Tired Of Official Inaction, Safety Vigilantes Install Bike Lane Safety Posts

Photo via SFMTRA.

A group of anonymous pedestrian and cycling safety advocates have upped their game in a challenge to city officials to do more, now, to make San Francisco streets safer. San Francisco Metropolitan Transformation Authority (or SFMTrA), a play on the name of the official SFMTA, has made the news in the past for placing traffic cones around the city to create de facto separated bikes lanes. Now Streetsblog reports that the group has now taken it to the next level: Installing semi-permanent safety posts.

"While we love the psychological impact of orange cones (drivers intuitively slow down around them), we have noticed that our orange cone installations get pretty banged up after a day or two," the group explained on its website. "Cones get knocked over or removed, and their impact dissipates over time. So we decided to test out a new tool this week."

Pictured above, the post are essentially glued to the road at JFK and Kezar Drive — a route taken by scores of cyclists heading into Golden Gate Park — and cost around $27 each. They were installed sometime early last week on the edge of an existing bike lane that was notoriously unsafe.

Here is the corner before the posts were installed:

We're tired of drivers cutting this corner at high speed. pic.twitter.com/tsm2vXMQ9Z

— SF Transformation (@SFMTrA) September 17, 2016

And here it is after the installation:

— Asumu Takikawa (@asumu) October 5, 2016

And while the route is undoubtedly now safer, the folks over at SFMTA are none too pleased. "We have no other choice but to remove the cones placed on the road by SFMTrA, because it is a code violation to place objects in the roadway and they could create conflicts for transit in the areas where they have been placed," spokesperson Paul Rose told Streetsblog.

Which, sure, but to what conflict exactly is Rose referring? The posts would definitely create a conflict for a car trying to cross into the bike lane, for example. Otherwise, it's hard to see just exactly what the problem is. And while we can be certain that city officials will undue the work of SFMTrA, we can be just as certain that the group will keep at it — until they no longer have to.

"We'd love the city government to pick this up from us," they explain. "We're doing this as a showcase of how cheap and easy this is, and we're wondering why in the world the city isn't following our lead."

Previously: Guerrilla Traffic Safety Warriors Take Reforms Into Their Own Hands After Cyclist Deaths

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