Proposal for car free SF Market Street

July 24, 2008 9:52:18 AM PDT
If San Francisco Supervisor Chris Daly gets his way, approximately 2 miles of Market Street could be closed to automobiles as early as next year, the District 6 supervisor said today.

Daly proposed the plan at Tuesday's board of supervisors meeting and said today his next step is to ask City Attorney Dennis Herrera to draft legislation that would restrict automobile access on Market Street between Embarcadero and Octavia Street.

Daly said one inspiration for his proposal was Mayor Gavin Newsom's Sunday Streets initiative, in which Newsom plans to shut down a stretch of roadway along the Embarcadero to vehicle traffic on two Sundays this year to allow residents to partake in physical activities such as walking, jogging and bicycling.

"It's a bit of a nothing-burger," Daly said. "It's two Sunday mornings in a year. It's not that big of a deal."

Another reason Daly proposed the Market Street traffic closure is to awaken what he called "a long range goal."

According to Daly, former Mayor Willie Brown proposed closing Market Street to automobile traffic in his inauguration, and studies that have been conducted to determine possible improvements on Market Street point to eliminating cars from the road.

"This is an idea that's been around for a long time," Daly said.

Daly said the process to have the legislation approved could be lengthy, and residents should not expect cars to be "kicked off" Market Street this year.

"(It's) a significant legislative proposal that will involve much study and much public process," Daly said.


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