Baby Strollers on Muni

Photo by visnup

Two San Francisco supervisors have proposed new laws that would force Muni operators to allow baby strollers on Muni unfolded. According to SFGate, it currently is up to the driver whether to allow strollers (news to us). More from SFGate on the current situation:

If it is allowed, the baby must be removed and the stroller must be folded up. The policy also prohibits parents with strollers from using wheelchair lifts and “special ramped platforms” for boarding a bus.

Families are apparently leaving the city, and the supervisors hope that this policy change will slow that phenomenon down.

Read the rest of the report on SFGate. And let us know what you think about this proposal.


  • Sus

    Ack…I think it’s a horrible idea. It’s not so bad if the bus isn’t crowded, but manuevering around unfolded strollers is difficult enough as it is. Folded strollers should always be allowed unless it’s rush hour, but removing reasonable discretion from the drivers and forcing all unfolded strollers by law could potentially be a nightmare.

    I don’t believe for a minute that not allowing unfolded strollers on buses have anything to do with families leaving the city.

  • Did the nudists finally make it to Stroller Valley?

  • Lisa

    Do the supervisors ever ride the bus during commute times – if they did they would realize whtat a horrible idea this is.

  • I understand both sides. My kid’s out of a stroller now, but I remember the days of kid-carriers and strollers. People on MUNI are usually not very kind to kids/babies or people with kids/babies. Glad my kid is a kid now and MUNI-savvy and can hold onto her own bar in a crowded sardine train.

  • Angie

    People seem to bring strollers on now anyway. Which the picture above shows clearly. 🙂 As always, a little common sense goes a long way. Stroller pushing folks should be allowed on, folded or not folded depending on the fullness of the coach or lrv. This isn’t what is making parents leave the city, though, it’s the fact that infant and toddler daycare in the city runs about $1200 a month. Unless mom or dad is a brain surgeon or EVP at BofA, both parents usually need to work to live in SF.

  • Sarah

    I think this is a great idea, and much needed. While I don’t think that this alone is what is causing families to leave, it contributes to a child-hostile environment.
    The main point is that babies and small children are people and deserve equal access to public transportation. Though is it possible to carry children in arms, if you have to go downtown to a doctors appointment and run some errands, you need a stroller. If you have two little ones, you need it even more so.

    When my first was a baby, we didn’t have a car and lived right at Church and Market, so we took Muni everywhere. I never took the bigger stroller on the buses, but I took it on the train all the time. And, by the way, many of the strollers made these days don’t fold up, so the rule that they should be is outdated and impractical. I had a routine I would follow on the train to keep the stroller as out of the way as possible. I would always push it into the opposite doorway so it was never in the aisle and never a danger to others. Then I just locked the stroller and stood next to it. Still I had Muni drivers hassle me about having a stroller on the train, and forget getting any help getting up or down the stairs. There is no reason why, if there is a ramp to be used, strollers can’t use it as well as wheel chairs.

    And, for those of you worried about strollers at rush hour, don’t worry. Parents with little kids don’t travel on the same schedule you do and we don’t want to fight that crowd, either.

  • What people always forget is that babies aren’t luggage — they’re people. Citizens of San Francisco who have as much right to ride public transportation as commuters do. It’s ridiculous to say that strollers should only be allowed during non-rush hours. How the hell could parents get anywhere, then?

    I know it’s irritating when something like a stroller is taking up space and you’re hanging on a strap. But that doesn’t justify prohibiting babies (and their parents) from riding public transportation, or even restricting the hours during which they can ride. And yes, this attitude is part of what makes parents want to leave San Francisco.

  • Wait’ll you have kids – then you’ll know why they said that. Muni SUCKED with a stroller.

  • Muni already allows wheelchairs, and has bike racks on the print of busses. When the city works.overtime to discourage cars and encourage use if public transit, they cannot then deny use of public transport to people who have strollers and small children just because hipsters and people who work in the financial district roll their eyes and whine and complain. If you are enough of a misanthrope that having to share public transport with people who aren’t like you bothers you that much then perhaps you should just walk instead. Or take a cab. Because in that case public transport just isn’t for you.

    • Sam Foster

      Oooh, I love the idea of mounting the strollers on the bike racks, give the little tyke the ride of their lives!

  • Simon

    I think the best compromise is smaller strollers. When my daughter was small we would ride the 1 a lot, we had a fully collapsable umbrella strollers, on the bus I could fold it up and use the straps to put it on my back like a satchel. It’s these massive strollers with the padding and the cup holders that clog things up.

  • Brooke

    Is anyone else noticing the pack of cigarettes in the stroller? That’s what should be illegal!

  • GG

    I suggest the people who support this idea take a trip to Buenos Aires or some other pedestrian-heavy city where the crowded sidewalks don’t permit the giant SUV-style strollers SF parents seem to favor. Guess what? They CARRY their babies. They have those reverse backpacks to stick the baby in, or just plain old carry them. A stroller is not a necessity.

  • Chris Ackord Rivas Panaligan-Taylor via Facebook

    I hate to break up the debate regrading small children and strollers it’s been a muni policies about strollers blocking up the aisles on buses and trains due to an event of a emergency and it’s been like that. It’s fold up the stroller and put your child in your lap and kept aisles clear if you have two or more kids the policy might let you fly.

  • Christina Castro via Facebook

    So… if this stroller policy is passes, will it mean families will start moving back to San Francisco? Somehow, I don’t think so.

  • Christina Castro via Facebook

    So… if this stroller policy passes, will families begin moving back to San Francisco? Somehow, I don’ t think so.

  • Jessica

    If you have twins who are too young to stand/walk on their own, you literally CAN’T hold them both (in a carrier or in arms), much less hold them and collapse and carry a stroller. So basically Muni is off limits to families of twins for a couple of years. Which is pretty ridiculous. Yes, buses are crowded and strollers take up a lot of space, but so do wheelchairs, and giant duffel bags, and musical instruments… overcrowded muni is a system wide problem that goes way beyond letting strollers on board.

  • Michelle

    What always drove me NUTS was when the little guy (3 years old at the time) was sacked out, completely asleep, and I was getting on a really empty #23 bus after dropping big girl off at school. Empty as in me, the driver, and 5 other people. Most drivers would make me pull him (fast asleep) out of the stroller and fold it.


  • Ursula

    We’d take our (unfoldable) stroller on the Muni trains all the time from Church. Heck, we’d still be doing it if we hadn’t moved out of SF. We were usually told that we had to take little Baby Gaga out of the stroller, W hen asking why, we were told because too many parents got out of the train and left the stroller behind by mistake. I didn’t believe it, but we were told this more than once. Truth or urban legend?

    BTW, just getting home from Amsterdam. Very stroller friendly public transit. It can be done, SF!

  • Debbie

    What’s more ridiculous is that the Muni has the means to give access to strollers using the ramps. It would generate more revenue since people with young children like to go for rides and walks. A driver has the right to deny someone with a stroller a ride? Well that just sounds like discrimination. Allowing strollers would be a nightmare? Please, 90% of the people I see on the Muni are rude and mean and wouldn’t give up their seat for a 100 year old blind person .Thats a nightmare and sad. Here is an idea, why not have a manners class to teach all of these ignorant people how to act in a civilized manner or better yet, have a car specifically for them so their misery doesn’t rub off on anyone else.

  • We take a cab whenever we take our kid out, that way we don’t really have to face that awkward situation where a ma with a collar just stares at how much trouble you are having with keeping the stroller out of their way!

  • Rosette

    I survived the 80’s folding my stroller (hated it) but now understand the need. My biggest complaint is now parents with SUV strollers are taking advantage of priority seating and the elderly are standing. They pick up the seats and park with 4 seats that the elderly could be sitting. That was yesterday, today another 4, as the bus got crowded. The drivers can’t police everyone and drive safely at the same time. I think it basically comes down to people being respectable, which is lacking in our society, if you see a crowded bus fold up the stroller, especially when school gets out or rush hour, why does everyone have to stumble over you making their way through the sea of back packs, sometimes it feels like third world. I even see teachers with students sitting in priority seating, wouldn’t that be a teachable moment of respect? So yes, I am against those huge strollers on the bus and parents move out of San Francisco because its over priced and has terrible schools.

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