Could Embarcadero become the next car-free zone in San Francisco?

ByGloria Rodriguez KGO logo
Friday, December 16, 2022
Is a car-free SF Embarcadero next?
A group of advocates is pushing for a car-free Embarcadero in San Francisco, where visitors can walk and enjoy the world-class waterfront with ease.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A group of advocates is pushing for a car-free Embarcadero in San Francisco.

"We're trying to build on the momentum of what we've had on the west side of town with the resounding defeat of Prop I and support of Prop J for car-free JKF and the Great Highway," advocate Stacey Randecker said. "It's time. It's time for us to do something differently. We are heading in the wrong direction."

The group has a website and organizers have three main reasons for wanting this car-free Embarcadero they're calling the "Grand Embarcadero."

MORE: Residents rally to keep JFK Drive in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park car-free

One is safety. They say it'd be a safer way to get around the waterfront, taking away the risk of pedestrians and cyclists being killed or injured by cars.

And they say this is part of a low and no carbon transportation network for San Francisco and that it'd be vibrant - a place for people to enjoy the Bay. They say world-class waterfronts are about people, not cars, and give examples of San Antonio's River Walk and Chicago's Lakefront Trail.

But there are concerns a car-free Embarcadero would result in increased travel time and discourage people from going to businesses in the area. And there's the question of whether traffic would just be re-routed to other roads.

"I'm not saying no cars," advocate Stacey Randecker said. "I will never see the end of cars. I used to work in automotive. I get it. I have to use a car at times. But it's a matter of making it the least desirable option. Not impossible. Just not the thing that has free reign over everything else. That's all. It takes a few minutes longer if you want to go by car. But transit is now wicked fast. Bikes are extra safe."

VIDEO: Videos show sideshow on busy Embarcadero in SF, concerns rise over police response

A sideshow in the middle of the night at one of San Francisco's most prominent locations has raised questions about a slow response from police.

According to SF Gate, Assemblymember Matt Haney and State Senator Scott Wiener are among those interested in the project although nothing formal has been drawn up.

ABC7 News reached out to their offices for comment and is waiting to hear back.

This is just an idea at this point.

But, Randecker said she won't stop until it becomes reality.

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