Valencia.  However, the discerning viewer can appreciate the myriad improvements here. 

First of all, that wide, unnecessary, center-dividing “parking lot” has been eliminated in favor a simple, sensible yellow line that widens only at intersections to allow for left turns.  Sorry bros, no more parking in the center divider just so you can pop into Puerto Alegre for a quick marg.  Gonna have to stick with the party bus from now on.

As a result, this creates significantly more space for vehicles in the middle of the road, which consequently allows the bicycle lanes to not only be wider but also further away from the rogue suddenly-swinging-open parked car doors that have a nasty habit of clotheslining unsuspecting cyclists. 

Vehicles still have enough space to park (as before), while pedestrians also manage to come out ahead since they get a few extra feet of sidewalk space.  So if I see you and 4 of your friends all walking towards me on the sidewalk in a horizontal line so you can all pleasantly chat together, I’ll still think you’re an asshole, but at least I’ll be able to get by you.

So, what’s the final equation, Prof? 

[Valencia] – [center divider] = [more fucking space for everybody]

Of course, I’m all for the “greening” of San Francisco, but I think the city planners might have taken things a little too far in this case . . .

Previously:

Coming Soon: Valencia Streetscape Improvements

Valencia Doing Work

Getting A Feel For The New Valencia

18 Responses to “The New Valencia Is Shaping Up Quite Nicely”

  1. MrEricSir says:

    It’s also cool how there’s space for some sidewalk seating now at restaurants. Seeing as how the Mission is one of the few parts of the city where it ever gets warm enough to eat outside, this is definitely a good thing.

  2. Mazzy says:

    love it!

  3. rick says:

    they should have closed the whole street 15th – 19th to cars and made it only for bikes, peds and put grass instead of pavement.

    • rick springfield says:

      i think you’re forgetting that businesses and residences get deliveries on a daily basis. i’m also a bit annoyed by the line, “First of all, that wide, unnecessary, center-dividing ‘parking lot’ has been eliminated…” i think those “unnecessary” spaces prevented delivery trucks from double parking and/or blocking bike lanes. the previous layout seemed to allow space for everyone: bicyclists, pedestrians, cars and delivery trucks.

    • Adam G. says:

      Yeah, man, let’s like, close a huge stretch of Valencia. Delivery trucks won’t be able to supply businesses. The traffic jams going around it will be terrible, making life miserable to bikers, peds, and drivers alike. But hey, we’d finally get a four block stretch of car-free land. Great idea, man.

      Or, less sarcastically, if you want to still have a drink at Puerto Alegre, you can’t cut off supply lines.

      • James says:

        Right! Because there are no cities in the world that supply businesses without trucks….

        Also, the most center divide parking I ever saw was in front of Lost Weekend.

      • friscolex says:

        Although I am ideologically in support of car-free areas, I’m not sure this would be the best option here.

        But at any rate, it’s pretty easy to zone vehicle deliveries for the morning or certain times of the day. That’s what they do on Maiden Lane, for example and in Montpellier, France, which was, at the time I lived there, the largest ped zone in Europe. There are other solutions that aren’t black-and-white, including compromise, co-existence…

    • tack says:

      The hospital down on the end of Valencia wants/wanted at some point to expand across the street. Part of that would be closing the end of Valencia to motor vehicles and turning it into a park so patients going across the street, newly cured, wouldn’t be ironically snuffed out by DETH TRUK.

      I assume this is part of why the 26 bus was axed. Anyway, if it happens it means that people going down there from market won’t be using Valencia as a thoroughfare. That should make it more ped/bike/stilt/pogo/skate/horse/american gladiator ball friendly.

      • Dan says:

        Tack: St. Luke’s does not plan to expand to the other side of Valencia. They want to replace the current hospital with a smaller (but seismically safe) one, closer to Guerrero. The proposal to turn Valencia into a park was not from St. Luke’s, but rather, something someone suggested on a blog, maybe this one.

      • johnny0 says:

        Errr, Valencia St Park was my idea.

        But the new tower would be only slightly shorter, but considerably wider, would have no street facing access on CC, and the ass-end of the hospital would back up against the houses on Guerrero which pretty much sucks.

        More doctors offices is what would be much more useful for the neighborhood. Pretty fucking ridiculous that so many in the southern part of the city have to drive to CMPC on California.

        That being said, the tail end of Valencia would make a rather lovely park IMHO.

    • FLoyd Law says:

      That’s a really bad idea.

  4. friscolex says:

    New pavement wheeeeeeeeeee! End of construction wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! Double parking enforcement… we’ll work on that one.

  5. So when do we get the promised custom bike racks at the wide places?

    And when does someone from the mayor’s office admit that this could have (and probably should have) been done on Mission first?

  6. olu says:

    friscolex is absolutely correct, with zoning you can limit when trucks can enter. the island of manhattan is such a zone – trucks are only allowed at certain times.

    but i’m not advocating they do this.

    question for anyone who knows: why can restaurants commandeer the sidewalk for their private uses, effectively increasing their sq ftge w/ paying more?

  7. tack says:

    I’m also glad that Luna Park scaled back their sidewalk patio on the new sidewalk. No way a wheelchair could have gotten between it and that big tree. And it forced people to single file past an empty patio. Much better now and they still get a patio.

    17th – 19th is kindof a dead zone. I think 19th – 23rd could benefit from the new sidewalks more… but hey… there’s always next recession.

  8. monkeeknifefight says:

    Anyone else remember when Valencia was four lanes?

  9. Blanche Du Blah says:

    Saaariously, what is up with the Valencia St. wall walkers? I mean dang, don’t any of you guys do solo things? Your mobs depress.

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