An Imagined Route for the ‘G-Geary’ Metro Line October 8, 2011 jeff 26 comments Self-proclaimed “#UrbanPlanning nerd” @jeffkloy whipped up this Google map of his proposed “G-Geary” alignment, complete with above- and underground stations and stops. Click here to check out the entire map. Oh, and nice work, Other Jeff! Category: diaries
THIS would be worth a billion dollars.
Yeah, one of the things that influenced me to design this line is that it it can help get commuters from Caltrain to Moscone or Union Sq, but more importantly – the residential population from Richmond to Chinatown. I’d like to take out some stops though and will probably do that in a few days. Thanks for your comment by the way!
The intent of the T-Third line is to go (eventually) to North Beach and Fisherman’s Wharf. As much as I’d love a Geary Metro line, your proposal doesn’t mesh with the T-Third plans.
Also, FYI: the original Geary line letter designation was ‘B’ as in “B-Geary.” The letters were never meant to be mnemonic (T-Third not withstanding).
I’d like to reserve the ‘G’ letter for a (forgotten, but hopefully resurrected) proposal to build another historic streetcar line: the G-Golden Gate Park. It would use part of the N-Judah trackage to 9th Ave and instead turn right (north) on 9th and into Golden Gate Park to the California Academy of Sciences and the DeYoung. It would be les than 1 mile of new track but provide a great way to get to Golden Gate Park and the museums. The historic streetcar lines would then be E, F, and G, i.e., contiguous.
No, the Central Subway to nowhere will NOT go to North Beach nor will it go to Fisherman’s Wharf. For no discernible reason, the plan is to bring the tunnel boring machines up in Chinatown. This is all in spite of protests from people who live in North Beach and want the line extended. So not only have Ed Lee and Rose Pak nixed extending the subway, they’ve also made it infinitely more expensive to extend it.
If you really think that someone’s gonna plonk machines down in North Beach in a few years time… I’ve got some oceanfront property in Kansas you might be interested in.
The extension to North Beach is still shown on the map here: http://www.sfmta.com/cms/mcsp/cspover.htm
Thanks for response. Good idea about the “G-Geary” to “B-Geary”. As for the T-Third running to North Beach, I have been hearing much debate over the cost analysis benefit issues, as well as ineffectiveness for residents. THe line extension would only carry a few additional stops and the North Beach/Columbus Av stop is only proposed so far. Listening to the mayoral debates, it’s also seeming as if the candidates are swaying towards budget cutting, at least in the theatre of Muni necessities.
If you have any more comments, please let me know – we’re trying to get a lot of feedback for this project; not the easiest professor to please.
I don’t get why people from SF doesn’t lobby harder for BART to create an extension on Geary and the Sunset. You pay parcel taxes into BART for a reason. Someone “represents” you for a reason.
Not only the Taxes, but also the current Fares and future Fares on built lines, which would have high ridership.
Fares provide a solid majority of BARTs operating revenue, but we are only ever looking at the taxes to decide where to build lines (and not even doing a very good job of that).
Probably because rich people tend not to like public transit. Plans for BART down Geary (and over the GG Bridge to Marin) were drawn back when BART was first proposed, but Marin County didn’t want it and neither did the wealthier Richmond residents.
Two words: David Heller.
He’s the president of the Greater Geary Boulevard Merchant Association (and owner of the Beauty Network — 22nd & Geary) and a staunch opponent to any public transit improvements along the Geary corridor (including, but not limited to, BRT or light rail). While Rose Pak fought tooth an nail FOR the blingfrastructure (as Tom Radulovich put it) that is known as the Central Subway to nowhere, David Heller has fought tooth and nail AGAINST any light rail along Geary. He is the single biggest reason you will only ever see the 38 buses along Geary.
Look, even an organization as inept as the MTA has looked at how to improve the situation down Geary. They’ve looked a number of times. Both the Bayview and Chinatown neighborhoods wanted the Central Subway. The voice of the Richmond has rejected such projects. But when the neighborhood opposes any sort of improvement so vigorously, what can you do?
FWIW, the next time you guys in the Richmond stop by the House of Bagels, Aziza, the Beach Chalet, Gaspare’s, Kitaro, the Pig & Whistle, Tommy’s, Nizario’s, Family Billiards, Gastronome, House of Flowers, the 4 Star, Richmond Produce Market, … keep in mind that the dues they pay to Mister Heller go to prevent bus rapid transit, light rail, or even a subway down Geary.
The lack of a A/B/C/D-Geary revival (yes there were that many streetcar routes down Geary at one point) is not a rich people not wanting poor people (that’s what the Marin opposition to SMART is all about) thing. It’s a David Heller being allowed to (mis)represent the Richmond thing.
If you want to see real improvements, go to any of those companies and talk to the management. Ask why they belong to a group that opposes making it easier to patronize their businesses.
This plan for burrowing under Nob Hill is very imaginative. I never have seen a plan that does anything like that, combining a Geary subway and the Central Subway in one plan. Usually Geray subway proponents just ignore the Central Subway and turn left at Geary. Now if only we could get the money to build the Geary premetro line.
As for the Central subway itself, I’ve read that the subway continues on to Washington Square so the tunnel boring machines can be removed. If there were money available, a station would be built there. Well, North Beach residents, light a fire under the Board of Supervisors to find the money!
Yup. But no station is actually planned at North Beach. And, according to Bay Citizen (28 June 2011), not only is the city going to bring the TBMs up at Columbus and Union, they’re not going keep (buy) the machines at all.
Realistically, what do you think the chances of a North Beach station being built are? What do you think the chances of anything beyond North Beach being built are?
Keep in mind that the 30 and 45 are both going to be gutted to pay for the operating costs associated with the subway to nowhere… but the 30 and 45 both run beyond Union and Columbus (for now).
IMO this is just like the surface portion (the T-Fail Street). Axe the 15, but don’t provide any replacement service to CCSF.
But, hey, it’s shiny so it must be good. Right? 🙂
P.S. Save Muni has this to say:
“By failing to serve all or even most riders of the 30 and 45 lines, the MTA’s plan would make it impossible to reduce bus operations sufficiently to cover the extra cost of the subway operation. As a result the MTA would be obliged to operate both a very expensive subway deep underground and a substantial surface bus operation; thereby digging the Muni’s fiscal hole even deeper than it already is.”
“By rerouting the T-Line from its alignment along the Embarcadero and Market Street Subway to Chinatown, the project would disconnect riders from Mission Bay, Dogpatch, Bayview-Hunters Point, Little Hollywood and Visitation Valley and the rest of southeast San Francisco from the Market Street Subway. Those with Market Street or Market Street subway destinations would ride the Central Subway past Market to a new Union Square station, and then backtrack on foot a substantial distance to Market Street or the Powell Street Station.”
You could add a “fork” in the T-Third line just north of Chinatown with one fork continuing to North Beach and the other turning into your B-Geary line. The fork could be done in the same vertically separated way that the J/N fork was done behind Safeway. Vertical separation of inbound/outbound tracks means no cross-over is needed.
Interesting idea about the fork. I’ll look into the possible drafting options. Thanks.
First of all. G-Geary? GTFO. It’s the B-Geary.
Secondly, this route makes absolutely no sense. It avoids the TL completely, requires a transfer to get to the financial district. Don’t quit your day job, buddy.
Luckily, I don’t work 🙂
While it’s true that a direct Downtown Chinatown to Richmond Chinatown trip might make the Chinatown constituency happy, there are a lot of commuters who are doing a commute to the financial district and this doesn’t go close enough to that area to be very convenient. I’d guess there are more people trying to go between those two areas every day than Chinatown to Chinatown.
I don’t see the tenderloin as being that big of a loss (aside from maybe civic center area), but maybe there are some high traffic tenderloin hotspots I’m not thinking about.
The big problem I see with the diagonal jog from North Beach to Cathedral Hill is that it tunnels under the highest part of Nob Hill. Anyone who has been to Atlanta’s Peachtree Center MARTA station knows how deep that is, and Jeff’s scheme appears to be at least 100 feet farther underground at the Nob Hill station. Then there’s the problem of convincing riders headed to the Financial District that a 15-20 minute detour would be worthwhile.
I could get behind the Central Subway if that plan called for building stubs under Union Square to handle a future subway tunnel via Geary. But that sensible idea got nowhere, because it didn’t offer anything to Rose Pak.
Alex is right: David Heller and the Richmond merchants are selfish pigs who would rather see Geary choked with surface traffic than lose a single parking space.
I have spent the last 24 years of my life riding the J-Lurch, and thankfully, next year will be the last. I’m going to miss riding light rail in my new home, but at least I won’t be riding Muni.
I think a geary metro line should split from the market street subway between Powell and Montgomery, go through the TL and go all the way to near the ocean along, of course, geary blvd. one question I have for you guys, would a elevated portion ruin the neighborhood? I figure it would be too expensive for a subway along the entire length.
I don’t think an elevated rail line would ruin the neighborhood. But I don’t live there.
I think in the long term, they won’t be able to rely on a surface street light rail. It would cross over 45 streets, and that’s just too much, I think. What do people who live close to geary think about it?
Agreed. And every surface-level line in town proves what a fiasco that tends to be. Elevate, Richmond!
Bring it up west of Park Presidio Blvd. Give the trains signal-priority on the surface.
I am beggining to think that a surface light rail would be just fine west of van ness, with a few grade seperations at major streets. Treat it like the 3rd street LR, but with a lot fewer grade crossings.
I have been advocating that the boring machines be left in place at the central subway project for future extension
The Money “saving muni” folks have identified money for Geary light rail, this could be used as matching funds to BART to tunnel under Geary
While it might be a good idea to reuse the Central Subway boring machines to bore a Geary subway, but the machines would have to be removed from the Central Subway to place them at the beginning of the Geary subway. ( Or what, tell the workers placing the Central Subway tracks to move aside so the TBMs can back up to Geary?)