When it comes to bike lanes in San Francisco, there’s SFMTA—the official transit agency—and then there’s the thorn in its side known as SMFTrA. Their names may look the same at first glance, but don’t be confused.
The San Francisco Municipal Transformation Agency is a group of anonymous traffic-safety activists who formed in response to two deadly hit-and-runs on local cyclists on the same day in June. They’ve performed scores of interventions
in areas known to be hazardous to cyclists and pedestrians, typically
fortifying bike lanes by lining them with orange traffic cones, or even
installing white soft-hit posts in the road.
They’re building the protected bike lanes they want to see around
town, and they’ve caused a bit of a headache for local planners this
year. Officials have complained the illicit cones and posts violate the
city code, impede the work of street-sweepers, and must be removed. As
such, the installations usually only last for a day or so. But in
October, the SFMTrA scored a victory when the city bowed down and
allowed one of their enhanced lanes to remain.
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