Muni driver uniforms may get a redesign this spring

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Muni drivers may be ditching their brown uniforms this spring, depending on how they vote on this important decision, reports the Examiner. Voting ends Feb. 8, and right now gray is the leading choice. A little sneak peek about the new look, according to the Examiner:

The newest uniforms include a polo shirt option and new jacket options, according to SFMTA documentation. The Muni logo on the gray shirts would be stitched in red, whereas the logo on the brown uniforms would be stitched in white.

Alison Cant, an archivist and museum manager at the San Francisco Railway Museum, told the Examiner that Muni’s first operators in 1912 wore navy blue uniforms. This lasted until about 1968.

The operator uniforms then went from navy blue to green (with a maroon tie!) to the now familiar brown. Looks aren’t the only factor here. Drivers also told the Examiner that the current uniforms are not comfortable and they’d like to have a more breathable fabric.

This reminds me of that one Project Runway episode where the designers tried to redesign the U.S. Postal Service uniform, and the poor mail carriers ended up with a flowy hooded cape, a fur-lined cap with ear flaps (ok I liked that hat, but still), and pants that unzipped into shorts. I hope Muni drivers end up with something comfortable with a little bit of flair.

H/t our friends at SFist

Oh by the way, here are three times when Muni drivers were being awesome human beings:
Muni driver leaves note about lost work ID

The day my Muni driver stopped the bus

Muni driver’s unexpected kindness warms one rider’s heart

Photo credit: Petrelisfiles

Muni adds safety pole near locked seats

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SFMTA is adding new metal poles near those seats that have been locked up since 2014 for safety reasons, according to SFBay News. These poles (heh heh) are for your safety, folks, but if they happen to inspire some new dance moves like these sexy beasts on the L here … well, it wouldn’t be the first time!

More from SFBay News:

SFMTA spokesman Paul Rose said the transit agency is making an effort to make it safe for riders who stand in that area by providing an extra pole connected to the locked seats for riders to hold onto.
Rose said the transit agency is testing the new pole on 50 buses and will make an assessment in six months on the added safety measure.

In 2014, SFMTA locked up these front-facing seats with a safety message because the bus manufacturer feared that there’s nothing stopping you from flying forward if the bus were to suddenly lurch.

Unfortunately, even with the safety pole installed, you still can’t sit in those, seats so they will continue to mock you on any crowded bus until SFMTA replaces its fleet.

Photo by josephbergen

Muni strikes back!

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Take that, silly tech shuttle!

Karmic justice and schadenfreude collided (combined?) this morning downtown, when a Muni trolley’s electric pole came offline and smashed through the window of a (probable) tech shuttle. SFist has the story:

An electric Muni bus antenna collided with the window of what appears to be a tech shuttle downtown, though which vehicle may have been at fault remains unclear. From the photo above, it appears the antennas had come loose from the overhead wires and were sticking off the rear of the Muni bus when the shuttle possibly drove into them.

Photo by unknown Instagram user, via SFist

How Super Bowl construction will affect your life on Muni

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Construction for the Super Bowl pregame activities start next weekend, so here’s a closer look at how Sports Bowl will impact your transit life in the next few weeks.

The short story is: Don’t drive downtown. If you’re reading this on Muni Diaries, you already got the memo. Even though the game will be played in Santa Clara at Levi’s Stadium, a “fan village” called Super Bowl City (free to the public) is being built at the foot of Market Street, and a “pro football interactive theme park” will be at Moscone Center.

The pregame events open on Jan. 30, with hundreds of thousands of people are expected to descend on our city in the days leading up to the Super Bowl, which is on Feb. 7. Officials expect to spend about a week after the event tearing everything down, according to SFGate, so the whole shebang might last from Jan. 22 to Feb 12.

You can see the construction area in the map above. Details from the SFMTA:

  • All Muni lines will operate downtown except the E-line.
  • Muni Metro will continue to run in the subway.
  • Some bus lines that run downtown will be re-routed to nearby streets and may have a stop a block or two away from their original location.
  • The F Line will be truncated with streetcars continuing to run from the Ferry Building to Fisherman’s wharf. Buses will replace streetcars for service from the Embarcadero to the Castro.

San Francisco will spend about $4 million in taxpayer money to host Super Bowl, including $1.7 million for the SFMTA for increased services, according to the Examiner. The Examiner also says that the city hopes to make the money back through tax revenue during the event, according a memo by the mayor’s office.

Check out the bad ‘ol days from this 1940s Muni Map

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The good people at Curbed have combed through lots of old San Francisco maps, including this 1940s Muni map (courtesy of our favorite map nerd, Eric Fischer). You’ll see that the F used to go through the Stockton tunnel, and there was no M line at the time. Click here to see a bigger version of the map. Oh, and here are some more Muni maps from 1920s and 1930s.

The Curbed story has lots more old fascinating maps of our city. Go on and check ’em out!

h/t our friends at Tiny Rides. thanks, guys!

Nighttime Muni underground service will return soon

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Remember all those times when you tried to walk into an underground Muni station after a night of drinking, only to be reminded that there hasn’t been nighttime underground service since last July? Well, you soon won’t have to suffer that indignity any more, the SFMTA says.

For nearly six months, the underground service has closed nightly 9:30 p.m. to allow for the replacement of the Blue Light Emergency Telephone and Radio System. Surface bus shuttles have substituted for your beloved J, K, L, M, N, and T lines. The construction project is set to be completed on January 22, so you can go back to your underground transit-riding ways.

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