SFMTA to vote on pedestrian safety changes to Lombard Street

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Big changes could be coming for Lombard Street with the hopes of making one of San Francisco's most dangerous roads a lot safer. The changes would take place on the straight part of Lombard that takes drivers to and from the Golden Gate Bridge, not the famous crooked part of street.

Transit officials have a plan to try and make Lombard safer; it includes building islands for pedestrians in the middle of Lombard so they have a safe place to stand when they get off a bus. They also want to build bulb-outs, which is more sidewalk at intersections, forcing a car to make a wider turn, so the driver has a better chance of seeing a pedestrian. That also means a smaller crosswalk, less ground for a walker to cover. Officials also want to create more sidewalk at bus stops so people have a safe place to wait.

This all comes at a cost -- not only the $12 million it will take to construct it all, but Lombard will also lose 46 parking spaces. Businesses, like the Marina Pet Hospital, say that will hurt.

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"Actually we are kind of disappointed about that. We are looking for more parking for our clients here and they don't have enough places to park and we are going to lose parking for our employees. It's going to be a big impact ," said Shaun Kuhn, Marina Pet Hospital manager.

The SFMTA is scheduled to vote on these safety proposals at its board meeting today. If it is approved, construction could start this summer.
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