Skip to main content

Full text of "Van Ness Avenue Bus Rapid Transit Project : final environmental impact statement/environmental impact report"

See other formats


San  Francisco  Public  Library 


Government  Information  Center 
San  Francisco  Public  Library 
100  Larkin  Street,  5th  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94102 

REFERENCE  BOOK 

Not  to  be  taken  from  the  library 


SCH  No.  2007092059 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE  BUS  RAPID  TRANSIT  PROJECT 

City  and  County  of  San  Francisco,  California 


FINAL  ENVIRONMENTAL  IMPACT  STATEMENT/ 
ENVIRONMENTAL  IMPACT  REPORT 

PREPARED  PURSUANT  TO: 

National  Environmental  Policy  Act  of  1969,  §102  (42  U.S.C.  §4432);  and  Federal  Transit  Law  (49  U.S.C.  Chapter  53);  49  U.S.C.  §303 
(formally  Department  of  Transportation  Act  of  1966,  §4(0);  National  Historic  Preservation  Act  of  1966,  §  106  (16  U.S.C.  §4700; 
Executive  Order  1 1990  (Protection  of  Wetlands);  Executive  Order  1 1988  (Floodplain  Management);  and 
Executive  Order  12898  (Environmental  Justice). 


By  the 

FEDERAL  TRANSIT  ADMINISTRATION 
U.S.  DEPARTMENT  OF  TRANSPORTATION 

and  the 

SAN  FRANCISCO  COUNTY  TRANSPORTATION  AUTHORITY 


Leslie  T.  Rogers 
Region  IX  Administrator 
Federal  Transit  Administration 


JUN  1 1 2013 


Date  of  Approval 


Mai  i;i  Lomhai  <1< 

Interim  Executive  Director 
s/n  Francjsco  County  Transportation  Authority 


Date  of  Approval 


3  1223  10225  8218 


Preface 


Introduction 

The  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  (SFCTA  or  Authority)  proposes,  in  cooperation  with  the 
Federal  Transit  Administration  (FTA)  and  the  San  Francisco  Municipal  Transportation  Agency  (SFMTA),  to 
implement  bus  rapid  transit  (BRT)  improvements  along  a  2-mile  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  San  Francisco, 
California. 

This  Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ Environmental  Impact  Report  (EIS/EIR)  has  been  prepared 
pursuant  to  the  requirements  of  both  the  National  Environmental  Policy  Act  (NEPA)  and  the  California 
Environmental  Quality  Act  (CEQA).  Both  laws  require  that  projects  with  a  potential  for  significant  adverse 
environmental  effects  be  reviewed  in  an  EIS  and  EIR,  respectively.  This  Final  EIS/EIR  identifies  three  build 
alternatives  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  that  would  meet  the  project's  purpose  and  need,  as  well  as  the 
Locally  Preferred  Alternative  (LP A),  which  is  the  project  design  selected  by  the  project  proponents  to  be  carried 
forward  for  approval  and  subsequent  construction.  This  document  evaluates  the  environmental  effects  that 
would  result  from  each  project  alternative,  including  the  LPA.  This  document  also  identifies  measures  to  avoid, 
minimize,  and  mitigate  impacts. 

Who  is  leading  the  environmental  review  of  this  project? 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  is  a  collaborative  effort.  In  cooperation  with  FTA,  the  Authority  initiated  this 
project  and  has  led  the  effort  to  complete  the  environmental  review  and  preliminary  engineering  (approximately 
30  percent  design  completion).  The  Authority  has  partnered  closely  with  SFMTA,  which  will  take  the  subsequent 
lead  in  all  major  steps  of  project  delivery  following  completion  of  the  environmental  review  process,  including 
final  design,  construction,  operation,  and  maintenance.  The  Authority  has  also  partnered  closely  with  the 
California  Department  of  Transportation  (Caltrans),  which  owns  the  portion  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  within  the 
project  limits,  designated  as  U.S.  Highway  101. 

FTA  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  NEPA,  and  the  Authority  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  CEQA.  Caltrans  and  SFMTA 
participate  as  Cooperating  Agencies  under  NEPA  and  as  Responsible  Agencies  under  CEQA  in  environmental 
review.  Other  participating  agencies  include  Golden  Gate  Bridge  Highway  &  Transportation  District. 
Metropolitan  Transportation  Commission,  San  Francisco  Department  of  Public  Works,  San  Prancisco  Planning 
Department,  San  Francisco  Public  Utilities  Commission,  and  the  San  Francisco  Mayor's  Office  on  Disability. 

What  is  the  purpose  of  this  document? 

As  required  by  NEPA  and  CEQA,  this  document  informs  the  public  and  governmental  decision  makers  of 
potential  environmental  effects  associated  with  the  project  and  describes  the  measures  thai  would  be 
implemented  to  mitigate  or  lessen  those  effects  (Chapters  3,  4,  5,  6,  and  7).  This  document  will  be  used  In 
federal,  state,  regional,  and  local  agencies  to  assess  the  environmental  impacts  of  the  project  on  resources  under 
their  jurisdiction,  to  make  discretionary  decisions  regarding  the  project,  and  to  exercise  then  review  and  permit 
authority  over  the  project.  This  document  also  includes  information  on  the  cost  to  construct  and  operate  this 
project  (Chapter  9),  and  provides  an  evaluation  of  important  considerations  such  as  environmental  impacts,  need, 
feasibility,  funding,  cost  for  each  project  alternative,  and  selection  of  the  IT  A  (Chapter  10).  This  process  provides 
decision-makers  and  the  public  information  so  they  may  consider  the  likely  effects  of'  the  project  on  the 
environment,  together  with  other  important  factors  such  as  feasibility,  cost,  and  meeting  the  identified  project 
purpose  and  needs. 

The  Draft  EIS/EIR  was  made  available  for  public  review  and  comment  from  November  •»  through  December 
23,  2011;  it  was  the  subject  of  a  public  hearing  on  November  30,  201  I.  and  an  online  uchmar  on  Decembd  \ 
2011.  After  considering  public  and  agency  comments  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  identifying  the  I  V \.  the  SFCTA 


prepared  this  Final  EIS/EIR  that  includes  the  responses  to  comments  received  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  which  are 
included  as  Appendix  I  of  this  document,  and  documentation  on  the  LPA. 


What  is  the  difference  between  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  this  Final  EIS/EIR? 

In  this  Final  EIS/EIR,  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  recommend  a  preferred  alternative,  the  LPA,  to  be  carried  forward. 
At  the  compledon  of  this  environmental  process,  FTA,  SFCTA,  and  SFMTA  expect  to  be  able  to  approve  and 
certify  this  Final  EIS/EIR  and  make  a  determination  on  whether  to  implement  the  project  LPA.  An  additional 
northbound  station  at  the  intersection  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Vallejo  Street,  called  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Station  Variant,  is  under  consideration  as  a  design  variant  under  the  LPA.  The  decision  on  whether  to  include  the 
variant  will  be  made  at  the  time  of  project  approval. 

Material  that  is  new  or  has  been  substantially  revised  since  publication  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  is  indicated  by  a 
vertical  bar  in  the  margin.  Changes  between  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  the  Final  EIS/EIR  primarily  reflect 
documentation  of  the  LPA,  as  well  as  responses  to  comments  received  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  staff-initiated 
changes  to  correct  minor  errors  or  improve/ update  presentation  of  information.  These  changes  are  delineated 
with  the  vertical  margin  bar. 

Appendix  I  contains  all  comments  received  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  during  the  public  comment  period,  as  well  as 
responses  to  those  comments.  Technical  reports  are  available  on  request  by  contacting  the  SFCTA  (project 
contact  information  provided  below).In  this  Final  EIS/EIR,  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  recommend  a  preferred 
alternative,  the  LPA,  to  be  carried  forward.  At  the  completion  of  this  environmental  process,  FTA,  SFCTA,  and 
SFMTA  expect  to  be  able  to  approve  and  certify  this  Final  EIS/EIR  and  make  a  determination  whether  to 
implement  the  project  LPA. 


How  can  I  be  involved? 

The  project  proponents  encourage  members  of  the  public  to  remain  involved  with  the  project  by  reviewing  the 
Final  EIS/EIR  and  attending  the  SFCTA  Board  certification  hearing,  the  SFMTA  project  approval  meeting,  and 
other  project  meetings  such  as  Citizen  Advisory  Committee  (CAC)  meetings.  Members  of  the  public  may  also 
attend  neighborhood  and  other  stakeholder  meetings  in  which  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  is  discussed  during  the 
final  design  and  construction  phases  of  the  project.  If  the  project  is  approved,  the  SFMTA  will  distribute 
information  about  the  formation  of  a  Final  Design  and  Construction  Period  CAC  via  the  project  Web  site,  direct 
mailings,  and  electronic  newsletters.  Requests  to  be  added  to  the  project  mailing  list  to  receive  periodic  updates 
on  the  project  can  be  made  by  contacting: 

Attn:  Michael  Schwartz,  Senior  Transportation  Planner 
San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 
1455  Market  St.,  22nd  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94103 
vannessbrt@sfcta.org 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


Executive  Summary 


5.1  |  Introduction 

The  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  (SFCTA  or  Authority)  proposes,  in 
cooperation  with  the  Federal  Transit  Administration  (FT A)  and  the  San  Francisco  Municipal 
Transportation  Agency  (SFMTA),  to  implement  bus  rapid  transit  (BRT)  improvements 
along  a  2-mile  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  San  Francisco,1  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  at 
Lombard  Street  in  the  north  to  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Mission  Street  in  the  south.  This 
chapter  provides  a  brief  summary  of  the  purpose  of  and  need  for  the  proposed  project,  the 
project  alternatives,  project  performance,  a  summary  of  potential  environmental  impacts, 
and  proposed  mitigation  measures.  This  summary  should  not  be  relied  upon  for  a  thorough 
understanding  of  these  topics;  references  to  sections  of  this  Environmental  Impact 
Statement/Environmental  Impact  Report  (EIS/EIR)  with  complete  information  are 
provided  below. 

Substantive  text  changes  between  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  circulated  November  4  through 
December  23,  2011,  and  this  Final  EIS/EIR  are  demarcated  by  a  vertical  bar  in  the  margin. 
Text  changes  primarily  reflect  documentation  of  the  LP  A,  as  well  as  responses  to  comments 
received  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  staff-initiated  changes  to  correct  minor  errors  or 
improve/update  presentation  of  information.. 

5.2  |  Agencies  and  Approvals 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  is  a  collaborative  effort.  In  cooperation  with  FTA,  the 
Authority  initiated  this  project  and  has  led  the  effort  to  complete  the  environmental  review 
and  conceptual  engineering.  The  Authority  has  partnered  closely  with  SFMTA,  which  will 
take  the  subsequent  lead  in  all  major  steps  of  project  delivery  following  completion  of  the 
environmental  review  process,  including  preliminary  and  final  design,  construction, 
operation,  and  maintenance.  The  Authority  has  also  coordinated  project  development  with 
the  California  Department  of  Transportation  (Caltrans). 

FTA  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  NEPA,  and  the  Authority  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  C1X)A. 
Caltrans  and  SFMTA  participate  in  the  environmental  review  as  Cooperating  Agencies 
under  NEPA  and  as  Responsible  Agencies  under  CEQA.  Other  participating  agencies 
include  Golden  Gate  Bridge  Highway  &  Transportation  District,  Metropolitan 
Transportation  Commission,  San  Francisco  Department  of  Public  Works,  San  Francisco 
Planning  Department,  San  Francisco  Public  Utilities  Commission,  and  the  San  Francisco 
Mayor's  Office  on  Disability.  The  FTA  and  the  Authority  are  responsible  for  approving 
certifying  this  Final  EIS/EIR,  and  subsequently  the  Authority  and  SFMTA  are  responsible 
for  approving  this  project.  The  SFCTA  Board  and  the  SFMTA  would  each  approve  the 
project  through  formal  selection  of  a  preferred  alternative  as  the  project  definition.  It"  the 
project  is  approved,  the  SFMTA  would  implement  project  design,  construction,  operation, 
and  maintenance.  The  Authority  would  provide  funding  and  ensure  compliance  with  the 
Mitigation  Monitoring  and  Reporting  Program  (MMRP  -  see  Appendix  J)  and  would  also 
provide  review  and  concurrence  on  deliverables  for  the  project  during  the  design  phase.  In 
addition,  the  Authority  would  be  actively  involved  in  the  project  through  its  oversight  role  .is 
part  of  the  significant  Prop  K  funding  programmed  for  the  project  (see  Chapter  Caltrans, 
as  the  owner  of  the  facility  (Van  Ness  Avenue  is  US  101  in  the  project  study  area),  would 
provide  various  approvals  of  permits  and  documents  as  part  of  project  development  and 
construction.  See  Chapter  2  on  next  steps,  permits,  and  approvals  for  more  details  on  agencv 
roles  and  responsibilities. 


The  City  and  County  of  San  Francisco  operate  as  a  joint  government  body  within  the  same  geographical  Imundaricv 
Throughout  this  document,  this  governmental  body  and  geographic  area  may  he  referred  to  .i-  the  '(  tt\  ..I  San 
Francisco,"  "San  Francisco,"  "City,"  or  "County." 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Si 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


For  more  on  the  history  and 
context  of  the  project, 
see  Chapter  1. 


Van  Ness  Avenue  functions  as  a 
major  north  to  south  transit 
corridor  for  the  eastern  part  of 
San  Francisco,  with  more  than 
16,000  daily  boardings  on  Muni 
Routes  47  and  49. 

For  further  discussion  of  the 
project's  purpose  and  need, 
see  Chapter  1.3. 


5.3  I  Project  Location 

Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  is  proposed  in  the  northeastern  quadrant  of  the  City  and  County  of 
San  Francisco,  California.  Van  Ness  Avenue  serves  as  U.S.  Highway  101  (US  101)  through 
the  central  part  of  the  city  and  is  owned  by  Caltrans.  The  BRT  alignment  follows  Van  Ness 
Avenue/South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  a  primary  north-south  arterial  and  transit  spine,  and 
extends  approximately  2  miles  from  Mission  Street  to  Lombard  Street.  Replacement  of  the 
overhead  contact  system  (OCS)  support  pole/streetlight  network,  as  part  of  the  project, 
would  extend  from  Mission  Street  to  North  Point  Street. 

5.4  I  Project  History 

Van  Ness  Avenue  has  been  identified  as  a  high-priority  transit  improvement  corridor  in  a 
number  of  planning  studies  and  funding  actions  by  the  City,  including  the  Authority's  Four 
Corridors  Plan  (1995),  Muni's  Short-Range  Transit  Plan  (since  1996),  and  Muni's  Vision 
Plan  and  Vision  for  Rapid  Transit  (2000).  The  Authority's  Countywide  Transportation  Plan 
(2004)  called  for  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  part  of  a  citywide  BRT  Network  (defined 
initially  by  a  core  BRT  network  encompassing  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Geary  Boulevard,  and 
Potrero  Avenue).  The  Authority  conducted  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  in 
partnership  with  SFMTA,  comparing  four  BRT  alternatives  with  a  no  project  scenario.  In 
2006,  the  Authority  and  SFMTA  Boards  unanimously  approved  the  study  and  called  for 
continued  project  development.  In  2007,  the  Authority  entered  into  a  formal  partnership 
with  SFMTA  through  a  Memorandum  of  Agreement  to  develop  the  project.  That  year,  the 
Authority  initiated  joint  state  and  federal  environmental  review  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT. 
The  same  year,  the  Bay  Area  region  designated  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  as  a  regional  priority, 
and  the  Authority  requested  entry  for  the  project  into  FTA's  Small  Starts  Program.  FTA 
gave  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  a  "High"  rating  for  cost  effectiveness  ("one  of  the  Small  Starts 
project  justification  criteria),"  one  of  only  two  Small  Starts  projects  in  the  nation  at  that  time 
to  receive  such  a  designation,  and  has  received  the  same  rating  for  that  criterion  each  year 
since.  In  2009,  SFMTA  adopted  the  Transit  Effectiveness  Project  (TEP),  which  included 
Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  Muni  rapid  network  and  identified  it  as  a  high-priority  route  for 
rapid  transit  and  BRT  treatments. 

5.5  I  Project  Purpose  and  Need 

S.5.I  I  PROJECT  PURPOSE 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  major  north  to  south  corridor  for  the  eastern  part  of  San  Francisco.  It 
functions  as  a  major  transit  corridor,  with  more  than  16,000  daily  boardings  on  Muni  Routes 
47  and  49  between  Mission  and  Lombard  streets  and  more  than  38,000  total  daily  boardings 
on  those  two  routes  overall.  The  Muni  bus  routes  that  travel  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
provide  regional  transit  connections  to  Bay  Area  Rapid  Transit  (BART),  AC  Transit, 
Caltrain,  and  SamTrans.  Golden  Gate  Transit  (GGT)  also  provides  service  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue. 

As  described  in  the  previous  section,  rapid  transit  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  been  included  as 
part  of  numerous  local  and  regional  plans.  One  purpose  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Project  is  to  serve  a  critical  function  in  the  City's  rapid  transit  network  and  help  meet  the 
following  goals  of  the  network  as  defined  in  the  2004  Countywide  Transportation  Plan: 

•  Improve  transit  levels  of  service  for  existing  users  quickly  and  cost  effectively; 

•  Strengthen  the  citywide  network  of  rapid  transit  sendees; 

•  Raise  the  cost  effectiveness  of  Muni  services  and  operational  efficiency  of  the  city's 
Transit  Preferential  Streets  (TPS)  roadway  network;  and 

•  Contribute  to  the  urban  design,  identity,  and  livability  of  the  BRT  corridors  as  signature 
TPS  streets. 

The  2006  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  identified  specific  needs  for  the  corridor 
(see  Section  1.3.2)  and  established  the  purpose  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  project:  to 


S-2 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


improve  the  safety  and  operational  efficiency  of  Van  Ness  Avenue.  With  the  development 
of  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  City  hopes  to: 

•  Significantly  improve  transit  reliability,  speed,  connectivity,  and  comfort; 

•  Improve  pedestrian  comfort,  amenities,  and  safety; 

•  Enhance  the  urban  design  and  identity  of  Van  Ness  Avenue; 

•  Create  a  more  livable  and  attractive  street  for  local  residential,  commercial,  and  other 
activities;  and 

•  Accommodate  safe  multimodal  circulation  and  access  within  the  corridor. 
S.5.2  I  PROJECT  NEED 

Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  is  intended  to  address  numerous  citywide  needs,  including  reversing 
trends  towards  decbning  transit  mode  share,  lowering  transit  productivity,  and  escalating 
operating  costs.  In  addition,  BRT  improvements  were  identified  to  address  the  corridor- 
specific  purpose  described  above  and  to  meet  the  following  corridor-specific  needs: 

•  Separate  Transit  from  Auto  Traffic  to  Improve  Travel  Time  and  Service  Reliability.  Transit 
speeds  are  currently  not  competitive  with  automobiles  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Buses  now 
travel  at  half  the  speed  of  cars  (only  5  miles  per  hour  [mph])  within  the  project  area.  The 
longer  that  buses  travel  in  mixed  traffic,  the  more  irregular  the  spacing  becomes, 
causing  bus  bunching  during  peak  periods. 

•  Reduce  Delays  Associated  with  Loading  and  Unloading  and  Traffic  Signals.  Time  spent 
loading  and  unloading  passengers  and  time  spent  waiting  at  traffic  signals  accounts  for 
nearly  50  percent  of  total  travel  time  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  Improve  the  Experience  for  Transit  Patrons.  Existing  transit  sendee  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 
lacks  many  amenities  for  waiting  passengers  (e.g.,  bus  shelters  with  seating  and  real  time 
information)  and  for  passengers  onboard  vehicles  (e.g.,  poor  ride  quality).  Improvement 
of  these  conditions  would  make  the  transit  experience  attractive  to  new  riders  and  more- 
comfortable  for  existing  riders,  both  in  and  out  of  the  vehicle. 

•  Improve  the  Safety  and  Comfort  of  Pedestrians.  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  long  street  crossing 
distances,  and  most  crossings  do  not  have  pedestrian  infrastructure  such  as  countdown 
signals,  accessible  pedestrian  signals,  corner  bulbs,  and  nose  cones.  Pedestrians  also 
experience  more  delay  at  signals  than  other  users  of  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  Raise  the  Operating  Efficiency  of  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  has  the 
potential  to  carry  substantially  more  people,  more  efficiently,  than  today.  Within  the 
study  area,  automobile  trips  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  expected  to  increase  bv  up  to  7.5 
percent  by  2015  if  a  BRT  project  is  not  built,  while  the  transit  mode  share  is  expected  to 
stay  the  same  or  decline  without  a  BRT  project.  These  trends  would  result  in  an  increase 
in  congestion  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  Upgrade  Streetscape  to  Support  an  Identity  as  a  Rapid  Transit  and  Pedestrian  Environment. 
Existing  streetscape  conditions  are  deficient,  lacking  in  design  consistency  and 
pedestrian  amenities. 

•  Reduce  operations  costs.  It  buses  continue  to  operate  in  congested  traffic,  further 
degradation  in  transit  speeds  will  increase  the  operating  cost  to  maintain  Muni's  current 
service  headways. 

•  Support  the  Civic  Destinations  on  the  Corridor  and  Integrate  Transit  Infrastructure  with 
Adjacent  Land  Uses.  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  already  a  strong  market  for  transit,  due  largelj 
to  the  existing  transit-supportive  land  uses  in  the  corridor;  for  instance,  nearly  half  of 
the  households  in  the  corridor  do  not  own  automobiles.  More  jobs  and  housing  are 
being  planned  along  the  corridor  in  future  years. 

•  Accommodate  private  vehicle  circulation  and  commercial  loading.  Van  Ness  Vvenue  i^  also 
designated  as  US  101.  For  this  reason,  attainment  of  transit  and  pedestrian 
improvement  objectives  must  be  balanced  with  the  needs  to  accommodate  mixed  local 
and  through  traffic,  bicycle,  and  goods  circulation  and  access  within  the  corridor. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  july  2013 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


See  Chapter  2  for  further 
discussion  of  BRT  features  and 
a  description  of  alternatives 
included  for  analysis, 
as  well  as  alternatives 
considered  but  rejected 
through  the  scoping  process. 


The  No  Build  Alternative 

• 

would  include  only 
improvements  that  are  planned 
to  occur  regardless  of  whether 
BRT  is  implemented,  including 
pavement  rehabilitation  and 
incremental  replacement 
of  the  OCS  and  support 
poles/streetlights. 


S.6  I  Project  Description 

5.6.1  I  BRT  FEATURES 

BRT  is  a  new  mode  of  transit  in  San  Francisco  and  represents  a  package  of  features  that 
together  create  rapid  and  reliable  transit  service  for  the  benefit  of  passengers  along  a  given 
corridor,  and  the  transit  system  as  a  whole.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  includes: 

•  Dedicated  bus  lanes  separated  from  regular  (mixed-flow)  traffic  to  reduce  delays  and 
improve  reliability. 

•  Level  or  near  level  boarding  that  minimizes  the  horizontal  and  vertical  gap  between  the 
platform  edge  and  vehicle  door  threshold  to  decrease  passenger  loading  time,  increase 
service  reliability,  and  improve  access  for  all  users. 

•  Consolidated  transit  stops  to  reduce  delays  due  to  existing  stop  spacing  that  does  not 
meet  Muni  standards  (stop  locations  and  details  shown  in  Chapter  2,  Table  2-3). 

•  High-quality  stations,  each  with  an  elevated  platform,  canopy  for  weather  protection, 
comfortable  seating,  vehicle  arrival  time  information,  landscaping,  and  other  amenities. 
Platforms  would  be  large  enough  to  safely  and  comfortably  accommodate  waiting 
passengers,  long  enough  to  load  two  BRT  vehicles,  and  designed  to  provide  Americans 
with  Disabilities  Act  (ADA)  accessibility. 

•  Proof  of  Payment  allowing  passengers  to  swipe  their  fare  cards  either  on  the  platform 
before  the  buses  arrive  or  on-bus  once  boarded,  allowing  for  all-door  loading,  and 
reducing  passenger  loading  time. 

•  Traffic  signal  optimization  using  technology  upgrades  to  allow  real-time  traffic 
management  and  optimal  signal  timing. 

•  Transit  Signal  Priority  (TSP)  to  recognize  bus  locations  and  provide  additional  green  light 
time  for  buses  approaching  intersections  and  reduce  delay  at  red  lights. 

•  Fewer  left-turn  pocket  lanes  for  mixed-flow  traffic  by  eliminating  left  turns  at  certain 
intersections  to  reduce  conflicts  with  the  BRT  operation. 

•  Pedestrian  safety  enhancements,  including  enhanced  median  refuges,  nose  cones,  and  curb 
bulbs  to  reduce  crossing  distances  at  intersections  and  increase  safety.  Accessible 
pedestrian  signals  with  crossing  time  countdowns  would  be  installed  at  all  signalized 
intersections  in  the  project  corridor. 

5.6. 2  I  PROJECT  ALTERNATIVES 

Based  on  the  findings  of  the  2006  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  and  input 
received  during  the  project  scoping  process,  three  build  alternatives  were  defined  and 
recommended  for  NEPA/CEQA  analysis.  A  No  Build  Alternative  was  also  defined,  which 
considers  planned  and  funded  improvement  projects  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor 
that  will  be  implemented  by  2015  (opening  year  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project)  or 
2035  (the  long-term  horizon  or  "design"  year).  The  project  alternatives  are  described  in  the 
following  subsections  and  further  in  Chapter  2,  along  with  alternatives  considered  but 
rejected  during  the  public  scoping  process. 

Alternative  1:  No  Build 

Alternative  1,  the  No  Build  Alternative,  would  include  only  improvements  that  are  planned 
to  occur  regardless  of  whether  BRT  is  implemented,  including  pavement  rehabilitation  and 
incremental  replacement  of  the  OCS  and  support  poles/ streetlights.  New,  low-floor  buses, 
on-bus  proof  of  payment,  and  real-time  passenger  information  at  major  bus  stops  would 
result  in  minor  improvements  to  transit  service.  Pedestrian  improvements  at  select  locations 
would  include  curb  ramp  upgrades,  countdown  signals,  and  accessible  signals.  Figure  S-l 
provides  a  typical  cross  section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  it  exists  today,  and  this  would 
remain  the  same  under  the  No  Build  Alternative. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


Executive  Summary 


Figure  S-i:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Existing  Van  Ness  Avenue 


Lane     Trifle  lane    Tr*nc  Lm 


Build  Alternatives 

The  three  build  alternatives  would  include  all  of  the  BRT  features  listed  above  in  S.6.1,  but 
with  differing  lane  configurations  and  associated  station  placement  at  the  intersections.  The 
following  subsections  summarize  the  differences  between  the  three  alternatives,  while 
Chapter  2  describes  each  alternative  in  detail.  Appendix  A  contains  detailed  plan  drawings 
for  each  build  alternative.  Under  all  build  alternatives,  GGT  vehicles  that  currently  operate 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  operate  in  the  transitway  and  use  select  BRT  stations 
exclusively. 


The  three  build  alternatives 
would  include  all  of  the 
BRT  features  but  with 
differing  lane  configurations 
and  associated  station 
placement  at  the  intersections. 


Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Build  Alternative  2  (see  Figure  S-2)  would  provide  a  dedicated  bus  lane,  or  transitwav,  in  the 
right-most  lane  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  located  adjacent  to  the  existing  curbside  street  parking 
area.  The  transitway  would  be  traversable  for  mixed-flow  traffic  that  would  enter  the 
transitway  to  complete  a  right  turn  or  to  parallel  park.  Under  Build  Alternadve  2,  BRT 
stations  would  be  located  within  the  curbside  parking  area  as  curb  extensions. 

Figure  S-2:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  2 


I' 


£3k  GT  '13  St 


WT8MM  ~BR      Vwifo."  <o.' 

p«t*g    TrMMy     Tftteljn*  TrtfkUnt 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians 

Build  Alternadve  3  (sec  Figure  S-3)  would  provide  a  transitwav  comprised  of  two  side-bv- 
side,  dedicated  bus  lanes  located  in  the  center  of  the  roadway  in  between  two  medians.  The 
transitway  would  be  separated  from  mixed-flow  traffic  by  a  4-foot-widc  median,  widening  to 
a  9-foot-wide  median  at  BRT  stations,  allowing  right-side  boarding. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  )uly  2013 


Executive  Summary 


For  detailed  analysis  of  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project 
performance  for  all 
transportation  modes,  see 
Chapter  3.  Analysis  of  benefits 
and  impacts  of  each  alternative 
across  all  performance  measures 
is  provided  in  Chapter  10. 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


Figure  S-3:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  3 


ft 


B3      Srwig"uMnM>  LCdEii1  KffSaE) 

LM      ToAcLm  TraflcUP* 


L  »  .1.  10  .1. — u — ~  t  „  !<  • 

BRTSMon'  Mta     Uadnoo    Pirtto  Sara* 


MMan     Tnffcura     TnflcUM  un 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median 

Build  Alternadve  4  (see  Figure  S-4)  would  provide  a  transitway  in  the  center  of  the  roadway 
comprised  of  a  single,  14-foot-wide  median  flanked  by  dedicated  northbound  (NB)  and 
southbound  (SB)  bus  lanes.  Stadon  platforms  would  be  located  on  the  single  center  median, 
requiring  left-side  passenger  boarding  and  alighting,  as  well  as  left-side  doors  on  vehicles.  All 
stations  would  have  this  single-median  design,  with  the  exception  of  the  BRT  stations 
proposed  at  Geary/O'Farrell,  which  would  utilize  a  dual-median  configuration  similar  to 
that  proposed  under  Build  Alternative  3  to  accommodate  GGT  buses  that  are  strictly  right- 
side  boarding.  All  GGT  stops,  except  Geary/O'Farrell,  along  the  BRT  corridor  would  be 
eliminated  in  Build  Alternative  4.  At  the  northern  end  of  the  corridor,  GGT  vehicles  would 
be  routed  along  a  portion  of  Chestnut  Street  to  accommodate  an  additional  stop  at  the 
corner  of  Chestnut  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue.  At  the  southern  end,  GGT  buses  would 
continue  to  stop  at  the  intersections  of  McAllister  and  Polk  streets  (NB)  and  Golden  Gate 
Avenue  and  Polk  Street  (SB).  A  second  GGT  stop  within  the  BRT  runningway  at  Union 
Street  is  also  possible. 

Figure  S-4:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  4 


"^n>«    IMta  Wdk 

una     Traflcum    TnAcuna  ImMi 


Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B 

Both  center-running  alternatives  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4)  contain  a  design  option 
referred  to  as  the  Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B,  or  Design  Option  B.  This 
design  option  would  eliminate  all  but  one  NB  left  turn  (at  Lombard  Street)  and  all  but  one 
SB  left  turn  (at  Broadway)  in  the  project  corridor. 

S.7  I  Alternatives  Analyzed  and  the  LPA 

As  part  of  the  alternatives  analysis  required  by  NEPA,  the  lead  agencies  are  required  to  analyze 
the  environmental  impacts  of  all  reasonable  alternatives.  Three  build  alternatives  and  a  design 
option  for  center-lane  Alternatives  3  and  4  were  analyzed  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  (see  Chapter  2 
for  a  description  of  alternatives),  which  was  circulated  for  public  review  and  comment  from 
November  4  through  December  23,  2011.  As  required  by  NEPA,  an  approved  EIS  must 


S-6 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


include  the  selection  of  a  locally  preferred  alternative  (LP A).  The  three  build  alternatives 
considered  consisted  of  one  side-lane  option  (Alternative  2)  and  two  center-lane  options 
(Alternatives  3  and  4),  as  well  as  a  reduced  left-turn  variant  (Design  Option  B).  Based  on 
technical  analyses  presented  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  as  well  as  agency,  stakeholder,  and  public 
input  received  during  circulation  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  and  results  of  risk  analyses 
performed  by  a  steering  committee  of  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  staff,  the  SFMTA  and  SFCTA 
jointly  recommended,  and  subsequently  selected,  the  LPA  as  a  center  -lane  BRT  with  right  - 
side  boarding/ single  median  and  limited  left  turns  for  inclusion  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR.  The 
LPA  includes  features  of  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  as  described  in  greater  detail  in  the 
following  subsection.  Section  10.3  describes  the  process  of  how  the  LPA  was  selected. 

S.7.I  I  LPA:  CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE  BOARDING/SINGLE  MEDIAN  AND 
LIMITED  LEFT  TURNS 

The  LPA  is  a  combination  and  refinement  of  the  center-running  alternatives  with  limited  left 
turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B)  and  is  referred  to  as  Center-Lane 
BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding/ Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns.  The  LPA  retains  the 
high-performance  features  of  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (e.g.,  maximum  transit  priority, 
fewest  conflicts),  while  avoiding  the  need  to  acquire  left- right  door  vehicles  or  remove  the 
entire  existing  median.  Under  the  LPA,  BRT  vehicles  would  run  alongside  a  single  median 
for  most  of  the  corridor,  similar  to  Build  Alternative  4;  however,  at  station  locations,  BRT 
vehicles  would  transition  to  the  center  of  the  roadway,  allowing  right-side  loading  at  station 
platforms  as  under  Build  Alternative  3.  Figure  S-5  depicts  the  LPA  on  a  block  without  a 
station  and  a  block  with  a  station.  The  LPA  incorporates  Design  Option  B,  the  left-turn 
removal  design  option  that  would  eliminate  all  left  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  between 
Mission  and  Lombard  streets  with  the  exception  of  a  southbound  (SB)  (two-lane)  left  turn  at 
Broadway  Street.  Incorporation  of  Design  Option  B  would  provide  the  greatest  transit  travel 
time  benefits,  reduce  the  weaving  associated  with  the  transitions  buses  must  make  between 
station  locations  and  blocks  without  stations,  and  aid  with  the  flow  of  north-south  traffic 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  LPA  also  includes  a  design  variant  to  be  decided  at  the  time  of 
project  approval.  The  design  variant  is  a  NB  transit  station  at  Vallejo  Street,  referred  to  as 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 


Figure  S-5:  LPA:  Center-Running  BRT  with  Right-Side  Loading/Single  Median  and 
Limited  Left  Turns 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


Relative  to  the 
No  Build  Alternative, 
the  LPA  would: 

•    Reduce  transit  travel  time 
by  33  percent, 
reducing  the  travel  time  gap 
between  autos  and  transit  by 
as  much  as  50  percent 

•    Incorporate  features  to 
increase  pedestrian  safety 
at  intersections. 

Carry  more  people  per  hour 
than  each  remaining  mixed 
traffic  lane,  resulting  in 
more  efficient  operations. 
Reinvestment  of  travel  time 
savings  into  more  frequent 
bus  service  could  raise 
person  throughput  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue 
by  8  to  12  percent. 


S.8  I  Project  Performance  in  Meeting  Purpose  and  Need 

To  help  support  decision  making,  this  EIS/EIR  documents  BRT  performance  against  a 
number  of  measures  related  to  the  Purpose  and  Need  described  in  Section  S-4  and  Chapter 
1.  For  more  detailed  analysis  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  performance  for  all 
transportation  modes,  see  Chapter  3.  Analysis  of  benefits  and  impacts  of  each  alternative 
across  all  performance  measures  is  provided  in  Chapter  10. 

5.8.1  IMPROVED  TRANSIT  PERFORMANCE  AND  RIDERSHIP 

BRT  would  significantlv  improve  transit  travel  time,  reliability,  passenger  comfort,  and 
ridership  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  In  2015,  relative  to  Alternative  1  (No  Build  Alternative), 
the  LPA  would  reduce  transit  travel  time  by  33  percent,  reducing  the  travel  time  gap 
between  autos  and  transit  by  as  much  as  50  percent  (Source:  V7.SSIM  model).2  Reliability  for 
the  LPA  would  also  improve;  the  likelihood  of  a  bus  unexpectedly  stopping  (excluding 
loading  and  unloading  passengers)  would  decrease  by  52  percent,  allowing  more  consistent 
travel  times  (Source:  VISSIM  model).  Improved  station  facilities  with  level  or  near  level 
boarding,  additional  amenities,  and  real-time  arrival  information  would  also  improve  transit 
passengers'  comfort.  W  ith  the  LPA,  transit  boardings  for  Muni  47  and  49  lines  throughout 
their  routes  would  increase  by  3"  percent  with  BRT  relative  to  Alternative  1,  and  up  to  half 
of  the  additional  riders  could  be  former  drivers  (Source:  SF-CHAMP).  With  implementation 
of  the  LPA,  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  would  increase  the  street's  transit  mode  share  to  44 
percent  of  all  motorized  trips,  relative  to  30  percent  in  Alternative  1  (Source:  SF-CHAMP). 
See  Section  3.2  for  additional  information  on  transit  performance. 

5.8. 2  ENHANCED  PEDESTRIAN  SAFETY  AND  COMFORT 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  incorporate  features  to  increase  pedestrian  safety 
at  intersections,  including  pedestrian  countdown  signals,  enhanced  median  refuges,  and 
additional  curb  bulbs.  These  features  would  shorten  crossing  distances,  allowing  nearly  all 
intersections  to  meet  local  and  federal  standards  for  minimum  pedestrian  crossing  speed, 
while  giving  pedestrians  more  information  about  when  it  is  safe  to  cross.  New  ADA  curb 
ramps  and  Accessible  Pedestrian  Signals  (APS)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  improve 
safety  and  access  for  all  users.  Pedestrians  would  also  benefit  from  wider  effective  sidewalk 
widths  in  many  locations,  pedestrian-scale  lighting,  and  additional  median  trees  and 
landscaping  and  tree  plantings  along  the  sidewalk.  See  Section  3.4  for  more  information  on 
nonmotorized  transportation  performance. 

5.8. 3  IMPROVED  OPERATIONAL  EFFICIENCY  AND  ACCOMMODATION  OF  PRIVATE 
VEHICLES  AND  COMMERCIAL  LOADING 

By  the  most  conservative  estimates,  BRT  would  maintain  the  same  levels  of  person- 
throughput  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  relative  to  Alternative  1  (No  Build  Alternative).  The 
dedicated  transit  lane  would  carry  more  people  per  hour  than  each  remaining  mixed  traffic 
lane;  however,  by  reinvesting  saved  operating  resources  into  more  frequent  bus  service,  daily 
person  throughput  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  could  increase  by  as  much  as  8  percent  in  certain 
locations.  If  intangibles  such  as  marketing,  branding,  permanence,  and  quality  are  also 
considered  (as  they  are  for  rail  projects),  daily  person  throughput  could  increase  by  as  much 
as  12  percent  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  certain  locations  (Source:  SF-CHAMP). 

San  Francisco's  grid  network  supports  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  in  many  ways. 
The  majority  of  drivers  who  would  drive  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  the  No  Build 
Alternative  in  2015  would  continue  to  drive  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  any  of  the  build 
alternatives  (68  to  81  percent  for  locations  north  of  Hayes  Street,  depending  on  the 
location),  including  the  LPA  (Source:  CHS,  2013).  Of  the  remaining  19  to  32  percent,  many 
would  continue  to  drive  on  a  street  within  two  blocks  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  —  mosdy 


I    :    The  proposed  project  is  scheduled  to  begin  service  in  2016  and  revenue  operations  arc  anticipated  in  2018. 


S-8 


San  Francisco  County  Transportatfon  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE 


Executive  Summary 


SUMMARY 


Franklin  Street  (Source:  CHS,  2013);  approximately  a  third  would  switch  modes  to  transit  or  j 
change  their  travel  time  of  day  or  destination;  and  a  small  portion  would  continue  driving  on 
other  parallel  streets  throughout  San  Francisco  (Source:  SF-CHAMP).  Due  in  part  to  the 
many  alternative  options  for  current  drivers  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  implementation  of 
BRT  does  not  increase  the  net  number  of  intersections  operating  at  level  of  service  (LOS)  E 
or  F  in  2015  when  compared  with  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  that  same  year  (Source:  CHS, 
2013).  See  Section  3.1  for  additional  information  on  multimodal  system  performance.  See 
Table  S-l  at  the  end  of  this  summary  and  Section  3.3  for  details  on  traffic  circulation  and 
impacts.  Section  3.3  also  discusses  how  the  traffic  effects  of  converting  mixed-traffic  lanes 
to  dedicated  bus  lanes  could  be  managed  through  signal  timing,  driver  information, 
improvement  of  alternative  routes,  and  implementation  of  numerous  citywide  transportation 
improvement  and  system  management  efforts  that  are  currently  underway. 

5.8.4  |  UPGRADED  STREETSCAPE 

A  main  component  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  is  to  provide  a  consistent 
landscaped  median  treatment  and  pedestrian  lighting,  as  well  as  establish  a  more  unified 
identity  for  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  one  of  the  City's  most  prominent  arterials  and  a  visible 
rapid  transit  service.  The  improved  streetscape  features  of  the  LPA  would  enhance  the 
amenity  and  urban  design  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  a  gateway  into  the  city. 

5.8.5  I  SUPPORT  OF  CIVIC  DESTINATIONS  IN  THE  CORRIDOR  AND  INTEGRATE 
TRANSIT  INFRASTRUCTURE  WITH  ADJACENT  LAND  USES 

The  improved  streetscape  features  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  enhance  the 
amenity  and  urban  design  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  a  gateway  into  the  city  while  achieving 
multimodal  transportation  goals.  In  addition  to  serving  existing  transit  demand,  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  meant  to  support  recently  approved  nearby  high-density  mixed-use 
development  plans.  The  project  will  also  transform  the  street  into  a  vibrant  pedestrian 
promenade  that  supports  the  Civic  Center  and  commercial  uses.  Rapid  transit  service  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  would  contribute  to  the  City's  transit-oriented  development  efforts  by 
providing  high-quality,  reliable,  comfortable  transit  that  improves  access  to  destinations 
within  the  corridor  and  elsewhere  in  the  city.  Placement  of  BRT  infrastructure  would 
demonstrate  an  investment  in  the  corridor  and  provides  a  greater  sense  of  permanence  than 
typical  bus  facilities.  Such  facilities  can  support  place-making  and  livability,  while  helping  to 
stimulate  further  transit-oriented  development. 

5.8.6  I  INCREASED  TRANSIT  OPERATIONAL  EFFICIENCY  AND  CAPITAL  COST 
EFFECTIVENESS 

Muni  operating  resources  in  the  BRT  corridor  could  see  a  savings  of  16  to  32  percent  with 
BRT  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  because  fewer  buses  could  provide  the  same 
service  frequency.  The  resulting  savings  could  be  reinvested  in  additional  service  00  Van 
Ness  Avenue  or  elsewhere  in  the  Muni  system.  See  Chapter  9  for  more  information  on 
Operations  Costs  for  each  of  the  alternatives.  As  discussed  in  the  Environmental 
Alternatives  Screening  Report  prepared  after  scoping,  the  BRT  alternatives  provide  a  cost- 
effective  way  to  deliver  transit  benefits  to  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  Sec  Section  S-9 
and  Chapter  9  for  more  information  on  Project  Cost  and  Funding. 

S.9  I  Project  Cost  and  Funding 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  LPA  is  estimated  to  cost  SI 26  million.  Two  sources  .ire 
planned  to  provide  a  significant  portion  of  the  funding  for  the  project: 

•  Small  Starts  ($74,999,999  million).  This  program,  w  hic  h  is  administered  In  I  l  \.  pto\  id<  s 
competitive  grants  for  new  transit  projects  whose  total  capital  costs  do  not  exceed  S250 
million.  The  maximum  grant  award  is  $74,9<)9,W9  million.  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  have 
requested  $74,999,999  million  in  Small  Starts  funding  for  the  project.  In  2012,  the 
project  was  one  of  three  Small  Starts  potential  projects  in  the  nation  to  receive  .1  High 


I 


As  discussed  in  the 
I  Environmental  Alternatives 
Screening  Report,  BRT  provides 
a  cost  effective  way  to  deliver 
transit  benefits  to  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


Van  Ness  BRT  would  result  iir 
traffic  circulation  impacts  at 
6  to  11  intersections  in  the 
corridor,  primarily  along 
Franklin  and  Cough  streets, 
but  no  significant  impacts  at 
other  intersections,  or  to  transit 
or  nonmotorized  transportation. 
If  implemented,  mitigation 
measures  could  reduce 
traffic  impacts. 


rating  for  cost  effectiveness  and  the  only  Small  Starts  project  in  the  nation  to  receive  a 
Medium  -  High  rating  for  "project  justification".  (Source:  Fiscal  Year  2014  FTA  Annual 
Report  on  Funding  Recommendations)3. 
•  Proposition  K  Sales  Tax  ($20.5  million).  In  November  2003,  San  Francisco  voters  approved 
Proposition  K  (Prop  K),  approving  a  new  30-year  Expenditure  Plan  and  extending  the 
local  half-cent  transportation  sales  tax.  The  Board-adopted  2009  Proposition  K  Strategic 
Plan  programs  approximately  $20.5  million  in  sales  tax  funds  to  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
BRT  Project.  The  Authority  will  examine  the  Prop  K  programming  during  the  next 
Strategic  Plan  update  to  determine  if  more  Prop  K  funds  can  be  used  for  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT  project. 

The  annual  operations  and  maintenance  costs  associated  with  the  LPA  are  significantly 
lower  than  those  of  the  No  Build  Alternative,  with  cost  savings  estimated  at  28  percent.  The 
savings  are  attributed  to  the  travel  time  benefits  of  the  BRT,  requiring  fewer  vehicles  to 
provide  a  similar  amount  of  service.  See  Chapter  9  for  more  information  on  Project  Cost 
and  Funding;  Section  9.1.3  includes  a  broader  discussion  of  funding  sources. 

S.10  I  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts 

Table  S-l  summarizes  the  environmental  impacts  that  would  result  due  to  each  project 
alternative,  the  significance  of  the  impacts,  and  proposed  mitigation  measures.  Under 
CEQA  significance  criteria,  the  proposed  project  would  result  in  no  impacts  or  less  than 
significant  impacts  relative  to  the  following  environmental  factors: 

Agricultural  Resources 
Greenhouse  Gas  (GHG)  Emissions 
Mineral  Resources 

Population,  Housing,  and  Recreation 
Wind  and  Shadow 
Hydrology  and  Water  Quality 
Land  Use 

Noise  and  Vibration 

With  implementation  of  mitigation  measures,  the  project  would  result  in  less  than  significant 
impacts  relative  to  the  following  environmental  factors: 

Aesthetics/ Visual  Resources 
Air  Quality 
Biological  Resources 
Community  Impacts 
Cultural  Resources 
Geology  and  Soils 
Hazardous  Waste  and  Materials 
Public  Services 

Transit  Crowding  (part  of  Chapter  3,  Transportation  Analysis) 
Utilities  and  Service  Systems 

Implementation  of  any  of  the  build  alternatives  may  result  in  significant  and  unavoidable 
impacts  in  one  environmental  category:  traffic  circulation.  Traffic  circulation  impacts  would 
occur  by  2035  at  1 1  intersections  in  the  corridor  for  the  LPA,  primarily  along  Franklin  and 
Gough  streets.  If  implemented,  mitigation  measures  could  reduce  traffic  impacts  to  less  than 
significant  levels.  However,  the  mitigation  measures  identified  in  Section  3.3.4,  while 
reducing  localized  traffic  delays  in  the  short  term,  may  ultimately  be  found  by  the  Authority 
Board  to  not  be  feasible  due  to  policy  conflicts,  specifically  the  need  to  balance  traffic 


3  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  received  a  score  of  "High"  on  all  three  project  justification  criteria  where  scoring 
measures  have  been  defined.  For  the  three  criteria  where  measures  have  not  yet  been  defined,  all  projects  were  assigned 
a  rating  of  "medium."  In  all  previous  annual  funding  recommendations  since  2007  (where  all  measures  had  been 
defined),  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  has  received  a  score  of  "High"  for  project  justification,  the  only  Small  Starts 
Project  in  the  nation  to  receive  such  a  designation. 


S-io 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


circulation  with  pedestrian  and  transit  circulation  and  safety.  In  addition,  these  engineering 
techniques  function  by  increasing  automobile  traffic  capacity  and  are  unlikely  to  be  effective 
in  the  long  term  due  to  the  risk  of  induced  demand.  Section  3.3.4  provides  a  more 
comprehensive  description  of  those  intersections  that  would  be  significantly  impacted. 

No  unmitigable,  significant  impacts  are  projected  for  transit  or  to  nonmotorized 
transportation.  A  detailed  discussion  of  impacts,  and  associated  improvement  and  mitigation 
measures  is  provided  in  Chapter  3,  Transportation  Analysis,  and  Chapter  4,  Affected 
Environment,  Environmental  Consequences,  and  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or 
Mitigation  Measures.  Analysis  of  cumulative  impacts  is  presented  in  Chapter  5. 

S.n  I  Areas  of  Controversy 

Primary  areas  of  controversy  raised  by  the  public  during  review  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR 
consist  of:  traffic  congestion  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  diversion  onto  parallel  streets  in  the 
project  vicinity,  including  how  increased  traffic  congestion  would  affect  air  quality  and  noise 
in  the  project  area;  the  project's  effects  on  trees  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  the  desire  to 
preserve  trees;  the  effects  of  relocating  existing  bus  stops  and  stop  consolidation  (limiting  of 
stops);  and  concern  about  how  the  project  alternatives  were  defined  and  that  there  should 
be  more  consideration  of  less  costly  express  bus  alternatives.  A  more  detailed  discussion  of 
areas  of  controversy  is  provided  in  Section  7.7. 

5.12  |  Locally  Preferred  Alternative  Selection 

As  described  in  Section  10.3,  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  for  the  proposed  project  was  made 
available  to  the  public  for  review  from  November  4  through  December  23,  201 1.  During  the 
Draft  EIS/EIR  review  period,  the  project  team  solicited  further  public  and  agency  input  on 
the  alternatives  analysis,  including  input  on  the  selection  of  an  LPA,  through  a  public 
hearing,  webinar,  and  stakeholder  meetings.  In  particular,  input  on  those  performance 
indicators  that  are  directly  related  to  the  project  purpose  were  sought.  Once  input  was 
gathered  from  all  of  the  parties,  including  comments  received  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR, 
SFCTA  and  SFMTA  staff  proposed  an  LPA.  An  LPA  Report  was  prepared,  including  a 
summary  of  public  and  agency  input,  analysis  of  alternatives'  performance,  and  the 
recommended  LPA  (SFCTA,  2012).  The  LPA  Report  was  presented  to  the  SFCTA  and 
SFMTA  Boards  for  adoption,  and  in  summer  2012  was  unanimously  approved  by  the  Board 
of  Commissioners,  which  authorized  the  Executive  Director  to  analyze  the  Staff 
Recommended  LPA  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR.  The  LPA  is  a  refinement  of  the  center-running 
alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B),  and  is 
referred  to  as  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left 
Turns.  The  staff-recommended  LPA  combines  features  of  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  in  such 
a  way  that  it  reduces  project  risk  associated  with  needing  to  rebuild  the  entire  median  (and 
associated  environmental,  utilities,  and  cost  impacts)  and  needing  to  procure  dual-side  door 
vehicles  (cost  and  operations  impacts)  without  compromising  the  ability  of  the  project  to 
fulfill  the  purpose  and  need.  Additional  detail  about  the  LPA  selection  process  is  pr.n  ided  in 
Sections  10.3.2  through  10.3.8. 

5.13  |  Project  Timeline 

This  Final  EIS/EIR  was  completed  following  selection  of  the  I.PA.  The  Final  LIS  1  IR 
includes  all  comments  received  during  the  public  review  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  (Appendix 
I),  responds  to  those  comments,  documents  the  I.PA,  and  proposes  mitigation  measures  tor 
significant  impacts.  The  next  steps  include  certification  of  this  Final  KIR  by  the  SI'CT  \  and 
approval  of  this  Final  KIS  by  the  FTA,  publication  of  a  NEPA  Notice  of  Availability  of  this 
Final  EIS  in  the  Federal  Register,  and  subsequent  approval  of  a  Record  of  Decision  (ROD)  by 
the  FTA.  The  Final  EIS/EIR  will  be  distributed  to  agencies  that  previously  Commented  on 
the  Draft  EIS/KIR.  FTA  may  sign  the  ROD  no  less  than  30  days  after  the  Notice  of 
Availability  is  published  in  the  Federal  Register. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


The  SFCTA  Board  of.  Commissioners  and  SFMTA  Board  of  Directors  would  next  approve 
the  project  to  pursue  final  design  and  construction  phases  of  the  LPA.  A  Statement  of 
Overriding  Considerations  is  prepared,  which  is  a  CEQA  findings  document  that  includes  a 
summary  of  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  findings  identified  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR  and 
explains  the  justification  for  approving  the  project  despite  these  impacts.  The  Statement  of 
Overriding  Considerations  is  presented  at  the  time  of  project  approval  as  part  of  the  CEQA 
Findings.  Inclusion  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  in  the  project  design  would 
be  determined  at  the  time  of  project  approval  and  documented  in  the  CEQA  Findings  and 
Statement  of  Overriding  Considerations. 

Construction  of  the  proposed  project  is  planned  to  begin  in  2016  and  last  20  months.  BRT 
service  is  anticipated  to  begin  in  2018. 

S.14  I  Opportunities  for  Public  Input 

The  project  proponents  encourage  members  of  the  public  to  remain  involved  with  the 
project  by  reviewing  the  Final  EIS/EIR  and  attending  the  SFCTA  Board  certification 
hearing,  attending  project  meetings  with  neighborhood  groups  and  other  stakeholders 
throughout  the  final  design  and  construction  phases  of  the  project,  visiting  the  project 
website  (www.vannessbrt.org).  and  subscribing  to  the  project  e-mail  newsletter  and  mailing 
list.  Through  these  communication  channels,  the  SFMTA  will  distribute  information  about 
the  upcoming  formation  of  the  Final  Design  and  Construction  Period  Citizen  Advisory 
Committee  (CAC),  in  addition  to  briefings  to  neighborhood  and  other  local  organizations.  A 
list  of  upcoming  meetings  is  made  available  on  the  project  Web  site:  www.vannessbrt.org 
and  will  be  publicized  through  the  project  electronic  newsletter.  Requests  to  be  added  to  the 
newsletter  and  mailing  list  may  be  made  by  contacting: 

Attn:  Michael  Schwartz 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 
1455  Market  St.,  22nd  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94103 
vannessbrt@sfcta.org 


S-12 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


Table  S-i:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  M 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREA/ 
IMPACTS 


NO-BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2: 
SIDE-LANE  BRT  WITH  STREfrER 


D  ALTERNATIVE  4: 

LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
BOARDINC  AND  SINGLE 
IAN 


Aesthetics/ 
Visual  Resources 
Construction 


No  im pact- 


Less  than  significars  than  significant 


ne  as  Build 
2. 


Less  than  significaifiSt 
activity,  such  as  sig 
require  artificial  ligh^rnative 
light  and  glare  imp 
Improvement  Mea 
IM-AE-Ci:  During  f 
orderly  manner,  rer 
IM-AE-C2:  To  redu 
contractor  to  direct 
toward  residences, 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 


LPA 

(COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4)' 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Aesthetics/ 
Visual  Resources 
Operation 


No  impact. 


Less  than  significars  than  significant 


Mitigation  measur 
resulting  from  the  f  ne 
network  with  taller 


P>act  with  mitigation. 


accommodate  the  (cent  of  exist 


as  Build 
;rnative  2,  except  15 
ting 

reconstruction  ofths  would  be 

which  wolioved.  The  same 

tion  measures  as 
jld  Alternative  2 
be 

ilemented. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  4. 


>th£jld 


sidewalk, 

Mitigation  Measurt1^1 
M-AE-i:  Design  sid1' 
properties  and  ot 
M-AE-2:  Design  an 
aesthetic  function  c 
(2)  assures  a  unifot 
with  the  existing  vis 
streetlight  network, 
network  to  comply 
be  compatible  with 
designating  ordinal 
M-AE-3:  To  the  ext« 
project  landscape  c 
sidewalk  plantings 
and  a  tree-lined  cor 
provides  a  sense  of 
for  visibility.  The  pr 
Commission,  as  we 
ROW,  which  ensure 
design  plan  within 
City  Hall  Preservati 
HPC  for  the  landsc 
M-AE-4:  Design  an 
for  the  Van  Ness  As 
Plan,  and  San  Frani 
with  the  goal  of  pre 
M-AE-5:  Design  ani 
wind  turbines,  and 
Francisco  General 
Center  Historic  Dis 
Properties,  Plannin 
applicable  guidelini 
Review  and  approv, 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2,  except 
22  percent  of 
existing  trees  would 
be  removed.  The 
same  mitigation 
measures  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would 
be  implemented. 


The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  imp 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


S  11 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY 


The  SFCTA  Board  of  Commissioners  and  SFMTA  Board  of  Directors  would  next  approve 
the  project  to  pursue  final  design  and  construction  phases  of  the  LPA.  A  Statement  of 
Overriding  Considerations  is  prepared,  which  is  a  CEQA  findings  document  that  includes  a 
summary  of  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  findings  identified  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR  and 
explains  the  justification  for  approving  the  project  despite  these  impacts.  The  Statement  of 
Overriding  Considerations  is  presented  at  the  time  of  project  approval  as  part  of  the  CEQA 
Findings.  Inclusion  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  in  the  project  design  would 
be  determined  at  the  time  of  project  approval  and  documented  in  the  CEQA  Findings  and 
Statement  of  Overriding  Considerations. 

Construction  of  the  proposed  project  is  planned  to  begin  in  2016  and  last  20  months.  BRT 
service  is  anticipated  to  begin  in  2018. 

S.14  I  Opportunities  for  Public  Input 

The  project  proponents  encourage  members  of  the  public  to  remain  involved  with  the 
project  by  reviewing  the  Final  EIS/EIR  and  attending  the  SFCTA  Board  certification 
hearing,  attending  project  meetings  with  neighborhood  groups  and  other  stakeholders 
throughout  the  final  design  and  construction  phases  of  the  project,  visiting  the  project 
website  (www.vannessbrt.org).  and  subscribing  to  the  project  e-mail  newsletter  and  mailing 
list.  Through  these  communication  channels,  the  SFMTA  will  distribute  information  about 
the  upcoming  formation  of  the  Final  Design  and  Construction  Period  Citizen  Advisory 
Committee  (CAC),  in  addition  to  briefings  to  neighborhood  and  other  local  organizations.  A 
list  of  upcoming  meetings  is  made  available  on  the  project  Web  site:  www.vannessbrt.org 
and  will  be  publicized  through  the  project  electronic  newsletter.  Requests  to  be  added  to  the 
newsletter  and  mailing  list  may  be  made  by  contacting: 

Attn:  Michael  Schwartz 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 
1455  Market  St.,  22nd  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94103 
vannessbrt@sfcta.org 


S-12 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


v.r,  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rap.d  Transit  Proiect 
RHl  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
En„ror.mental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summery 


Table  S-i:  Summary 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREA/ 


of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


eUHO  ALTERNATIVE  ): 

SIDE-LANE  BUT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  \. 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RICHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  : 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4 
WITH  DESICN  OPTION  B 


(COMBINES  AlTEtaUTIVES 
i  »"0  4| 


Aesthetics/ 
Visual  Resources 


No  impact. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 

Less  than  significant  impacts  to  aesthetics  would  result  from  temporary  visual  disruptions  by  construction 
activity,  such  as  signage,  soil  stockpiles,  and  construction  equipment.  Nighttime  construction  would 
require  artificial  lighting,  which  would  be  minimized  in  residential  areas  and  set  up  to  avoid  significant 
light  and  glare  impacts  on  adjacent  residential  properties. 
Impro  vement  Measures: 

IM-AE-Ci:  During  project  construction,  SFMTA  will  require  the  contractor  to  maintain  the  site  in  an 
orderly  manner,  removing  trash  and  waste,  and  securing  equipment  at  the  close  of  each  day's  operation. 
IM-AE-C2:  To  reduce  glare  and  light  used  during  nighttime  construction  activities,  SFMTA  will  require  the 
contractor  to  direct  lighting  onto  the  immediate  area  under  construction  only  and  to  avoid  shining  lights 
toward  residences,  nighttime  commercial  properties,  and  traffic  lanes. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Aesthetics/ 
Visual  Resources 
Operation 


No  impact. 


The  summary  of  im 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  measures  will  be  implemented  to  address  impacts  to  visual  character  and  scenic  resources 
resulting  from  the  following  project  features:  replacement  of  the  existing  OCS  support  pole/streetlight 
network  with  taller  network  that  meets  current  sidewalk  and  roadway  lighting  standards  and  can 
accommodate  the  BRT  OCS  loads,  introduction  of  BRT  stations  and  streetscape  features,  and 
reconstruction  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  median  and  implementation  of  new  BRT  stations  adjacent  to  the 
sidewalk,  which  would  involve  removal  of  approximately  14  percent  of  existing  sidewalk  and  median  trees. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-AE-i:  Design  sidewalk  lighting  to  minimize  glare  and  nighttime  light  intrusion  on  adjacent  residential 
properties  and  other  properties  that  would  be  sensitive  to  increased  sidewalk  lighting. 
M-AE-2:  Design  and  install  a  replacement  OCS  support  pole/streetlight  network  that  (1)  retains  the 
aesthetic  function  of  the  existing  network  as  a  consistent  infrastructural  element  along  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
(2)  assures  a  uniform  architectural  style,  character,  and  color  throughout  the  corridor  that  is  compatible 
with  the  existing  visual  setting  and  (3)  retains  the  architectural  style  of  the  original  OCS  support  pole/ 
streetlight  network.  Within  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District,  design  the  OCS  support  pole/streetlight 
network  to  comply  with  the  Secretary  of  Interior's  Standards  for  the  Treatment  of  Historic  Properties  and 
be  compatible  with  the  character  of  the  historic  district  as  described  in  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District 
designating  ordinance  as  called  for  by  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Code. 

M-AE-3:  To  the  extent  that  the  project  alters  sidewalk  and  median  landscaping,  design  and  implement  a 
project  landscape  design  plan,  including  tree  type  and  planting  scheme  for  median  BRT  stations  and 
sidewalk  plantings  that  replaces  removed  landscaping  and  re-establishes  high-quality  landscaped  medians 
and  a  tree-lined  corridor.  To  the  extent  feasible,  use  single-species  street  trees  and  overall  design  that 
provides  a  sense  of  identity  and  cohesiveness  for  the  corridor.  Place  new  trees  close  to  corners,  if  feasible, 
for  visibility.  The  project  landscape  design  plan  will  require  review  and  approval  by  the  San  Francisco  Arts 
Commission,  as  well  as  review  and  approval  by  the  SFDPW  as  part  of  their  permitting  of  work  in  the  street 
ROW,  which  ensures  consistency  with  the  San  Francisco  Better  Streets  Plan.  The  median  landscape 
design  plan  within  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District  will  be  reviewed  by  the  San  Francisco  HPC  and  the 
City  Hall  Preservation  Advisory  Commission.  A  Certificate  of  Appropriateness  must  be  obtained  from  the 
HPC  for  the  landscape  plans  within  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District. 

M-AE-4:  Design  and  install  landscaped  medians  so  that  median  design  promotes  a  unified,  visual  concept 
for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  consistent  with  policies  in  the  Van  Ness  Area  Plan,  Civic  Center  Area 
Plan,  and  San  Francisco  Better  Streets  Plan.  This  design  goal  for  a  unified,  visual  concept  will  be  balanced 
with  the  goal  of  preserving  existing  trees;  thus,  new  tree  plantings  would  be  in-filled  around  preserved  trees. 

M"*E"5:  Des'Sn  and  inSta"  3  pr°'eCt  BRT  station  and  transitway  design  Pla"  (including  station  canopies 
wind  turbines,  and  other  features)  that  is  consistent  with  applicable  City  design  policies  in  the  San 
Francisco  General  Plan  and  San  Francisco  Better  Streets  Plan;  and  for  project  features  located  in  the  Civic 
Center  Historic  District,  apply  the  Secretary  of  Interior's  Standards  for  the  Treatment  of  Historic 

roperties,  Planning  Code  Article  10,  Appendix  j  pertaining  to  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District  and  other 
applicable  guidelines,  local  interpretations,  and  bulletins  concerning  historic  resources. 
Review  and  approval  processes  supporting  this  measure  include: 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 
except  25  percent  of  existing  trees 
would  be  removed,  all  of  them 
along  the  median.  The  same 
mitigation  measures  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would  be 
implemented. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  3. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2,  except  15 
percent  of  existing 
trees  would  be 
removed.  The  same 
mitigation  measures  as 
Build  Alternative  2 
would  be 
implemented. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  4. 


Less  than  sjgrjjficanj 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2.  except 
22  percent  of 
existing  trees  would 
be  removed.  The 
same  mitigation 
measures  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would 
be  implemented. 


(1)  San  Francisco  Art  Commission 


 ' — ■  —  1_J    ■  ...  1  1  1  1  1  1  1  3  1 

'pacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  include*  all  Im  •■  - 

all  .mpacts  and  mitigation  that  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  or  without  incorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbo 


ind  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design. 


S'"F'"^<*'""»  Transportation  Authority  |  ,ulv  20„ 


S'l 


Eiecutive  Summary 


Van  Net*  Avenue  But  8*p*4  T>mvt  L*'«y*a 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Scatem***/ 


Table  Si:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  i: 

SIDE-LANE  BUT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RICHTSIDE 
BOARDINC  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER  LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDINC  ANO  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


approval  of  the  station  and  transitway  design  plan  as  part  of  its  review  of  public  structures;  {2)  SFDPW 
approval  of  the  station  and  transitway  design  plan  as  part  of  its  permitting  of  work  in  the  street  ROW, 
which  ,t  will  include  rev.ew  for  consistency  with  the  San  Francisco  Better  Streets  Plan;  (3)  HPC  approval  of 
the  portion  of  the  station  and  transitway  design  plan  located  within  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District  as 
part  of  granting  a  Certificate  of  Appropriateness;  and  (4)  City  Hall  Preservation  Advisory  Commission  and 
City  Planning  Department  advisement  on  design  to  HPC. 

M-AE-6:  Context-sensitive  design  of  BRT  station  features  will  be  balanced  with  the  project  objective  to 
provide  a  branded,  cohesive  identity  for  the  proposed  BRT  service.  The  following  design  objectives  that 
support  planning  policies  described  in  Section  4.4.1  will  be  considered  in  BRT  station  design  and 
landscaping; 

•  Architectural  integration  of  BRT  stations  with  adjacent  Significant  and  Contributory  Buildings  through 
station  canopy  placement,  materials,  color,  lighting,  and  texture,  as  well  as  the  presence  of  modern 
solar  paneling  and  wind  turbine  features  to  harmonize  project  features  with  adjacent  Significant  and 
Contributory  Buildings. 

•  Integration  of  BRT  stations  and  landscaping  with  existing  and  proposed  streetscape  design  themes  within 
the  Civic  Center  Historic  District  in  conformance  with  the  Secretary  of  Interior's  Standards  for  the 
Treatment  of  Historic  Properties  and  compatible  with  the  character  of  the  historic  district  as  described  in 
the  Civic  Center  Historic  District  designating  ordinance  as  called  for  by  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Code. 

•  Marking  the  intersection  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Market  Street  as  a  visual  landmark  and  gateway  to 
the  city  in  design  of  the  Market  Street  BRT  station. 


Aesthetics/ 
Visual  Resources 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative  No  cumulative  impacts- 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


impacts. 


Air  Quality  No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Construction  Construction  activity  would  result  in  a  less  than  significant  impact  under  CEQA  due  to  exceedances  of 

nitrogen  oxide  (NOx)  emissions.  Implementation  of  Bay  Area  Air  Quality  Management  District 
(BAAQMD)  control  measures  would  reduce  this  impact  to  a  less  than  significant  level. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-AQ-Ci:  Construction  contractors  shall  implement  the  BAAQMD  Basic  Construction  Mitigation 
Measures  listed  in  Table  4.15-4  and  the  applicable  measures  in  the  Additional  Construction  Mitigation 
Measures.  This  includes  Measure  10  in  the  Additional  Construction  Mitigation  Measures. 
M-AQ-C2:  Construction  contractors  shall  comply  with  BAAQMD  Regulation  11  (Hazardous  Pollutants) 
Rule  2  (Asbestos  Demolition,  Renovation,  and  Manufacturing).  The  requirements  for  demolition  activities 
 include  removal  standards,  reporting  requirements,  and  mandatory  monitoring  and  record  keeping. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Air  Quality 
Operation 


Less  than 
significant 
impact. 


Air  Quality 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 

Localized  carbon  monoxide  (CO)  concentrations  would  result  in  less-than-significant  impacts.  An  analysis 
of  emissions  from  idling  vehicles  during  peak  congestion  period  at  the  most  congested  intersection 
showed  idle  emissions  would  be  well  below  the  State  standards  after  implementation  of  the  BRT  in  year 
2035  faffic  conditions.  Toxic  air  contaminant  (TAC)  emissions  would  result  in  a  less-than-significant 
impact  under  CEQA.  The  project  would  not  increase  TAC  emissions.  The  proposed  BRT  would  reduce 
regional  operational  emissions,  resulting  in  a  beneficial  impact.  Localized  CO  concentrations  associated 
with  each  of  the  alternatives  would  not  exceed  State  ambient  air  quality  standards,  and  all  alternatives 
would  be  consistent  with  the  BAAQMD  regional  air  quality  plans.  The  project  would  reduce  the  volume  of 
cars  by  providing  the  public  with  alternative  means  of  transportation,  which  results  in  lower  citywide 
vehicle  miles  traveled  (VMT),  reducing  regional  operational  emissions. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  fa-  s      •  zs". 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  Measures  M-AQ-Ci  and  M-AQ-C2  would  avoid  significant,  cumulative  air  quality  impacts 
during  construction  of  the  proposed  project  and  other  planned  projects  in  the  vicinity. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Sam  Francisco  Countv  Tran<nnrtahon  Authonh  I  lutt  JO'l 


»  ..  Vr».  ».*-.»  »-»  «!*•«  Tt»rw.«  Protect 

I  If  lit  S 
i  -.   .•--»-•  <»•-•' 


Table  So:  Summa^  of  Envtronmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


BWtwtf  wt  wrm  STWrr  pawing 


»  iaiivi  |i 

CENTER  LAN!  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUIIO  ALTERNATIVE  4 
CENTER-LANC  BRT  WTTH  LIFT 
SIDE  BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MfDUN 


IM 
(COM 
jAAIOa, 


Greenhouse  Gas 
Emissions 
Operation  

Greenhouse  Cas 

Emissions 

Cumulative 

Biological 

Environment 

Construction 


No  impact. 

The  proposed  proiect  would  decrease  automobile  VMT  and  associated  greenhouse  gas  emissions 
compared  to  baseline  conditions,  and  it  would  cause  a  beneficial  global  warming  impact. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts.  Transit  proiects.  like  the  proposed  proiect.  reduce  the  volume  of  cars  resulting  in 
overall  reduction  in  greenhouse  gas  emissions. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  o—  -at  <» 

impacts. 


Biological 

Environment 

Operation 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Less  than  significant  impacts  to  trees  and  nesting  birds  would  result  from  temporary  construction  activity 
the  disturbance  of  bird  nests  during  breeding  season.  Mitigation  measures  will  avoid  disturbance  of 
protected  bird  nests  during  breeding  season,  and  require  measures  to  preserve  tree  health  during 
construction.  Mitigation  measures  are  required  to  address  potential  impacts  to  trees  and  nesting  birds 
during  project  construction. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-BI-Ci:  Best  Management  Practices  (BMPs)  identified  in  tree  protection  plans  and  tree  removal  permits 
resulting  from  the  preconstruction  tree  survey  will  be  implemented  to  preserve  the  health  of  trees  during 
project  construction. 

M-BI-C2:  Disturbance  of  protected  bird  nests  during  the  breeding  season  will  be  avoided.  Tree  and  shrub 
removal  will  be  scheduled  during  the  non-breeding  season  (i.e..  September  1  through  January  31),  as  feasible. 
If  tree  and  shrub  removal  are  required  to  occur  during  the  breeding  season  (i.e..  February  1  through  August 
31),  then  the  following  measures  will  be  implemented  to  avoid  potential  adverse  effects  to  nesting  birds: 
A  qualified  wildlife  biologist  will  conduct  preconstruction  surveys  of  all  potential  nesting  habitats  within 
500  feet  of  construction  activities  where  access  is  available.  Exclusionary  structures  (e.g.,  netting  or  plastic 
sheeting)  may  be  used  to  discourage  the  construction  of  nests  by  birds  within  the  project  construction 
zone.  A  preconstruction  survey  of  all  accessible  nesting  habitats  within  500  feet  of  construction  activities  is 
required  to  occur  no  more  than  2  weeks  prior  to  construction. 

If  preconstruction  surveys  conducted  no  more  than  2  weeks  prior  to  construction  identify  that  protected 
nests  are  inactive  or  potential  habitat  is  unoccupied  during  the  construction  period,  then  no  further 
mitigation  is  required.  Trees  and  shrubs  within  the  construction  footprint  that  have  been  determined  to  be 
unoccupied  by  protected  birds  or  that  are  located  outside  the  no-disturbance  buffer  for  active  nests  may 
be  removed. 

If  active  protected  nests  are  found  during  preconstruction  surveys,  then  the  project  proponent  will  create  a 
no-disturbance  buffer  (acceptable  in  size  to  the  California  Department  of  Fish  and  Wildlife  [CDFW]) 
around  active  protected  bird  and/or  raptor  nests  during  the  breeding  season,  or  until  it  is  determined  that 
all  young  have  fledged.  Typical  buffers  include  500  feet  for  raptors  and  50  feet  for  passerine  nesting  birds. 
The  size  of  these  buffer  zones  and  types  of  construction  activities  restricted  in  these  areas  may  be  further 
modified  during  consultation  with  CDFW.  and  it  will  be  based  on  existing  noise  and  human  disturbance 
levels  at  the  project  site.  Nests  initiated  during  construction  are  presumed  to  be  unaffected,  and  no  buffer 
will  be  necessary;  however  the  "take"  (e.g.,  mortality,  severe  disturbance  to)  of  any  individual  protected 
birds  will  be  prohibited.  Monitoring  of  active  nests  when  construction  activities  encroach  upon 
established  buffers  may  be  required  by  CDFW. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant         Less  than  significant  Less        »  J  j  gaj 

impact  with  mitigation.     impact  with  impact  with 

Same  as  Build  mitigation.  mitigation. 

Alternative  2.  Same  as  Build  Same  as  Build 

Alternative  2.  Alternative  2. 


The  summary  of 


mpacts  and  mmgauon  <„  theLW^^ 


Less  than  significant  impact. 

Less  than  significant  impacts  would  result  from  removal  of  existing  trees  and  landscaping.  Build 
Alternative  2  would  result  in  the  removal  of  some  median  and  sidewalk  trees  within  the  project  limits 
Replacement  trees  would  be  planted.  Benefits  of  mature  tree  canopies  would  be  reduced  until  new 
plantings  mature,  and  replacement  trees  would  not  offer  the  same  width  canopy  of  many  existing  trees 
Zv    m  °CS  Clearance  '"laments.  T"e  project  would  offset  these  impacts  by  planting  more  trees  in 

e  van  Ness  corridor  than  currently  present,  resulting  in  less  than  significant  impacts. 
Improvement  Measures: 

Potential  disturbance  to  migratory  birds  during  project  construction  and  tree  removal  is  discussed  in 
a  on  4-15-".  Construction  Impacts.  To  minimize  impacts  from  removal  of  existing  trees  and 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 
Replacement  trees  would  be 
planted  in  the  median.  Sidewalk 
trees  would  not  be  affected  under 
this  alternative.  Benefits  of 
mature  tree  canopies  would  be 
reduced  until  new  plantings 
mature,  and  replacement  trees 
would  not  offer  the  same  width 
canopy  of  many  existing  trees  due 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3. 


litigation  that  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  or  without  incomoratinn  „f  .u.  w  11  — ZZ  77 — I  TT~  7~. 

urn  incorporation  ol  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

Build  Alternative  4 
would  result  in  the 
removal  of 
approximately  64 
median  trees,  or  15 
percent  of  median 
trees  within  the  project 
limits.  Sidewalk  trees 
would  not  be  affected. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative^. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 

The  LPA  would 
result  in  the  removal 
of  approximately  90 
median  trees,  or  82 
percent  of  median 
trees  within  the 
project  limits- 
Approximatery  95 
new  median  trees 


f  r.nc.KO  Count,  Transportation  Author,!, 


M»  201J 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Pepor* 


Table  So:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREA/ 
IMPACTS 


NO-BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 


8UILD  ALTERNATIVE  2; 

SIDE-LANE  BRT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  j: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


-^dTZI^g  the  following  improvement  measures  and  permit  requirements  would  be  incorporated  into 
project  design  for  each  build  alternative,  including  Design  Option  B: 

IM-BI-r  In  compliance  with  local  tree  protection  policies,  mature  trees  shall  be  preserved  and 
incorporated  into  the  project  landscape  plan  as  feasible.  Planting  of  replacement  trees  and  landscaping 
will  be  incorporated  into  the  landscape  plan  as  feasible  (also  refer  to  mitigation  measure  M-AE-3, 
addressing  aesthetic/visual  impacts). 

IM-BI-2'  A  certified  arborist  will  complete  a  preconstruction  tree  survey  to  identify  protected  trees  that  will 
be  potentially  impacted  by  the  proposed  project,  and  to  determine  the  need  for  tree  removal  permits  and 
tree  protection  plans  under  San  Francisco  Public  Works  Code  requirements. 

IM-BI-3:  In  compliance  with  the  Executive  Order  on  Invasive  Species,  E.O.  13112,  the  landscaping  included 
in  the  proposed  project  would  not  use  species  listed  as  noxious  weeds. 


to  the  OCS  clearance 
requirements.  The  project  would 
offset  these  impacts  by  planting 
more  trees  in  the  Van  Ness 
corridor  than  currently  present, 
and  implementation  of 
Improvement  Measures  IM-BI-i, 
IM-BI-2  and  IM-BI-3  listed  under 
Build  Alternative  2,  resulting  in 
less  than  significant  impacts. 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE  BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


Replacement  trees 
would  be  planted. 
Benefits  of  mature  tree 
canopies  would  be 
reduced  until  new 
plantings  mature,  and 
replacement  trees 
would  not  offer  the 
same  width  canopy  of 
many  existing  trees 
due  to  the  OCS 
clearance 
requirements.  The 
project  would  offset 
these  impacts  by 
planting  more  trees  in 
the  Van  Ness  corridor 
than  currently  present, 
and  implementation  of 
Improvement 
Measures  IM-BI-i,  IM- 
BI-2  and  IM-BI-3  listed 
under  Build  Alternative 
2,  resulting  in  less  than 
significant  impacts. 


[COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4)' 


would  be  planted. 
Sidewalk  trees  would 
not  be  affected. 
Benefits  of  mature 
tree  canopies  would 
be  reduced  until  new 
plantings  mature, 
and  replacement 
trees  would  not 
offer  the  same  width 
canopy  of  many 
existing  trees  due  to 
the  OCS  clearance 
requirements.  The 
project  would  offset 
these  impacts  by 
planting  more  trees 
in  the  Van  Ness 
corridor  than 
currently  present, 
and  implementation 
of  Improvement 
Measures  IM-BI-i, 
IM-BI-2  and  IM-BI-3 
listed  under  Build 
Alternative  2, 
resulting  in  less 
than  significant 
impacts. 


Biological 
Environment 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Cultural  Resources 
Construction 


The  summary  of  11 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Less  than  significant  impacts  would  occur  to  significant  historic  and  architectural  properties.  Excavation  work 
would  occur  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  ROW,  where  there  is  a  low  probability  of  uncovering  significant 
archaeological  deposits.  Implementation  of  mitigation  measures  is  required  to  address  potential  impacts 
to  archaeological  resources  and  human  remains  that  may  be  encountered  during  project  construction. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-CP-Ci:  Focused  archival  research  will  identify  specific  areas  within  the  APE  that  are  likely  to  contain 
potentially  significant  remains.  Methods  and  findings  will  be  documented  as  an  addendum  to  the  2009 
survey  and  sensitivity  assessment  (Byrd  eta/.,  2013).  Research  will  be  initiated  once  the  project's  APE  map 
is  finalized  identifying  the  major  Areas  of  Direct  Impact  (i.e.,  the  stations  and  sewer  relocation).  Many 
documents,  maps,  and  drawings  cover  long  stretches  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  while  other  locations  may  be 
researched  if  documents  indicate  potential  sensitivity  in  adjacent  areas. 
The  Addendum  Survey  Report  will  include  the  following: 

•  A  contextual  section  that  addresses  the  development  of  urban  infrastructure  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
as  well  as  widening  and  grading  activities  along  the  thoroughfare.  This  overview  will  provide  a  basis  for 
evaluating  potential  resources  as  they  relate  to  the  history  of  San  Francisco  and  to  its  infrastructure. 

•  Documentary  research  that  identifies  the  types  of  documents  available  for  the  identified  station 
locations:  street  profiles  for  grading,  street  widening  maps  showing  demolished  building  sites  utility 
work  plans,  and  others  as  appropriate.  This  will  include  researching  various  archives  and  records  of 
public  agencies  in  both  San  Francisco  and  Oakland  (Caltrans). 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


.pacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mi„ga,ion  that  would  pertain  ,0  the  LPA  with  or  w„hou,  incorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northed  Station  Vanant  ,n,o  the  project  design. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Table  S-i:  Summary 


of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


BUR.D  ALTERNATIVE  *  

POC^ANC  BRT  WW  ST»*rT  RARtiNC 


 •  >  NA  I  i  .  l 

"»  ««  B»T  WITH  RIGHT  SIDE 

BOARDINC  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


.  Locations  apt  to  have  historic  remains  present  within  selecl  areas  of  the  APE  (i.e.,  not  removed  by  later 
grading  or  construction). 

.  A  cut-and-fiM  reconstruction  of  the  entire  APE  corridor,  comparing  the  modern  versus  midi8oos 
ground  surface  elevations,  to  fine-tune  the  initial  prehistoric  sensitivity  assessment,  and  refine  the 
location  of  high-sensitivity  locations  where  prehistoric  remains  may  be  preserved. 

•  Relevant  profiles  and  plan  views  of  specific  blocks  to  illustrate  the  methods  used  in  analyzing  available 
documentation. 

•  Summary  and  conclusions  to  provide  detailed  information  on  locations  that  have  the  potential  to 
contain  extant  prehistoric  archaeological  and  historic-era  remains  that  might  be  evaluated  as  significant 
resources,  if  any. 

Two  results  are  possible  based  on  documentary  research: 

•  No  or  Low  Potential  for  Sensitive  Locations  -  Major  Areas  of  Direct  Impact  have  no  potential  to  retain 
extant  archaeological  remains  that  could  be  evaluated  as  significant  resources.  No  further  work  would 
be  recommended,  beyond  adherence  to  the  Inadvertent  Discovery  Plan  (M-CP-3). 

•  Potentially  Sensitive  Locations  -  If  the  ma|or  Areas  of  Direct  Impact  contain  locations  with  a  moderate 
to  high  potential  to  retain  extant  historic  or  prehistoric  archaeological  remains  that  could  be  evaluated 
as  significant  resources,  further  work  would  be  carried  out.  detailed  in  a  Testing  and  Treatment  Plan 
(see  M-CP-2). 

The  Phase  I  addendum  report  will  be  submitted  to  the  SHPO  for  review  and  concurrence  prior  to  initiation 
of  construction. 

M-CP-C2:  The  Testing/Treatment  plan,  if  required,  would  provide  archaeological  protocols  to  be 
employed  immediately  prior  to  project  construction  to  test  areas  identified  as  potentially  significant  or 
having  the  potential  to  contain  buried  cultural  resources.  If  such  areas  might  be  unavoidable,  mitigation 
measures  would  be  proposed. 

For  historic-era  resources,  work  would  initially  entail  detailed,  focused  documentary  research  to  evaluate 
the  potential  significance  of  any  archaeological  material  identified  during  initial  research  that  might  be 
preserved.  Significance  would  be  based  on  the  data-potential  of  possible  remains  applied  to  accepted 
research  designs.  Two  results  could  ensue: 

•  No  Potentially  Significant  Remains.  If  no  locations  demonstrate  the  potential  for  significant  remains, 
no  further  archaeological  testing  would  be  recommended. 

•  Potentially  Significant  Remains.  If  any  locations  have  the  potential  to  contain  significant  remains,  then 
appropriate  field  methods  will  be  proposed,  including  compressed  testing  and  data-recovery  efforts. 
Testing  will  be  initiated  immediately  prior  to  construction,  when  there  is  access  to  historic  ground  levels. 

•  Should  a  site  or  site  feature  be  found  and  evaluated  as  potentially  significant,  mitigation  in  the  form  of 
data  recovery  will  take  place  immediately  upon  discovery  should  avoidance  of  the  site  not  be  possible. 

If  required  for  prehistoric  resources,  a  Treatment  Plan  would  identify  relevant  research  issues  for  resource 

evaluation,  and  pragmatic  field  methods  to  identify,  evaluate,  and  conduct  data  recovery  if  needed.  This 

could  include  a  pre-construction  geoarchaeological  coring  program  or  a  compressed  three-phase  field 

effort  occurring  prior  to  construction,  when  the  ground  surface  is  accessible. 

The  procedures  detailed  in  the  Treatment  Plan  would  be  finalized  in  consultation  with  the  SHPO. 

A  Phase  2  Test/Phase  3  Mitigation  report  will  document  all  testing  and  data-recovery  excavation  methods 

and  findings. 

M-CP-C3:  If  buried  cultural  resources  are  encountered  during  construction  activities,  pursuant  to  36  CFR 
800.13.  construction  would  be  halted  and  the  discovery  area  isolated  and  secured  until  a  qualified 
professional  archaeologist  assesses  the  nature  and  significance  of  the  find.  Unusual,  rare,  or  unique 
finds— particularly  artifacts  or  features  not  found  during  data  recovery— could  require  additional  study 
Examples  of  these  would  include  the  following: 

•  Any  bone  that  cannot  immediately  be  identified  as  non-human 

•  Any  types  of  intact  features  (e.g.,  hearths,  house  floors,  cache  pits,  structural  foundations) 
•^Artifact  caches  or  concentrations 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WTTM  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


TV  wnmr,  of  impacts  and  m,t,ga„on  for  the  LpA  . 


ndudes  all  impacs  and  m,„gatlon  that  wou|d  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  or  without  incorporation  of  the  V.ll.jo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  pro,ect  design. 


S*.  '-~>~»  C*,nt,  T-nIporULloo  Authority  |  |uly  201J 


S-«> 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


TaS!summa^ 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREA/ 
IMPACTS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  & 
SIDE-LANE  BUT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


-T^— ^i^s  (i.e..  engraved  or  incised  stone  or  bone,  beads  or  ornaments,  m,  s^^Tt, fact  ) 
.  Archaeological  remains  that  are  redundant  with  materials  collected  during  teis'ing0^a;a/!C°Vel" 

fh at    v  m  n  rnal  data  potential  need  not  be  formally  investigated.  This  could  include  debitage,  most 

naked  or  gZnd  tools,  with  .he  excepts  of  diagnostic  or  unique  items  (e.g.,  pro,ec.ile  points. 

crescents)'  shell'  non-human  bone;  charcoal;  and  other  plant  remains. 
.  Diagnostic  and  unique  artifacts  unearthed  during  construction  would  be  collected  and  their  origins 

noted  ^fac,  concentrations  and  other  features  would  be  photographed,  flotation/soils/radiocarbon 

samples  taken  (as  appropriate),  and  locations  mapped  using  a  CPS  device. 
Upon  discovery  of  deposits  that  may  constitute  a  site,  the  agency  official  shall  notify  the  State  Historic 
Preservation  Officer  (SHPO)  and  any  Indian  tribe  that  might  attach  religious  and  cultural  s.gn.f.cance  to 
the  affected  property.  The  notification  shall  describe  the  agency  official's  assessment  of  National  Register 
Zibility  of  .he  property  and  proposed  actions  to  resolve  the  adverse  effects  (if  any).  The  SHPO,  Indian 
tribe  and  Advisory  Council  on  Historic  Preservation  (the  Council)  shall  respond  within  48  hours  of  the 
notification  The  agency  official  shall  take  into  account  their  recommendations  regarding  National  Register 
eligibility  and  proposed  actions,  and  then  carry  out  appropriate  actions.  The  agency  official  shall  provide 
the  SHPO,  Indian  tribe,  and  the  Council  a  report  of  the  actions  when  they  are  completed. 
The  above  activities  could  be  carried  out  quickly  and  efficiently,  with  as  little  delay  as  possible  to 
construction  work. 

The  methods  and  results  of  any  excavations  would  be  documented,  with  photographs,  in  an  Addendum 
Report.  Any  artifacts  collected  would  be  curated  along  with  the  main  collection.  Samples  would  be 
processed  in  a  lab  and  analyzed,  or  curated  with  the  collection  for  future  studies,  at  the  discretion  of  the 
project  proponent. 

If  major  adjustments  are  made  to  the  final  project  design,  a  qualified  professional  archaeologist  should  be 
consulted  before  work  begins,  to  determine  whether  additional  survey,  research,  and/or  geoarchaeological 
assessments  are  needed. 

M-CP-C4:  If  human  remains  are  discovered  during  project  construction,  the  stipulations  provided  under 
Section  7050.5  of  the  State  Health  and  Safety  Code  will  be  followed.  The  San  Francisco  County  coroner 
would  be  notified  as  soon  as  is  reasonably  possible  (CEQA  Section  15064.5).  There  would  be  no  further  site 
disturbance  where  the  remains  were  found,  and  all  construction  work  would  be  halted  within  100  feet  of  the 
discovery.  If  the  remains  are  determined  to  be  Native  American,  the  coroner  is  responsible  for  contacting 
the  California  Native  American  Heritage  Commission  within  24  hours.  The  Commission,  pursuant  to 
California  Public  Resources  Code  Section  5097.98  would  notify  those  persons  it  believes  to  be  the  most 
likely  descendants  (MLD).  Treatment  of  the  remains  would  be  dependent  on  the  views  of  the  MLD. 


(COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
}  AND  4|' 


Cultural  Resources      No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact. 

Operation  Less  than  significant  impacts  would  occur  to  significant  historic  and  architectural  properties.  No  impacts 

to  archaeological  resources  would  result  during  project  operation.  Mitigation  measures  M-AE-2,  M-AE-3, 
M  AE-5,  and  M-AE-6,  presented  in  Section  4.4.4  and  in  this  table  under  Aesthetics/Visual  Resources, 
 ensure  compatibility  of  the  BRT  project  with  historic  elements  such  as  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Cultural  Resources 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Nocumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Section  4(f) 

Resources 

Construction 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or  No  direct  or  temporary  use. 

constructive  use,     project  construction  would  not  result  in  direct  or  constructive  use  of  Section  4(f)  resources. 


No  direct  or  constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or  constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Section  4(f) 

Resources 

Operation 


No  direct  or  No  direct  or  constructive  use- 

constructive  use.     The  proposed  project  wou,d  n0,  resu|(  m  d|rect  usg  Qf  construct|ve  uJe  of  Section  ^  resources 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or  constructive  use.  No  direct  or  constructive  use. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2.  Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mitigation  that  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  direct  or 
constructive  use. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


or  without  incorporation  of  the  Valle,o  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  pro,ect  de 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Im        Thau*  *mrci 


Tab*e  S-i:  Summary 


of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


•UHO  UTfUMATnt  i 

SKX-ULNE  MT  *1TH  STRfTT  AARA1NC 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  1 

CENTER  LANE  BITT  WITH  RIGHT  SIOE 

BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4 
CENTER- LANE  RAT  WTTH  LIFT- 
SIDE  BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


LM 
COM 
•  •»-..« 


Secnoo  4(fl 
Resources 


Ho  jBIBPBCl 


No  impact. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


A  •»-'*-  .»  > 


Geology  /Soils/ 

SeisiT»crty/ 

Topography 


*w  Tic: 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  measures  are  required  to  avoid  slope  instability  impacts  during  protect  construction. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-CE-Ci:  All  cuts  deeper  than  5  feet  must  be  shored  (ACS.  2009a).  Shoring  design  of  open  excavations 
must  be  completed  In  consideration  of  the  surcharge  load  from  nearby  structures,  including  an  examination 
of  the  potential  for  lateral  movement  of  the  excavation  walls  as  a  result.  The  following  construction  BMPs 
related  to  shonng  and  slope  stability  will  be  implemented: 

•  Heavy  construction  equipment,  building  materials,  excavated  soil,  and  vehicle  traffic  shall  be  kept  away 
from  the  edge  of  excavations,  generally  a  distance  equal  to  or  greater  than  the  depth  of  the  excavation. 

•  During  wet  weather,  storm  runoff  shall  be  prevented  from  entering  the  excavation.  Excavation  sidewalls  can 
be  covered  with  plastic  sheeting,  and  berms  can  be  placed  around  the  perimeter  of  the  excavated  areas 

•  Sidewalks,  slabs,  pavement,  and  utilities  ad|acent  to  proposed  excavations  shall  be  adequately 
supported  during  construction. 


I  ess  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  thar  siz^  f  '.i-: 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


impact  with 

Same  as  3^:  C 
Alternative  2. 


Ceology/Soils/  No  impact  No  impact. 

Seismictty/  The  project  would  not  result  in  soil  erosion,  and  project  design  would  avoid  potential  seismic  hazards. 

Topography  There  are  no  substantial  geologic  hazard  impacts  that  would  not  be  fully  addressed  by  design  requirements. 

Operation  Improvement  Measures: 

IM-CE-i:  Localized  soil  modification  treatments  will  be  performed  as  needed  at  locations  where  station 
platforms  would  be  located  in  areas  of  fill  or  areas  mapped  as  a  liquefaction  area.  Such  soil  modification 
may  include  soil  vibro-compaction  or  permeation  grouting. 

IM-GE-2:  Fill  soils  will  be  overexcavated  and  replaced  with  engineered  fill  as  needed  in  areas  where 
proposed  project  structures  would  be  located  in  areas  of  fill  or  in  liquefaction  zones. 

IM-GE-3:  Deeper  foundations  will  be  designed  for  station  platforms  and  canopies  located  in  areas  of  fill  or 
 areas  mapped  as  a  liquefaction  area,  as  needed. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


'  ■ :  ~  :  ■  ■-. 

-  :e"=:  .5  ; 


Geology/Soils/ 
Seisin  icfty/ 
Topography 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  c u mulative  impacts 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No       ^  a:  .e 

Sa~-e  as  8-  z 
AJternatrve  2. 


Hazardous  Waste/ 

Materials 

Construction 


W  Vj-wur,  of  mpjeti  ,n<J 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  measures  are  required  to  avoid  and  minimize  hazardous  materials  exposure  during  project 

construction. 

Mitigation  Measures: 

M-HZ-Cl:  A  Worker  Site  Health  and  Safety  Plan  will  be  created  with  the  following  components,  in 
response  to  potential  recognized  environmental  conditions  (RECs)  identified  in  the  Phase  II  review  or 
other  follow-up  investigations,  and  results  from  preconstruction  lead-based  paint  LBP  and  aerially 
deposited  lead  (ADL)  surveys  specified  in  Sections  4.8.3  and  4.8.4: 

•  A  safety  and  health  risk/hazards  analysis  for  each  site  task  and  operation  in  the  work  plan; 

•  Employee  training  assignments; 

•  Personal  protective  equipment  requirements; 

•  Medical  surveillance  requirements; 

•  Air  monitoring,  environmental  sampling  techniques,  and  instrumentation; 

'  mclud'nT      d'SP0Sal  meaSUr"  f°r  encountered  contaminated  soil,  groundwater,  or  debris 
including  temporary  storage  locations,  labeling,  and  containment  procedures 
 *  Emergency  response  plan;  and 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


mitigaoon. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


"litigation  for 


the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mitigation  that  would  pertain  ,0  .he  LPA  with  or  without  incorporation  of 


the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design 


^'•^wCaJwmjfTr.otpofUUon  Authority  |  July  2013 


Executive  Summary 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


S   U    M    tVI   A   R  Y 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRTWITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  j 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  8 


BUILO  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRTWITH  LEFT 
SIDE  BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


(COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4)' 


Hazardous  Waste/ 
Materials 


Hazardous  Waste/ 

Materials 

Cumulative 


No  c  umul.ilivc 
impacts. 


Water  Quality 
and  Hydrology 
Construction 


No  impact 


M  SZIX  included  in  the  pro,ect  Storm  Water  Pollution  Prevention  Plan  (SW, 
luir an , o   fb    contamination,  including  protection  of  storm  drains,  and  to  prevent, any 

'eabge  either  into  or  onto  exposed  ground  surfaces,  as  specified  ,n  SectK 
Hydrology  and  Water  Quality  Construction  Impacts. 

M-HZ-C3:  Necessary  public  health  and  safety  measures  will  be  implemented  during  construction 


No  impact  I  ess  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  measures  acquired  to  reduce  or  eliminate  hazardous  materials-related  impacts  from  ADL. 
LBP  and  nearby  database  listed,  hazardous  materials  sites. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-HZ-i:  Phase  II  review,  or  follow-up  investigation,  for  identified  recognized  environmental  conditions 
(RECs)  will  be  conducted  prior  to  construction,  including: 

.  Field  surveys  of  identified  RECs  to  verify  the  physical  locations  of  the  REC  sites  with  respect  to  the 
preferred  build  alternative  project  components  and  proposed  construction  earthwork,  and  observe  the 
current  conditions  of  the  sites. 
.  A  regulatory  file  review  for  each  identified  REC  to  determine  the  current  status  of  the  sites  and,  if 

possible,  the  extent  of  the  contamination. 
If  the  aforementioned  field  survey  and  file  review  reveal  a  likelihood  of  encountering  contaminated  soil  or 
groundwater  during  project  construction,  then  a  subsurface  exploration  will  be  conducted  within  the  areas 
proposed  for  construction  earthwork  activities.  The  subsurface  investigation  will  be  conducted  within  the 
project  limits,  adjacent  to,  or  downgradient  from  the  REC  sites.  If  soil  profiling  reveals  contaminant 
concentrations  that  meet  the  definition  of  hazardous  materials,  then  the  project  contractor  will  be 
required  to  address  the  management  of  various  hazardous  materials  and  wastes  in  the  Construction 
Implementation  Plan,  consistent  with  the  federal  and  state  of  California  requirements  pertaining  to 
hazardous  materials  and  wastes  management. 

M-HZ-2:  Soils  in  landscaped  medians  that  will  be  disturbed  by  project  activities  will  be  tested  for  ADL 
according  to  applicable  hazardous  material  testing  guidelines.  If  the  soil  contains  extractible  lead 
concentrations  that  meet  the  definition  of  hazardous  materials,  then  a  Lead  Compliance  Plan  to  be  approved 
by  Caltrans  will  be  required  prior  to  the  start  of  construction  or  soil-disturbance  activities.  If  lead  levels  present 
in  surface  soils  reach  concentrations  in  excess  of  the  hazardous  waste  threshold,  then  onsite  stabilization  or 
disposal  at  a  Class  l  landfill  may  be  required,  which  will  be  specified  in  the  Lead  Compliance  Plan. 
M-HZ-3:  Paint  used  for  traffic  lane  striping  and  on  streetscape  features,  including  the  OCS  support 
poles/streetlights,  will  be  tested  for  LBP  prior  to  demolition/removal  to  determine  proper  handling  and 
disposal  methods  during  project  construction.  If  lead  is  detected,  then  appropriate  procedures  will  be  included 
 in  the  Construction  Implementation  Plan  to  avoid  contact  with  these  materials  or  generation  of  dust  or  vapors. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  Measures  M-HZ-Ci  through  M-HZ-C3  would  avoid  significant,  cumulative  impacts  from 
hazardous  materials  exposure  during  construction  of  the  proposed  project  and  other  planned  proiects  i 
the  vicinity. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 

Compliance  with  permit  requirements  and  standard  best  practices  would  avoid  significant  impacts  to 
water  quality  during  construction. 
Improvement  Measures: 

IM-HY-O:  Preparation  and  implementation  of  a  Storm  Water  Pollution  Prevention  Plan  (SWPPP)  during 

foX TTTol  W'"  T'T"  °r  aV0'd  S'gnifiCant  lmp3CtS  t0  water  Completion  of  an  SWPPP 

or      National  Pollutant  Discharge  Elimination  System  (NPDES)  General  Perm,,  w.H  be  required  for 
™,,on  of  each  build  alternative  and  for  earthwork  activities  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  such  as 
he  OCS  support  pole/streetlight  replacement  and  repaving  activities.  The  SWPPP  will  address  water 
_3HteH£tL«SM^  with  construction  activities,  including  identification  of  all  drainage  facilities 

ie  LPA  include  all  Imnifl.  1  .l  ,.  .  "  s  


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  mrl  A     „   -"'""»■  ""-luomg  .oenmicat.on  ot  all  drainage  facilities 

..gationformeLPAincludesall^^ 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  !  July  2013 


Tabie  St:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


BUU.0  AlTWUTTVt  » 

S»DE  UNI  KT  WITH  STWET  RARXINC 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVI  1: 
CENTSRLANE  HKT  WITH  RIGHT. SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  41 

C  E  NT  EH- LAN  E  BAT  WTTH  LEFT 

SIDE  BOARDING  ANO  SINCU 

MEDIAN 


onsite  placement  of  appropriate  stormwater  and  non-stormwater  pollution  controls  and  best 
management  practices  (BMPs).  erosion  and  sediment  control,  spill  response  and  containment  plans, 
inspection  scheduling,  maintenance,  and  training  of  all  construction  personnel  onsite. 
The  SWPPP  will  specify  how  construction-related  stormwater  impacts  can  be  mitigated  throughout  the 
project  site  through  practices  such  as: 

•  The  appropriate  treatment  of  overflow  stormwater  during  construction,  including  inlet  protection 
devices,  temporary  silt  fencing,  soil  stabilization  measures,  street  sweeping,  stabilized  construction 
entrances,  and  temporary  check  dams. 

•  Lining  storage  areas. 

.  Proper  and  expeditious  disposal  of  items  to  be  removed,  such  as  landscaping,  curb  bulb  waste,  existing 

bus  stop  shelters,  and  demolished  OCS  support  poles/streetlights  and  signal  poles. 
IM-HY-C2:  Any  construction  work  that  impacts  the  combined  sewer  system  (CSS)  will  require 
coordination  with  the  San  Francisco  Public  Utilities  Commission  (SFPUC),  and  construction-related 
activities  shall  conform  to  the  "Keep  it  on  Site"  guide  (SFPUC.  2009). 

IM-HY-C3:  If  groundwater  is  encountered  during  project  excavation  activities,  the  water  will  be  pumped 
from  the  excavated  area  and  contained  and  treated  in  accordance  with  all  applicable  State  and  federal 
regulations  before  being  discharged  to  the  existing  local  CSS.  A  batch  discharge  permit  from  SFPUC  will  be 
required  prior  to  commencement  of  discharge  to  the  CSS. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Water  Quality  No  impact.  No  impact. 

and  Hydrology  The  project  would  slightly  increase  pervious  surface  area  and  improve  drainage  and  runoff  water  quality. 

Operation  Improvement  Measures: 

IM-HY-i:  Landscape  areas  provided  by  the  project  will  be  designed  to  minimize  and  reduce  total  runoff. 

The  overuse  of  water  and/or  fertilizers  on  landscaped  areas  will  be  avoided. 

IM-HY-2:  Opportunities  to  incorporate  stormwater  management  tools  set  forth  in  the  San  Francisco 
Better  Streets  P/anwiH  be  investigated  for  implementation  as  project  design  progresses.  Streetscape 
geometry,  topography,  soil  type  and  compaction,  groundwater  depth,  subsurface  utility  locations,  building 
laterals,  maintenance  costs  and  safety,  and  pedestrian  accessibility  will  be  ma|or  considerations  in 
determining  the  feasibility  of  implementing  stormwater  management  tools.  Permeable  paving,  infiltration 
planters,  swales,  and  rain  gardens  will  be  considered. 

IM-HY-3:  In  compliance  with  the  City  Integrated  Pest  Management  Policy  (City  Municipal  Code.  Section 
300).  prevention  and  non-chemical  control  methods  will  be  employed  in  maintaining  landscaping  in  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  including  monitoring  for  pests  before  treating,  and  using  the  least-hazardous 
chemical  pesticides,  herbicides,  and  fertilizers  only  when  needed  and  as  a  last  resort. 
IM-HY-4:  Proposed  BRT  stations  will  be  equipped  with  trash  receptacles  to  minimize  the  miscellaneous 
 waste  that  may  enter  the  storm  drain  system  and  clog  storm  drains  or  release  pollutants. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Sa—e  as  3-  - 
Alternative  2- 


Water  Quality 
and  Hydrology 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Land  Use 


Less  than  significant  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact. 

Compliance  with  permit  requirements  and  standard  best  practices  would  avoid  significant  cumulative  Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

impacts  to  water  quality  during  construction  of  the  proposed  project  and  other  planned  projects  in  the 
vicinity. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


^ess  :-a-  5  ~;a-: 
—  ra;: 

$a~e  35  =_  - 
Alternative  2. 


Land  Use 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  imoact  ,       .l  r 

 6   f  Less  than  significant  impact 

Construction  would  not  change  land  uses  or  displace  properties.  Construction  planning  would  minimize  Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

nighttime  construction  in  residential  areas  and  daytime  construction  in  retail  and  commercial  areas  as 

part  of  the  Traffic  Management  Plan  (TMP)  implementation.  The  temporary  removal  of  colored  parking 

spaces  during  project  construction  is  discussed  under  Community  Impacts  -  Construction  below 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  TiBrmBrmt 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


No  impacts 


Land  Use 
1     j  >:  /» 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


Thesummao;  of 


""pacts  and  mitigation  for 


the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mitigation  that  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  or  without 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumLBTHrit 
impacts- 


ncorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design. 


>  'wm  County  Trj,«po,OIlon  Authority  !  Jul,  2013 


£*ecutive  Summary 


Van  Nets  Avenue  Bui  Sapid  Tfawf  ?'Oj*& 
Final  Environment*'  Impact  StaK*w<wf/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  S-i:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


ENVIRONMENTAL  ARIA/ 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  .', 
CENTERLANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDINC  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


)UtOt) 


Noise  and  Vibration  No  impact. 
Construction 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 

Increases  in  noise  and  vibration  at  some  locations  would  be  temporary  and  are  thus  considered  a  less 
than  significant  impact.  Pro|ect  construction  would  comply  with  the  City  Noise  Ordinance. 
Improvement  Measures: 

Mitigation  measure  M-CI-C6  presented  in  Section  4.15  and  in  this  table  under  Community  Impacts 
provides  a  program  for  accepting  and  addressing  noise  and  other  complaints  during  project  construction. 
To  further  reduce  noise  and  vibration  impacts  during  construction,  the  following  best  practices,  identified 
as  improvement  measures,  would  be  implemented: 

IM-NO-Ci:  Project  construction  will  implement  best  practices  in  equipment  noise  and  vibration  control  as 
feasible,  including  the  following: 

•  Use  newer  equipment  with  improved  noise  muffling  and  ensure  that  all  equipment  items  have  the 
manufacturers'  recommended  noise  abatement  measures,  such  as  mufflers,  engine  covers,  and  engine 
vibration  isolators  intact  and  operational.  Newer  equipment  will  generally  be  quieter  in  operation  than 
older  equipment.  All  construction  equipment  should  be  inspected  at  periodic  intervals  to  ensure  proper 
maintenance  and  presence  of  noise  control  devices  (e.g.,  mufflers  and  shrouding). 

•  Perform  all  construction  in  a  manner  that  minimizes  noise  and  vibration.  Utilize  construction  methods 
or  equipment  that  will  provide  the  lowest  level  of  noise  and  ground  vibration  impact. 

•  Turn  off  idling  equipment. 

•  When  possible,  limit  the  use  of  construction  equipment  that  creates  high  vibration  levels,  such  as 
vibratory  rollers  and  hammers.  When  such  equipment  must  be  used  within  25  feet  of  any  existing 
building,  select  equipment  models  that  generate  lower  vibration  levels. 

•  Restrict  the  hours  of  vibration-intensive  equipment  or  activities,  such  as  vibratory  rollers,  so  that 
annoyance  to  residents  is  minimal  (e.g.,  limit  to  daytime  hours  as  defined  in  the  noise  ordinance). 

IM-NO-C2:  Project  construction  will  conduct  truck  loading,  unloading,  and  hauling  operations  so  that 
noise  and  vibration  are  kept  to  a  minimum  by  carefully  selecting  routes  to  avoid  passing  through 
residential  neighborhoods  to  the  greatest  possible  extent. 

IM-NO-C3:  Perform  independent  noise  and  vibration  monitoring  in  sensitive  areas  as  needed  to 
demonstrate  compliance  with  applicable  noise  limits.  Require  contractors  to  modify  and/or  reschedule  their 
construction  activities  if  monitoring  determines  that  maximum  limits  are  exceeded  at  residential  land  uses  per  the 
City  Noise  Ordinance. 

IM-NO-C4:  The  construction  contractor  will  be  required  by  contract  specification  to  comply  with  the  City 
noise  ordinances  and  obtain  all  necessary  permits,  particularly  in  relation  to  nighttime  construction  work. 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impacts. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impacts. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  Less  tha-  s  z-  ''ca't 

impacts.  impacts. 

Same  as  Build  Same  as  Build 

Alternative  2.  Alternative  2. 


Noise  and  Vibration 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

No  impact 

Operation 

1 

BRT  operation  would  not  increase  noise  and  vibration;  it  would  operate  a  less  noisy  fleet  of  diesel-electric 
hybrid  and  electric-powered  vehicles  than  exists  today.  Noise  levels  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  the 
parallel  Franklin  and  Cough  streets  would  remain  below  FTA  and  Caltrans  impact  criteria. 
Improvement  Measure: 

IM-NO-i:  Upkeep  of  roadway  surface  will  be  maintained  throughout  project  operation  to  avoid  increases 
in  BRT  noise  and  vibration  levels. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

Noise  and  Vibration 

No  cumulative 

Less  than  significant  impact. 

Less  than  significant  impact. 

Less  than  significant  impact. 

Less  than  significant 

Less  than  significant 

Less  than  sign:*~ca-: 

Cumulative 

impacts. 

Control  measures  IM-NO-Ci  through  IM-NO-C4  would  be  implemented  to  minimize  noise  and  vibration 
disturbances  at  sensitive  areas  during  construction.  Project  construction  would  comply  with  the  City 
Noise  Ordinance  to  avoid  significant  impacts  during  construction  of  the  proposed  project  and  other 
planned  projects  in  the  vicinity.  Construction  phasing  would  be  coordinated  with  these  projects  to 
minimize  construction-related  impacts  to  sensitive  receptors. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

Population  and 

Housing/Growth 

Construction 

No  impact. 

No  impact. 

Project  construction  would  not  lead  to  unplanned  growth  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  or  the  larger 
region,  nor  would  it  displace  housing. 

No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 

The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mit.gation  that  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  or  without  incorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  Into  the  project  design 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Author. r»    |uH  mi) 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


Table  Si:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AKAJ 
IMPACTS 


Population  and 

Housing/Growth 

Operation 


Population  and 

Housing/Growth 

Cumulative 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE 8OARDINC  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 


{COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4) 


No  impact.  No  impact. 

The  project  would  not  lead  to  unplanned  growth  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  or  larger  region,  nor 
would  it  displace  housing.  ^  


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative  impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Public  Services  No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Construction  L«s  than  significant  impacts  to  public  services  would  result  from  construction  activities,  such  as 

temporary  rerouting  and  loss  of  on-street  parking.  No  sidewalk  closures  would  be  required.  These  impacts 
would  cause  temporary  inconvenience  to  area  residents,  businesses,  and  people  traveling-through  the 
corridor.  Mitigation  measures  M-CI-Ci  through  M-CI-C7,  described  in  this  table  under  Community 
Impacts,  would  minimize  impacts  to  Civic  Center  facilities  and  other  public  services  during  project 
construction. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Public  Services  No  impact.  No  impact. 

Operation  The  BRT  would  not  result  in  the  need  for  new  or  physically  altered  governmental  facilities  and  would  not 

hinder  service  rations  and  response  times.  The  project  would  benefit  community  facilities  with  improved 
transit  access. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Public  Services  No  cumulative        Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Cumulative  impacts.  Mitigation  Measures  M-CI-Ci  through  M-CI-C7,  described  in  this  table  under  Community  Impacts,  would 

lessen  potentially  significant,  cumulative  impacts  to  community  facilities  and  government  services  during 
construction  of  the  proposed  project  and  other  planned  projects  in  the  vicinity. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Transportation 
and  Circulation 
Construction 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 
except  a  contraflow  lane  system 
would  not  be  required  for  Build 
Alternative  3;  therefore, 
Mitigation  Measure  M-TR-C2 
would  not  apply. 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Circulation  impacts  during  construction  due  to  lane  closures,  short-term  detours,  and  reduced  speeds 
would  be  temporary  and  are  considered  a  less  than  significant  impact  with  implementation  of  mitigation 
measures.  All  construction  activity  will  be  carried  out  in  compliance  and  accordance  with  the  California 
Manual  on  Uniform  Traffic  Control  Devices  (MUTCD),  and  applicable  regulations  of  the  SFPUC  and  San 
Francisco  Department  of  Public  Works  (SFDPW)  Bureau  of  Street  Use  and  Mapping  (BSM),  and  SFMTA 
Regulations  for  Working  in  San  Francisco  Streets  Blue  Book. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-TR-Ci:  Temporary  conversion  of  parking  lanes  to  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  will  be  implemented  to 
generally  maintain  two  open  traffic  lanes  in  each  direction  and  minimize  traffic  impacts. 
M-TR-C2:  A  contraflow  lane  system,  including  elimination  of  left  turns  in  either  direction  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  will  be  implemented  during  daytime  construction  under  Build  Alternative  2  to  enable  two  lanes  of 
mixed-flow  traffic  to  generally  remain  open  in  each  direction  during  construction  and  minimize  traffic 
congestion  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Appropriate  signage  and  temporary  traffic  signals  will  be  used  to  guide 
drivers,  augmented  by  flagmen  as  needed. 

M-TR-C3:  Plan  required  closures  of  a  second  mixed-flow  traffic  lane  and  detours  for  nighttime  or  off-peak 
traffic  hours  as  feasible,  and  as  in  conformance  with  approved  noise  requirements. 
M-TR-C4:  Maintain  one  east-west  and  north-south  crosswalk  leg  open  at  all  times  at  all  intersections. 
M-TR-C5:  Install  sufficient  barricading,  signage,  and  temporary  walkways  as  needed  to  minimize  impacts 
to  pedestrians  and  bicyclists.  v 

M-TR-C6:  SFMTA  will  coordinate  with  CGT  as  part  of  the  Transportation  Management  Plan  (TMP)  to  plan 
temporarily  relocated  transit  stops  as  needed,  and  minimize  impacts  to  CGT  service 
M-TR-C7:  Implement  a  TMP  to  minimize  delay  and  inconvenience  to  the  traveling  public  including  a 
el tT,  Ta"°n  Pf0gram       Wayfndmg  10  pr°V'de  '0Cal  bu5lness«  and  -^ents  with  information 

Sao  r„nclsco  County  Transporter,  Authority  I  July  20.3 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3 
without  Design  Option  B. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 


S-15 


Cwcutiv*  Summary 


Van  Nest  Avenue  Bus  SapHf  Tf* 
F«nal  Enyironmentjt  ltr*p*ct 


Table  S-i:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


iwwwnni  «Uj 


Transportation 
and  Circulation 
Operation 


No  impact.  Significant  impact  (to  traffic). ' 

The  project  would  not  significantly  impact  traffic  conditions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Traffic  congestion  on 
streets  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  receive  increased  traffic  that  has  diverted  from  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Traffic  impact  significance  findings  for  the  near-term  and  horizon  years  follow. 
Less  than  significant  impact  (to  traffic). 

Less  than  significant  vehicular  traffic  circulation  impacts  would  result  in  Year  2015  at  the  following 
intersection: 

•  Cough/Green 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp 

Less  than  significant  vehicular  traffic  circulation  impacts  would  result  in  Year  2035  at  the  following 
intersections: 

•  Cough/Green 

•  Gough/Clay 

•  Mission/South  Van  Ness/Otis 

•  Mission/Duboce/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramps 

•  Van  Ness/Pine 
Significant  impact  ftp  traffic). 2 

Significant  impacts  that  may  not  be  mitigated  would  result  in  Year  2015  at  the  following  intersections: 

•  Gough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

Significant  impacts  that  may  not  be  mitigated  would  result  in  Year  2035  at  the  following  intersections: 

•  Gough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/Pine 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

•  Franklin/Eddy 

•  Franklin/  McAllister 
Mitigation  Measures 
M-Traffic  Management  Toolbox 

Develop  and  implement  a  traffic  management  toolbox  to  raise  public  awareness  of  circulation  changes; 
advise  drivers  of  alternate  routes;  and  pedestrian  improvements.  Toolbox  actions  will  include: 

•  Provide  driver  wavfinding  and  signage,  especially  to  assist  infrequent  drivers  of  the  corridor  who  may 
not  be  aware  of  alternate  routes,  such  as  along  the  Larkin/Hyde  and  Franklin/Gough  corridors. 
Coordinate  with  Caltrans  to  develop  the  driver  wayfinding  and  signage  strategy  as  part  of  mitigation 
measure  M-TR-C5.  Continue  to  monitor  traffic  after  construction  and  during  project  operation. 

•  Public  Awareness  Campaign  and  Transportation  Management  Plan  (TMP)  during  and  after  Project 
Construction.  As  discussed  as  part  of  mitigation  measure  M-TR-C7,  the  TMP  will  implement  a  public 
awareness  program  of  wayfinding  during  construction  and  will  coordinate  the  public  information 
program  with  regional  agencies,  including  Caltrans  and  GGT.  Continue  to  monitor  traffic  after 
construction  and  during  project  operation. 

'  P^estrian  Amenities  at  Additional  Corridor  Locations  After  construction,  during  project  operation 
monitor  travel  in  the  corridor  to  identify  additional  locations  for  pedestrian  improvements  based  on  . 
combination  of  pedestrian  and  vehicle  volumes,  infrastructure  capabilities,  and  collision  hist, 

Less  than  significant  impact  (to  transit). 

No  significant  impacts  to  transit  would  result.  While  one  transit  line  that  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue 
experience  increased  delay,  this  delay  would  not  result  in  significant  impacts  to  service  rel,ab,l,"v  and 
travel  time.  BRT  service  would  substantially  improve  transit  service  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Less  than  significant  impact  (to  nonmotorized  transportation). 

No  significant  impacts  to  nonmotorized  travel  would  result.  While  transit  stop  consolidation  would 


story. 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  j: 

CENTER- LANE  BRT  WITH  RICHTSIDE 

BOAROINC  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  j 
WITH  OESICN  OPTION  B 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  f 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT. 
SIDE  BOAROINC  AND  SINGLE 
MEOIAN 


g  automoDiie  traffic  capacity  and  are  unlikely  to  be  effective  In  the  long  term  due  to  the  risk  of  induced  demand.  Thus,  a  conservative  worsl "case  f  '°  poUc<  confllc,s'  specifically  the  need  to  balance  traffic  circulation  with  pedestrian  and  transit  circulation  and  safety.  In  addition,  these  engineering  techmoues  fw«t»o«  to 


Significant  impact  (to  traffic). ' 
The  project  would  not 
significantly  impact  traffic 
conditions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Traffic  congestion  on  streets 
parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue 
would  receive  increased  traffic 
that  has  diverted  from  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Traffic  impact 
significance  findings  for  the  near- 
term  and  horizon  years  follow, 
including  those  impacts  that  are 
less  than  significant  and  those 
that  are  significant.  Mitigation 
Measure  M-Traffic  Management 
Toolbox  under  Build  Alternative  2 
also  applies. 

Less  than  significant  impact  (to 
traffic). 

Less  than  significant  vehicular 
traffic  circulation  impacts  would 
result  in  Year  2015  at  the 
following  intersection: 

•  Gough/Green 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101 
off-ramp 

Less  than  significant  vehicular 
traffic  circulation  impacts  would 
result  in  Year  2035  at  the 
following  intersections: 

•  Gough/Green 

•  Franklin/Pine 

•  Van  Ness/Pine 

•  Mission/Duboce/Otis/US  lot 
Off- Ramps 

Significant  impact  (to  traffic). 2 
Significant  impacts  that  may  not 
be  mitigated  to  a  less  than 
significant  level  would  result  in 
Year  2015  at  the  following 
intersections: 

•  Gough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

•  Mission/South  Van  Ness/Otis 
Significant  impacts  that  may  not 
be  mitigated  to  a  less  than 
significant  level  would  result  in 
Year  2035  at  the  following 
intersections: 

•  Cough/Sacramento 

•  Gough/  Eddy 


Significant  impact  (to  traffic).' 
The  project  would  not 
significantly  impact  traffic 
conditions  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Traffic  congestion  on 
streets  parallel  to  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  receive 
increased  traffic  that  has 
diverted  from  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Also,  the  elimination 
of  all  but  two  left  turn 
opportunities  off  ofVan  Ness 
Avenue  will  result  in  an 
increase  in  drivers  making 
multiple  right  turns  in  the 
project  vicinity,  causing  some 
additional  traffic  on  these 
adjacent  collector  streets. 
Traffic  impact  significance 
findings  for  the  near-term  and 
horizon  years  follow, 
including  those  impacts  that 
are  less  than  significant  and 
those  that  are  significant. 
Mitigation  Measure  M-Traffic 
Management  Toolbox  under 
Build  Alternative  2  also 
applies. 

Less  than  significant  impact 
(to  traffic). 

Less  than  significant  vehicular 
traffic  circulation  impacts 
would  result  in  Year  2015  at 
the  following  intersection: 

•  Gough/Green 

•  South  Van 
Ness/Mission/Otis 

•  Duboce/  Mission/ 
Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp 

Less  than  significant  vehicular 
traffic  circulation  impacts 
would  result  in  Year  2035  at 
the  following  intersections: 

•  Gough/Green 

•  Gough/Clay 

•  Franklin/Pine 

•  Mission/Duboce/Otis/US 
101  Off-Ramps 

Significant  impact  (to  traffic).' 
Significant  impacts  that  may 
not  be  mitigated  to  a  less 
than  significant  level  will  


Significant  impact  (to 
traffic).  'Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Mitigation  Measure  M- 
Traffic  Management 
Toolbox  under  Build 
Alternative  2  also 
applies. 

Less  than  Significant 
Impact  (to  traffic). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 
Significant  impact. ' 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation 
(to  transit). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  (to 
nonmotorized 
transportation). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B,  in 
addition  to  the 
following  improvement 
measures: 

IM-NMT-2:  For  Build 
Alternative  4,  bus 
vehicle  design  should 
incorporate  an  intuitive 
seating  space  for  users 
requiring  level 
boarding  that  is  easily 
accessible  to  both  the 
front  door  on  the  right 
side  and  the  door 
behind  the  operator  on 
the  left  side. 
IM-NMT-3:  For  Build 
Alternative  4,  bus 
vehicle  design  should 
incorporate  audible 
cues,  such  as  stop 


Significant  impact  (to 
traffic).' 

The  project  would  not 
significantly  impact 
traffic  conditions  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Traffic  congestion  on 
streets  parallel  to  Van 
Ness  Avenue  would 
receive  increased 
traffic  that  has 
diverted  from  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  Also, 
the  elimination  of  all 
but  two  left  turn 
opportunities  off  of 
Van  Ness  Avenue  will 
result  in  an  increase  in 
drivers  making 
multiple  right  turns  in 
the  project  vicinity, 
causing  some 
additional  traffic  on 
these  adjacent 
collector  streets. 
Traffic  impact 
significance  findings 
for  the  near-term  and 
horizon  years  follow, 
including  those 
impacts  that  are  less 
than  significant  and 
those  that  are 
significant.  Mitigation 
Measure  M-Traffic 
Management  Toolbox 
under  Build  Alternative 
2  also  applies. 
Less  than  Significant 
Impact  (to  traffic). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 
Significant  impact  (to 
traffic).  ! 


Same  as  Build 
Alternatives  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation 
(to  transit). 
Same  as  Build 


Significant  impact 
(to  traffic).' 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Mitigation  Measure 
M-Traffic 
Management 
Toolbox  under  Htald 
Alternative  2  also 
applies. 
Less  thar 
S'gn.fica*:  '-"sac: 
. 

Same  as  Buiic 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 
S  Z'  -"  ZZ'-  —  " 
(to  traffic).' 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  :ra^  5  f  ' 


transit). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  -si-'  5  £-  '  :  =  " 
impact  (to 
nonmotonzec 
:-a-srr~;:  :- 
Same  as  B^  c 
Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  :-a-  5 
impact  itc  :s-<.  -£ 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2.  except 
■c;  rs-v  sr=;es 
would  be  removed 
along  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  The  same 
improvement 
measure  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would 
be  implemented. 


S24 


t  fat.     f    A   r-"JM,-y  t-UlllliHJ,  juh.iiiv.oiii  '"I-  \\j  "i*'"""-*-  Mmim  <>*«■  whihwii  '  

case  finding  of  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  under  CEQA  is  assumed  (see  Section  3.3.4). 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  fw^p  so*) 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Proiect 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


Table  So:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREA/ 


increase  the  physical  effort  required  to  reach  transit  for  some  patrons  relative  to  existing  conditions,  the 
average  distances  between  stops  are  consistent  with  applicable  Muni  guidelines  for  rapid  bus  and  light 
rail,  and  the  project  would  offer  pedestrian  accessibility  and  safety  benefits.  The  proposed  project  would 
not  substantially  change  or  degrade  bicycle  conditions. 
Improvement  Measures: 

IM-NMT-i:  Include  comprehensive  wayfinding,  allowing  all  users  to  navigate  to  and  from  the  correct 
platform. 

IM-NMT-4:  Provide  sufficient  information  to  educate  less-ambulatory  passengers  that  board  at  BRT 
stations  that  they  would  need  to  exit  through  the  front,  right  doors  for  stops  outside  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
corridor. 

Less  than  significant  impact  (to  parking). 

The  project  would  not  have  a  significant  impact  on  the  transportation  system  from  changes  in  parking 
supply.  Build  Alternative  2  would  remove  33  parking  spaces  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Improvement  Measures: 

IM-TR-i:  On-street  parking  will  be  created  where  bus  stops  are  consolidated  or  moved  to  the  center  of  the 
street. 

IM-TR-2:  Additional  on-street  parking  will  be  provided  where  feasible  by  lane  striping. 
IM-TR-3:  Infill  on-street  parking  spaces  will  be  provided  where  they  do  not  exist  today  as  feasible. 
IM-TR-4:  SFMTA  will  give  priority  to  retaining  color-painted  on-street  parking  spaces,  such  as  yellow 
freight  zones  white  passenger  loading  zones,  green  short-term  parking,  and  blue  disabled  parking. 
IM-TR-5:  Blue  handicapped  parking  spaces  will  be  designed  to  provide  a  curb  ramp  behind  each  space. 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDINC  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDINC  AND  SINCLE 
MEDIAN 


(COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4)' 


•  Cough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

•  Franklin/Eddy 

•  Franklin/McAllister 

•  Van  Ness/Hayes 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis 
Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation  (to  transit). 

A  potentially  significant  impact  to 
transit  service  could  occur  in  year 
2035  due  to  vehicle  crowding.  The 
following  mitigation  measure  is 
required  to  reduce  this  impact  to 
less  than  significant: 
M-TR-i :  An  additional  vehicle  will 
be  added  to  the  fleet  as  needed  to 
provide  additional  service  and 
reduce  station  vehicle  crowding 
impacts. 

Less  than  significant  impact  (to 
transit) 

While  some  transit  lines  that 
cross  Van  Ness  Avenue  would 
experience  some  increased  delay, 
this  delay  would  not  result  in 
significant  impacts  to  service 
reliability  and  travel  time.  BRT 
service  would  substantially 
improve  transit  service  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue. 

Less  than  significant  impact 

(to  nonmotorized 

transportation). 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 

Less  than  significant  impact  (to 

Parking). 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 
except  68  parking  spaces  would 
be  removed  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  The  same  improvement 
measure  as  Build  Alternative  2 
would  be  implemented. 


result  in  Year  2015  at  the 
following  intersections: 

•  Cough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

•  Franklin/Market/Page 
Significant  impacts  that  may 
not  be  mitigated  to  a  less 
than  significant  level  would 
result  in  Year  2035  at  the 
following  intersections: 

•  Cough/Sacramento 

•  Cough/Eddy 

•  Gough/Hayes 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell 

•  Franklin/Eddy 

•  Franklin/McAllister 

•  Franklin/Market/Page 

•  Mission/South  Van 
Ness/Otis 

Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation  (to  transit). 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3 
without  Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant  impact 
(to  nonmotorized 
transportation). 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3 
without  Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant  impact 
(to  parking). 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 
except  31  parking  spaces 
would  be  removed  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  The  same 
improvement  measure  as 
Build  Alternative  2  would  be 
implemented. 


announcements,  of 
which  door  will  open  to 
avoid  any  confusion  for 
passengers. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  (to  parking). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2,  except  45 
parking  spaces  would 
be  removed  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  The 
same  improvement 
measure  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would  be 
implemented. 


Alternative  3  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  (to 
nonmotorized 
transportation). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  4  without 
Design  Option  B. 
Less  than  significant 
impact  (to  parking). 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2,  except  13 
parking  spaces  would 
be  removed  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  The 
same  improvement 
measure  as  Build 
Alternative  2  would  be 
implemented. 


Transportation 
and  Circulation 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impacts. 


Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation 

Mitigation  Measures  M-TR-O  through  M-TR-C7  would  lessen  significant,  cumulative  circulation  impacts 
during  construction  of  the  proposed  pro,ect  and  other  planned  projects  i'n  the  vicimty  The  Z ac  s 
Z 1  h     P°rary  tHUS  C°"Sidered  'eSS  tha"  Si6nificant  with  mitjgat'°"-  clula,     arcu  ation 

E7T- To^Z^  ProP°Sed  ^  -d  «~  P"i«  -  «"  —ty  «  — 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 
except  a  contraflow  lane  system 
would  not  be  required  for  Build 
Alternative  3;  therefore, 
Mitigation  Measure  M-TR-C2 
would  not  apply. 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3 
without  Design  Option  B. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 


Less  than  significant        Less  than  s  gn  f  ;a-; 


impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 


impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 


1   The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  imnar.      a~-  Z   -   WOjlc 

P    ty      are  unlikely  to  be  effective  In  the  long  term  due  to  the  risk  of  mduced  demand  Thus     cZerv/r      n°'  be  fe3S,lble  due  t0  P0'10*'  conflicts'  specifically  the  need  to  balance  traffic  circulation  with  pedestrian  and 

emano.  ihus.  a  conservative  worst-case  rinding  of  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  under  CEQA  is  assumed  (see  Sect.on  3.3.4)  3 

San  Franosco  County  Transportat.on  Authority  |  July  2o,3 


transit  circulation  and  safety.  In  addition,  these  engineering  techniques  function  by 


sis 


Encutiv*  Summary 


Van  ties*  Av«nu«  »u*  P« 
Final  Enveonmenfat  impact  ******** 


EMS 


Table  Si:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


ENVIRONMENTAL  AREAJ 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  ): 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  ■ 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  wrTH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDING  AND  SINCLE 
MEDIAN 


UW 
ICOH 


Utilities  and 
Service  Systems 
Construction 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact. 

Compliance  with  standard  procedures  will  minimize  the  potential  for  damage  to  utilities,  injury  to 
construction  workers,  and  proper  completion  of  construction  work. 
Improvement  Measures: 

IM-UT-Ci:  Construction  work  involving  utilities  will  be  conducted  in  accordance  with  contract 
specifications,  including  the  following  requirements: 

•  Obtain  authorization  from  utility  provider  before  initiating  work 

•  Contact  Underground  Service  Alert  in  advance  of  excavation  work  to  mark-out  underground  utilities 

•  Conduct  investigations,  including  exploratory  borings  if  needed,  to  confirm  the  location  and  type  of 
underground  utilities  and  service  connections 

•  Prepare  a  support  plan  for  each  utility  crossing  detailing  the  intended  support  method 

•  Take  appropriate  precautions  for  the  protection  of  unforeseen  utility  lines  encountered  during  construction 

•  Restore  or  replace  each  utility  as  close  as  planned  and  work  with  providers  to  ensure  its  location  is  as 
good  or  better  than  found  prior  to  removal   


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  | 
impact. 
Same  as  B>  c 
A  :e"at  <e  i 


Less  than  significant  Less  than  significant  Less  ;ra^  s  ' 
impact  with  mitigation.     impact  with  impact  wtth 


Utilities  and  No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Service  Systems  Operation  would  not  result  in  changes  to  utility  demand  and  capacity.  Some  utilities  would  require  relocation 

Operation  or  modification  for  construction  and  to  maintain  access  for  utility  providers  to  conduct  maintenance,  repair, 

and  upgrade/replacement  activities.  These  would  result  in  less  than  significant  impacts  to  utilities  and 
service  systems.  Mitigation  measures  are  required  to  avoid  adverse  impacts  to  utility  systems  and  services. 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-UT-i:  BRT  construction  will  be  closely  coordinated  with  concurrent  utility  projects  planned  within  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 

M-UT-3:  During  planning  and  design,  consideration  must  be  given  to  ensure  that  the  proposed  BRT 
transitway  and  station  facilities  do  not  prevent  access  to  the  underground  auxiliary  water  supply  service 
(AWSS)  lines.  There  must  be  adequate  access  for  specialized  trucks  to  park  next  to  gate  valves  for 
maintenance.  The  gate  valves  must  not  be  located  beneath  medians  or  station  platforms. 
M-UT-4:  In  situations  where  utility  facilities  cannot  be  relocated,  SFMTA  will  create  a  plan  to 
accommodate  temporary  closure  of  the  transitway  and/or  stations  in  coordination  with  utility  providers  to 
allow  utility  providers  to  perform  maintenance,  emergency  repair,  and  upgrade/replacement  of 
underground  facilities  that  may  be  located  beneath  project  features  such  as  the  BRT  transitway,  station 
platforms,  or  curb  bulbs.  Signage  for  BRT  patrons  and  safety  protocols  for  Muni  operators  and  utility 
 providers  will  be  integrated  into  this  plan. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2, 

except  the  following  additional 

mitigation  measure  would  also  be 

required: 

M-UT-2:  An  inspection  and 
evaluation  of  the  sewer  pipeline 
within  the  project  limits  will  be 
undertaken  to  assess  the 
condition  of  the  pipeline  and 
need  for  replacement. 
Coordination  with  SFPUC  and 
SFDPW  will  continue  and  be 
tracked  by  Committee  for  Utility 
Liaison  on  Construction  and 
Other  Projects  (CULCOP). 


Less  than  significant  impact 
with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build  Alternative  3 
without  Design  Option  B. 


impact  with  mitigation 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 


impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  3  with 
Design  Option  B. 


—  :  z ; :  : ' 
Same  as  Bu-iC 
Alternative  3. 


Utilities  and 
Service  Systems 
Cumulative 


No  cumulative        Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Mitigation  Measure  M-UT-Ci  would  avoid  significant  cumulative  impacts  to  utilities  during  construction 
of  the  proposed  project  and  other  planned  projects  in  the  vicinity. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  sigmrca-: 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Bu"C 
Alternative  2. 


Community 

Impacts 

Construction 


No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Less  than  significant  impacts  on  the  community  would  result  from  construction  activities  such  as 
temporary  rerouting  and  loss  of  parking;  these  impacts  would  cause  temporary  inconvenience  to  area 
residents,  businesses,  and  people  traveling  through  the  corridor.  Construction  phase  impacts  to  the 
community  will  be  mitigated  with  special  provisions  to  control  rerouting,  noise  and  fugitive  dust  The 
temporary  removal  of  colored  parking  spaces  during  project  construction  would  be  addressed  by  M-CI  IM 
1  (see  Community  Impacts  Operation).  y 
Mitigation  Measures: 

M-CI-Ci:  ATMP  that  includes  traffic  rerouting,  a  detour  plan,  and  public  information  procedures  will  be 
developed  during  the  design  phase  with  participation  from  local  agencies  other  maio ornT,  \ 
m  the  area  (e.g.,  CPMC  Cathedral  Hill,  Hayes  Two-Way  Conversion,  and  the  C    t^Co  r  do TB  r^Ts  $ 
Jocal  communis,  business  associations,  and  affected  drive.  r.H.  ■■^jj^jg^^- 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less :~a-  5 ■ 


impact 
with  mit:ga: 
Same  as  Bui 'c 
Alternative  2. 


The  summary  of  impacts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mitigation  tha,  would  pertain  to  the  LPA  with  , 


without  incorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Author*)  |  jot} 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Frnal  Envtronmemal  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Executive  Summary 


Table  S-i:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  i: 

SIDE-LANE  BRT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE 
BOARDING  AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4: 
CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT- 
SIDE BOARDING  AND  SINGLE 
MEDIAN 


(COMBINES  ALTERNATIVES 


and  other  public  information  measures  will  be  implemented  prior  to  and  during  construction  to  minimize 
confusion,  inconvenience,  and  traffic  congestion. 

M-CI-C2:  As  part  of  the  TMP,  construction  planning  will  minimize  nighttime  construction  in  residential 
areas  and  minimize  daytime  construction  impacts  on  retail  and  commercial  areas. 

M-CI-C3:  As  part  of  the  TMP,  construction  scheduling  and  planning  in  the  Civic  Center  area  will  take  into 
consideration  major  civic  and  performing  arts  events. 

M-CI-C4:  As  part  of  the  TMP  public  information  program,  SFMTA  will  coordinate  with  adjacent  properties 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  determine  the  need  for  colored  parking  spaces  and  work  to  identify  locations 
for  replacement  spaces  or  plan  construction  activities  to  minimize  impacts  from  the  loss  of  these  spaces. 
M-CI-C5:  As  part  of  the  TMP  public  information  program,  SFMTA  will  coordinate  with  adjacent  properties 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  ensure  that  pedestrian  access  to  these  properties  is  maintained  at  all  times. 
M-CI-C6.  As  part  of  the  TMP,  SFMTA's  process  for  accepting  and  addressing  complaints  would  be 
implemented.  This  includes  provision  of  contact  information  for  the  Project  Manager,  Resident  Engineer, 
and  Contractor  on  project  signage  with  direction  to  call  if  there  are  any  concerns.  Complaints  are  logged 
and  tracked  to  ensure  they  are  addressed. 

M-CI-C7.  As  part  of  the  TMP,  adequate  passenger  and  truck  loading  zones  will  be  maintained  for  adjacent 
land  uses,  including  maintaining  access  to  driveways  and  providing  adequate  loading  zones  on  the  same 
or  adjoining  street  block  face. 


Less  than  significant 
impact  with 
mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Community  No  impact.  Less  than  significant  impact  with  mitigation. 

Impacts  Mitigation  measures  are  required  to  minimize  economic  impacts  on  properties  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 

Operation  from  parking  removal. 

Mitigation  Measures: 

M-CI-I  M-i3:  SFMTA  will  coordinate  with  all  businesses  that  would  be  affected  by  removal  of  colored 
parking  spaces,  including  short-term  parking,  to  confirm  the  need  for  truck  and/or  passenger  loading 
spaces  and  to  identify  appropriate  replacement  parking  locations  to  minimize  the  impacts  to  these 
businesses. 

M-CI-IM-23:  SFMTA  will  apply  parking  management  tools  as  needed  to  offset  any  substantial  impacts 
from  the  loss  of  on-street  parking,  including  adjustment  of  residential  parking  permits  in  the  residential 
community  north  of  Broadway,  or  SFpark,  which  is  a  package  of  real-time  tools  to  manage  parking 
occupancy  and  turnover  through  pricing  (appropriate  in  areas  of  high-density  commercial  uses  that  rely 
  on  high  parking  turnover). 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant  impact 

with  mitigation. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Less  than  significant 
impact 

with  mitigation. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Community 

Impacts 

Cumulative 


No  cumulative 
impact. 


Cumulative  impacts  on  community  related  and  business  activities  from  the  loss  of  colored  on-street 
parking  spaces  would  be  mitigated  through  the  implementation  of  M-CI-IM-i  and  M-CI-IM-2. 


Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


Environmental 

Justice 

Construction 


No  impact.  No  impact. 

Project  construction  would  not  disproportionately  affect  low  income  and  minority  populate 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Environmental 

Justice 

Operation 


No  impact.  No  impact. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


The  proposed  project  would  not  disproportionately  affect  low  income  and  minority  populations. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


Environmental 

Justice 

Cumulative 


No  impact.  No  impact. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alte'native  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 

Same  as  Build  Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


No  impact. 
Same  as  Build 
Alternative  2. 


The  summary  of  i 
M-CI-IM-i  and  M 


mparts  and  mitigation  for  the  LPA  includes  all  impacts  and  mitigation  that  would  perta 

■U-IM-2  Constitute  mitioatii-in  meaorac  Men*  I  :  


HIM  constitute  mitigation  measures  under  N  EPA  and  improvement  measures  undtcEQA  ^  W"h°U'  WC0'p0'3l'0n  0<  the  V'N°  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design 


San  Franc.sco  County  TransportatK 


'  Authority  I  July  2013 


S-J7 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority    |yl>  ae>| 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Contents 


Contents 

EXECUTIVE  SUMMARY  |  S-i 

1  PROJECT  PURPOSE  AND  NEED  |  i-i 

1.1  Introduction  |  i-i 

1.1.1  |  Project  Location  1 1-3 

1.1.2  I  Uses  of  this  Environmental  Impact  Statement/Environmental  Impact 
Report  1 1-4 

1.2  Planning  Context  1 1-4 

1.2.1  I  Countywide  Planning  Context  1 1-4 

1.2.2  I  Regional  Planning  Context  1 1-6 

1.3  Project  Purpose  and  Need  1 1-7 

1.3.1  I  Project  Purpose  1 1-7 

1.3.2  I  Project  Need  1 1-8 

1.3.3  I  Project  Ability  to  Meet  the  Purpose  and  Need  1 1-13 

2  PROj  ECT  ALTERNATIVES  |  2-1 

2.1  Alternatives  Development  Process  |  2-1 

2.1.1  I  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  |  2-1 

2.1.2  I  Scoping  Process  |  2-1 

2.1.3  I  Alternatives  Screening/Analysis  |  2-2 

2.1.4  I  Identification  of  a  Locally  Preferred  Alternative  |  2-3 

2.2  Project  Alternatives  |  2-4 

2.2.1  I  Alternative  i:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative)  |  2-4 

2.2.2  I  Build  Alternatives,  including  the  LPA  |  2-6 

2.3  Construction  Plan  |  2-24 

2.3.1  I  Construction  Approach  and  Schedule  |  2-26 

2.4  Project  Schedule  |  2-28 

2.5  Capital  and  Operating  Costs  of  Build  Alternatives  I  2-28 

2.5.1  I  Capital  Costs  |  2-28 

2.5.2  I  Annual  Operating  Costs  |  2-29 

2.6  Alternatives  Considered  and  Withdrawn  |  2-29 

2.6.1  I  Fatal  Flaw  Alternatives  |  2-29 

2.6.2  I  Low-Performance  Alternatives  I  2-30 

2.7  Related  and  Planned  Projects  |  2-31 

2.7.1  I  Local  Transportation  Projects  I  2-32 

2.7.2  I  Regional  Transportation  Projects  |  2-34 

2.7.3  I  Local  Planning  Projects  |  2-34 

2.8  Next  Steps  and  Project  Timeline  |  2-37 

2.9  Permits  and  Approvals  |  2-38 

3  TRANSPORTATION  ANALYSIS  |  3-1 

3.0  Introduction  |  3-1 

3.1  Corridor  Travel  Patterns  I  3-2 

3.1.1  I  Existing  Travel  Patterns  I  3-2 

3.1.2  I  Future  Travel  Patterns  |  3-6 

3.1.3  I  Summary  of  Corridor  Travel  Patterns  I  3-12 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

3.2  Transit  Conditions  |  3-14 

3.2.1  I  Existing  Transit  Services,  Ridership,  and  Performance  |  3-14 

3.2.2  I  Future  SFMTA  Transit  Services,  Ridership,  and  Performance  |  3-25 

3.2.3  I  Future  Regional  Transit  Services  |  3-31 

3.2.4 1  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  3-37 
3.2.5  I  Transit  Summary  |  3-37 

3.3  Traffic  |  3-39 

3.3.1  I  Traffic  Evaluation  Methodology  |  3-39 

3.3.2  I  Existing  Conditions  |  3-41 

3.3.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  3-45 

3.3.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  3-79 

3.4  Nonmotorized  Transportation  |  3-89 

3.4.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  3-89 

3.4.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  3-91 

3.4.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  3-100 

3.4.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  3-115 

3.5  Parking  |  3-116 

3.5.1  I  Existing  Conditions  |  3-116 

3.5.2  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  3-117 

3.5.3  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures:  Build 
Alternatives  (2015  and  2035)  |  3-123 

AFFECTED  ENVIRONMENT,  ENVIRONMENTAL  CONSEQUENCES,  AND 
AVOIDANCE,  MINIMIZATION,  AND/OR  MITIGATION  MEASURES  |  4.1-1 

4.0  Introduction  |  4.1-2 

4.1  Land  Use  |  4.1-2 

4.1.1  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.1-2 

4.1.2  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.1-10 

4.1.3  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.1-13 

4.2  Community  Impacts  |  4.2-1 

4.2.1  I  Community  Character  and  Cohesion  |  4.2-1 

4.2.2  I  Public  Services  and  Community  Facilities  1 4.2-5 

4.2.3  I  Relocations  |  4.2-]! 

4.2.4  I  Economic  and  Business  Environment  |  4.2-n 

4.2.5  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.2-17 

4.3  Growth  I  4.3-1 

4.3.1  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.3-1 

4.3.2  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.3-1 

4.3.3  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.3-2 

4.4  Aesthetics/Visual  Resources  |  4.4-1 

4.4.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.4-1 

4.4.2  I  Affected  Environment  I  4.4-6 

4.4.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.4-19 

4.4.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.4-51 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  I mpact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

4.5  Cultural  Resources  |  4.5-1 

4.5.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  I  4.5-1 

4.5.2  I  Archaeological  Resources  I  4.5-2 

4.5.3  I  Historic  and  Architectural  Resources  1 4.5-7 
4.5.4 1  Environmental  Consequences  1 4.5-23 

4.5.5  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.5-32 

4.6  Utilities  |  4.6-1 

4.6.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.6-1 

4.6.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.6-3 

4.6.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  I  4.6-6 

4.6.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.6-9 

4.7  Geology/Soils/Seismic/Topography  |  4.7-1 

4.7.1  I  Geologic  Setting  |  4.7-1 

4.7.2  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.7-9 

4.7.3  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.7-10 

4.8  Hazardous  Waste/Materials  |  4.8-1 

4.8.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.8-1 

4.8.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.8-2 

4.8.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.8-4 

4.8.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.8-6 

4.9  Hydrology  and  Water  Quality  I  4.9-1 

4.9.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.9-1 

4.9.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.9-3 

4.9.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.9-7 

4.9.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.9-10 

4.10  Air  Quality  |  4.10-1 

4.10.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.10-1 

4.10.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.10-8 

4.10.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.10-11 

4.10.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.10-19 

4.10.5  I  Transportation  Conformity  Impacts  |  4.10-19 

4.10.6  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.10-20 

4.10.7  I  Greenhouse  Gas  Emissions  |  4.10-20 

4.10.8  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.10-23 

4.11  Noise  and  Vibration  I  4.11-1 

4.11.1  I  Terminology  |  4.11-1 

4.11.2  I  Human  Reaction  to  Noise  |  4.11-3 

4.11.3  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.11-4 

4.11.4  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.11-7 

4.11.5  I  Environmental  Consequences  I  4.11-11 

4.11.6  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.11-12 

4.12  Energy  |  4.12-1 

4.12.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.12-1 

4.12.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.12-1 

4.12.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  I  4.12-2 

4.12.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  I  4.12-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Contents 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


4.13  Biological  Environment  I  4.13-1 

4.13.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.13-1 

4.13.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.13-3 

4.13.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.13-4 

4.13.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.13-5 

4.14  Environmental  Justice  1 4.14-1 

4.14.1  I  Regulatory  Setting  |  4.14-1 

4.14.2  I  Affected  Environment  |  4.14-2 

4.14.3  I  Environmental  Consequences  |  4.14-4 

4.14.4  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures  |  4.14-10 

4.15  Construction  Impacts  |  4.15-1 

4.15.1  I  Traffic  and  Transportation/Pedestrian  and  Bicycle  Facilities  |  4.15-9 

4.15.2  I  Land  Use  &  Community  Impacts  |  4.15-12 

4.15.3  I  Visual/Aesthetics  |  4.15-14 

4.15.4  I  Cultural  Resources  |  4.15-15 

4.15.5  I  Utilities/Service  Systems  |  4.15-18 

4.15.6  I  Geology/Soils/Seismic/Topography  |  4.15-19 

4.15.7  I  Hazardous  Materials  1 4.15-19 

4.15.8  I  Hydrology  and  Water  Quality  |  4.15-20 

4.15.9  I  Air  Quality  |  4.15-23 

4.15.10  I  Noise  and  Vibration  |  4.15-29 

4.15.11  I  Biological  Environment  I  4.15-32 

4.16  Irreversible  and  Irretrievable  Commitment  of  Resources  1 4.16-1 

4.17  Relationship  between  Local  Short-Term  Uses  of  the  Environment  and  the 
Maintenance  and  Enhancement  of  Long-Term  Productivity  |  4.17-1 

5    CU  M  U  LATI VE  I M  PACTS  |  5-1 

5.1  Regulatory  Setting  I  5-1 

5.2  Methodology  |  5-1 

5.3  Reasonably  Foreseeable  Projects  |  5-2 

5.4  Environmental  Areas  with  No  Cumulative  Impacts  |  5-4 

5.4.1  I  Land  Use  |  5-5 

5.4.2  I  Growth  I  5-5 

5.4.3  I  Visual/Aesthetics  |  5-5 

5.4.4  I  Cultural  Resources  |  5-6 

5.4.5  I  Water  Quality  and  Hydrology  |  5-6 

5.4.6  I  Geology  and  Soils  |  5-7 

5.4.7  I  Hazardous  Materials  |  5-7 

5.4.8  I  Biological  Resources  |  5-7 

5.4.9  I  Utilities  |  5-8 

5.4.10  I  Air  Quality  |  5-8 

5.4.11  I  Noise  and  Vibration  |  5-9 

5.4.12  I  Nonmotorized  Transportation  |  5-10 

5.5  Environmental  Areas  Subject  to  Cumulative  Effects  |  5-11 

5.5.1  I  Private  Vehicular  Traffic  |  5-11 

5.5.2  I  Parking  |  5-15 

5.5.3  I  Community  Impacts  |  5-20 

5.5.4  I  Public  Services  and  Community  Facilities  |  5-23 


iv 

0 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Contents 


6  FINAL  SECTION  4(F)  EVALUATION  |  60 

6.1  Proposed  Action  |  6-i 

6.2  Section  4(f)  Properties  |  6-3 

6.2.1  I  Cultural  Resources  |  6-3 

6.2.2  I  Parks  and  Recreation  Properties  |  6-4 

6.3  Impacts  on  Section  4(f)  Properties  I  6-4 

6.4  Avoidance  Alternative  |  6-7 

6.5  Measures  to  Minimize  Harm  |  6-7 

6.6  Coordination  |  6-9 

7  CALIFORNIA  ENVIRONMENTAL  QUALITY  ACT  EVALUATION  |  7-1 

7.1  The  Relationship  between  NEPA  and  CEQA  |  7-1 

7.2  Significance  of  the  Proposed  Project's  Impacts  under  CEQA  |  7-1 

7.3  Findings  of  Significance  under  CEQA  |  7-2 

7.4  Mitigation  Measures  Pursuant  to  CEQA  Impacts  |  7-2 

7.5  Unavoidable  Significant  Effects  under  CEQA  |  7-25 

7.6  Environmentally  Superior  Alternative  |  7-27 

7.7  Areas  of  Controversy  |  7-28 

8  COORDINATION  AND  PUBLIC  PARTICIPATION  |  8-1 

8.1  Interagency  Consultation  I  8-i 

8.1.1  I  Technical  Advisory  Committee  |  8-1 

8.1.2  I  Caltrans  Project  Development  Team  |  8-2 

8.1.3  I  FTA  Quarterly  Progress  Review  Meetings  |  8-2 

8.2  Community  Involvement  |  8-2 

8.2.1  I  Public  Information  Meetings  and  Hearing  |  8-2 

8.2.2  I  Citizens  Advisory  Committee  |  8-3 

8.2.3  I  Meetings  with  Local  Groups  and  Organizations  |  8-4 

8.2.4  I  Outreach  during  Draft  EIS/EIR  Circulation  |  8-4 

8.2.5  I  Outreach  to  Support  LPA  Selection  |  8-6 

8.2.6  I  Cultural  Resources  Community  Consultation  |  8-7 

8.2.7  I  Current  and  Future  Public  Outreach  Efforts  |  8-7 

9  FINANCIAL  ANALYSIS  I  9-1 

9.1  Capital  Costs  |  9-1 

9.1.1  I  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  Capital  Costs  |  9-1 

9.1.2  I  Improvements  to  be  Coordinated  with 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  |  9-2 

9.1.3  I  Budgeted/Planned  Funding  |  9-2 

9.1.4  I  Other  Potential  Funding  Sources  I  9-3 

9.2  Operations  and  Maintenance  Costs  |  9-5 

9.3  Risk  Analysis  |  9-6 

9.4  Financial  Analysis  Conclusions  |  9-6 

10  ALTERNATIVES  ANALYSIS  AND  THE  LOCALLY  PREFERRED  ALTERNATIVE  1 10-1 

10. 1  Introduction  and  Approach  1 10-1 

10. i.i  I  Alternatives  Analyzed  1 10-2 

10.2  Alternatives  Analysis  1 10-2 

10.2.1  I  Indicators  Based  on  Project  Purpose  and  Need  1 10-2 

10.2.2  I  Additional  Considerations  1 10-2 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


10.2.3  I  List  of  Performance  Indicators  1 10-2 

10.2.4  I  Alternatives  Performance  1 10-4 

10.3  Locally  Preferred  Alternative  Selection  1 10-24 

10.3.1  I  Introduction  1 10-24 

10.3.2  I  Performance  Evaluation  Process  1 10-24 

10.3.3  I  Steering  Committee  and  Agreement  on  Consensus  Alternative  1 10-25 

10.3.4  I  Weighting  of  Criteria  and  Subcriteria  1 10-25 

10.3.5  I  Risk  Analysis  of  Center-Running  Alternatives  1 10-26 

10.3.6  I  Staff-Recommended  LPA:  Center-Lane  BRT 

with  Right-Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns  1 10-27 

10.3.7  I  Additional  Outreach  in  Support  of  Staff-Recommended  LPA  1 10-28 

10.3.8  I  Selection  of  LPA  1 10-29 

10.4  LPA  Environmental  Consequences  and  Performance  1 10-29 

10.4.1  I  LPA  Environmental  Consequences  1 10-29 

10.4.2  I  Summary  of  LPA  Performance  against  Purpose  and  Need  1 10-39 

10.5  Small  Starts  Evaluation  Process  1 10-40 

10.5.1  I  Current  Rating  1 10-40 

10.5.2  I  Project  Justification  1 10-40 

10.5.3  I  Local  Financial  Commitment  1 10-41 

10.5.4  I  Summary  1 10-41 

11   REFERENCES  I  n-i 


List  of  Appendices 

A  Plan  Drawings  of  the  Build  Alternatives  and  LPA 

B  Changes  in  Parking 

C  State  Historic  Preservation  Officer  Letter  of  Concurrence 

D  Area  of  Potential  Effect  Maps 

E  Distribution  List 

F  Notice  of  Intent  and  Notice  of  Preparation 

C  Notice  of  Completion  and  Notice  of  Availability  for  the  Draft  EIS/EIR 

H  List  of  Preparers 

I  Response  to  Comments 

J  Mitigation  Monitoring  and  Reporting  Program 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


List  of  Figures 

Figure  S-i:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Existing  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  S-5 
Figure  S-2:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  2  |  S-5 
Figure  S-3:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  3  |  S-6 
Figure  S-4:  Typical  Cross  Section  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Build  Alternative  4 1  S-6 
Figure  S-5:  LPA:  Center-Running  BRT  with  Right-Side  Loading/Single  Median 

and  Limited  Left  Turns  I  S-7 
Figure  l-i:  Project  Location  Map  1 1-3 
Figure  1-2:  San  Francisco  Rapid  Transit  Network  Map  1 1-5 

Figure  1-3:  Variation  in  Headways  (Average  Wait  Times)  at  Market  Street  SB  during  the  PM 
Peak  1 1-9 

Figure  1-4:  Components  of  Transit  Travel  Time  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 

(Southbound  -  PM  Peak)  |  l-io 
Figure  2-1:  Typical  Cross  Sections  of  Build  Alternatives  2-4 1  2-7 

Figure  2-2:  Cross  Sections  and  Station  &  Left-Turn  Pocket  Location  Map  for  the  LPA  |  2-9 

Figure  2-3:  BRT  Station  and  Left-Turn  Pocket  Locations  for  Build  Alternatives  2-4  |  2-n 

Figure  2-4:  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  |  2-13 

Figure  3.1-1:  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  Study  Area  |  3-1 

Figure  3.1-2:  Existing  (2005)  Daily  Motorized  Person-Trips  for  Van  Ness  Avenue 

at  Select  Screenlines  |  3-4 
Figure  3.1-3:  Neighborhoods  Surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue  used  for 

Mode  Split  Analysis  |  3-5 
Figure  3.1-4:  Average  Daily  Auto  and  Transit  Trips  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor 

at  Average  Screenline  |  3-8 
Figure  3.2-1:  Existing  Transit  Routes  along  and  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue 

(does  not  include  Market  Street)  |  3-15 
Figure  3.2-2:  Existing  Transit  Stops  for  Muni  Routes  47/49 

on  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor  |  3-21 
Figure  3.2-3:  Daily  Boardings  by  Stop  for  Routes  47  and  49  |  3-22 
Figure  3.2-4:  Northbound  Daily  Load  (Passenger  Volume)  for  Routes  47  and  49  |  3-23 
Figure  3.2-5:  Southbound  Daily  Load  (Passenger  Volume)  for  Routes  47  and  49  |  3-24 
Figure  3.2-6:  Average  Speed  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  Mode  - 

Existing,  2015  No  Build  Alternative, 

2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  |  3-28 
Figure  3.2-7:  Average  Travel  Time  in  Both  Directions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  for  Route  47 
between  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness  and  Clay/Van  Ness  - 
Existing,  2015  No  Build  Alternative, 

2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  I  3-29 
Figure  3.2-8:  Average  Travel  Time  in  Both  Directions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  Mode 
from  Duboce/Mission/Otis  to  Clay  and  Van  Ness  - 
Existing,  2015  No  Build  Alternative, 

2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  |  3-30 
Figure  3.2-9:  Average  Delay  by  Mode  for  All  Intersections 

between  Clay  and  McCoppin  |  3-30 
Figure  3.3-1:  Street  Network  in  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  Corridor 

Traffic  Study  Area  |  3-40 
Figure  3.3-2:  2007  Existing  PM  Peak-Hour  Intersection  LOS  I  3-46 
Figure  3.3-3:  Near-Term  (2015)  No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  I  3-51 
Figure  3.3-4:  Near-Term  (2015)  Build  Alternative  2  Intersection  LOS  |  3-56 
Figure  3.3-5:  Near-Term  (2015)  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  Intersection  LOS  I  3-58 
Figure  3.3-6:  Near-Term  (2015)  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 

with  Design  Option  B  (and  LPA)  Intersection  LOS  I  3-61 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

Figure  3.3-7:  Long-Term  (2035)  No  Bui'd  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  |  3-65 
Figure  3.3-8:  Long-Term  (2035)  Build  Alternative  2  Intersection  LOS  |  3-68 
Figure  3.3-9:  Long-Term  (2035)  Bu'ld  Alternatives  3  and  4  Intersection  LOS  |  3-71 
Figure  3.3-10:  Long-Term  (2035)  Alternatives  3  and  4 

with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  Intersection  LOS  |  3-75 
Figure  4.1-1:  Zoning  and  Land  Use  |  4.1-3 
Figure  4.1-2:  Commercial  and  Industrial  Land  Use  |  4.1-4 
Figure  4.2-1:  Socioeconomic  Study  Area  |  4.2-2 
Figure  4.2-2:  Public  and  Community  Facilities  |  4.2-8 
Figure  4.2-3:  Parks  and  Recreation  |  4.2-10 

Figure  4.4-1:  Character-Depicting  Images  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  |  4.4-9 

Figure  4.4-2:  Civic  Center  Historic  District  Map  |  4.4-10 

Figure  4.4-3:  Images  of  Civic  Center  Historic  District  |  4.4-12 

Figure  4.4-4:  Images  of  OCS  Support  Poles/Streetlight  Network  |  4.4-14 

Figure  4.4-5:  Damaged  and  Leaning  OCS  Support  Pole/Streetlights  |  4.4-15 

Figure  4.4-6:  Landscape  and  Trees  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  |  4.4-18 

Figure  4.4-7:  Scenic  Vistas  Viewed  from  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  |  4.4-20 

Figure  4.4-8:  Viewpoint  i:  Visual  Simulations  of  Intersection 

of  McAllister  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  4.4-23 
Figure  4.4-9:  Viewpoint  2:  Visual  Simulations  of  Intersection 

of  Sutter  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  4.4-27 
Figure  4.4-10:  Viewpoint  3:  Visual  Simulations  of  Intersection 

of  Union  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  4.4-29 
Figure  4.4-n:  Viewpoints  1-3:  Visual  Simulations  of  the  LPA  at  the  Intersections 

of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  McAllister,  Sutter,  and  Union  Streets  |  4.4-31 
Figure  4.4-12:  Special  Status  Buildings  Located  Adjacent  to  Proposed  BRT  Stations  I  4.4-47 
Figure  4.5-1:  Civic  Center  Historic  District  Boundaries  |  4.5-10 

Figure  4.5-2:  Historic  Properties  Listed  or  Eligible  for  Listing  within  Project  APE  |  4.5-n 
Figure  4.5-3:  Project  Features  and  Location  Map  of  Historic  Properties 

Listed  or  Eligible  within  Project  APE  |  4.5-13 
Figure  4.5-4:  Historic  Properties  Listed  or  Eligible  for  Listing  within  Project  APE  |  4.5-17 
Figure  4.5-5:  Historic  Properties  Listed  or  Eligible  for  Listing  within  Project  APE  |  4.5-19 
Figure  4.5-6:  Historic  Properties  Listed  or  Eligible  for  Listing  within  Project  APE  |  4.5-21 
Figure  4.7-1:  Project  Alignment  Slope  Map  |  4.7-2 
Figure  4.7-2:  Mapped  Soils  Underlying  Project  Alignment  1 4.7-4 
Figure  4.7-3:  Earthquake  Fault  Map  |  4.7-6 
Figure  4.7-4:  Seismic  Hazard  Map  1 4.7-8 
Figure  4.8-1:  Recognized  Environmental  Conditions - 

Hazardous  Materials  Database  Listed  Sites  1 4.8-5 
Figure  4.9-1:  Hydrologic  Setting  |  4.9-3 
Figure  4.9-2:  San  Francisco  Sewer  System  Map  |  4.9-4 
Figure  4.9-3:  Regional  Groundwater  Basin  Map  |  4.9-6 
Figure  4.11-1:  Typical  A-Weighted  Sound  Levels  |  4.11-2 
Figure  4.11-2:  Typical  Levels  of  Ground-borne  Vibration  |  4.11-3 
Figure  4.11-3:  Noise  Impact  Criteria  for  Transit  Projects  |  4.11-5 
Figure  4.11-4:  Background  Noise  Levels  Modeled 

by  the  San  Francisco  Department  of  Public  Health  (2009)  |  4.11-9 
Figure  4.11-5:  Noise  Measurement  Locations  |  4.11-10 

Figure  4.14-1:  Low-Income  Block  Groups,  Significant  Traffic  Impacts,  and  Colored  Parking 
within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  BRT  Study  Area  I  4.14-9 

Figure  4.14-2:  Minority  Block  Groups,  Significant  Traffic  Impacts,  and  Colored  Parking  Loss 
within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor  BRT  Study  Area  |  4.14-10 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Contents 


Figure  5-1:  Locations  of  Reasonably  Foreseeable  Projects 

within  General  Vicinity  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  |  5-4 
Figure  5-2:  Traffic  Study  Area  I  5-12 
Figure  6-i:  Cross  Sections  of  Build  Alternatives  I  6-3 
Figure  6-2:  No  Build  Alternative  (Existing  Conditions)  Cross  Section  |  6-7 
Figure  10-1:  Results  of  LPA  Criteria  Category  Weighting  Exercise  1 10-26 
Figure  10-2:  LPA  Cross  Sections  and  Station  and  Left-Turn  Pocket  Location  Map  1 10-27 
Figure  10-3:  Aerial  Schematic  of  LPA  1 10-28 

List  of  Tables 

Table  S-i:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  and  Mitigation  Measures  |  S-13 
Table  2-1:  Alternatives  Screening  Report  Criteria  |  2-2 
Table  2-2:  Major  Project  Features  |  2-14 

Table  2-3:  Proposed  BRT  Station  Locations  for  Build  Alternatives  2-4  |  2-15 

Table  2-4:  Proposed  BRT  Station  Locations  for  LPA  |  2-16 

Table  2-5:  Turn  Pockets  Proposed  under  Build  Alternatives  2-4  |  2-18 

Table  2-6:  Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B  Proposed  Turn  Pockets  I  2-22 

Table  2-7:  Anticipated  Construction  Areas  and  Excavation  Depths  I  2-24 

Table  2-8:  Preferred  Construction  Approach  and  Schedule  |  2-27 

Table  2-9:  Related  and  Planned  Projects  |  2-31 

Table  2-10:  Anticipated  Environmental-Related  Permits  and  Approvals  |  2-39 
Table  3.1-1:  Existing  Weekday  Motorized  Travel  Demand  at  Average  Screenline  |  3-3 
Table  3.1-2:  Regional  versus  Local  Auto  Trips 

along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Franklin/Gough  Streets  during  the  PM  Peak  |  3-5 
Table  3.1-3:  Divertible  and  Nondivertible  Trips  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 

(North  of  Broadway)  during  PM  Peak  Period  |  3-5 
Table  3.1-4:  Mode  Split  for  Daily  Trips  To,  From,  or  Within  Neighborhoods 

Surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  3-6 
Table  3.1-5:  PM  Peak  Person  Trips/Lane/Hour  at  Average  Screenline  |  3-9 
Table  3.2-1:  Existing  Muni  Lines  along  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor  |  3-16 
Table  3.2-2:  Existing  Muni  Service  crossing  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 

Corridor  |  3-17 

Table  3.2-3:  Existing  Golden  Gate  Transit  Service  in  or  near 

the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor  |  3-19 
Table  3.2-4:  Passenger  Capacities  |  3-23 

Table  3.2-5:  Existing  Northbound  PM  Peak-Hour  Muni  Ridership  and  Load  Factor  |  3-23 
Table  3.2-6:  Headway  Variability  for  Routes  47  and  49,  Southbound  during  PM  Peak  |  3-25 
Table  3.2-7:  Existing  and  Near-Term  (2015)  Daily  Transit  Boardings 

on  Muni  Routes  47  and  49  |  3-26 
Table  3.2-8:  Existing  and  Near-Term  (2035)  Daily  Transit  Boardings 

on  Muni  Routes  47  and  49  |  3-27 
Table  3.2-9:  Unexpected  Delays  Impacting  Reliability  of  BRT  Routes  I  3-31 
Table  3.2-10:  Likely  GGT  Stop  Locations  with  BRT  Project  by  Project  Alternative  I  3-32 
Table  3.2-n:  Year  2015  Muni  Load  Factor  Analysis  |  3-34 
Table  3.2-12:  Year  2035  Muni  Load  Factor  Analysis  I  3-36 
Table  3.3-1:  Existing  (2007)  Traffic  Counts  Average  Weekday,  Saturday, 

and  Sunday  Daily,  AM  and  PM  Peak-Hour  Traffic  Link  Volumes  I  3-44 
Table  3.3-2:  Average  Speed  -  2007  Existing  Conditions  I  3-45 
Table  3.3-3:  2015  No  Build  Alternative  Southbound  Average  Speed  I  3-50 
Table  3.3-4:  2015  No  Build  Alternative  Northbound  Average  Speed  I  3-50 
Table  3.3-5:  Private  Vehicle  2015  Southbound  Average  Speed  I  3-54 
Table  3.3-6:  Private  Vehicle  2015  Northbound  Average  Speed  I  3-54 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-7:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternative  2  (Side-Lane  BRT),  and 

No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections 

that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-55 
Table  3.3-8:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT),  and 

No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections 

that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-57 
Table  3.3-9:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT)  with 

Design  Option  B,  and  No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay) 

for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-60 
Table  3.3-10:  2035  No  Build  Alternative  Southbound  Average  Speed  |  3-63 
Table  3.3-11:  2035  No  Build  Alternative  Northbound  Average  Speed  |  3-63 
Table  3.3-12:  2035  Horizon  Year  Southbound  Average  Speed  |  3-64 
Table  3.3-13:  2035  Horizon  Year  Northbound  Average  Speed  |  3-66 
Table  3.3-14:  Existing  Conditions,  2035  Build  Alternative  2  (Side-Lane  BRT),  and 

No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections 
j  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-67 

Table  3.3-15:  Existing  Conditions,  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT),  and 

No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections 
j  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-72 

Table  3.3-16:  Existing  Conditions,  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT)  with 

Design  Option  B,  and  No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay) 

for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  |  3-76 
Table  3.3-17:  Summary  of  Vehicular  Traffic  Impacts  |  3-80 
Table  3.4-1:  Pedestrian  Crowding  LOS  Thresholds  I  3-92 

Table  3.4-2:  Pedestrian  Crowding  LOS  at  High  Pedestrian  Count  Intersections  |  3-92 

Table  3.4-3:  Van  Ness  Avenue  Intersections  with  Nose  Cones  -  Existing  Condition  |  3-94 

Table  3.4-4:  Pedestrian  Delay  LOS  Thresholds  for  Signalized  Intersections  |  3-96 

Table  3.4-5:  Pedestrian  Delay  LOS  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  Intersections  |  3-96 

Table  3.4-6:  Pedestrian  Collisions  by  Location  (2003-2008)  |  3-97 

Table  3.4-7:  Forecast  Hourly  Pedestrian  Crossing  Volumes  |  3-101 

Table  3.4-8:  Average  Median  Refuge  Width  and  Crossing  Distances  |  3-102 

Table  3.4-9:  Side  Street  Crossings  Meeting  City  and  FHWA  Walking  Speed  Targets 

during  Full  Walk  Split  I  3-103 
Table  3.4-10:  Van  Ness  Crossings  Meeting  City  and  FHWA  Walking  Speed  Targets 

during  Full  Walk  Split  |  3-103 
Table  3.4-n:  Pedestrian  Delay  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  (seconds)  |  3-104 
Table  3.4-12:  Right-Turn  Locations  by  Hourly  Volume  |  3-105 

Table  3.4-13:  Number  of  Corner  Bulbs  by  Alternative  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  I  3-109 
Table  3.4-14:  Number  of  Nose  Cones  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  |  3-109 
Table  3.4-15:  Width  of  Travel  Lane  Used  by  Bicycles  |  3-114 

Table  3.5-1:  Existing  Parking  Supply  along  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenues 
I  between  Mission  and  Lombard  Streets  (2010,  2011)  |  3-116 

Table  3.5-2:  Existing  Parking  Occupancy  along  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenues 
!  between  Mission  and  Lombard  Streets  (2010)  |  3-117 

Table  3.5-3:  Parking  Supply  and  Demand  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  - 
No  Build  and  Build  Alternatives  |  3-119 

Table  3.5-4:  Parking  Supply  and  Demand  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  - 
No  Build  and  LPA  |  3-123 

Table  4.1-1:  Major  Approved  and  Active  Projects  in  the  Study  Area  1 4.1-7 

Table  4.2-1:  Population,  Employment,  and  Housing  Projections;  2000-203514.2-1 

Table  4.2-2:  Racial  and  Ethnic  Composition  |  4.2-3 
I  Table  4.2-3:  Household  Characteristics  |  4.2-4 

Table  4.2-4:  2000  Transit-Dependent  Populations  I  4.2-4 

Table  4.2-5:  Public  and  Community  Facilities  1 4.2-7 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  4.2-6:  Park  and  Recreation  Facilities  I  4.2-9 

Table  4.2-7:  Labor  Force  by  Occupation  -  2000  (Civilians  Age  16+)  1 4.2-n 
Table  4.2-8:  Blocks  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  where  Substantial  Parking 

would  be  Removed  I  4.2-14 
Table  4.2-9:  Adverse  Colored-Zone  Parking  Impacts  |  4.2-16 

Table  4.4-1:  High-Quality  Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree  Canopies  |  4.4-17 

Table  4.4-2:  Tree  Health  and  Condition  Rating  Scale  |  4.4-37 

Table  4.4-3:  Removed  Trees  Summarized  by  Tree  Health  and  Condition  |  4.4-37 

Table  4.4-4:  Summary  of  Anticipated  Tree  Removal  and  Planting  Opportunities  |  4.4-38 

Table  4.4-5:  Alternative  2  -  Project  Impact  on  High-Quality 

Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree  Canopies  1 4.4-39 
Table  4.4-6:  Alternative  3  -  Project  Impact  on  High-Quality 

Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree  Canopies  1 4.4-40 
Table  4.4-7:  Alternative  4  -  Project  Impact  on  High-Quality 

Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree  Canopies  1 4.4-42 
Table  4.4-8:  LPA  -  Project  Impact  on  High-Quality 

Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree  Canopies  |  4.4-43 
Table  4.4-9:  Proposed  BRT  Station  Locations  and  Special-Status  Properties  |  4.4-45 
Table  4.5-1:  Anticipated  Construction  Areas  and  Excavation  Depths  |  4.5-3 
Table  4.5-2:  Prehistoric  Archaeological  Site  Sensitivity  within  the  APE  |  4.5-5 
Table  4.5-3:  Status  of  Historic  Resources  within  the  Project  APE  |  4.5-8 
Table  4.5-4:  Properties  Determined  Not  Eligible  for  National  Register  |  4.5-23 
Table  4.7-1:  Active  Fault  Seismicity  |  4.7-5 
Table  4.8-1:  Recognized  Environmental  Concerns 

for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  -  Database  Listed  Sites  I  4.8-3 
Table  4.9-1:  Federal  303(d)  List  of  Impairments 

for  Central  and  South  San  Francisco  Bay  |  4.9-5 
Table  4.9-2:  Existing  and  Proposed  Approximate  Impervious  Surface  Area 

in  the  Project  Corridor  |  4.9-9 
Table  4.10-1:  State  and  National  Ambient  Air  Quality  Standards 

and  Attainment  Status  for  the  Bay  Area  Air  Basin  |  4.10-6 
Table  4.10-2:  2009-2011  Ambient  Air  Quality  Data  in  Project  Vicinity  |  4.10-10 
Table  4-10-3:  Estimated  Net  Operational  Emissions  -  2035  |  4.10-12 
Table  4.10-4:  Estimated  Net  Operational  Emissions  -  2007  |  4.10-13 
Table  4.10-5:  Localized  Operational  Concentrations,  2035  with  BRT  |  4.10-15 
Table  4.10-6:  Idle  Emissions,  2035  witr>  BRT  |  4.10-16 
Table  4.10-7:  Toxic  Air  Contaminant  Concentrations 

on  Parallel  Streets,  2035  witri  BRT  |  4.10-17 
Table  4.10-8:  Estimated  Cross  Citywide  Greenhouse  Gas  Emissions  -  2035  I  4.10-21 
Table  4.10-9:  Estimated  Net  Citywide  Greenhouse  Gas  Emissions  -  2035  I  410-21 
Table  4.10-10:  Estimated  Gross  Citywide  Greenhouse  Gas  Emissions  -  2007  I  4.10-22 
Table  4.10-11:  Estimated  Net  Citywide  Greenhouse  Gas  Emissions  -  2007  I  4.10-23 
Table  4.11-1:  Land  Use  Categories  and  Metrics  for  Transit  Noise  Impact  Criteria  I  4.11-4 
Table  4.11-2:  Ground-Borne  Vibration  Impact  Criteria  for  Human  Annoyance  I  4.11-6 
Table  4.11-3:  Construction  Vibration  Damage  Criteria  I  4.11-7 
Table  4.11-4:  Operational  Noise  Levels  for  Build  Alternative  2  |  4.11-13 
Table  4.11-5:  Operational  Noise  Levels  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA  I  4.11-14 
Table  4.12-1:  Annual  Year  2035  Countywide  Energy  Use  for  the  Project  Alternatives  I  4.12-3 
Table  4.14-1:  2000  U.S.  Census  Block  Group  Analysis  |  4.14-2 
Table  4.15-1:  Anticipated  Construction  Areas  and  Excavation  Depths  I  4.15-2 
Table  4.15-2:  Preferred  Construction  Approach  and  Schedule  I  4.15-5 
Table  4.15-3:  Elements  of  Transportation  Management  Plan  |  4.15-7 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

Table  4.15-4:  Build  Alternative  2  Estimated  Daily  Construction  Emissions  - 

Unmitigated  I  4.15-24 
Table  4.15-5:  Build  Alternative  3  Estimated  Daily  Construction  Emissions  - 

Unmitigated  |  4.15-25 
Table  4.15-6:  Feasible  Control  Measures  for  Construction  Emissions  |  4.15-27 
Table  4.15-7:  Build  Alternative  2  Estimated  Daily  Construction  Emissions  - 

Mitigated  |  4.15-28 

Table  4.15-8:  Build  Alternative  3  Estimated  Daily  Construction  Emissions  - 
Mitigated  |  4.15-28 

Table  4.15-9:  Projected  Construction  Noise  Emission  Levels  (dBA)  14.15-29 
Table  4.15-10:  Vibration  Source  Levels  and  Building  Damage  Impact  Distances 

for  Construction  Equipment  |  4.15-31 
Table  5-1:  Reasonably  Foreseeable  Projects  within  General  Vicinity 

of  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  |  5-2 
Table  5-2:  Summary  of  Parking  Loss  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 

from  Project  Implementation  |  5-17 
Table  5-3:  Summary  of  Parking  Loss  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 

from  Project  Implementation  -  No  Build,  LPA  |  5-18 
Table  7-1:  CEQA  Significance  Criteria  |  7-3 

Table  7-2:  Summary  of  Environmental  Impacts  under  CEQA  |  7-9 
Table  7-3:  CEQA  Mandatory  Findings  of  Significance  I  7-22 
Table  9-1:  Capital  Cost  Estimates  for  Build  Alternatives  |  9-1 
Table  9-2:  Annual  Operating  and  Maintenance  Costs  for  Proposed  Service  |  9-5 
Table  10-1:  Performance  Indicators  and  Definitions  1 10-3 
Table  10-2:  Adverse  Colored-Zone  Parking  Impacts  under  the  LPA  1 10-33 
Table  10-3:  Project  Impact  on  High-Quality  Landscaped  Medians  Featuring  Mature  Tree 
Canopies  1 10-37 

Table  10-4:  LPA  Performance  Summary  against  Purpose  and  Need  Evaluation  1 10-39 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


°F  degrees  Fahrenheit 

ug/rn^  micrograms  per  cubic  meter 

AADT  annual  average  daily  traffic 

AB  Assembly  Bill 

ABAC  Association  of  Bay  Area  Governments 

AC  asphalt  concrete 

ACHP  Advisory  Council  on  Historic  Preservation 

ACM  asbestos-containing  material 

ADA  Americans  with  Disabilities  Act 

ADL  aerially  deposited  lead 

amsl  above  mean  sea  level 

ANACRSA     Archaeological  and  Native  American  Cultural  Resources  Sensitivity 
Assessment 

APC  automatic  passenger  counter 

APE  Area  of  Potential  Effects 

APS  Alternative  Planning  Strategy 

APS  Accessible  Pedestrian  Signal 

ARRA  American  Recovery  and  Reinvestment  Act 

ASTM  American  Society  for  Testing  and  Materials 

AT  articulated  trolley  bus 

ATCM  Air  Toxics  Control  Measures 

Authority  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 

AVL  automatic  vehicle  location 

AWSS  auxiliary  water  supply  service 

BAAB  Bay  Area  Air  Basin 

BAAQMD      Bay  Area  Air  Quality  Management  District 

BACI  Bay  Area  Climate  Initiatives 

BACT  best  available  control  technology 

BART  Bay  Area  Rapid  Transit 

bgs  below  ground  surface 

Bl  No  Project  Impact 

BMPs  Best  Management  Practices 

BMS  Better  Market  Street  Project 

BRT  bus  rapid  transit 

BSM  SFDPW  Bureau  of  Street  Use  and  Mapping 

BTUs  British  Thermal  Units 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


CAA 

CAAAs 

CAAQS 

CAC 

CalEPA 

California 
Register 

Cal-OSHA 

Caltrans 

CARB 

CC 

CCAA 

CCR 

CCSF 

CDFW 

CEC 

CEQ 

CEQA 

CER 

CERCLA 

CERFA 

CESA 

CFGC 

CFR 

CH4 

CHP 

CHRIS 

CMAQ 

CMP 

CNDDB 

CO 

CO2 

COze 

COZEEP 

CPMC 

CPUC 

CRA 

xiv 


Clean  Air  Act 

Clean  Air  Act  Amendments 

California  Ambient  Air  Quality  Standards 

Citizens  Advisory  Committee 

California  Environmental  Protection  Agency 

California  Register  of  Historical  Resources 

California  Division  of  Occupational  Safety  and  Health  Administration 
California  Department  of  Transportation 
California  Air  Resources  Board 
cable  car 

California  Clean  Air  Act 
California  Code  of  Regulations 
City  and  County  of  San  Francisco 
California  Department  of  Fish  and  Wildlife 
California  Energy  Commission 
Council  on  Environmental  Quality 
California  Environmental  Quality  Act 
Conceptual  Engineering  Report 

Comprehensive  Environmental  Response,  Compensation  and  Liability  Act 
of  1980 

Community  Environmental  Response  Facilitation  Act  of  1992 

California  Endangered  Species  Act  of  1984 

California  Fish  and  Game  Code 

Code  of  Federal  Regulations 

methane 

California  Highway  Patrol 

California  Historical  Resources  Information  Center 

Congestion  Mitigation  and  Air  Quality 

Congestion  Management  Program 

California  Natural  Diversity  Database 

carbon  monoxide 

carbon  dioxide 

carbon  dioxide  equivalent 

Construction  Zone  Enhanced  Enforcement  Program 
California  Pacific  Medical  Center 
California  Public  Utilities  Commission 
California  Resources  Agency 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


CRHR  California  Register  of  Historical  Resources 

CSAA  California  State  Automobile  Association 

CSS  combined  sewer  system 

CULCOP  Committee  for  Utility  Liaison  on  Construction  and  Other  Projects 

CWA  Clean  Water  Act 

CWTP  2004  Countywide  Transportation  Plan 

cy  cubic  yards 

dB  decibel 

dBA  A-weighted  decibel 

DOT  United  States  Department  of  Transportation 

DPM  diesel  particulate  matter 

DSA  disturbed  soil  area 

EDR  Environmental  Database  Reports 

E.O.  Executive  Order 

EB  eastbound 

EIR  Environmental  Impact  Report 

EIS  Environmental  Impact  Statement 

EPA  United  States  Environmental  Protection  Agency 

FEMA  Federal  Emergency  Management  Agency 

FESA  Federal  Endangered  Species  Act  of  1973 

FHWA  Federal  Highway  Administration 

FIFRA  Federal  Insecticide,  Fungicide,  and  Rodenticide  Act 

fps  feet  per  second 

FR  Federal  Register 

FS  far  side  of  intersection 

FTA  Federal  Transit  Administration 

FY  fiscal  year 

GGBHTD      Golden  Gate  Bridge,  Highway  and  Transportation  District 

GGNRA  Golden  Gate  National  Recreation  Area 

GGT  Golden  Gate  Transit 

GHG  greenhouse  gas 

GPS  global  positioning  system 

gsf  gross  square  feet 

HAPs  hazardous  air  pollutants 

HCM  Highway  Capacity  Manual 

HOV  high-occupancy  vehicle 

HPC  Historic  Preservation  Commission 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 

HPS 

HRIER 

HSC 

HSIP 

IES 

IRRS 

ISA 

ISA 

ISP 

ITSP 

kV 

LBP 

LCFS 

Ldn 
Leq 
Lmax 

LOS 

LP 

LPA 

LRDP 

LRV 

LSI 

LUSTs 

M 

Ma 

MACT 

MAPS 

MBTA 

MC 

MLD 

MLP 

Mmax 
MMT 

mph 
MPO 
MRI 
MSAT 

xvi 

0 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

Historic  Property  Survey 

Historic  Resources  Inventory  and  Evaluation  Report 
historic  street  car 

Highway  Safety  Improvement  Program 
Illuminating  Engineering  Society 
Interregional  Road  System 
International  Society  of  Arborculture 
Initial  Site  Assessment 
iron  stone  pipe 

Interregional  Transportation  Strategic  Plan 
kilovolt 

lead-based  paint 

low-carbon  fuel  standard 

day-night  average  sound  pressure  level 

equivalent  sound  pressure  level 

maximum  sound  pressure  level 

level  of  service 

sound  pressure  level 

locally  preferred  alternative 

Long-Range  Development  Plan 

light-rail  vehicle 

Less  than  Significant  Impact 

leaking  underground  storage  tanks 

metered 

million  years  ago 

maximum  available  control  technology 

Mobility,  Access,  and  Pricing  Study 

Migratory  Bird  Treaty  Act 

motor  coach 

most  likely  descendant 

maximum  load  point 

maximum  moment  magnitude  earthquake 
million  metric  tons 
miles  per  hour 

metropolitan  planning  organization 
magnetic  resonance  imaging 
mobile  source  air  toxics 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


MTC  Metropolitan  Transportation  Commission 

MTS  Metropolitan  Transportation  System 

MUTCD  Manual  on  Uniform  Traffic  Control  Devices 

N2O  nitrous  oxide 

NAAQS  National  Ambient  Air  Quality  Standards 

NAHC  Native  American  Heritage  Commission 
National 

Register  National  Register  of  Historic  Places 

NB  northbound 

NEPA  National  Environmental  Policy  Act 

NESHAPs  national  emissions  standards  for  hazardous  air  pollutants 

NHL  National  Historic  Landmark 

NHPA  National  Historic  Preservation  Act  of  1966 

NHS  National  Highway  System 

NM  nonmetered 

NO  nitric  oxide 

NO2  nitrogen  dioxide 

NOA  naturally  occurring  asbestos 

NOA  Notice  of  Availability 

NOAA  National  Oceanic  and  Atmospheric  Administration 

NOC  Notice  of  Completion 

NOI  Notice  of  Intent 

NOP  Notice  of  Preparation 

NOx  nitrogen  oxide 

NPDES  National  Pollutant  Discharge  Elimination  System 

NPI  No  Project  Impact 

NPS  National  Park  Service 

NRHP  National  Register  of  Historic  Places 

NS  near  side  of  intersection 

NTD  National  Transit  Database 

O3  ozone 

OCS  Overhead  Contact  System 

OHP  Office  of  Historic  Preservation 

O&.M  operations  and  maintenance 

OPR  Office  of  Planning  and  Research 

OSHA  Occupational  Safety  and  Health  Act 

Pb  lead 

PCBs  polychlorinated  biphenyls 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


PCCA 

Project  Construction  Grant  Agreement 

PCP 

Project  Construction  Plan 

PDAs 

Priority  Development  Areas 

PDT 

Project  Development  Team 

PG&E 

Pacific  Gas  and  Electric 

PI 

Project  Impact 

PMio 

particulate  matter  less  than  10  microns  in  diameter 

PM2.5 

particulate  matter  less  than  2.5  microns  in  diameter 

POAQC 

Projects  of  Air  Quality  Concern 

ppb 

r  r 

parts  per  billion 

ppm 

r  r 

parts  per  million 

PPV 

peak  particle  velocity 

PRC 

Public  Resources  Code 

RCP 

reinforced  concrete  pipe 

RCRA 

Resource  Conservation  and  Recovery  Act  of  1976 

RECs 

Recognized  Environmental  Conditions 

RHNA 

Regional  Housing  Needs  Allocation 

RMS 

root  mean  square 

ROD 

Record  of  Decision 

ROC 

reactive  organic  gas 

ROW 
r\w  w 

RTP 

Regional  Transportation  Plan 

RWQCB 

Regional  Water  Quality  Control  Board 

SAFETEA-LU 

Safe,  Accountable,  Flexible,  Efficient  Transportation  Equity  Act:  A  Legacy  for 

Users 


SAR 

Strategic  Analysis  Report 

SB 

Senate  Bill 

SB 

southbound 

SC/PI 

Significant  Contribution/Project  Impact 

scs 

Sustainable  Communities  Strategy 

SEL 

sound  exposure  level 

SER 

Standard  Environmental  Reference 

SEWTP 

Southeast  Wastewater  Treatment  Plant 

SFCTA 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 

SFDPH 

San  Francisco  Department  of  Public  Health 

SFDPW 

San  Francisco  Department  of  Public  Works 

SFFD 

San  Francisco  Fire  Department 

SFHPC 

San  Francisco  Historic  Preservation  Commission 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


SFMTA 

San  Francisco  Municipal  Transportation  Agency 

SFPUC 

San  Francisco  Public  Utilities  Commission 

SFWD 

San  Francisco  Water  Department 

SHOPP 

State  Highway  Operation  and  Protection  Program 

SHPO 

State  Historic  Preservation  Officer 

SIP 

State  Implementation  Plan 

SMAQMD 

Sacramento  Metropolitan  Air  Quality  Management  District 

S02 

sulfur  dioxide 

SoMa 

South  of  Market 

SPUR 

San  Francisco  Planning  and  Urban  Research 

SR2T 

Safe  Routes  to  Transit 

SRO 

single-room  occupancy 

SSGA 

Small  Starts  Grant  Agreement 

STP 

Surface  Transportation  Program 

STRAHNET 

Strategic  Highway  Network 

SWITRS 

Statewide  Integrated  Traffic  Records  System 

SWPPP 

Storm  Water  Pollution  Prevention  Plan 

SWRCB 

State  Water  Resources  Control  Board 

TAC 

Technical  Advisory  Committee 

TACs 

toxic  air  contaminants 

TAZ 

Traffic  Analysis  Zone 

TBACT 

toxic  best  available  control  technology 

TC 

trolley  coach 

TCMs 

Transportation  Control  Measures 

TEP 

Transit  Effectiveness  Project 

TIGER  III 

Transportation  Investment  Generating  Economic  Recovery 

TIP 

Transportation  Improvement  Plan 

TJPA 

Transbay  Joint  Powers  Authority 

TLC 

Transportation  for  Livable  Communities 

TMDL 

total  maximum  daily  load 

TMP 

Transportation  Management  Plan 

TPI 

Transit  Performance  Initiative 

TPS 

Transit  Preferential  Streets 

TPY 

tons  per  year 

TRB 

Transportation  Research  Board 

TSCA 

Toxic  Substances  Control  Act 

TSF 

Transportation  Sustainability  Fee 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Acronyms  and  Abbreviations 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


TSM 

Transportation  System  Management 

TSP 

Transit  Signal  Priority 

TSP 

Transportation  Sustainability  Program 

TVM 

ticket  vending  machines 

U.S.C. 

United  States  Code 

US  ioi 

U.S.  Highway  icn 

USFWS 

United  States  Fish  and  Wildlife  Service 

USGS 

United  States  Geological  Survey 

VdB 

vibration  decibel 

VCP 

vitrified  clay  pipe 

VMT 

vehicle  miles  traveled 

VOC 

volatile  organic  compounds 

vph 

vehicles  per  hour 

VRF 

Vehicle  Registration  Fee 

WB 

westbound 

WDR 

Waste  Discharge  Requirements 

YOE 

Year  of  Expenditure 

0 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  1 
Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


CHAPTER  SUMMARY:  There  is  strong  demand  and  ridership  growth  potential  for  high-performance 
transit  service  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  Despite  the  high  demand,  transit  speeds  and 
reliability  are  poor  in  the  corridor.  Degradation  in  transit  performance  is  a  projected  citywide  problem 
that  is  largely  contributing  to  a  decline  in  transit  mode  share.  The  proposed  project  is  strategic  in  light 
of  these  needs.  Chapter  1  examines  the  planning  context  and  project  needs,  in  terms  of  transit 
performance  and  multimodal  circulation,  as  a  means  to  provide  focus  on  the  purpose  of  the  proposed 
BRT  project.  The  project  purpose  is  developed  to  address  these  needs  and  provide  the  rationale  for 
the  proposed  improvements,  as  follows:  improve  transit  reliability,  speed,  connectivity  and  comfort  in 
the  corridor;  improve  the  pedestrian  experience;  enhance  urban  design  and  identity  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue;  create  a  more  livable  street;  and  accommodate  safe  multimodal  circulation  and  access. 


CHAPTER 


1 


Project  Purpose 
and  Need 

1.1  Introduction 


The  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  (SFCTA  or  Authority)  proposes,  in 
cooperation  with  the  Federal  Transit  Administration  (FTA)  and  the  San  Francisco  Municipal 
Transportation  Agency  (SFMTA),  to  implement  bus  rapid  transit  (BRT)  improvements 
along  a  2-mile  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  San  Francisco,4  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  at 
Lombard  Street  to  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Mission  Street.  In  cooperation  with  ETA,  the 
Authority  has  initiated  this  joint  Environmental  Impact  Statement  (EIS)  under  the  National 
Environmental  Policy  Act  (NEPA)  and  Environmental  Impact  Report  (EIR)  under  the 
California  Environmental  Quality  Act  (CEQA).  The  FTA  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  NEPA 
and  the  Authority  is  the  Lead  Agency  under  CEQA.  The  California  Department  of 
Transportation  (Caltrans)  owns  the  portion  of  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  avenues 
within  the  project  limits,  designated  as  U.S.  Highway  101  (US  101).  In  this  capacity,  Caltrans 
has  participated  in  the  analysis  of  Van  Ness  BRT  from  the  initial  stages,  including  providing 
funding  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  (SFCTA,  2006).  Caltrans  continues 
to  participate  as  a  Responsible  Agency  under  CEQA  in  the  environmental  review  process. 
SFMTA  is  also  participating  as  a  Responsible  Agency  because  they  would  implement  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  after  project  approval. 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  major  north  to  south  artery  for  the  eastern  part  of  San  Francisco.  It 
also  functions  as  a  major  transit  street,  with  an  average  of  over  16,000  daily  transit  trips  (four 
times  more  than  the  two  streets  on  either  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  combined)  carried  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  within  the  study  area  (sec  Section  3.1.1.1).  SFMTA  operates  the  Muni  bus 
system  in  San  Francisco.  There  are  two  Muni  bus  routes  along  the  entire  length  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  within  the  project  limits  (Routes  47  and  49).  Five  other  Muni  routes  serve  a  portion 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  one  (#19)  operates  along  Polk  Street,  which  runs  parallel  ...  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  In  addition,  32  Muni  transit  routes  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue  al  various 
intersections  along  the  corridor,  providing  transfer  opportunities  to  other  Muni  routes. 
Several  Mum  routes  provide  regional  transit  connections  to  Bav  Are..  Rapid  Tr.insii  HiMrut 
(BART),  AC  Transit,  Caltrain,  Golden  Gate  Transit,  and  SamTrans.  Golden  Gate  Transit 


'  The  City  and  County  of  San  rranasco  opera.e  as  a  join,  government  body  within  the  s..me  geographical  I  xUriea 

Throughout ;  thu  document,  th.a  government  body  and  geography  area  may  he  referred  to  as  the '  (  It]  ..,  San 
f  ranciSCO,    Jian  rrancisco,  "City,  or  "Couni\  " 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


operates  eight  routes  (Routes  54,  70,  72,  73,  76,  80,  93,  and  97)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
south  of  Lombard  Street,  and  one  route  (Route  10)  crosses  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Golden 
Gate  Avenue  (inbound)  and  at  McAllister  Street  (outbound).5  (See  Section  3.1  for  more 
details  on  the  city/ county  transit  network.) 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  also  designated  as  part  of  the  larger  US  101  highway  arterial  on  the 
National  Highway  System  (NHS),  providing  regional  and  interregional  travel  (i.e.,  commute 
and  non-commute)  and  goods  movement.  US  101  extends  from  Los  Angeles,  California,  to 
Olympia,  Washington.  Van  Ness  Avenue  serves  as  one  of  San  Francisco's  key  north-south 
arterials  connecting  freeway  entrances  and  exits  south  of  downtown  with  Lombard  Street, 
which  routes  US  101  traffic  to  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge.  One  block  to  the  west  is  the  high- 
capacity  arterial  pair  of  Franklin  and  Gough  streets,  which  provides  more  than  double  the 
automobile  capacity  provided  by  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Throughout  the  project  corridor,  Van 
Ness  Avenue  typically  has  six  traffic  lanes,  a  landscaped  median,  and  parking  on  both  sides. 
With  approximately  45,000  jobs,  25,000  housing  units,  and  key  regional  destinations  such  as 
the  San  Francisco  Civic  Center,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  one  of  the  region's  major 
employment  and  commercial  centers,  and  supports  one  of  the  highest  population  densities 
of  any  transit  corridor  in  San  Francisco. 

Approximately  33  percent  of      Thus,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  functions  in  the  role  of  a  local  and  a  regional  arterial, 
private  vehicle  traffic  in  the      moving  traffic  to,  from,  and  within  the  city.  The  corridor  carries  a  mix  of  cars,  trucks, 
corridor  is  regional,  while  most      transit,  private  employer  shuttles,  pedestrians,  and  bicycles.  Generally,  approximately  33 
(67  percent)  is  local.      percent  of  private  vehicle  traffic  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  study  area  is  regional,  while 
most  (67  percent)  is  local.6  Approximately  20  percent  of  all  trips  to,  from,  and  within  the 
neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  currently  made  by  transit,  which  is 
slightly  above  the  city-wide  share  of  17  percent  transit  trips  (SFCTA,  2009).  At  46  percent, 
the  percentage  of  households  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  that  do  not  own  cars  is  17 
percentage  points  higher  than  the  citywide  average  (SFCTA,  2009).  Van  Ness  Avenue  also 
functions  as  the  key  north/south  transit  "spine"  of  the  Muni  network,  with  32  intersecting 
Muni   routes   between  Mssion  and   Lombard   streets.  These   existing  land   use  and 
transportation  characteristics  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  are  highly  conducive  to 
transit  use  and  particularly  well  suited  to  BRT. 

The  Authority  and  SFMTA  have  identified  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  in  long-range 
planning  studies  as  a  top  priority  route  for  rapid  transit  treatments,  and  the  corridor  is 
included  in  the  San  Francisco  Transit  Priority  Network.  The  San  Francisco  Transit  Priority 
Network  is  intended  to  address  the  current  citywide  decline  in  transit  mode  share,  which  is  a 
trend  expected  to  continue  into  the  future  unless  action  is  taken  to  improve  transit  travel 
times,  reliability,  and  productivity  (SFCTA,  2004)  (see  Section  3.1).  The  2003  Proposition  K 
Expenditure  Plan  and  the  2004  Countywide  Transportation  Plan  (CWTP)  identify  BRT  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue  as  part  of  a  strategic  investment  in  a  citywide  network  of  rapid  transit. 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study,  completed  by  the  Authority  in  2006,  identified 
the  need  for  and  purpose  of  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  developed  conceptual  BRT  design 
alternatives,  and  identified  preliminary  initial  impacts  and  benefits.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue 
BRT  Feasibility  Study  found  that  several  BRT  configurations  are  possible  for  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  are  likely  to  provide  significant  benefits.  With  the  adoption  of  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study,  both  the  Authority  and  SFMTA  also  called  for  the  next 
phase  of  project  development  -  environmental  analysis  and  preliminary  engineering. 
Following  environmental  scoping,  four  alternatives  were  defined  and  carried  forward  for 
evaluation  in  this  Draft  EIS/EIR,  including  one  no-build  alternative  and  three  build 
alternatives,  with  a  design  variation.  The  project  alternatives  considered  in  the  Draft 
EIS/EIR  are  presented  in  Chapter  2,  Project  Alternatives. 


5  Throughout  the  document,  transit  service  reflects  operations  at  the  time  of  issuance  of  the  Notice  of  Preparation  (NOP) 
in  September  2007. 

8  Regional  versus  local  traffic  varies  by  location  within  the  corridor,  with  higher  proportions  of  regional  traffic  in  the 
northern  portion  and  lower  proportions  in  the  southern  portion  (SFCTA,  2009). 

1-2  San  Francisco  County  Transportafion  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


This  Final  EIS/EIR  presents  the  environmental  analysis  and  findings  related  to  the  Locally 
Preferred  Alternative  (LP A),  which  is  the  project  design  recommended  by  the  SFCTA  and 
SFMTA  staffs  to  be  carried  forward  for  final  design  and  construction.  The  LPA  is  a 
refinement  of  center-running  alternatives  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4)  with  the  design 
variation,  called  Design  Option  B,  that  eliminates  left  turns,  as  described  in  Sections  2.2.2.4, 
10.3,  and  10.4.  The  LPA  also  incorporates  a  southbound  (SB)  station  at  Vallejo  Street  in 
response  to  community  concerns  regarding  stop  spacing.  Furthermore,  a  northbound  (NB) 
transit  station  at  Vallejo  Street  is  included  as  a  design  variant,  referred  to  as  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant.  The  decision  on  whether  to  include  the  variant  will  be  made  at 
the  time  of  project  approval.  Section  2.2.2.4  provides  a  detailed  description  of  the  LPA. 

i.i.i  |  Project  Location 

The  proposed  project  is  located  in  the  northeastern  quadrant  of  the  City  and  County  of  San 
Francisco,  California.  Figure  1-1  provides  a  project  location  map.  The  BRT  project 
alignment  follows  South  Van  Ness  and  Van  Ness  avenues,  which  comprise  a  north-south 
primary  arterial,  extending  approximately  2  miles  from  Mission  Street  in  the  south  to 
Lombard  Street  in  the  north.  The  project  includes  replacement  of  the  Overhead  Contact 
System  (OCS)  support  pole/  streetlight  network,  which  extends  from  Mission  Street  north 
to  North  Point  Street,  also  shown  in  Figure  1-1. 


Figure  i-i:  Project  Location  Map 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


KEY  CONCEPT 


This  document  informs  the 
public  and  governmental 
decision  makers  of 
environmental  effects 
associated  with  the  project 
and  describes  the  measures 
that  would  be  undertaken  to 
mitigate  those  effects. 


The  north  and  south  project  limits,  or  project  "termini"  constitute  logical  termini  for  the 
reasons  described  below.  The  project  limits  were  identified  in  accordance  with  the  project 
purpose  and  need,  described  in  the  following  secdon,  and  in  accordance  with  opportunities 
and  constraints  of  the  local  environment.  The  southern  project  terminus,  the  intersection  of 
Mission  Street  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  was  identified  in  part  due  to  the  fact  that  the 
width  of  Mission  Street  does  not  allow  for  the  same  types  of  treatments  that  are  proposed 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Additionally,  this  intersection  marks  the  start  of  the  corridor  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  where  the  47  and  49  bus  routes  follow  the  same  right-of-way  (ROW). 

The  northern  project  terminus,  the  intersection  of  Lombard  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
was  identified  based  on  traffic  patterns  that  show  a  significant  decrease  in  traffic  volume 
north  of  Lombard  Street.  Due  to  the  lower  traffic  volumes,  transit  delays  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  north  of  Lombard  Street  are  significantly  less  frequent  and  severe  than  transit  delays 
within  the  project  limits. 

1.1.2  |  Uses  of  this  Environmental  Impact  Statement/Environmental 
Impact  Report 

This  EIS/EIR  is  prepared  pursuant  to  the  requirements  of  NEPA,  the  Council  on 
Environmental  Quality  (CEQ)  regulations  implementing  NEPA  (40  Code  of  Federal  Regulations 
[CFR]  1500-1508),  and  CEQA,  Tide  14,  California  Code  of  Regulations  (CCR),  Guidelines 
for  Implementation  of  the  California  Environmental  Quality  Act  (Sections  15000  to  15387). 
As  required  by  NEPA  and  CEQA,  this  document  informs  the  public  and  governmental 
decision-makers  of  environmental  effects  associated  with  the  project  and  describes  the 
measures  that  would  be  undertaken  to  mitigate  those  effects.  This  document  will  be  used  by 
federal,  state,  regional,  and  local  agencies  to  assess  the  environmental  impacts  of  the  project 
on  resources  under  their  jurisdiction,  to  make  discretionary  decisions  regarding  the  project, 
and  to  exercise  review  and  permit  authority  over  the  project.  Upon  certification  and 
approval  of  this  document,  the  City  of  San  Francisco  will  include  the  proposed  project  in 
their  land  use  planning,  zoning  processes,  and  transportation  planning,  and  will  depict  the 
proposed  project  on  the  circulation  element  maps  of  the  City  of  San  Francisco  General  Plan 
and  supporting  Area  Plans. 


1 .2  Planning  Context 

As  discussed  in  the  next  two  sections,  rapid  transit  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  has 
been  consistently  identified  as  a  priority  in  local  and  regional  transportation  planning.  At  the 
same  time,  the  role  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  as  part  of  US  101  and  the  state 
highway  system  is  a  critical  component  to  the  planning  context. 


1.2.1  |  Countywide  Planning  Context 

Van  Ness  Avenue  has  been  identified  as  a  high-priority  transit  improvement  corridor  in  a 
number  of  planning  studies  and  funding  actions  by  the  City.  The  Authority's  Four  Corridors 
Plan  (1995)  and  Muni's  Vision  for  Rapid  Transit  (2000)  identified  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  a 
priority  corridor  for  rapid  transit  improvements.  Since  1996,  Muni's  Short-Range  Transit 
Plan  has  called  for  rapid  transit  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  In  2000,  MTA's  Vision  Plan  also 
called  for  rapid  transit  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  In  2003,  San  Francisco  voters  approved 
Proposition  K,  which  is  the  reauthorization  of  the  City's  Vi  cent  transportation  sales  tax. 
The  Prop  K  Expenditure  Plan  serves  as  the  investment  component  of  the  2004  CWTP, 
which  sets  forth  the  City's  "blueprint  to  guide  the  development  of  transportation  funding 
priorities  and  policy."  A  key  objective  of  the  CWTP  is  the  promotion  and  implementation  of 
San  Francisco's  transit  first  policy  through  development  of  a  network  of  fast,  reliable  transit, 


i-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  i:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


including  BRT.  The  purposes  of  the  multimodal  transportation  investment  package 
recommended  in  the  CWTP  are  to: 

•  Support    the    City's    growth    and    development    needs    by    addressing  expected 
transportation  system  congestion  impacts; 

•  Stem  and  reverse  the  trend  toward  transit  mode  share  loss  within  San  Francisco 
affordably  and  in  the  near  term;  and 

•  Improve  the  cost  effectiveness  and  operational  efficiency  of  the  City's  mature 
transportation  system  infrastructure  and  service. 

The  CWTP  evaluated  alternative  approaches  toward  meeting  these  system  needs  and 
recommended  a  preferred  scenario  that  calls  for  development  of  a  citywide  Bus  Rapid 
Transit  Network  (defined  initially  by  a  core  BRT  network  encompassing  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
Geary  Boulevard,  and  Potrero  Avenue).  The  purpose  of  this  rapid  transit  network  is  to: 

•  Improve  transit  levels  of  service  for  existing  users  quickly  and  cost  effectively; 

•  Strengthen  the  citywide  network  of  rapid  transit  services; 

•  Raise  the  cost  effectiveness  of  Muni  services  and  operational  efficiency  of  the  city's 
Transit  Preferential  Streets  (TPS)  roadway  network;  and 

•  Contribute  to  the  urban  design,  identity,  and  livability  of  the  BRT  corridors  as  signature 
TPS  streets. 

Figure  1-2  shows  the  city's  Rapid  Transit  Network  identified  in  the  CWTP.  San  Francisco 
currently  lacks  north-south  rapid  transit  service  in  the  northern  half  of  the  city.  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  combined  with  Mission  Street,  functions  as  the  primary  north-south  transit  corridor 
in  San  Francisco;  however,  Van  Ness  Avenue  lacks  rapid  transit  service  treatments,  and 
existing  transit  services  suffer  from  poor  performance  in  terms  of  speed  and  reliability. 
These  conditions  affect  two  Muni  transit  lines  (49  and  47)  and  eight  Golden  Gate  Transit 
regional  bus  routes  (54,  70,  72,  73,  76,  80,  93,  and  97). 


Figure  1-2:  San  Francisco  Rapid  Transit  Network  Map 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  J013 


Chapter  i:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Transportation  2035,  adopted 
n  2009,  serves  as  the  blueprint 
for  the  development  of 
transportation  facilities  in  the 
nine-county  San  Francisco  Bay 
Area.  An  update  to  this  plan, 
Plan  Bay  Area,  is  currently 
underway  and  is  scheduled  for 
adoption  in  2013. 


Since  adoption  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study,  SFMTA  has  developed  and 
adopted  the  Transit  Effectiveness  Project  (TEP)  (SFMTA,  2009).  The  TEP  recommended 
comprehensive  revisions  to  the  Muni  route  structure  to  improve  efficiency  and  meet 
emerging  travel  demand  patterns.  In  addition,  the  TEP  recommended  a  Rapid  Network 
designation  composed  of  the  most  critical  and  productive  Muni  lines.  Van  Ness  Avenue  is 
included  in  the  rapid  network  and  identified  in  the  TEP  as  a  high-priority  route  for  rapid 
transit  and  BRT  treatments. 

As  a  result  of  recommendations  in  the  CWTP,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study 
was  initiated  in  2004  and  completed  in  2006.  During  this  time,  the  City  defined  BRT  in  San 
Francisco  as  a  "fuD-featured"  system  with  the  following  general  elements: 

Dedicated  lane 
Transit  signal  priority 
High-quality  stations 
Distinctive  vehicles 

Level  or  near  level/all-door  boarding  (or  proof-of-payment) 

The  Feasibility  Study  evaluated  the  feasibility  of  four  alternative  BRT  configurations  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  Four  BRT  alternatives  were  developed  and  compared  with  a  no  project 
scenario,  in  conjunction  with  a  comprehensive  public  and  agency  participation  program.  The 
feasibility  study  was  unanimously  approved  by  both  the  Authority  and  SFMTA  Boards  in 
December  2006. 


1.2.2  I  Regional  Planning  Context 

1.2.2.1  I  METROPOLITAN  TRANSPORTATION  COMMISSION 

The  Metropolitan  Transportation  Commission  (MTC)  serves  as  the  Bay  Area's 
transportation  planning,  coordinating,  and  financing  agency  for  the  nine-county  San 
Francisco  Bay  Area.  The  MTC  functions  as  both  a  regional  transportation  planning  agency 
for  California,  and  for  federal  purposes,  as  the  region's  metropolitan  planning  organization 
(MPO).  As  such,  it  is  responsible  for  regularly  updating  the  Regional  Transportation  Plan 
(RTP),  which  is  a  comprehensive  blueprint  for  the  development  of  mass  transit,  highway, 
airport,  seaport,  railroad,  bicycle,  and  pedestrian  facilities.  The  most  recent  RTP, 
Transportation  2035,  was  adopted  in  2009  and  specifies  how  $218  billion  in  anticipated 
federal,  state,  and  local  transportation  funds  will  be  spent  in  the  Bay  Area  during  the  next  25 
years.  Improvements  to  local  and  express  bus  services  are  included  as  a  major  project  in  the 
2009  RTP,  with  BRT  service  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  specifically  identified  as  part  of  this  plan. 
Due  to  its  regional  reach,  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  is  one  of  only  two  Small  Starts  (FTA 
funding  program  for  projects  under  $250  million)  priorities  in  the  region.  MTC  has  made  a 
programming  commitment  to  the  project,  including  $87.6  million  in  committed  funds  in  the 
financially  constrained  and  adopted  2009  RTP. 

1.2.2.2  I  CALTRANS 

As  part  of  US  101,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  provides  part  of  the  surface  street  link  of 
US  101  through  San  Francisco.  US  101  is  a  major  component  of  the  Caltrans  Interregional 
Transportation  Strategic  Plan  (ITSP).  Thus,  accommodating  traffic  operations  in  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  essential;  at  the  same  time,  Vision  D  of  the  June  1998  ITSP  notes 
that  mass  transit  can  support  interregional  travel  improvements  with  cost-effective 
investments  in  corridors  that  are  densely  populated  and  heavily  traveled. 

Development  of  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  consistent  with  Caltrans  Deputy  Directive  98 
(October  2008),  entitled  "Integrating  Bus  Rapid  Transit  into  State  Facilities."  The  directive 
supports  the  integration  of  BRT  on  the  State  highway  system,  recognizing  its  potential  to 
increase  the  "person-throughput"  and  vehicle  occupancy  rate,  reduce  congestion,  mitigate 
pollution,  reduce  greenhouse  gas  (GHG)  emissions,  and  improve  goods  movement.  Deputy 


1-6 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  I mpact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  i:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Directive  98  places  strong  emphasis  on  the  responsibility  of  Caltrans  to  ensure  that  BRT  is 
integrated  with  other  transportation  modes  on  the  State  highway  system  through  revised 
design  policies  and  standards,  as  well  as  maintenance/ operations  functions. 

Another  relevant  Caltrans  Deputy  Directive,  Directive  64  (October  2008),  is  entitled 
"Complete  Streets  -  Integrating  the  Transportation  System."  This  directive  supports  the 
development  of  complete  streets,  encouraging  alternative  modes  of  transportation,  during 
system  planning  and  continuing  through  project  development.  A  "complete  street"  is 
defined  as  a  transportation  facility  that  is  planned,  designed,  operated,  and  maintained  to 
provide  safe  mobility  for  all  users,  including  bicyclists,  pedestrians,  transit  riders,  and 
motorists,  appropriate  to  the  function  and  context  of  the  facility. 

In  2003,  Caltrans  supported  local  planning  efforts  by  providing  a  Community  Planning 
Grant  to  study  whether  BRT  can  address  transit  needs  and  opportunities  in  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor.  This  was  important  initial  funding  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Feasibility  Study,  which  was  also  supported  by  Proposition  K  funding. 

1.3  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


1.3.1 1  Project  Purpose 

The  purpose  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  has  its  origins  in  the  2004  CWTP, 
discussed  above  in  Section  1.2.1,  which  identified  the  need  for  a  rapid  transit  network 
citywide.  The  CWTP  describes  the  purpose  of  the  rapid  network  as  follows: 

•  Improve  transit  levels  of  service  for  existing  users  quickly  and  cost  effectively; 

•  Strengthen  the  citywide  network  of  rapid  transit  services; 

•  Raise  the  cost  effectiveness  of  Muni  services  and  operational  efficiency  of  the  city's 
Transit  Preferential  Streets  (TPS)  roadway  network;  and 

•  Contribute  to  the  urban  design,  identity,  and  livability  of  the  BRT  corridors  as  signature 
TPS  streets. 

Van  Ness  BRT  is  a  key  element  of  the  rapid  network  (see  Figure  1.2),  and  is  intended  to 
fulfill  in  part  the  more  general  purpose  described  above  through  improvements  to  Van  Ness 
Avenue. 

The  project  is  intended  to  support  the  City's  growth  and  development  demands  by 
addressing  expected  transportation  system  performance  needs  -  including  to  stem  and 
reverse  the  trend  toward  transit  mode  share  loss  within  San  Francisco  -  affordably  and  in 
the  near  term.  The  project  is  also  intended  to  improve  the  cost  effectiveness  and  operational 
efficiency  of  the  City's  mature  transportation  system  infrastructure  and  service.  The  travel 
time  and  reliability  benefits  of  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  expected  to  ripple  throughout 
the  City's  transit  network,  facilitating  transfers  to  other  transit  routes  and  systems.  More 
than  40  percent  of  all  Muni  Routes  47  and  49  riders  make  at  least  one  transfer  to  the  many 
heavily  used  east-west  cross  routes,  including  Muni  Metro,  as  well  as  regional  services  such 
as  Golden  Gate  Transit,  BART  at  16*  Street,  and  Caltrain  at  4'VKing.  Van  Ness  Avenue 
riders  with  destinations  along  the  Mission,  Market,  SOMA,  Geary  Houlcv.ird,  and  I  "111011 
Street  corridors  will  benefit  through  shorter  travel  times  and  enhanced  rider  experience  with 
the  implementation  of  BRT. 

With  a  goal  of  having  the  Van  Ness  corridor  meet  the  rapid  network  purpose,  the  Feasibility 
Study  identified  specific  needs  for  the  corridor  (see  Section  1.3.2),  and  improvements 
identified  in  the  Study  attempt  to  achieve  that  end.  From  this  bottom-up  perspective,  the 
purpose  of  Van  Ness  BRT  is  to  improve  the  safety  and  operational  efficiency  ot  Van  Ness 
Avenue  in  order  to: 


I  DEFINITION  

USER  BENEFIT:  Benefits 
of  the  project  bestowed  on 

existing  passengers 
(e.g.,  shorter  travel  time, 
enhanced  rider  experience) 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  t:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


High  Ridership:  Approximately 
43,000  passengers  use  Muni 
bus  routes  47  and  49  and  the 
Golden  Gate  Transit  routes  54, 
70,  72,  73,  76,  80,  93,  and  97 
daily,  with  more  than  1 6,000 
daily  passenger  boardings 
within  the  project  limits. 


•  Significantly  improve  transit  reliability,  speed,  connectivity,  and  comfort; 

•  Improve  pedestrian  comfort,  amenities,  and  safety; 

•  Enhance  the  urban  design  and  identity  of  Van  Ness  Avenue; 

•  Create  a  more  livable  and  attractive  street  for  local  residential,  commercial,  and  other 
activities;  and 

•  Accommodate  safe  multimodal  circulation  and  access  within  the  corridor. 

Attainment  of  the  project  objectives  must  be  balanced  with  the  needs  to  accommodate 
mixed  traffic,  bicycle,  and  goods  circulation  and  access  within  the  corridor,  as  well  as 
maintain  some  on-street  parking  for  loading/ unloading  and  drop-off  access. 


1.3.2  I  Project  Need 


The  2004  CWTP  found  that  San  Francisco's  17%  transit  mode  share  among  San  Francisco 
residents  will  decline  by  2025  if  measures  are  not  taken  to  provide  a  competitive  transit 
alternative  to  auto  travel  in  major  corridors  such  as  Van  Ness  Avenue.  In  addition,  the 
CWTP  determined  that  trends  towards  lower  transit  productivity  and  rising  operations  costs 
must  be  reversed  in  order  to  provide  sustainable  transit  service  in  San  Francisco  that  will 
meet  future  demands.  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  is  expected  to  help  address  these  citywide 
needs,  and  others,  through  specific  improvements  in  the  Van  Ness  corridor.  The  specific 
improvements  identified  in  the  Feasibility  Study  were  based  on  the  project's  purpose 
described  in  the  previous  section  and  the  corridor  needs  described  in  this  section. 

1.3.2.1  Itransit  performance  needs 

There  is  an  existing  strong  demand  in  addition  to  large  ridership  growth  potential  for  high 
transit  service  levels  in  the  project  corridor.  Van  Ness  Avenue  transit  services  currently 
operate  at  high  frequencies  (the  Muni  bus  routes  provide  an  average  combined  headway  of 
3.75  minutes  during  peak  periods  and  6  to  8  minutes  in  the  off  peak).  Approximately  43,000 
passengers  use  Muni  bus  routes  47  and  49  and  the  Golden  Gate  Transit  routes  54,  70,  72, 
73,  76,  80,  93,  and  97  daily,  with  more  than  16,000  daily  passenger  boardings  within  the 
project  limits.  A  number  of  major  east-west  transit  routes  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
generate  major  bus-to-bus  and  bus-to-rail  transfers  with  Van  Ness  Avenue  transit  services, 
including  the  Muni  Metro  lines  at  Market  Street  and  Muni  bus  lines  38  (Geary)  and  38L 
(Geary  Limited).  Transit  has  a  20  percent  mode  share  for  trips  to,  from,  and  within  the 
neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue,  which  is  greater  than  the  17  percent  daily 
transit  mode  share  citywide. 

Transit  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  has  the  potential  to  serve  substantially  more  riders 
both  today  and  in  the  future.  Approximately  46  percent  of  households  in  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor  do  not  own  cars,  compared  with  29  percent  citywide  (SFCTA  BRT 
Feasibility  Study,  2006,  using  BATS  and  Census  2000  survey  data).  At  an  average  of  93 
dwelling  units  per  acre,  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  the  highest  population  density  of  any  transit 
corridor  in  San  Francisco.  The  existing  population  density,  together  with  the  concentration 
of  employment  and  commercial  activity  along  the  corridor  (approximately  45,000  jobs), 
establishes  a  strong  transit  market  capable  of  supporting  higher  levels  of  transit  investment. 
Furthermore,  the  Association  of  Bay  Area  Governments  (ABAG)  and  the  San  Francisco 
Planning  Department  have  targeted  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  for  21,000  additional 
jobs  (50  percent  increase)  and  9,000  additional  housing  units  (34  percent  increase)  between 
2005  and  2015  (ABAG  Projections,  2007),  particularly  near  Market  Street,  and  active  infill 
development  is  underway  throughout  the  corridor,  consistent  with  the  objectives  of  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  Area  Plan  and  the  Market/Octavia  Better  Neighborhoods  Plan. 

Despite  the  above-mentioned  high  existing  and  projected  ridership  demand,  transit  speeds 
and  reliability  are  poor  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  Degradation  in  transit 
performance  is  a  projected  citywide  problem  that  is  largely  contributing  to  a  citywide  decline 
in  transit  mode  share.  The  Authority's  2004  CWTP  found  that  the  City's  17  percent  transit 


1-8 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


mode  share  among  city  residents  will  decline  by  2025  if  measures  are  not  taken  to  provide  a 
competitive  transit  alternative  to  auto  travel  in  major  corridors  such  as  Van  Ness  Avenue.  A 
key  need  for  transit  service  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  to  close  the  performance  gap,  in 
reliability  and  in  travel  time,  between  transit  and  automobile  travel. 

•  Separate  Transit  from  Auto  Traffic  to  Improve  Travel  Time  and  Service  Reliability.  Transit 
speeds  and  reliability  (both  travel  time  and  headway  reliability)  are  poor  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  due  in  large  part  to  conflicts  with  mixed-flow  traffic.  Buses  spend 
approximately  half  their  time  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  completely  stopped;  these  delays 
occur  when  moving  in  traffic,  maneuvering  to  and  from  the  curb  to  load  and  unload 
passengers,  and  waiting  at  signals.  Signal  and  mixed-traffic  delays  account  for  well  over 
half  of  total  bus  delay.  Travel  times  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Clay  and  Mission 
average  16  minutes  by  transit  and  fewer  than  9  minutes  by  private  vehicle  (see  Section 
3.2  for  details).  Even  when  time  spent  loading  and  unloading  passengers  is  subtracted 
from  transit  travel  time,  buses  still  remain  as  much  as  35  percent  slower  than  cars 
(SFCTA,  2006). 

Travel  in  mixed  traffic  also  causes  reliability  problems.  As  buses  travel  in  mixed  traffic, 
variation  in  headway  increases,  and  buses  begin  to  bunch,  as  shown  in  Figure  1-3 
(Source:  SFCTA  field  study  performed  as  part  of  Van  Ness  BRT  Feasibility  Study, 
2006).  By  the  time  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  reach  Market  Street,  buses  are  just  as 
likely  to  be  more  than  50  percent  off  from  scheduled  spacing  (i.e.,  less  than  4  minutes 
apart  or  more  than  1 1  minutes  apart)  as  they  are  to  arrive  within  50  percent  of 
scheduled  spacing  (i.e.,  4-  to  11 -minute  spacing).  For  example,  buses  are  equally  as  likelv 
to  be  1  or  more  than  13  minutes  apart  (compared  to  the  scheduled  7.5  minutes  apart  per 
route),  reflecting  unreliable  service  for  waiting  passengers. 

Figure  1-3:  Variation  in  Headways  (Average  Wait  Times) 
at  Market  Street  SB  during  the  PM  Peak 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  july  2013 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Finally,  conflicts  with  mixed  traffic  affect  transit  operating  efficiency  and  productivity. 
The  delays  caused  by  operating  in  mixed  traffic  add  significandy  to  transit's  route  cycle 
time,  increasing  the  number  of  vehicles  and  operators  required  to  provide  needed 
service  frequencies. 

BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  forecast  to  decrease  transit  travel  times  by  up  to  32 
percent  and  improve  reliability  by  up  to  50  percent  (see  Section  3.2  for  details). 
Moreover,  BRT  is  estimated  to  improve  transit  operating  productivity  by  up  to  33 
percent,  reducing  the  overall  cycle  time  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  routes  and  saving 
substantial  operating  resources  (see  Chapter  9  for  details). 

•  Reduce  Delays  Associated  with  Loading  and  Unloading  and  Traffic  Signals.  As  shown  in 
Figure  1-4,  time  spent  loading  and  unloading  passengers  (dwell  time),  while  part  of 
service,  does  include  unnecessary  delays  that  contribute  to  slow  travel  times  for  buses. 
Dwell  times  are  lengthy  because  passengers  must  enter  the  bus  through  a  single  door, 
ascend  from  the  curb  into  the  bus  doorway,  and  wait  in  line  while  those  without  passes 
pay  bus  fare  onboard.  Passengers  with  mobility  disabilities  often  need  the  assistance  of 
lifts  or  ramps  to  enter  and  exit  buses,  which  can  further  increase  dwell  time. 


VAN    NESS  CORRIDOR 
TRANSIT  NEEDS 


1.  Separate  transit  from  auto 
traffic  to  improve  travel  time 

and  service  reliability. 

2.  Reduce  delays  associated 
with  loading  and  unloading 

and  traffic  signals. 

3.  Expand  the  City's 
Network  of  Rapid  Transit. 

4.  Improve  the  experience 
for  transit  patrons. 


Figure  1-4:  Components  of  Transit  Travel  Time 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue  (Southbound  -  PM  Peak) 


Bus  Travel  Time  Components  (SB  PM  Peak  in  Minutes) 


r 


'■Cruising  Time 

■  Signal  Delay 

□  Mixed  Traffic  Delay 

■  Dwell  Time 


BRT  stations  with  level  or  near  level  boarding  platforms,  proof-of-payment,  and  fare 
prepayment  should  facilitate  faster  and  easier  passenger  loading  and  unloading  by 
enabling  passengers  to  simply  walk  or  roll  onto  the  bus  through  all  vehicle  doors. 
Boarding  more  passengers  in  less  time  would  provide  more  transit  capacity  without  the 
added  costs  of  additional  buses  and  drivers. 

•  Improve  the  Experience  for  Transit  Patrons.  Existing  transit  service  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 
lacks  many  amenities  that  would  make  the  transit  experience  attractive  to  new  riders  and 
more  comfortable  for  existing  riders,  both  in  and  out  of  the  vehicle.  While  waiting, 
transit  passengers  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  often  lack  shelter,  seating,  and  real-time 
information.  Waiting  passengers  jostle  for  sidewalk  space  with  passing  pedestrians. 
While  riding,  transit  passengers  often  encounter  crowded  buses  as  a  result  of  bunching 
and  reliability  problems,  and  experience  poor  ride  quality  as  buses  must  weave  around 
mixed  traffic  and  into  and  out  of  sidewalk  bus  stops. 

BRT  will  upgrade  bus  service  with  station  amenities  including  larger  shelters,  additional 
seating,  communications  systems,  ticket  vending  machines  at  selected  stations,  real-time 


1-10 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


service  information,  improved  lighting,  and  security  features.  BRT  station  platforms  would 
be  separated  from  pedestrian  traffic,  and  would  include  landscape  and  streetscape  features  to 
offer  a  buffer  from  vehicular  traffic  where  feasible.  BRT  is  intended  to  improve  ride  quality 
by  eliminating  the  need  to  pull  in  and  out  of  stops,  and  for  most  alternatives,  the  need  to 
weave  around  mixed  traffic.  The  BRT  buses  would  accommodate  more  passengers,  offer 
additional  seating,  and  operate  at  more  reliable  headways,  relieving  crowding. 

1-3.2.2  I  MULTIMODAL  CIRCULATION  NEEDS 

People  currently  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  drive,  walk,  bike,  and  ride  transit.  Van  Ness 
Avenue  improvements  are  intended  to  improve  multimodal  circulation  and  the  overall 
transportation  effectiveness  of  the  corridor,  meeting  the  general  needs  identified  in  the 
CWTP  and  the  corridor-specific  needs  identified  in  the  BRT  Feasibility  Study.  Support  of 
non-motorized  travel  modes  and  overall  system  operation  is  critical  to  the  success  of  high- 
quality  transit  in  the  corridor  and  would  support  local  planning  efforts  to  transform  Van 
Ness  Avenue  into  a  pedestrian  promenade,  as  well  as  a  grand  multimodal  thoroughfare. 

Multimodal  circulation,  corridor  design,  and  land  use  planning  needs  for  Van  Ness  Avenue 
include  the  following: 

•  Improve  the  Safety  and  Comfort  of  Pedestrians.  Pedestrian  trips  comprise  26  percent  of 
total  daily  trips  to,  from,  and  within  the  neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
exceeding  the  citywide  average  of  17  percent.  Every  transit  trip  begins  and  ends  with  a 
walking  trip,  and  nearly  half  of  trips  to,  from,  or  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
neighborhoods  are  a  walk,  bike,  or  transit  trip,  indicating  the  importance  of  non- 
motorized  travel  in  the  area  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  While  the  existing  street  design 
within  the  project  limits  meets  City  sidewalk  width  standards  with  its  16-foot-wide 
sidewalks,  most  intersections  are  without  pedestrian  countdown  signals  or  Accessible 
Pedestrian  Signals  (APS),  and  many  of  the  intersections  do  not  meet  San  Francisco  or 
Federal  standards  for  minimum  pedestrian  speeds  in  order  to  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue 
during  the  walk  signal  phase.7  Pedestrians  experience  twice  as  much  delay  at 
intersections  as  vehicle  occupants,  especially  waiting  to  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The 
greater  the  delay,  the  higher  the  likelihood  of  noncompliance  with  signals,  which  results 
in  compromised  safety  and  traffic  flow  impacts  (SFCTA  2011).  At  crossings  without  a 
pedestrian  signal,  pedestrians  can  be  caught  mid-crossing  when  the  light  turns  yellow, 
with  as  little  as  4  seconds  to  reach  a  curb  or  median  refuge,  indicating  the  strong  need 
for  pedestrian  countdown  and  APS  with  sufficient  crossing  times  at  these  crossings. 
Section  3.4  provides  detailed  information  on  pedestrian  crossing  conditions  in  the 
corridor. 

BRT  will  improve  pedestrian  safety  and  conditions  through  the  provision  of  curb 
extensions  (curb  bulbs)  to  create  greater  pedestrian  visibility,  as  well  as  shorter  crossing 
distances  coupled  with  signal  timings  that  meet  City  and  federal  targets  for  walking 
speeds.  The  project  will  also  implement  APS,  in  addition  to  countdown  signals,  .11  .ill 
signalized  intersections,  as  well  as  enhance  refuge  medians  to  meet  or  exceed  City 
standards  and  include  nose  cones.  These  BRT  features  are  expected  to  reduce  the 
crosswalk  pedestrian  collisions  commonly  experienced  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  Raise  the  Operating  Efficiency  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  Maintaining  Person-Throughput  while 
Increasing  the  Capacity  and  Vehicle  Occupancy  Rate.  Tin  Van  Ness  Vvenue  corridor, 
comprised  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  parallel  streets  from  Gough  Street  to  Hyde  Street, 
has  the  potential  to  carry  people  more  efficiently,  than  today.  Within  the  study  area, 
motorized  trips  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  expected  to  increase  In  up  to  ".5  percent  In 
2015  if  a  BRT  project  is  not  built,  while  the  transit  mode  share  is  expected  to  st.tv  the 
same  or  decline.  These  trends  would  cause  an  increase  in  congestion  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  These  increasing  demands  on  the  street's  limited  ROW   necessitate  more 


PROJECT  COALS  BEYOND 
TRANSIT  ENHANCEMENT 

1.  Improve  the  safety  and 
comfort  of  pedestrians. 

2.  Raise  the  operating  efficiency 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue  by 
increasing  person-throughput/ 
vehicle  occupancy  rate. 

3.  Upgrade  streetscape  to 
support  an  identity  as  a  rapid 
transit  and  pedestrian 
environment. 

4.  Support  the  civic  destinations 
on  the  corridor  and  integrate 
transit  infrastructure  with 
adjacent  land  uses. 


7  APS  are  devices  that  communicate  when  to  cross  the  street  in  a  non  visual  manner,  such  as  tudiblc  tones,  speech 
messages,  anil  vibrating  surfaces. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


t-n 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


efficient  operations  and  use  of  space  to  increase  capacity  for  person-throughput  in  the 
corridor  and  raise  the  vehicle  occupancy  rate. 

Due  to  the  expected  increase  in  transit  ridership  with  BRT,  Van  Ness  Avenue  would 
operate  more  productively.  With  BRT,  each  transit  lane  would  carry  13  percent  (Build 
Alternative  2)  to  36  percent  (Build  Alternatives  3,  4,  and  the  LP  A)  more  people  than 
each  mixed  traffic  lane,  and  the  average  vehicle  occupancy  on  the  street  would  increase 
to  more  than  two  people  per  vehicle  (see  Section  3.1  for  details). 

In  addition,  by  creating  a  dedicated  lane  for  transit,  BRT  would  allow  for  increased  bus 
operations  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  without  impacting  the  traffic  network  (i.e.,  additional 
buses  would  not  conflict  with  auto  traffic).  BRT  also  makes  it  possible  to  provide 
similar  service  at  a  lower  operating  cost  (see  Chapter  9);  this  is  because  with  BRT,  each 
bus  can  complete  its  route  in  less  time,  so  less  vehicles  and  drivers  would  be  needed  to 
keep  the  same  frequencies.  Preliminary  results  indicate  that  1  to  2  more  buses  per  hour 
could  be  added  on  both  the  47  and  49  BRT  routes  at  no  additional  operating  cost  based 
on  the  travel  time  savings  in  the  2015  microsimulation  model  (see  Section  3.2).  If  more 
operating  funds  were  dedicated  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  future,  those  investments 
would  be  more  cost  effective  with  BRT  because  the  lower  travel  times  would  allow  for  a 
greater  increase  in  frequency  of  bus  operations.  The  center-lane  BRT  alternatives  (Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4)  would  be  more  cost  effective  than  Build  Alternative  2  because 
those  alternatives  would  have  a  lower  travel  time  (see  Chapter  3.2  for  more  details);  and 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  as  well  as  the  LPA,  would  offer 
additional  cost  effectiveness  for  this  reason. 

•  Upgrade  Streetscape  to  Support  an  Identity  as  a  Rapid  Transit  and  Pedestrian  Environment. 

Existing  streetscape  conditions  are  deficient,  lacking  in  consistency  and  pedestrian 
amenities. 

A  main  component  of  the  proposed  build  alternatives  is  to  provide  a  consistent 
landscaped  median  treatment  and  pedestrian  lighting,  as  well  as  establish  a  more  unified 
identity  for  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  one  of  the  City's  most  prominent  arterials  and  a  visible 
rapid  transit  service.  The  improved  streetscape  features  of  the  proposed  build 
alternatives  would  enhance  the  amenity  and  urban  design  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  a 
gateway  into  the  city. 

•  Support  the  Civic  Destinations  on  the  Corridor  and  Integrate  Transit  Infrastructure  with 
Adjacent  Land  Uses.  The  project  corridor  is  already  a  strong  market  for  transit,  due 
largely  to  the  existing  transit-supportive  land  use  in  the  corridor,  including  the  highest 
population  density  of  any  transit  corridor  in  San  Francisco,  and  nearly  half  of  the 
households  in  the  corridor  do  not  own  automobiles. 

In  addition  to  existing  transit  demand,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  planned  by  the 
City  for  high-density  mixed-use  development  and  transformation  of  the  street  into  a 
transit-served  pedestrian  promenade  that  supports  the  Civic  Center  and  commercial 
uses.  Rapid  transit  service  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  contribute  to  the  City's 
transit-oriented  development  efforts  by  providing  high-quality,  reliable,  comfortable 
transit  that  improves  access  to  destinations  within  the  corridor  and  elsewhere  in  the  city. 
The  placement  of  BRT  infrastructure  demonstrates  an  investment  in  the  corridor  and 
provides  a  greater  sense  of  permanence  than  typical  bus  facilities. 

•  Accommodate  private  vehicles  and  commercial  loading.  Attainment  of  the  project  objectives 
must  be  balanced  with  the  need  to  accommodate  mixed  traffic  and  goods  circulation 
and  access  within  the  corridor,  as  well  as  maintain  some  on-street  parking  for 
loading/unloading  and  drop-off  access.  Private  vehicle  traffic  in  the  future  is  anticipated 
to  become  more  congested  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  on  the  streets  immediately  parallel 
in  the  no  project  scenario.  Analysis  indicates  that  the  implementation  of  BRT  is  not 
forecast  to  increase  the  number  of  congested  intersections  (i.e.,  those  operating  at  LOS 
E  or  F)  in  the  corridor,  in  year  2015,  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  (see  Section 


I 
I 

I 

I 
I 


1-12 
0 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  i:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


3.3  for  details).  Parallel  parking  is  located  along  most  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  throughout 
the  project  corridor,  providing  drop-off  and  loading  access  to  businesses,  residents,  and 
institutional  uses  fronting  the  avenue.  Parking  also  provides  persons  with  disabilities 
access  to  the  commercial,  residential,  civic,  and  cultural  centers  in  the  project  corridor. 
Accommodating  truck  maneuverability  is  also  important  in  supporting  land  uses  along 
the  corridor,  as  well  as  regional  goods  movement. 

1.3.3  I  Project  Ability  to  Meet  the  Purpose  and  Need 

Chapter  10  discusses  the  performance  of  each  alternative  and  the  LPA,  with  or  without  the 
Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  on  an  array  of  indicators  related  to  the  Project  Purpose 
and  Need,  as  well  as  other  issues  of  interest  to  stakeholders  A  full  analysis  of  transportation 
performance  can  be  found  in  Chapter  3,  while  analysis  on  the  other  areas  of  stakeholder  and 
environmental  concern  can  be  found  in  Chapter  4. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  1:  Project  Purpose  and  Need 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


This  page  intentionally  left  blank. 


,.,4  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2 
Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


CHAPTER  SUMMARY:  The  project  proposed  by  the  Authority  will  implement  BRT  improvements  along 
approximately  2  miles  of  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Lombard  and  Mission 
streets  in  San  Francisco.  This  chapter  of  the  EIS/EIR  describes  the  proposed  action  and  the  project 
alternatives  that  were  considered  to  achieve  the  project  purpose  and  need  while  avoiding  or 
minimizing  environmental  impacts.  Three  build  alternatives,  including  one  side-lane  running  and  two 
center-lane  running  alignments,  a  design  option  eliminating  left  turns,  a  Locally  Preferred  Alternative 
(LPA)  refined  from  the  center-lane  running  build  alternatives  incorporating  the  design  option,  and  a 
"No  Build"  (no  action)  Alternative  are  analyzed.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  propose 
operating  BRT  in  a  dedicated  transit  lane  in  the  northbound  and  southbound  directions,  resulting  in 
two  mixed-flow  and  one  transit  lane  in  each  direction,  replacing  existing  Muni  bus  stops  with  BRT 
stations  in  the  project  corridor,  and  other  transit  enhancements  such  as  transit  signal  priority. 


CHAPTER 


Project  Alternatives 

2.1  Alternatives  Development  Process 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  has  been  identified  as  a  high-priority  transit  improvement 
corridor  in  many  planning  studies  and  funding  acdons  by  the  City.  The  Authority's  Four 
Corridors  Plan  (1995)  and  Muni's  Vision  for  Rapid  Transit  (2000)  identified  Van  Ness 
Avenue  as  a  priority  corridor  for  rapid  transit  improvements.  The  Authority's  2004  CWTP 
reinforced  these  plans  by  recommending  a  citywide  rapid  transit  network  that  would  include 
BRT  and  TPS  treatments  as  San  Francisco's  transit  expansion  strategy.  The  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor  was  included  as  part  of  the  Rapid  Network. 

The  New  Expenditure  Plan  for  San  Francisco,  which  was  approved  bv  voters  as 
Proposition  K  authorizing  the  City's  Vz  cent  transportation  sales  tax  measure  in  November 
2003  idendfies  Van  Ness  Avenue  for  BRT  funding.  The  New  F^xpenditure  Plan  is  the 
investment  component  of  the  2004  CWTP. 

2.1.1 1  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study 

In  2006,  the  Authority  and  SFMTA  Boards  adopted  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility 
Study,  which  was  prepared  by  the  Authority,  and  identified  the  need  for  and  purpose  of  BRT 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  plan  developed  conceptual  BRT  design  alternatives  and  evaluated 
initial  impacts  and  benefits.  The  Feasibility  Study  found  that  several  BRT  configurations  .in- 
possible  for  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  are  likely  to  provide  significant  benefits  with  relatively 
modest  impacts,  and  it  called  for  the  next  phase  of  project  development,  environmental 
analysis,  and  preliminary  engineering.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibilitv  Studv  is  discussed 
below,  along  with  other  key  milestones  in  the  project  alternatives  development  process. 

2.1.2  I  Scoping  Process 

In  September  2007,  the  Authority  issued  a  federal  Notice  of  Intent  (NOI)  and  state  Notice 
of  Preparation  (NOP)  initiating  the  project  scoping  period  under  NEPA  and  <  I  QA, 
respectively.  The  purpose  of  the  scoping  period  was  to  obtain  feedback  from  the  public,  | 
partner  agencies,  and  all  interested  parties  on  the  proposed  project  alternatives  and  the  type* 
of  environmental  impacts  to  be  analyzed.  Two  formal  scoping  meetings  were  held  with  the 
public  on  October  2  and  October  4,  2007,  and  one  agency  meeting,  which  included  federal. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


RESOURCES 


To  view  the  Van  Ness  BRT 
Feasibility  Study,  the  Scoping 
Report,  and  the  Alternatives 
Screening  Report,  visit 
www.sfcta.org/vanness. 


state,  regional,  and  local  agencies,  was  held  on  October  4,  2007.  The  outcome  of  these 
meetings  is  presented  in  the  Van  Ness  BRT  Scoping  Summary  Report  (November  30,  2007). 
The  intent  of  the  scoping  process,  as  explained  in  the  Scoping  Summary  Report,  was  to: 

•  Inform  affected  agencies  and  the  public  about  the  proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Project,  including  compliance  with  NEPA  and  CEQA  requirements; 

•  Identify  a  reasonable  range  of  transit  improvement  alternatives  to  be  evaluated  for  Van 
Ness  Avenue; 

•  Identify  potentially  significant  environmental  impact  areas  that  should  be  studied  in  the 
EIS/EIR;  and 

•  Expand  on  the  existing  mailing  list  of  agencies  and  individuals  interested  in  the  future 
actions  related  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  and  the  EIS/EIR. 

Written  and  verbal  comments  were  received  on  a  wide  range  of  alternatives,  including  a  No 
Build  Alternative,  an  express  bus  alternative,  side  lane  and  center  lane  running  BRT 
alternatives,  side  lane  BRT  with  a  removed  parking  lane,  and  a  subway  alternative.  Overall, 
center  lane  running  BRT  was  the  configuration  most  often  preferred  by  the  public,  as 
documented  in  the  Van  Ness  BRT  Scoping  Summary  Report.  Agency  and  public  input 
received  during  the  scoping  period,  in  addition  to  findings  of  the  Feasibility  Study,  CWTP, 
and  other  studies,  helped  define  the  range  of  alternatives  recommended  for  NEPA  and 
CEQA  evaluation.  Chapter  8,  Consultation  and  Coordination,  provides  a  detailed  summary 
of  the  project  scoping  period  and  outreach  activities. 


The  Alternatives  Screening 
Report  (2008)  applied  screening 
criteria  to  alternatives  analyzed 
during  the  scoping  process  to 
determine  the  ability  of  each  one 
to  meet  the  project's  purpose 
and  need  (see  Chapter  1). 


2.1.3  I  Alternatives  Screening/Analysis 

To  identify  the  limited  set  of  build  alternatives  to  be  analyzed  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  the 
Authority  prepared  an  Alternatives  Screening  Report  (March  2008).  The  report  applied  many 
screening  criteria  to  determine  the  ability  of  each  alternative  to  meet  the  purpose  of  and  need  for 
the  project,  as  developed  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study.  The  project  purpose 
and  need  statement  reflects  citywide  BRT  development  policies  found  in  the  CWTP  and  project- 
level  goals  and  needs  identified  during  the  conceptual  planning  work  of  the  Feasibility  Study. 

The  alternatives  that  were  analyzed  in  this  report  include  a  No  Build  Alternative;  TPS 
improvements;  multiple  BRT  alignments,  including  center  running  and  side  running  BRT; 
and  surface  light  rail  and  subway  alternatives.  The  report  recommended  three  build 
alternatives  for  further  study;  these  alternatives  are  presented  in  Section  2.2. 

Table  2-1  displays  the  screening  criteria  used  to  analyze  the  alternatives  in  the  screening 
report.  The  criteria  address  benefits  and  impacts. 


Table  2-1:  Alternatives  Screening  Report  Criteria 


TYPE  OF  BENEFIT 

SCREENINC  CRITERIA 

Transit  Operations 

Transit  speed  and  reliability 

Transit  mode  share/ridership 

Out-of-vehicle  waiting  experience 

Transit  Rider  Experience 

In-vehicle  ride  quality 

Pedestrian  access  and  safety 

Urban  Design 

Streetscape,  landscape,  integration  with  land  uses 

Multimodal  System 
Performance 

Total  person-delay 

Rapid  network  identity 

Time  to  benefits 

2-2 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  july  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Table  2-1:  Alternatives  Screening  Report  Criteria 


TYPE  OF  IMPACT 


SCREENING  CRITERIA 


Traffic  and  Parking 


Traffic  circulation  (includes  diversions,  delay) 


Parking  spaces 


Cost 


Capital  cost 


Operating  cost 


Construction  Impact 


Duration  and  intensity  of  construction 


Source:  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Alternatives  Screening  Report.  March  2008. 

2.1.4 1  Identification  of  a  Locally  Preferred  Alternative 

The  Draft  EIS/EIR  was  distributed  and  made  available  to  the  public  for  review  and 
comment  from  November  4  through  December  23,  2011.  As  required  by  NEPA,  an  EIS 
must  include  the  identification  of  a  preferred  alternative.  The  three  build  alternatives 
considered  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  and  described  in  Section  2.2,  consisted  of  one  side- 
running  alignment  (Alternative  2)  and  two  center-lane  alignments  (Alternatives  3  and  4),  as 
well  as  a  limited  left- turn  variant  (Design  Option  B).  Based  on  technical  analyses  presented 
in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  agency,  stakeholder,  and  public  input  received  during  circulation  of 
the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  results  of  weighting  and  risk  analysis  performed  by  a  steering 
committee  of  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  staff,  the  SFCTA  and  SFMTA  staff  jointly 
recommended,  and  their  boards  subsequently  selected,  the  LPA  as  a  center-lane  BRT  with 
right-side  boarding/single  median  and  limited  left  turns  for  inclusion  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR. 

The  LPA  represents  an  optimized,  refined  center-running  alternative;  BRT  vehicles  would 
operate  alongside  the  median  for  most  of  the  corridor,  similar  to  Build  Alternative  4  (see 
Section  2.2  for  a  full  description  of  Build  Alternative  4).  At  station  locations,  the  BRT 
runningway  would  transition  to  the  center  of  the  roadway,  allowing  right-side  loading  using 
standard  vehicles,  similar  to  Build  Alternative  3  (see  Section  2.2  for  a  full  description  of 
Build  Alternative  3).  This  alternative  would  retain  the  high-performance  features  of  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  (e.g.,  maximum  transit  priority,  fewest  conflicts)  while  avoiding  the  need 
to  acquire  left-right  door  vehicles  or  remove  the  entire  existing  median.  Because  the  limited 
left-turn  variant  (Design  Option  B)  was  shown  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  to  provide  the  greatest 
travel  time  benefits  for  transit,  would  reduce  the  weaving  associated  with  the  transitions,  and 
aid  with  the  flow  of  north-south  traffic  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  LPA  incorporates  Design 
Option  B,  eliminating  all  left  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Mission  and  Lombard 
streets,  with  the  exception  of  the  southbound  (SB)  (two-lane)  left  turn  at  Broadway. 

The  LPA  also  involves  some  modifications  to  station  locations  versus  those  shown  for  the 
build  alternatives  in  the  Draft  EIS/HIR.  Specifically,  the  stations  are  now  on  the  near  side  of 
intersections  to  allow  for  trucks  turning  onto  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Since  the  NB  Market  Street 
station  would  be  less  than  one  block  from  the  Mission  Street  station,  the  NB  Mission  Street 
station  would  be  removed  under  the  LPA.  There  is  currently  a  stop  for  the  49  at  the 
13th  Strect/Dubocc/Mission/US  101  off-ramp  intersection  (one  block  from  Mission  Street 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue  intersection)  and  a  stop  for  the  47  at  1 I*  and  Mission  Street  (also 
one  block  from  the  Mission  Street/South  Van  Ness  Avenue)  intersection.  As  a  separate 
project,  the  TEP  is  studying  routing  that  would  accommodate  a  stop  for  the  47  Limited  on 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue  just  south  of  the  Mission  Street/South  Van  Ness  Avenue 
intersection.  Under  the  TEP,  the  49  Limited  would  not  make  stops  between  the 
16'V Mission  stop  and  the  Market  Street  BRT  station;  however,  riders  would  still  be  able  to 
board  the  14  (Mission  local)  bus  along  Mission  Street.  That  route  would  continue  to  stop  u 
the  Mission  Street/South  Van  Ness  Avenue  intersection. 

The  LPA  also  involves  the  incorporation  of  a  SB  station  at  Vftllejo  Street  in  response  to 
community  concerns  regarding  stop  spacing.  A  NB  transit  station  at  Vallejo  Street  ia  also 


DEFINITION 


LOCALLY  PREFERRED 
ALTERNATIVE  (LPA): 
The  final  selected  physical 
design  concept  and  scope  for 
the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Project,  which  will  be  one  of  the 
alternatives,  or  a  combination  of 
features  from  more  than  one  of 
the  alternatives  reviewed  in  the 
Draft  EIS/EIR  and  described  in 
Section  2.2. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


1) 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


included  as  a  design  variant,  referred  to  as  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant.  The 
decision  on  whether  to  include  the  variant  will  be  made  at  the  time  of  project  approval. 
Section  2.2.2.4  provides  a  detailed  description  of  the  LPA. 

Upon  project  approval,  the  City  of  San  Francisco  would  include  the  proposed  project  in 
their  land  use  planning,  zoning  processes,  and  transportation  planning.  Additionally,  the  City 
would  depict,  or  reference,  the  proposed  project  on  the  circulation  element  maps  of  the  City 
of  San  Francisco  General  Plan  and  supporting  Area  Plans. 

2.2  Project  Alternatives 

Based  on  the  outcome  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  screening  process,  four  alternatives 
were  defined  in  the  Alternatives  Screening  Report  prepared  by  the  Authority  in  March  2008, 
including  one  No  Build  Alternative  and  three  build  alternatives.  These  alternatives  have  been 
refined  in  response  to  changes  in  funding  and  programming  since  the  2008  Screening 
Report,  and  they  are  presented  in  detail  in  the  following  sections. 

2.2.1  I  Alternative  1:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative) 

Alternative  1,  the  No  Build  Alternative,  would  not  include  BRT  service  and  assumes  that  the 
existing  roadway  and  transit  services  in  the  2-mile-long  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  would 
continue  and  be  supplemented  by  funded  improvement  projects  planned  to  occur  within  the 
near-term  horizon  year  of  2015.  These  transportation  system  and  infrastructure 
improvements  are  planned  to  occur  regardless  of  implementation  of  any  BRT  build 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA.  The  following  transportation  system  and  infrastructure 
improvements  are  included  in  the  No  Build  Alternative: 

•  Pavement  Rehabilitation.  As  part  of  US  101,  which  is  a  State  highway,  Van  Ness  Avenue 
qualifies  for  Caltrans  State  Highway  Operation  and  Protection  Program  (SHOPP) 
funds,  which  may  be  used  for  capital  improvements  relative  to  maintenance,  safety,  and 
rehabilitation  of  state  highways  and  bridges  that  do  not  add  a  new  traffic  lane  to  the 
system.  Caltrans  is  developing  cost  and  estimates  as  part  of  a  Project  Report  for  the  Van 
Ness/Lombard  Pavement  Rehabilitation  project  for  funds  to  be  programmed  in  the 
2014  SHOPP  and  made  available  in  FY  2016/2017. 

•  OCS  and  Support  Pole/Streetlight  Replacement.  SFMTA,  together  with  the  San  Francisco 
Department  of  Public  Works  (SFDPW)  and  the  San  Francisco  Public  Utilities 
Commission  (SFPUC),  plans  to  replace  the  existing  overhead  wire  contact  system  and 
support  poles/ streetlights  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  Market  Street  to  North  Point 
Street  to  address  the  failing  structural  condition  of  the  system.  Replacement  of  the 
support  poles  has  been  on  SFMTA's  list  of  desired  Capital  Improvement  Projects  since 
2003  (DPW,  2009).  Improvements  would  include  removal  and  replacement  of  existing 
poles  and  light  fixtures.  This  effort  may  be  implemented  as  a  comprehensive  replacement 
project  or  as  a  phased  maintenance  program  that  would  replace  poles  on  a  priority  basis, 
with  the  most  structurally  compromised  poles  prioritized  for  replacement.  Poles  would  be 
replaced  in  approximately  the  same  locations  on  the  sidewalk,  within  approximately  3  feet 
to  5  feet  of  the  existing  poles.  The  replacement  poles  would  be  designed  to  handle 
modern  loads  as  required  by  the  BRT.  These  poles  would  also  provide  street  and  sidewalk 
lighting.  New  lighting  would  be  energy  efficient,  require  low  maintenance,  and  meet 
current  lighting  requirements  for  safety.  A  new  duct  bank  would  be  constructed  within 
the  sidewalk  area  to  support  the  streetlights  and  traffic  signal  interconnect  conduits. 

•  Traffic  Signal  Infrastructure  for  Real-Time  Traffic  Management.  The  SFgo  and  Signal 
Replacement  Program  led  by  SFMTA  is  a  package  of  technology-based  transportation 
management  system  tools  with  the  following  objectives: 

Advance  the  Transit  First  policy; 


2-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


-  Replace  50-year-old  traffic  signal  and  communications  infrastructure; 
Provide  transit  priority  and  emergency  vehicle  preemption; 
Disseminate  real-time  traveler  and  parking  information; 

-  Manage  special  events;  and 

-  Enhance  operations  and  maintenance. 

The  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program  is  comprised  of  many  projects  that  would 
be  implemented  throughout  the  City,  including  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  Some 
elements  of  the  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program  are  expected  to  be  implemented 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  2015  regardless  of  a  BRT  project  and  are  part  of  the  No  Build 
Alternative.  Other  elements  of  the  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program  intended  for 
Van  Ness  Avenue  would  be  implemented  as  part  of  the  BRT  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  and  they  are  presented  in  Section  2.2.2.  The  following  signal 
infrastructure  elements  of  the  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program  are  planned  for 
implementation  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  by  2015;  therefore,  they  are  included 
in  the  No  Build  Alternative: 

Traffic  Signal  Replacement.  Existing  traffic  signal  heads  and  poles  will  be  upgraded  to 
mast  arm  poles  (arched  to  hang  over  traffic  lanes),  and  new  signal  heads  will  be 
installed  at  all  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

-  Pedestrian  Countdown  Signals.  As  part  of  the  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program, 
pedestrian  countdown  signals  will  be  installed  on  all  crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized 
intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Pedestrian  countdown  signals  are  traffic  signals 
located  at  crosswalks  that,  in  addition  to  displaying  the  standard  symbols  for  walk/ 
don't  walk,  also  provide  a  flashing  numerical  countdown  that  indicates  how  much  time 
is  remaining  before  cross  traffic  is  given  a  green  light.  Countdown  signals  increase 
pedestrian  safety  by  giving  clear  and  accurate  information  about  crossing  time  so 
that  pedestrians  can  complete  their  crossing  before  cross  traffic  receives  the  ROW  . 

Accessible  Pedestrian  Signals.  Accessible  Pedestrian  Signals  (APS),  or  audible  crossing 
indications,  would  likely  be  installed  at  some  additional  signalized  intersections  in 
the  project  corridor  as  part  of  the  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program.  APS 
provides  audible  crossing  indications  for  visually  impaired  pedestrians.  Currently, 
APS  is  installed  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  the  intersections  of  Market,  McAllister, 
Hayes,  Grove,  and  Fell  streets. 

Curb  Ramp  Upgrades.  The  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program  will  install  curb 
ramps  that  meet  current  City  standards  and  ADA  requirements  at  all  intersections 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  provide  access  by  people  in  wheelchairs,  as  well  as 
provide  easier  travel  for  those  with  strollers,  carts,  and  the  like. 

•  High-Quality  Bus  Vehicles  with  Low-Floor  Boarding.  SFMTA  is  gradually  converting  its  fleet 
to  low-floor  buses,  which  will  provide  more-level  boarding,  resulting  in  easier  and 
quicker  boarding  and  alighting.  Low-floor  buses  would  not  require  passengers  to  climb 
steps  to  board  or  exit  buses,  helping  to  shorten  dwell  times,  especially  the  time  required 
for  passengers  in  wheelchairs  to  board  and  alight.  The  replacement  fleet  in  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  include  60-foot  articulated  electric  trolley  coaches  and  dicsel  hybrid  | 
coaches,  and  it  would  be  phased  into  operation  by  year  2015. 

•  On-Bus  Proof  of  Payment/All-Door  Boarding.  In  2012,  SFMTA  implemented  ill  dooi 
boarding,  allowing  passengers  with  proof  of  payment,  such  as  a  Clipper  Card,  to  board 
through  any  door  and  swipe  their  fare  cards  on  receptors  on  the  bus.  All-door  boarding 
will  help  to  reduce  dwell  times. 

•  Real-Time  Arrival  Information.  SFMTA  is  installing  real-time  bus  arrival  information 
displays  (like  NextMuni)  at  major  bus  stops  with  shelters  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Implementation  of  the  aforementioned  transportation  system  and  infrastructure 
improvements  is  assumed  under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  These  improvements  would  not 
result  in  changes  to  the  basic  sidewalk,  intersection  crossing,  and  median  configurations; 
therefore,  under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  it  is  assumed  that  Van  Ness  Avenue  would 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  |uly  203 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Under  each  build  alternative, 
including  the  LPA, 
two  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes 
(one  southbound  and  one 
northbound)  would  be  converted 
into  two  dedicated  transit  lanes. 


maintain  the  existing  physical  configuration,  and  median  widths,  sidewalk  widths,  crosswalk 
dimensions,  crossing  distances,  and  provision  would  be  the  same  as  today.  Muni  47  and  49 
buses  would  continue  to  serve  curbside  stations;  existing  parallel  parking  and  all  existing 
traffic  turning  movements  would  be  maintained. 

2.2.2  I  Build  Alternatives,  including  the  LPA 

Based  on  findings  of  the  2006  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  and  scoping  process, 
three  build  alternatives  were  defined  and  recommended  for  NEPA/CEQA  analysis  in  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Alternatives  Screening  Report.8  Figure  2-1  presents  cross  sections  of 
the  build  alternatives.  Figure  2-2  presents  a  typical  cross  section  of  the  LPA  and  the  station 
locations.  Figure  2-4  depicts  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  an  LPA  design  variation 
that  includes  a  NB  station  at  the  Vallejo  Street/Van  Ness  Avenue  intersection.  The  decision  on 
whether  to  include  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  will  be  made  at  the  time  of  project 
approval.  .Project  features  common  to  each  of  the  alternatives  are  summarized  in  Table  2-2. 

Each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA,  proposes  BRT  operating  along  a  dedicated  transit 
lane,  or  transitway,  for  the  2-mile-long  project  corridor.  Under  each  build  alternative, 
including  the  LPA,  two  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  (one  SB  and  one  NB)  would  be  converted 
into  two  dedicated  transit  lanes  (one  SB  and  one  NB).  In  other  words,  the  existing  mixed- 
flow  traffic  lanes  would  be  reduced  from  three  lanes  to  two  lanes  in  each  direction  to 
accommodate  the  BRT  transitway.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  occur 
entirely  within  the  existing  street  ROW,  and  no  property  acquisition  would  be  required. 
None  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  require  reduction  in  sidewalk 
width.  Curbside  parking  would  generally  be  maintained  under  each  build  alternative, 
including  the  LPA,  although  some  loss  of  street  parking  would  occur  at  locations 
throughout  the  project  corridor  under  each  of  the  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA. 
Detailed  information  on  parking  is  presented  in  Chapter  3,  Section  3.5. 

Under  all  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  the  existing  Muni  bus  stops  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  be  removed  and  replaced  with  BRT  stations.  Proposed  BRT  service  would 
meet  Muni's  standards  for  rapid  stop  spacing,  providing  eight  NB  and  nine  SB  stop  locations, 
or  one  stop  every  three  blocks;  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  variant  would  include  an 
additional  NB  station  for  a  total  of  9  NB  stations.  This  means  that,  on  average,  passengers 
would  not  need  to  walk  farther  than  1.5  blocks  to  reach  a  stop.  There  are  currently  15  NB 
and  14  SB  Muni  bus  stops  along  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  avenues  between  Mission 
and  Lombard  streets,  with  an  average  of  700  feet  between  stops,  or  a  stop  approximately 
every  2  blocks.  This  spacing  does  not  meet  the  Muni  service  standard  recommending 
spacing  between  stops  of  800  feet  to  1,000  feet  along  relatively  flat  streets  such  as  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Each  build  alternative  proposes  consolidation  and  removal  of  6  existing  bus  stops 
in  each  direction  to  reduce  dwell  time  delays  and  improve  service  reliability  over  existing 
conditions  (the  LPA  would  remove  seven  stops  in  the  NB  direction  along  the  BRT  corridor, 
including  the  Mission/South  Van  Ness  stop.  The  LPA  would  remove  five  stops  in  the  SB 
direction;  if  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  is  selected,  six  stops  would  be  removed 
in  the  NB  direction).  Figure  2-3  depicts  the  existing  Muni  stops  that  would  be  discontinued 
and  the  proposed  replacement  BRT  stations  for  Build  Alternatives  2  through  4,  and  Figures 
2-2  and  2-4  depict  this  information  for  the  LPA.  Stations  would  be  placed  within  the 
existing  street  ROW  at  10  intersections,  listed  in  Table  2-3  for  Build  Alternatives  2  through 
4  and  depicted  in  Figure  2-3.  Station  placement  for  the  LPA  is  listed  in  Table  2-4.  Detailed 
plan  drawings  for  each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA,  are  provided  in  Appendix  A. 
Golden  Gate  Transit  service  would  utilize  the  BRT  transitway  and  BRT  stations  to  a  varied 
degree  under  each  alternative,  as  described  in  Section  3.2.3. 


8    The  alternatives  presented  in  this  document  have  been  slightly  modified  from  the  alternatives  in  the  2008  Screening 
Report  in  response  to  changes  in  funding  and  programming  that  have  occurred  since  the  report  was  finalized.  Namely, 
features  of  the  No  Build  Alternative  have  been  more  clearly  defined  based  on  up-to-date  funding  and  programming. 

2-6  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


"Mixed  Flow-"  Mood  Flow 
Trade  Lane    Traffic  Lane    Traffic  Lane 


Traffic  Lane  Traffic  Lane 


Sidewa*       BRTSlalorv     BRT         MuedFbw     M tied  Flow 
Parting    Transtway     Traffic  Lane     Traffic  Lane 


BRT      BRTSUton;    16  Srfewa* 
Traffic  Lane  Traffic  Lane     Transtway  Partung 
 Lane  


Lane      Traffic  Lane     Traffic  Lane 


Parting  Mad  FV*  l»aj  Ftow 
Lam     Traffic  Lane    Traffic  Lane 


BRT  U«d  Ffcw 
Trie—)  Traffic  La 


Traffic  Law  Lane 


Figure  2-1.  Typical  Cross  Sections  of  Build  Alternatives  2-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


This  page  intentionally  left  blank. 


2-8 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rap.d  Trans.t  Proiecl 
Fmal  Env.ronmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


LPA:  Center  Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns 


3  2 

<o  » 


•1 
(A 

! 
i 

f 

e 

! 

• 

Jackson  St. 
Station  I 

.  AVE 

i  ! 
3  I 

• 

• 

- 

1  ! 

1 

1 

Incorporation  of  a  design  variant  under  the  LPA,  called  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  would  include  a  NB  station  on  the  block  ol  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  (see  Section  2.2.2.4  and  Figure  2  J). 


Proposed  BRT  Salon 
Proposed  BRT  Transrtoay 


Proposed  Landscape  Median 
Existng  Muni  Bus  Sbps 


Led  Turn  Pocket 

Exslng  Lelt  Turn  Pocket  to  be  Elmnatod 


Schematic  diagram  not  to  scale.  See  Appendix  A  for  scaled  engineering  drawings. 


Figure  2-2:  Cross  Sections  and  Station  &  Left-Turn  Pocket  Location  Map  for  the  LPA 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Author.ty  I  july  2013 


Chapter  a:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  A*e«*e  aWi  •*>-«  "'•*■».•  »-t**- 
f tn>l  ErrvrrorfeaMelleJ  featpMi  ft— 


This  page  intentionally  left  blank. 


2-IO 


Sar\  Francisco  County  Transportation  AutHwei 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  ProPect 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Proposed  BRT  Station 
Proposed  BRT  Transituiay 


Proposed  landscape  Median         _J   Proposed  Lett  Turn  Pocket 

Existing  Muni  Bus  Slops  — *  Existing  Left  Turn  Pocket  to  be  Eliminated 


Figure  2-3.  BRT  Station  and  Left-Turn  Pocket  Locations  for  Build  Alternatives 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  20l3 


Figure  2-2 

BRTStationandLett-TurnPochdLocations 
forProposedBuiltJAIteriiatives 


Chapter  K  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Nev* 


This  page  intentionally  left  blank. 


2-12 


San  Francisco  Count*  Tr«nspon«t«- 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Legend 


Proposed  BRT  Station 
Proposed  BRT  Transitway 
Proposed  Landscape  Median 
Existing  Muni  Bus  Stops 
Left  Turn  Pocket 

Existing  Left  Turn  Pocket  to  be  Eliminated 
Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant 


o 


Figure  2-4.  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


a  ij 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  2-2:  Major  Project  Features 


PROJECT  FEATURE 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES* 

High-Quality  Bus  Vehicles  with  Low-Floor  Boarding 

X 

X 

High-Quality  Bus  Vehicles  with  Level  or  Near  Level  Boarding** 

X 

Dedicated  Bus  Lanes  (Transitway) 

X 

High-Quality  Stations 

X 

On-Bus  Proof  of  Payment/All-Door  Boarding 
(swipe  pass  on  bus) 

X 

Platform  Proof  of  Payment/All-Door  Boarding — 

(swipe  pass  on  platform  prior  to  bus  arrival  at  selected  stations) 

X 

Real-Time  Arrival  Information 

X 

X 

Pavement  Rehabilitation 

X 

X 

Pavement  Resurfacing 

X 

Pedestrian-Scale  Lighting 

X 

Landscaping 

X 

X 

Overhead  Contact  System  (OCS)  support  pole/streetlight  replacement 

X 

X 

Curb  Ramp  Upgrades 

X 

X 

Curb  Bulbs  Upgrades 

X 

Median  Upgrades/Nose  Cones  for  Pedestrian  Safety 

X 

Traffic  Signal  Infrastructure,  including  Upgrade  to  Mast  Arm  Signals 

X 

X 

Real-Time  Traffic  Management  (upgraded  controllers  and  nber-optic 
signal  interconnects) 

X 

Global  Positioning  System  (CPS)-Based  Transit  Signal  Priority  (TSP) 

X 

Automatic  Vehicle  Location 

X 

Pedestrian  Countdown  Signals 

X 

X 

Accessible  Pedestrian  Signals  (APS) 

X**** 

X 

*The  Build  Alternatives  would  include  indicated  project  features  with  or  without  incorporation  of  the 

Center  Alternative  Desig 

n  Option  B  as 

described  in  Sections  2.1.2.2  and  2.1.2.3.  The  LPA  would  also  include  the  indicated  project  features. 

**The  Transportation  Research  Board  defines  level  boarding  as  minimizing  the  horizontal  and  vertical  gap  between  the  platform  edge  and 
vehicle  door  threshold  (TRB,  July  2003).  The  design  of  Van  Ness  BRT  will  have  the  buses  board  as  close  to  level  as  possible,  minimizing  the 
need  to  deploy  a  wheelchair  ramp. 

***  Not  all  BRT  stations  would  have  platform  proof  of  payment  with  a  receptor  on  the  platform;  however  all  stations  would  operate  on  a 
proof  of  payment  system  with  receptors  on  each  bus  with  at  least  the  same  technology  as  would  exist  under  the  No  Build  Alternative. 
****  The  No  Build  Alternative  would  likely  include  some  additional  APS  at  key  intersections.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would 
include  these  signals  at  all  intersections. 


2-14 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Table  2-3:  Proposed  BRT  Station  Locations  for  Build  Alternatives  2-4 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE 
CROSS  STREET 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND  AND  SOUTHBOUND 

Mission  Street 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @  FS 

No  BRT  station 
(existing  stop  on 
Otis  St.  retained) 

Center-lane  station, 
Dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @  FS 

No  BRT  station 
(existing  stop  on 
Otis  St.  retained) 

Center-lane,  single  median 
serving  NB 
150'  @  FS  NB 

Market  Street 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @  FS 

Curbside  station 
no'  @NS 

Center  lane  station, 
Dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @  FS 

Center-lane  station, 
Dual-median 
configuration 
110'  @  NS 

Center-lane,  single  median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  @  FS  NB 

McAllister 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @  FS 

Curbside  station 
150'  @FS 

Center-lane  station, 
Dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @  NS 

Center-lane  station, 
Dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @  FS 

Center-lane,  single  median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  @  NS  NB 

Eddy  Street 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @  FS 

Curbside  station 
112.5'  @FS 

Center-lane  station,  Dual-median 

configuration 

150'  @  FS 

Center-lane,  single  median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  @  NS  NB 

O'Farrell  Street 

No  station 

Curbside  station 
102.5'  @fs 

Center-lane,  dual-median  configuration 
extends  full  block 

Center-lane,  dual-median* 
extends  full  block 

Myrtle  Street 

No  station 

No  station 

Geary  Street 

Curbside 

station 

ioc).5'@NS 

No  station 

Sutter  Street 

Curbside 
station 
104  (a)  ri> 

Curbside  station 
109.7'  @  FS 

Center-lane  station,  dual-median 

configuration 

150'  @  FS 

Center-lane,  single-median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  @  FS 

Sacramento 
Street 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @FS 

Curbside  station 
150'  @FS 

Center-lane  station,  dual-median 

configuration 

150'  @FS 

Center-lane,  single-median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  @  FS 

Jackson  Street 

Curbside 
station 
150'  @NS 

Curbside  station 
125'  @NS 

Center-lane  station, 
dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @FS 

No  station 

Center-lane,  single-median 
serving  NB  and  SB,  extends 
full  block 

Pacific  Avenue 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

Center-lane  station, 
dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @FS 

Broadway 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

Green  Street 

Curbside 

station 

95'@FS 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

No  station 

Union  Street 

Curbside  station 
M8'@NS 

Center-lane  station, 
dual-median 
configuration 
150'  @FS 

Center-lane  station, 
dual-median 
configuration 
150"  @NS 

Center  lane,  single  median 
serving  NB  and  SB 
150'  ®  FS 

Notes:  FS  -  Far  Side  of  Intersection; ;  NB  -  northbound;  NS  -  Near  Side  of  Intersection,  SB  -  southbound 
*  Alternative  4  transitions  lo  an  Alternative  3  configuration  (dual  median,  center  lane)  at  this  location 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  2-4:  Proposed  BRT  Station  Locations  for  LPA 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE 
CROSS  STREET 

LOCALLY  PREFERRED  ALTERNATIVE 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

Mission  Street 

No  BRT  Station  (47  NB  stop  to  be 
relocated  to  south  side  of 
intersection  @NS) 

No  BRT  station  (existing  stop  on 
Otis  Street  retained) 

Market  Street 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

McAllister 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Eddy  Street 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

O'Farrell  Street 
Myrtle  Street 
Geary  Street 

Center  lane  stations,  single  median  configuration 
extends  full  block 

Sutter  Street 

No  station 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Bush  Street 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

No  station 

Sacramento  Street 

No  station 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Clay  Street 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

No  station 

Jackson  Street 

No  station 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Pacific  Avenue 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

No  station 

Broadway 

No  station 

No  station 

Vallejo 

No  Station* 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Green  Street 

No  station 

No  station 

Union  Street 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

Center  lane  station,  single  median 
configuration  150'  @  NS 

-The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  is  under  consideration  for  the  LPA,  to  be  decided  upon  at  project  approval  as  explained  in 
Section  2.2.2.4.  This  would  include  a  150'  far  side  station  platform  at  Vallejo  Street  in  the  northbound  direction. 


The  three  build  alternatives,  and  the  LPA,  propose  differing  lane  configurations  and 
associated  station  placement  at  the  intersections.  Build  Alternative  2  proposes  dedicated 
transit  lanes  along  the  side  of  the  roadway  where  the  right-most  travel  lane  in  each  direction 
currently  exists,  adjacent  to  the  curbside  parking  area.  Under  Build  Alternative  2,  curb 
extensions  would  provide  curbside  BRT  stations.  Build  Alternative  3  proposes  dedicated 
transit  lanes  in  the  center  of  the  roadway  where  the  median  currently  exists,  with  two 
medians  separating  bus  lanes  from  mixed-flow  traffic.  Build  Alternative  3  BRT  stations 
would  be  located  in  the  center  medians.  Build  Alternative  4  proposes  dedicated  transit  lanes 
in  the  center  of  the  roadway  where  the  left-most  travel  lane  in  each  direction  currently  exists 
along  both  sides  of  a  single  center  median.  Build  Alternative  4  BRT  stations  would  be 
located  in  the  single  center  median.  Additional  information  about  the  differing  proposed 
stations  and  lane  configurations  is  provided  in  Sections  2.2.2.1  through  2.2.2.3.  Figures  2-1 
and  2-4  depict  the  differing  lane  configuration  for  each  build  alternative. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


As  described  in  Section  2.2.2.4,  under  the  LPA,  BRT  vehicles  would  run  alongside  a  single 
median  for  most  of  the  corridor,  similar  to  Build  Alternative  4;  however,  at  station  locations, 
BRT  vehicles  would  transition  to  the  center  of  the  roadway,  allowing  right-side  loading  at 
station  platforms  as  under  Build  Alternative  3. 

Existing  left-turn  pockets  for  mixed- flow  traffic  would  be  eliminated  at  12  intersections  (6 
NB  movements  and  6  SB  movements)  to  reduce  conflicts  with  the  BRT  operation  and 
oncoming  vehicles.  The  proposed  BRT  service  under  build  alternatives  2,  3,  and  4  would 
allow  4  automobile  left-turn  opportunities  in  the  SB  direction  and  6  in  the  NB  direction. 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  would  have  only  one  left-turn  opportunity  in  the 
SB  direction  and  only  one  in  the  NB  direction.  The  LPA,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B, 
would  have  the  same  left-turn  opportunities  as  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  design  Option  B. 

In  addition,  right-turn  pockets  for  mixed-flow  traffic  would  be  introduced  at  certain 
intersections  to  reduce  conflicts  with  the  BRT  operation.  Table  2-5  identifies  the  locations 
of  existing  left-turn  pockets  and  left-turn  pockets  proposed  under  each  build  alternative 
(except  for  the  LPA).  Under  the  LPA,  right-turn  pockets  would  be  provided  at  three 
intersections  along  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness,  Market  Street, 
and  Pine  Street.  The  locations  of  left-turn  pockets  proposed  under  the  build  alternatives  are 
illustrated  in  Figure  2-4  and  Figure  2-2  for  the  LPA,  as  well  as  the  existing  left-turn  pockets 
that  would  be  removed. 

Finally,  pedestrian  improvements  outlined  in  the  Market  and  Octavia  Area  Plan,  approved  in 
2007  by  the  Board  of  Supervisors,  will  be  implemented  at  the  Mission  and  South  Van  Ness 
Avenue  intersection.  These  include  pedestrian  bulbouts  to  reduce  crossing  distances  and 
would  also  convert  the  turn  from  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  onto  12th  Street  such  that  traffic 
would  be  allowed  to  access  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  12th  Street  (i.e.,  converting  it  from 
1-way  to  2-way).  This  would  allow  the  project  to  close  the  southern  part  of  the  roadway 
connecting  12th  Street  to  South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  increasing  the  pedestrian  space  without 
reducing  traffic  access.  The  project  plans  in  Appendix  A  reflect  the  most  recent  plans  for 
this  intersection,  which  would  be  included  in  the  BRT  project. 

The  following  transportation  system  and  infrastructure  improvements  are  included  in  the 
build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA: 

•  High-Quality  Bus  Vehicles  with  Level  or  Near  Level  Boarding.  As  described  for  the  No  Build 
Alternative,  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  involve  an  upgrade  from 
the  existing  buses  to  higher-capacity,  higher-performance  bus  vehicles.  The  proposed 
BRT  vehicles  would  offer  increased  passenger  capacity  over  the  Muni  47  line  buses  that 
presently  operate  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  The  proposed  BRT  vehicle  fleet 
under  each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA,  would  be  a  mix  of  60-foot  electric 
trolley  coaches  and  60-foot  diesel  hybrid  motor  coaches.  The  proposed  BRT  fleet 
would  replace  the  vehicles  that  operate  on  the  existing  Muni  bus  lines  47  and  49,  which 
currently  comprise  approximately  a  50  percent  split  between  40-foot  diesel  motor 
coaches  and  60-foot  electric  trolleys,  respectively.  The  maximum  frequency  of  BRT 
buses  operating  in  the  corridor  would  be  equivalent  to  the  current  combined  schedule 
of  Routes  47  and  49  of  approximately  15  to  16  buses  per  hour  in  the  peak  hour  in  both 
NB  and  SB  directions.  The  design  vehicle  would  be  low-floor,  and  the  bus  station 
platform  design  would  provide  level  or  near  level  boarding  from  bus  to  station  | 
platform,  reducing  dwell  times  and  improving  service  reliability  over  the  existing 
conditions.  Level  or  near  level  boarding  would  reduce  the  horizontal  and  vertical  gap 
between  the  platform  edge  and  vehicle  door  threshold.  The  design  of  each  BRT  station 
will  allow  for  variation  in  the  degree  of  level  boarding  achieved,  and  all  BRT  stations 
will  provide  more  level  boarding  than  existing  Muni  operations  in  the  corridor  on 
Routes  47  and  49." 


I 


Under  the  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  existing  left 
turn  pockets  for  mixed-flow 
traffic  would  be  eliminated  at 
various  intersections 
to  reduce  conflicts  with  the 
BRT  operation  and  oncoming 
vehicles. 


"    -rhc  Transportation  Research  Hoard  defines  level  boarding  as  minimising  the  horizontal  and  vertical  can  bovvcen  the 
platform  edge  and  vehicle  door  threshold  (TUB,  lub  2(103). 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


»  «7 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  2-5:  Turn  Pockets  Proposed  under  Build  Alternatives  2-4 


INTERSECTION 

NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE/EXISTING 
CONDITIONS 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

IVlloblUir  JUCCl 

x 

x 

IvldirxCL  jLI  ccl 

X 

x 

x 

x 

x 

x 

1  CI  1   .J)  LI  CCL 

X 

X 

x 

Havoc  ^frppt 
ndycb  JlrCCL 

X* 

X 

X 

C.  rnwp  ^hrppr 
\JI  UVC  JKCCL 

X 

X 

X 

X 

\A  r  Al  1  ictor 

IVI  v_/\  1 1 1 i  LCI 

X 

X 

x 

(".rt  npn  (~".^t& 

VJUIUCII  VJdlC 

X 

x 

X 

x 

X 

TitrL/  ^ f rppt 
1  Ul  l\  JLI  CCl 

X 

X 

X 

PHHv  ^trppt1 

LUUV  J  11  CCL 

X 

L.  1 1 1  J   J  LI  CCL 

X 

\J  rdiicli  jIiccL 

X 

X 

X 

f"par\/  Ctrppf 
vjcdl  V  ju  ccl 

X 

X 

X 

Post  Street 

X 

X 

Sutter  Street 

X 

X 

Bush  Street 

X 

X 

X 

X 

X 

Pinp  ^trppt 
■  ■lie  ju  cci 

X 

X 

X 

X 

X 

f^^lifnrni^  Strppt 

\_  d  1  1  1  vJ  1  1  I  1  d    JLI  CCL 

X 

X 

Sacramento  Stree 
t 

X 

X 

X 

Clay  Street 

X 

X 

Washington  Stree 
t 

X 

l3/-L*c*-\n  ^trppt 
idLrbun  jLicci 

X 

rdCITIC  Mvenuc 

X 

D  [UdUWdy 

Xx 

XX 

XX 

Green  Street 

X 

Union  Street 

X 

X 

X 

Filbert  Street 

X 

Greenwich  Street 

Lombard  Street 

XXX 

XXX 

XXX 

TOTAL 

12 

TO 

6 

4 

6 

4 

Notes: 

Xx  =  Double  left-turn  lane  with  one  left-turn  pocket  (and  a  second,  outside  lane  allowing  left-turn  and  through  traffic). 
XX  =  Double  left-turn  lane 
XXX  =  triple  left-turn  lane. 

*  Currently,  there  is  a  northbound,  double  left-turn  lane  at  Hayes  Street;  however  this  would  be  changed  to  a  single  left-turn  lane  with  implementation  of  the  Hayes  Two-Way  Street 
Conversion  Project  being  implemented  by  the  SFMTA,  described  in  Section  2.6.1;  therefore  a  single  left-turn  lane  is  assumed  for  the  future  no-build  conditions. 


2-18 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


•  Dedicated  Bus  Lanes  (Transitway).  BRT  buses  would  operate  in  an  exclusive,  dedicated 
bus  lane  on  the  street  surface.  The  BRT  transitway  would  accommodate  both  SFMTA 
and  Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles,  which  currendy  operate  along  the  corridor,  and 
would  be  available  for  use  by  emergency  response  vehicles.  The  bus  lane  would  be 
distinguished  from  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  by  colored  pavement  or  other  special 
markings  or  physical  delineation. 

•  Pavement  Rehabilitation  and  Resurfacing.  Under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA, 
Van  Ness  Avenue  would  undergo  curb-to-curb  rehabilitation  and  resurfacing.  This  work 
would  be  planned  in  coordination  with  the  Caltrans  SHOPP  plans  for  pavement 
rehabilitation  as  described  in  Section  2.2.1  for  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  High-Quality  Stations.  The  BRT  stations  proposed  under  each  build  alternative,  including 
the  LPA,  would  include  a  platform,  canopy,  landscaped  planter,  and  station  amenities. 
Visual  simulations  of  stations  are  provided  in  Chapter  4.4,  Visual/Aesthetics.  The 
station  would  sit  upon  a  concrete  bus  pad  elevated  10  to  12  inches  above  the  street 
grade  (approximately  double  the  height  of  a  standard  curb).  Stations  would  be 
approximately  150  feet  in  length,  with  a  platform  length  of  130  feet  to  accommodate 
two  60-foot  articulated  BRT  vehicles.  The  platform  provides  the  area  for  passenger 
waiting,  boarding,  and  station  amenities.  The  station  platform  would  range  from  9  feet 
to  14  feet  in  width,  depending  on  the  project  alternative  and  the  need  for  a  platform  to 
accommodate  single-direction  travel,  or  both  SB  and  NB  travel.  All  station  platforms 
for  the  LPA  would  be  9  feet  in  width,  accommodating  only  single-direction  travel.  The 
station  canopy  would  provide  shelter  from  sun  and  rain,  and  it  would  be  approximately 
8  feet  to  1 1  feet  in  height,  depending  on  the  incorporation  of  decorative  architectural 
features  and/or  solar  paneling,  which  would  be  determined  during  final  design.10  Station 
amenities  would  include  ticket  vending  machines  (TVMs)  at  selected  stations,  seadng,  i 
lighting,  a  canopy  and  wind  screens,  garbage  receptacles,  and  wayfinding  information 
(maps/signage).  In  Build  Alternative  2,  a  landscaped  planter  would  be  incorporated  to 
beautify  the  stations.  Stations  would  be  designed  to  comply  with  ADA  requirements. 
The  stations  would  feature  active  data  display  and  audio  capability  to  indicate  bus  arrival 
time  as  required  by  ADA.  Protective  railings  would  be  incorporated  as  appropriate  for 
safety  requirements. 

•  Platform  Proof  of  Payment/All-Door  Boarding.  As  described  for  the  No  Build  Alternative, 
the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  operate  with  all-door  boarding  BRT 
service,  allowing  passengers  with  proof  of  payment,  such  as  a  Clipper  Card,  to  board 
through  any  door.  In  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  SFMTA  would  have 
selected  BRT  platforms  function  as  proof-of-payment  areas  where  passengers  would 
swipe  their  fare  cards  on  receptors  before  the  buses  arrive,  further  helping  to  reduce 
dwell  time. 

•  Real-Time  Arrival  Information.  As  described  for  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  BRT  Stations 
under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  be  equipped  with  real-time 
arrival  information,  providing  real-time  bus  arrival  information  displays. 

•  Transportation  System  Management  (TSM)  Capabilities.  The  proposed  BRT  service  under 
each  build  alternative,  and  the  LPA,  would  utili/e  advanced  traffic  and  TSM 
technologies,  like  those  proposed  under  the  SPgo  and  Signal  Replacement  Program, 
including: 

-  Traffic  Signal  Infrastructure  for  Real-Time  Traffic  Management.  Traffic  signal  poles 
would  be  upgraded  to  mast  armed  poles.  Signal  controllers  and  interconnects  would 
be  replaced  with  modern  controllers  and  a  new  fiber-optic  signal  interconnect 
communications  network  that  would  allow  real-time  traffic  management.  Variable 
real-time  message  signs  and  traffic  cameras  would  also  be  installed  to  manage  traffic 


Both  the  No  Build  and  Build 
I  Alternatives  would  operate  with 
all-door  boarding  BRT  service, 
allowing  passengers  with  proof 
of  payment,  such  as  a  Clipper 
Card,  to  board  through  any  door. 
In  addition,  at  selected  stations 
BRT  passengers  would  be  able  to 
pay  fares  and  swipe  passes  on 
receptors  on  the  platforms 
before  boarding  the  bus,  further 
helping  to  reduce  dwell  time. 


">  Chapter  4.4,  Visual/ Aesthetics,  discusses  the  design  process  tor  proposed  BRT  Itttioni  ind  othd  project  feature! 
located  within  the  publii  K<  >\\ 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  20 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Build  Alternative  2  provides  a 
dedicated  bus  lane  located 
adjacent  to  existing  curbside 
street  parking. 


conditions  and  special  events.  The  interconnects  and  controllers  allow  active 
monitoring  and  adjusting  of  traffic  signal  timings. 

Global  Positioning  System  (GPS)-Based  Transit  Signal  Priority  (TSP).  Under  the  build 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  TSP  hardware  would  be  installed  on  the  traffic 
signal  mast  arms.  TSP  provides  advance  and  extended  green  light  time  for  buses 
approaching  signals  to  reduce  bus  delay  caused  by  red  lights.  The  proposed  BRT 
stations  would  be  located  on  the  far  side  of  signalized  intersections  as  feasible  to 
optimize  the  capability  of  TSP.  Buses  would  be  granted  a  green  light  to  travel 
through  the  intersection  and  then  subsequently  stop  at  a  station,  benefiting  transit 
travel  time  and  reliability. 

Automatic  Vehicle  Location  (AVL).  AVL  would  be  utilized  under  the  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  to  manage  transit  route  operations  in  real  time. 

Median  Upgrades/Nose  Cones  for  Pedestrian  Safety.  Median  refuges  would  be  modified  and 
widened  where  feasible  to  reduce  the  distance  that  pedestrians  must  cross  during  one 
light  cycle,  improving  pedestrian  safety  at  those  locations.  Nose  cones  would  be 
installed  where  feasible  to  provide  a  protective  buffer  between  pedestrians  and 
automobile  traffic.  Under  the  LPA,  all  medians  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  be  at  least  6 
feet  wide,  and  nose  cones  would  be  installed  for  all  east-west  crossings  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  All  upgrades  to  intersections  would  comply  with  ADA  standards. 

Curb  Ramp  Upgrades.  Curb  ramps  would  be  installed  at  all  intersections  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Curb  ramps  would  meet  current  City  standards  and  ADA  requirements  to 
provide  access  by  people  in  wheelchairs,  as  well  as  provide  easier  travel  for  those  with 
rolling  devices  such  as  strollers  and  carts. 

Landscaping.  Medians  would  be  landscaped  to  promote  a  unified,  visual  concept  for  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  BRT  stations  would  include  landscaped  planters,  and 
landscaping  would  be  incorporated  as  feasible  to  provide  a  buffer  between  bus  patrons 
and  adjacent  auto  and  pedestrian  traffic.  In  addition,  the  discontinuation  of  existing 
Muni  bus  stops  and  removal  of  bus  shelters  as  proposed  under  the  build  alternatives, 
and  the  LPA,  would  open  up  additional  sidewalk  space  at  these  locations.  This  would 
enhance  the  pedestrian  environment  at  these  locations  and  offer  opportunities  for  tree 
planting,  landscaping,  or  streetscape  features.  Under  the  LPA,  the  project  proposes  to 
implement  an  approximate  2-foot-wide  buffer  in  the  form  of  planters  in  between 
existing  sidewalk  trees  on  the  block  between  O'Farrell  and  Geary  streets  on  the  east  side 
of  the  street,  as  well  as  the  two  blocks  between  Broadway  and  Green  Street  on  both 
sides  of  the  street  due  to  the  lack  of  parking  and  a  striped  buffer  in  the  outside  mixed 
traffic  lane  on  those  blocks.  The  planters  would  provide  a  buffer  for  pedestrians  from 
moving  traffic. 

Curb  Bulbs.  Curb  bulbs  are  proposed  at  most  signalized  intersections  to  improve 
pedestrian  safety  by  improving  visibility  between  motorists  and  pedestrians,  shortening 
the  crossing  distance  across  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  reducing  the  speed  of  right-turning 
traffic. 

Pedestrian  Countdown  Signals.  Pedestrian  countdown  signals  would  be  installed  on  all 
crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized  intersections  in  the  project  corridor  as  part  of  the  build 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA. 

Accessible  Pedestrian  Signals  (APS).  APS,  or  push-buttons,  would  be  installed  on  all 
crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized  intersections  in  the  project  corridor  as  part  of  the  build 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA. 

OCS  Support  Pole/Streetlight  Replacement.  Under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the 
LPA,  the  OCS  overhead  wire  and  support  pole  system  would  be  replaced  and  upgraded, 
as  described  in  Section  2.2.1,  along  with  the  associated  street  and  pedestrian  lighting. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


2.2.2.1  I  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2:  SIDE-LANE  BRT  WITH  STREET  PARKING 

Build  Alternative  2  would  provide  a  dedicated  bus  lane,  or  transitway,  in  the  right-most  lane 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue  located  adjacent  to  the  existing  curbside  street  parking  area.  The 
transitway  would  extend  from  Mission  Street  to  Lombard  Street  in  both  the  NB  and  SB 
directions.  The  transitway  would  be  traversable  for  mixed-flow  traffic  that  would  enter  the 
transitway  to  complete  a  right  turn  or  to  parallel  park.  Under  Build  Alternative  2,  BRT 
stations  would  be  located  within  the  curbside  parking  area  as  curb  extensions,  eliminating 
the  need  for  buses  to  exit  the  transitway  to  pick  up  passengers.  Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles 
that  currendy  operate  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  operate  in  the  transitway  and  use  BRT 
stations  exclusively,  thus  eliminating  the  existing  Golden  Gate  Transit  stop  at  Turk  Street.  A 
planter  with  trees  and  shrubs  would  be  located  along  the  sidewalk  side  of  the  BRT  station 
platform  to  serve  as  a  buffer  between  bus  patrons  and  sidewalk  pedestrians.  Build 
Alternative  2  would  include  all  of  the  project  features  described  in  Section  2.2.2.  Build 
Alternative  2  would  involve  minimal  modification  to  the  existing  median;  therefore,  existing 
trees  and  landscape  plantings  would  not  require  removal.  Figure  2-1  presents  the  typical 
cross  section  for  Build  Alternative  2. 

2.2.2.2  I  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3:  CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE  BOARDING 
AND  DUAL  MEDIANS 

Build  Alternative  3  would  provide  a  transitway  comprised  of  two  side-by-side,  dedicated  bus 
lanes  located  in  the  center  of  the  roadway  (where  the  median  currendy  exists)  in  between 
two  medians.  The  transitway  would  be  separated  from  mixed-flow  traffic  by  a  4-foot-wide 
median  and  a  9-foot-wide  median.  Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles  that  currently  operate  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue  would  operate  in  the  transitway  and  use  BRT  stations  exclusively,  thus 
eliminating  the  existing  Golden  Gate  Transit  Turk  Street  Station.  BRT  stations  would  be 
located  on  the  9-foot  median,  allowing  right-side  boarding.  Build  Alternative  3  would 
require  removal  of  much  of  the  existing  medians,  including  existing  trees  and  landscaping,  to 
construct  the  dual-median,  center-lane  transitway;  therefore,  opportunities  to  preserve 
existing  trees  and  landscape  would  be  minimal,  and  replacement  trees  and  landscaping 
would  be  the  most  constrained  among  the  build  alternatives.  New  tree  planting  is  proposed 
along  the  9-foot-wide  right-side  medians  and  at  locations  of  former  curbside  bus  stops. 
Figure  2-1  presents  the  typical  cross  section  for  Build  Alternative  3. 


Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B 

Both  center-running  alternatives  (Build  Alternadves  3  and  4)  contain  a  design  option 
referred  to  as  Design  Option  B.  This  design  option  would  eliminate  all  but  one  NB  left  turn 
(at  Lombard  Street)  and  all  but  one  SB  left  turn  (at  Broadway)  in  the  project  corridor. 
Design  Option  B  would  reduce  conflicts  at  intersections  with  turning  vehicles  and  increase 
the  green  light  time  available  to  BRT  buses  for  through  movement.  The  removal  of  left-turn 
pockets  would  allow  more  street  parking  at  certain  locations,  as  explained  in  Chapter  3, 
Section  3.5.  Table  2-6  presents  the  turn  pockets  proposed  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  incorporation  of  Design  Option  B.  As  discussed  in  Section  2.2.4,  the  LP  A  incorporates 
Design  Option  B. 


Build  Alternative  4.  Stations  are 
in  the  center  of  a  14-foot-wide 
median,  flanked  by  dedicated 
bus  lanes. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013  i 


Build  Alternative  3.  Two  side-by- 
side  dedicated  bus  lanes  are 
located  in  the  center  of  the 
roadway  between  two  medians. 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  2-6:  Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B  Proposed  Turn  Pockets 


INTERSECTION 

NO-BUILD  ALTERNATIVE/ 
EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4  WITH  DESIGN 
OPTION  B* 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

SOUTHBOUND 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RIGHT 

LEFT 

RICHT 

LEFT 

RICHT 

LEFT 

RICHT 

Mission/Otis 
Street 

X 

X* 

Market  Street 

X 

X 

X 

X 

X 

X* 

Fell  Street 

X 

X 

Hayes  Street 

X 

X 

Grove  Street 

X 

X 

X 

McAllister 

X 

X 

X 

Golden  Gate 

X 

X 

X 

X 

T* 

Turk  Street 

X 

X 

Eddy  Street 

X 

Ellis  Street 

X 

O'Farrell 
Street 

X 

X 

X 

Geary  Street 

X 

X 

X 

Post  Street 

X 

X 

Sutter  Street 

X 

X 

Bush  Street 

X 

X 

X 

X 

Pine  Street 

X 

X 

X 

X* 

California 
Street 

X 

X 

Sacramento  S 
treet 

X 

X 

X 

Clay  Street 

X 

X 

Washington  S 
treet 

X 

Jackson 
Street 

X 

Pacific 
Avenue 

X 

Broadway 

Xx 

XX 

XX* 

Vallejo  Street 

Green  Street 

X 

Union  Street 

X 

X 

Filbert  Street 

X 

Lombard 
Street 

XXX 

XXX 

XXX* 

Notes: 

T  =  transit  only,  turns  only  allowed  by  transit  vehicles. 

Xx  =  double  left-turn  lane  with  one  left-turn  pocket  (and  a  second,  outside  lane  allowing  left-turn  and  through  traffic). 
XX  =  double  left-turn  lane. 

*  The  LPA  also  incorporates  Design  Option  B,  but  includes  only  those  turn  pockets  indicated  with  an  asterisk. 
XXX  =  triple  left-turn  lane. 


2-22 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


2.2.2.3  I  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  4:  CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  LEFT-SIDE  BOARDING 
AND  SINGLE  MEDIAN 

Build  Alternative  4  would  provide  a  transitway  in  the  center  of  the  roadway  comprised  of  a 
single,  14- foot-wide  median  flanked  by  dedicated  NB  and  SB  bus  lanes  where  the  left-most 
travel  lane  in  each  direction  currently  exists.  Station  platforms  would  be  located  on  the  single 
center  median,  requiring  left-side  passenger  boarding  and  alighting,  as  well  as  left  side  doors  on 
vehicles.  All  stations  would  have  this  single-median  design,  with  the  exception  of  the  BRT 
stations  proposed  at  Geary/ O'Farrell,  which  would  utilize  a  dual-median  configuration  similar  to 
that  proposed  under  Alternative  3  to  accommodate  Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles  that  only  have 
right-side  doors.  As  with  the  other  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  Golden  Gate  Transit  i 
would  operate  exclusively  in  the  transitway.  Outside  of  the  Geary/ O'Farrell  Station,  all  other 
Golden  Gate  Transit  stops  along  the  BRT  corridor  would  be  consolidated  in  Build  Alternative  4. 
Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles  operating  along  the  Van  Ness  BRT  corridor  would  make  an 
additional  stop  at  the  corner  of  Chestnut  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  provide  access  in  the 
northern  end  of  the  corridor.  This  would  require  routing  Golden  Gate  Transit  buses  along 
Chestnut  Street  instead  of  Lombard  Street  between  Laguna  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue.  To 
accommodate  this  rerouting,  buses  turning  left  onto  Laguna  Street  eastbound  (EB)  on  Lombard 
Street  would  be  allowed.  Additionally,  Golden  Gate  Transit  bus  stops  and  shelters  would  be 
established  or  lengthened  at  the  intersection  of  Chestnut  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  either 
as  new  stops  or  shared  with  Muni  buses.  This  could  require  the  removal  of  a  few  parking 
spaces.  As  an  alternative  to  this  solution  at  Chestnut,  the  Authority  would  reconfigure  the 
platform  at  Union  Street  to  allow  right-side  boarding  similar  to  the  Geary  Street  station. 

Build  Alternative  4  would  require  some  modification  of  the  existing  median  landscaping, 
including  removal  of  some  existing  trees  and  landscaping,  to  construct  the  center-lane 
transitway.  Existing  trees  would  be  retained  where  feasible,  and  new  trees  would  be  planted 
in  the  median  and  at  former  bus  stops.  Figure  2-1  presents  the  typical  cross  section  of  the 
left-side  boarding,  single-median  design  for  Build  Alternative  4. 


Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B 

As  explained  in  Section  2.1.2.2,  Design  Option  B  is  under  consideration  for  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  it  is  incorporated  in  the  LPA.  The  design  option  would  eliminate  ! 
all  but  one  NB  left  turn  (at  Lombard  Street)  and  all  but  one  SB  left  turn  (at  Broadway).  The 
proposed  locations  of  turn  pockets  under  Build  Alternative  4  with  or  without  incorporation 
of  the  Center-Lane  Alternative  Design  Option  B  are  provided  in  Table  2-6. 

2.2.2.4ITHE  LPA:  CENTER-LANE  BRT  WITH  RIGHT-SIDE  BOARDING/SINGLE 
MEDIAN  AND  LIMITED  LEFT  TURNS 

The  LPA  is  a  combination  and  refinement  of  the  center-running  alternatives  w  ith  limited  left 
turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B)  and  is  referred  to  as  Center- Lane 
BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns.  The  LPA  retains  the 
high-performance  features  of  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (e.g.,  maximum  transit  priority, 
fewest  conflicts),  while  avoiding  the  need  to  acquire  left-right  door  vehicles  or  remove  the 
entire  existing  median.  Under  the  LPA,  BRT  vehicles  would  run  alongside  a  single  median 
for  most  of  the  corridor,  similar  to  Build  Alternative  4;  however,  at  station  locations,  BRT 
vehicles  would  transition  to  the  center  of  the  roadway,  allowing  right-side  loading  at  station 
platforms  as  under  Build  Alternative  3.  Figure  2-2  depicts  the  LPA,  schematicailv  showing 
locations  of  stations  and  turn  pockets,  and  it  provides  a  cross  section  of  the  LPA  on  a  block 
with  a  station  and  a  block  without  a  station.  Detailed  plan  drawings  of  the  LPA  are  provided 
in  Appendix  A.  The  LPA  incorporates  Design  Option  B,  the  left-turn  removal  design 
option,  which  would  eliminate  all  left  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Mission  and 
Lombard  streets  with  the  exception  of  a  SB  (two-lane)  left  turn  at  Broadway  Street. 
Incorporation  of  Design  Option  B  would  provide  the  grCatcst  transit  travd  timc  benefits, 
reduce  the  weaving  associated  with  the  transitions  buses  must  make  between  station 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


locations  and  blocks  without  stations,  and  aid  with  the  flow  of  north-south  traffic  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  The  LPA  would  include  all  project  features  described  in  Section  2.2.2. 

The  LPA  station  locations  differ  somewhat  from  those  proposed  under  Build  Alternatives  3 
and  4  because  all  of  the  stations  under  the  LPA  are  positioned  at  the  near  sides  of 
intersections,  whereas  stations  are  generally  proposed  at  the  far  side  of  intersections  under 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  In  addition,  under  the  LPA  the  NB  Mission  Street  station 
proposed  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  was  eliminated,  and  a  new  SB  station  at  Vallejo 
Street  was  introduced.  Lastly,  a  NB  station  at  the  Vallejo  Street  location  is  under 
consideration  as  a  design  variant  under  the  LPA,  called  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station 
Variant.  Incorporation  of  this  NB  station  at  the  Vallejo  Street/Van  Ness  Avenue 
intersection  will  be  decided  at  the  time  of  project  approval,  and  impacts  associated  with  this 
station  are  described  throughout  Chapters  3  through  7  of  this  document.11  The  station 
locations  represented  in  the  LPA  respond  to  comments  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  and  public 
outreach  regarding  LPA  selection,  and  efforts  to  further  optimize  transit  operations. 

The  LPA  would  require  substantially  more  modification  of  the  existing  median  landscaping 
than  Build  Alternative  4  (but  less  than  Build  Alternative  3),  including  removal  of  more 
existing  trees  and  landscaping  at  station  platform  locations  and  transition  blocks  leading  to 
and  from  station  locations.  Existing  trees  would  be  retained  where  feasible,  and  new  trees 
would  be  planted  in  the  median  and  along  the  sidewalk  at  former  bus  stop  locations.  Under 
the  LPA,  the  project  proposes  to  implement  an  approximate  2-foot-wide  buffer,  in  the  form 
of  planters  in  between  existing  sidewalk  trees  on  the  block  between  O'Farrell  and  Geary 
streets  on  the  east  side  of  the  street  and  on  the  two  blocks  between  Broadway  and  Green 
Street  on  both  sides  of  the  street  due  to  the  lack  of  parking  and  a  striped  buffer  in  the 
outside  mixed  traffic  lane  on  those  blocks.  Figure  2-2  presents  the  typical  cross  section  for 
the  LPA.  Figure  2-3  depicts  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 


2.3  Construction  Plan 


Construction  would  include 
pavement  rehabilitation  as 
needed,  pavement  resurfacing 
from  curb  to  curb,  reconstruction 
of  curb  and  gutters  (including 
curb  bulbs),  reconfiguration  of 
the  median,  construction  of  BRT 
stations,  replacement  of  the  OCS 
support  poles/streetlights 
system,  replacement  of  traffic 
signal  infrastructure,  and 
associated  utility  relocations. 


An  overview  of  the  project  Construction  Plan  (Arup,  2012)  follows.  Additional  detail  about 
the  Construction  Plan  is  provided  in  Section  4.15,  Construction  Impacts.  Construction  of 
the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  occur  within  the  existing  street  ROW. 
Construction  would  include  the  following  major  activities  along  the  length  of  the  proposed 
project:  pavement  rehabilitation  as  needed  along  the  transitway,  pavement  resurfacing  of 
Van  Ness  Avenue  from  curb  to  curb,  reconstruction  of  curb  and  gutters  (including  curb 
bulbs),  reconfiguration  of  the  median,  construction  of  BRT  stations,  replacement  of  the 
OCS  support  poles/streetlights  system,  replacement  of  traffic  signal  infrastructure,  and 
associated  utilitv  relocations.  BRT  station  construction  would  involve  installing  components 
such  as  platforms,  canopies,  ticket  vending  equipment,  railings,  lighting,  signage,  and  station 
furniture12.  The  manner  in  which  construction  would  take  place  would  be  similar  for  all  of 
the  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA.  Table  2-7  lists  the  major  construction  activities. 

Table  2-7:  Anticipated  Construction  Areas  and  Excavation  Depths 


CONSTRUCTION  ITEM 

AREA 

DEPTH 
(FEET)' 

OCS  Support  Pole 

3-foot-diameter  excavation  area,  within  sidewalk;  located 

11. 0 

Replacement 

throughout  project  limits. 

OCS  Conduit  Trench 

2-foot-wide  trench,  within  sidewalk;  located  throughout 
project  limits. 

3.0 

11  No  new  project  impacts  beyond  impacts  described  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  were  identified  with  incorporation  of  the 
Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  into  the  project  design  (see  discussions  pertaining  to  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Station  Variant  in  Chapters  3  through  7  of  this  document). 

12  Exact  features  at  each  station  will  be  determined  during  the  design  phase  of  the  project. 


2-24 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Table  2-7:  Anticipated  Construction  Areas  and  Excavation  Depths 


CONSTRUCTION  ITEM 

AREA 

DEPTH 
(FEET)1 

fa-toot-wide  trencn,  witnin  street,  replace  or  relocate  sewer 

Sewer  Pipeline 

at  platform  stations  and  at  any  locations  where  the  BRT 

11.5 

Relocation 

proposes  the  transitway  or  mixed  traffic  lanes  directly  over 
the  existing  sewer  facility. 

Traffic  Signal  Poles 

3-foot-diameter  excavation  area,  located  at  intersections 

1 6.0 

throughout  project  limits. 

Controller  Cabinets 

2.5-foot  by  4-foot  excavation  area,  located  within  the 
sidewalk  at  intersections  throughout  project  limits. 

3.0 

Curb  Bulbs  &  Sidewalk 
Reconstruction 

Approximately  30  feet  of  full-width  sidewalk  disturbance 
area,  located  at  intersections  throughout  project  limits 
(varies  by  project  alternative). 

1-5 

D 1  WO  m  a  ¥t  ¥    Don  i  rri  /~  i  r~\  or 

rdvcrricNL  rxcsuriacing 

Curb-to-curb  resurfacing. 

0.7 

Pavement 
Reconstruction/ 

R  p  n  a  K  i  1 1  tati r> 
r\CI  IdUIIILdUUII 

Spot  improvements,  as  needed,  to  travel  lanes  and  parking 
lanes  to  remedy  failed  pavement  areas. 

i-5 

New  pavement  would  be  provided  where  transitways 

New  Pavement 

cricrudcri  uvcr  cxibLiriy  rricuidn.  1  ric  maximum  wiuin  01  new 

1-5 

pavement  construction  would  be  14  feet  at  station  locations 
where  transitways  would  replace  existing  14-foot  medians. 

Typical  station  platform  dimensions  are  9  feet  to  14  feet 

Station  Platform 

wide  by  150  feet  long  at  platforms,  Ceary/O'Farrell  is  the 
longest  platform  area  of  approximately  270  feet. 

1.0 

Station  Canopy 
Foundation 

2.5-foot-diameter  excavation  area  at  platforms. 

5.0 

1  Depth  below  ground  surface  (bgs). 

Source:  Project  Construction  Plan  for  Ihe  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project  (2012). 


Closure  of  one  mixed-flow  traffic  lane  in  each  direction  and  some  on-street  parking  would 
be  necessary  for  construction  of  all  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA.  Temporary 
conversion  of  parking  lanes  to  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  would  be  implemented  in  some  cases 
to  maintain  two  traffic  lanes  in  each  direction  and  minimize  traffic  impacts.  In  all  cases,  two 
lanes  of  mixed-flow  traffic  would  generally  remain  open  in  each  direction  during 
construction,  although  temporary  closures  of  an  additional  mixed-flow  traffic  lane  would  be 
required  during  construction  tasks  that  could  interfere  with  traffic  or  create  safety  hazards 
such  as  utility  relocations,  placement  of  concrete  barriers,  or  large  equipment.  These 
closures  would  be  planned  for  nighttime  or  off-peak  traffic  hours  as  feasible.  Partial  closure 
of  the  sidewalk  would  be  required  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  for 
curb  bulb  construction  work,  replacement  of  the  OCS  support  poles/streetlights  and 
associated  duct  trenching,  signal  installation,  and  reconfiguration  of  underground  utilities. 

All  construction  work  would  be  conducted  in  compliance  with  obtained  permits  and 
regulations  set  forth  by  the  City  and  Caltrans,  in  accordance  with  the  Sl'MTA  Regulations 
for  Working  in  San  Francisco  Streets  (Blue  Book),  the  Manual  on  Uniform  Traffic  Control 
Devices  (MUTCD),  San  Francisco  Municipal  Code  (Noise  Ordinance,  Sections  2W  and 
2908),  and  SFPUC  and  SFDPW  Bureau  of  Street  Use  and  Mapping  (BSM)  work  orders.  \ 
traffic  rerouting  and  detour  plan  would  be  coordinated  during  the  project  design  phase. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


2.3.1 1  Construction  Approach  and  Schedule 


To  minimize  disruption  to 
the  traveling  public,  all  efforts 
will  be  made  to  keep  two  traffic 
lanes  open  in  each  direction 
during  construction. 
Construction  activities  that 
require  closure  of  the  on-street 
parking  lane  and/or  a 
second  traffic  lane  in 
one  direction  would  be 
staged  on  approximately 
three-block  segments. 


Principles  of  the  project  construction  approach  to  be  implemented  under  each  build 
alternative  include  the  following: 

•  Maintain  two  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  in  each  direction  (NB  and  SB)  during  peak  hours, 
and  as  feasible  during  non-peak  hours  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  during  project 
construction; 

•  The  two  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  would  carry  transit  vehicles  and  maintain  sendee  for 
the  47  and  49  bus  routes  throughout  construction; 

•  Assure  10-foot  widths  for  all  traffic  lanes  at  a  minimum; 

•  Place  a  physical  barrier  between  traffic  lanes  and  the  construction  zone  (typically  to  be 
done  by  using  a  concrete  k-rail  barrier); 

•  Provide  an  appropriate  buffer  width  between  the  construction  zones  and  the  adjacent 
traffic  lanes,  inclusive  of  the  k-rail  concrete  barrier; 

•  Reduced  speeds  through  construction  work  areas; 

•  Remove  curbside  parking  as  needed  during  construction  of  stations  or  the  transitway; 
and 

•  Adhere  to  requirements  and  standards  identified  in  the  MUTCD  and  the  San  Francisco 
Blue  Book,  which  govern  temporary  work  zone  installations. 

Construction  of  each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA,  under  the  preferred  construction 
approach,  would  occur  on  two  three-block  segments  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  throughout  the 
corridor  at  the  same  time  to  reduce  the  overall  construction  schedule.  Thus,  multiple 
construction  crews  would  be  working  at  different  locations  (in  three-block  segments)  along 
the  corridor  at  one  time.  To  minimize  disruption  to  the  traveling  public,  construction 
activities  that  require  closure  of  the  on-street  parking  lane  and/or  a  second  traffic  lane  in 
one  direction  would  be  staged  on  approximately  three-block  segments.  Construction  on 
three-block  segments  could  occur  simultaneously  in  the  northern  and  southern  ends  of  the 
corridor  to  stagger  associated  parking  and  traffic  circulation  disruption,  followed  by 
construction  in  the  central  segment.  The  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  have  different 
street  staging  plans  due  to  the  nature  of  construction  required  for  each.  Build  Alternative  2 
would  be  constructed  on  one  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  a  time  to  accommodate  open 
lanes  of  mixed-flow  traffic  in  both  NB  and  SB  directions  at  all  times.  One  traffic  lane  would 
remain  open  alongside  the  construction  area,  and  three  traffic  lanes  would  remain  open  on 
the  opposite  side  of  the  street,  along  with  on-street  parking.  Under  construction  of  Build 
Alternative  2,  a  contraflow  system  would  likely  be  used  during  daytime  construction  to 
maintain  two  open  traffic  lanes  in  each  direction.  Construction  of  the  BRT  stations, 
transitway,  and  medians  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  would  take  place  in  an 
approximate  43-foot-wide  area  in  the  center  of  the  roadway.  Two  traffic  lanes  would 
generally  remain  open  on  either  side  of  the  construction  area.  The  parking  lane  on  both 
sides  of  the  street  would  be  closed  during  the  construction  work  to  maintain  two  open 
traffic  lanes  in  each  direction. 

Each  alternative  would  have  a  range  of  durations,  depending  on  the  approach.  The  preferred 
approach  of  working  in  three-block  segments  in  two  parts  of  the  corridor  at  once  would 
have  the  duration  be  at  or  near  the  shorter  end  of  the  range  for  each  of  the  alternatives  (see 
Section  4.15).  This  approach  is  recommended  in  the  Project  Construction  Plan  prepared  for 
the  proposed  project  (Arup,  2012)  and  in  the  Caltrans  Project  Study  Report-Project  Report 
(Parsons,  2013).  Construction  of  Build  Alternative  2  under  the  preferred  approach  is 
anticipated  to  last  approximately  19  months,  as  shown  in  Table  2-7;  however,  construction 
duration  could  be  extended  in  the  event  a  contraflow  system  is  not  implemented  and 
construction  activities  requiring  closure  of  a  second  lane  in  one  direction  would  be  restricted 
to  nighttime.  Construction  for  Build  Alternative  3  under  the  preferred  approach  is 
anticipated  to  require  21  months,  whereas  construction  for  Build  Alternative  4  under  the 
preferred  approach  is  anticipated  to  require  14  months.  Replacement  of  the  aging  sewer 
pipeline  beneath  the  entire  transitway  alignment  (see  Chapter  4.6,  Utilities)  would  be 


2-26 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  july  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

coordinated  with  construction  of  Build  Alternative  3,  which  accounts  for  the  longer 
construction  duration  compared  to  Build  Alternative  4.  Under  Build  Alternative  4,  it  is 
anticipated  that  the  sewer  pipeline  would  require  replacement  only  beneath  stations  and  not 
the  transitway,  resulting  in  shorter  construction  duration.  Table  2-8  summarizes  the 
construction  approach  and  schedule  for  each  build  alternative.  Incorporation  of  Design 
Option  B  under  Build  Alternative  3  or  4  would  not  affect  the  construction  schedule  for 
these  alternatives. 

2.3.1.1  I  LPA  CONSTRUCTION  STAGING 

Construction  staging  for  the  LPA  would  be  as  described  above  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and 
4,  except  that  replacement  of  the  aging  sewer  pipeline  would  be  required  at  station  locations 
and  in  areas  where  the  transitway  would  cause  direct  load  (i.e.,  weight)  on  the  sewer.  The 
duration  for  LPA  construction  would  be  longer  than  under  Build  Alternative  4  because  it 
would  require  rebuilding  the  curb  for  the  entire  median,  as  well  as  replacement  of  the  sewer 
pipeline  as  described  above.  The  Build  Alternative  4  design  does  not  require  rebuilding  of 
the  median  curbs  on  blocks  that  are  not  proposed  to  have  stations  and  do  not  currently  have 
a  left-turn  pocket,  and  it  also  would  not  have  locations  with  the  transitway  running  directly 
over  the  sewer,  meaning  more  linear  feet  of  sewer  would  require  replacement  under  the  LPA 
than  under  Build  Alternative  4.  The  duration  for  LPA  construction  would  be  shorter  than 
under  Build  Alternative  3  because  it  is  not  anticipated  to  require  complete  replacement  of 
the  sewer  pipeline  beneath  the  entire  transitway  alignment  as  described  for  Build  Alternative 
3.  Under  this  construction  implementation  scenario,  construction  using  the  preferred 
approach  for  the  LPA  is  anticipated  to  require  20  months  to  substantial  completion.  The 
NB  station  would  be  constructed  at  the  same  time  as  the  SB  station,  and  related  lane 
closures  and  staging  would  not  be  substanitally  different.  Incorporation  of  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant  would  extend  construction  time  for  the  Vallejo  block  or 
segment,  but  it  would  not  extend  the  overall  project  schedule  under  the  preferred  approach, 
because  station  construction  is  not  on  a  cridcal  schedule  path  (i.e.,  construcdon  of  the 
station  could  occur  simultaneous  to  other  construction  activities  in  that  three-block 
segment). 


Table  2-8:  Preferred  Construction  Approach  and  Schedule 


BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

PREFERRED  CONSTRUCTION  APPROACH 

DURATION0 

Alternative  2 

Construction  along  a  single  side  of  the  street  on  mltiple 
segments,  simultaneously. 

19  months** 

Alternative  3 

Construction  along  both  sides  of  the  street  in  multiple 
segments,  simultaneously. 

21  months 

Alternative  4 

Construction  along  both  sides  of  the  street  in  multiple 
segments,  simultaneously. 

i4months 

LPA 

Construction  along  both  sides  of  the  street  in  two  segments, 
simultaneously.**** 

20  months 

*To  substantial  completion. 

**  Construction  duration  for  Build  Alternative  i  could  be  extended  in  the  event  a  contraflow  system  is  not  implemented  and  construction 
activities  requiring  closure  of  a  second  lane  in  one  direction  would  be  restricted  to  nighttime. 

***The  duration  for  Build  Alternative  3  construction  would  be  longer  than  Build  Alternative  4  due  primarily  to  replacement  of  the  sewer 
pipeline  throughout  the  BRT  alignment.  Design  Option  B  would  not  affect  the  construction  schedule  for  either  Build  Alternative  3  or  4. 
****  The  duration  for  LPA  construction  is  longer  than  Build  Alternative  4  because  it  would  require  rebuilding  of  the  median  curb  for  the 
length  of  the  corridor  and  also  would  require  replacement  of  the  sewer  at  station  locations  and  in  areas  where  the  transitway  would  cause 
direct  load  on  the  sewer.  Incorporation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  extend  construction  time  for  the  Valle|0  block  or 
segment,  but  it  would  not  extend  the  overall  project  schedule  under  the  preferred  approach. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


2.4  Project  Schedule 

The  public  hearing  for  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  occurred  November  30,  2011.  On  June  26,  2012, 
the  SFCTA  Board  of  Commissioners  voted  unanimously  to  select  the  "Center  Lane  Bus 
Rapid  Transit  with  Right  Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns"  as  the  LPA 
for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project,  authorized  the  Executive  Director  to  analyze  the 
Staff  Recommended  LPA  in  the  Final  EIS/EIR,  and  approved  the  Draft  Van  Ness  Avenue 
BRT  LPA  Report.  Final  design  will  occur  after  project  approval.  Following  completion  of 
design,  construction  of  the  proposed  project,  is  planned  to  begin  in  2016  and  last 
approximately  20  months,  assuming  the  preferred  construction  approach  is  utilized  as 
planned.  Thus,  BRT  service  is  expected  to  begin  in  2018. 

2.5  Capital  and  Operating  Costs 
of  Build  Alternatives 

Capital  and  operating  costs  for  the  build  alternatives  have  been  prepared  as  part  of  the 
Capital  Costing  and  Assumptions  report.  This  section  presents  the  estimated  costs  in  2014 
dollars  for  each  project  alternative.  Additional  detail  on  capital  and  operating  costs  is 
presented  in  Chapter  9,  Financial  Analysis. 

2.5.1 1  Capital  Costs 

Total  capital  costs  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  are  estimated  to  range  from 
$93  million  to  $136  million  (in  2014  dollars)  to  design  and  construct,  depending  upon  the 
project  alternative.  The  project  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  be  funded  with 
a  combination  of  local  and  federal  sources.  The  Proposition  K  Expenditure  Plan,  which  was 
passed  by  San  Francisco  voters  in  2004,  dedicates  close  to  $200  million  for  the  citywide 
network  of  BRT  and  TPS  improvements.  Of  this  amount,  approximately  $20  million  is 
allocated  for  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  This  amount  will  serve  as  a  local  match  to  leverage 
up  to  $74,999,999  million  from  the  FTA's  Small  Starts  Program.  Small  Starts  funding  is 
specifically  dedicated  for  major  transit  projects  that  cost  less  than  $250  million  and  have 
Federal  Section  5309  funding  contributions  of  less  than  $75  million.  BRT  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  is  eligible  for  these  fund;,  and,  in  2012,  the  project  was  one  of  three  Small  Starts 
potential  projects  in  the  nation  to  receive  a  High  rating  for  cost  effectiveness  and  the  only 
Small  Starts  project  in  the  nation  to  receive  a  Medium-High  rating  for  "project  justification". 
(Source:  Fiscal  Year  2014  FTA  Annual  Report  on  Funding  Recommendations)13. 

The  proposed  project  received  $15  million  in  Small  Starts  funds  in  FY  201 1  and  $30  million 
in  FY  2012.Elements  of  the  No  Build  Alternative  are  funded  by  a  variety  of  sources.  The 
replacement  of  OCS  support  poles/ streetlights,  including  the  streetlight  upgrades,  is  funded 
through  SFMTA's  Overhead  Rehabilitation  Program  and  SFPUC's  capital  budget.  The 
traffic  signals  upgrade  and  SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement  real-time  traffic  management 
program  is  funded  by  Proposition  B,  which  is  the  transportation  bond  measure  passed  by 
California  voters  in  2006,  as  well  as  funds  from  MTC's  Climate  Initiatives  Program. 
Roadway  repaving  will  be  funded  through  the  State's  SHOPP  program. 


Total  capital  costs  for  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project 
are  estimated  to  range  from 
$87  million  to  $130  million  to 
design  and  construct,  depending 
upon  the  project  alternative, 
funded  with  a  combination  of 
local  and  federal  sources. 


13  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  received  a  score  of  "High"  on  all  three  project  justification  criteria  where  scoring 
measures  have  been  defined.  For  the  three  criteria  where  measures  have  not  yet  been  defined,  all  projects  were  assigned 
a  rating  of  "medium."  In  all  previous  annual  funding  recommendations  since  2007  (where  the  all  measures  had  been 
defined),  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  has  received  a  score  of  "High"  for  project  justification,  the  only  Small  Starts  Project 
in  the  nation  to  receive  such  a  designation. 


2-28 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


2.5.2  I  Annual  Operating  Costs 


Overall,  the  estimated  annual  operations  cost  for  the  No  Build  Alternative,  in  current  year 
dollars,  would  total  approximately  $8.3  million,  which  does  not  include  baseline  maintenance 
costs.  Annualized  operations  and  incremental  maintenance  costs  range  from  $5.9  million  for 
Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B,  which  is  a  29  percent  savings  relative  to  the  No 
Build  Alternative,  to  $7.1  million  for  Build  Alternative  2,  which  is  a  14  percent  savings 
relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  key  determinant  of  the  cost  to  operate  a  service  is 
the  route  "cycle  time,"  which  dictates  the  number  of  buses  and  drivers  that  are  required  to 
operate  at  a  given  frequency  of  service.  By  improving  bus  travel  times  and  by  reducing 
delays,  BRT  shortens  the  amount  of  time  it  takes  a  bus  to  complete  its  route.  This  enables 
the  same  number  of  drivers  and  buses  to  operate  more  cycles  and  ultimately  provide  a 
higher  frequency  of  service;  therefore,  the  proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  would  reduce 
operating  costs  by  reducing  the  amount  of  time  required  for  a  bus  to  complete  its  route. 
Each  of  the  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  result  in  differing  costs  for  maintenance 
of  landscaping  and  the  transitway,  and  all  alternatives  would  include  the  costs  for  temporary 
shuttling  of  BRT  vehicles  between  maintenance  facilities  for  interim  maintenance  until 
SFMTA  completes  its  planned  maintenance  facility  expansion.  These  costs  are  described  in 
greater  detail  in  Chapter  9,  Financial  Analysis. 

The  annual  operating  and  maintenance  costs  associated  with  the  build  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  are  significantly  lower  than  those  of  the  No  Build  Alternative,  with  cost  savings 
ranging  from  14  percent  to  29  percent,  depending  on  the  build  alternative.  Operation  of  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  come  from  existing  revenue  sources  for  SFMTA. 


By  improving  bus  travel  times 
and  by  reducing  delays, 
BRT  shortens  the  amount 
of  time  it  takes  a  bus  to 
complete  its  route,  enabling 
the  same  number  of  drivers 
and  buses  to  operate  more 
cycles  and  ultimately  provide  a 
higher  frequency  of  service. 

The  annual  operating  and 
maintenance  costs  associated 
with  the  build  alternatives  are 
significantly  lower  than  those  of 
the  No  Build  Alternative,  with 
cost  savings  ranging  from 
14  percent  to  29  percent, 
depending  on  the 
build  alternative. 


2.6  Alternatives  Considered 
and  Withdrawn 

Many  alternatives  were  considered  during  project  development  and  were  analyzed  in  the 
Alternatives  Screening  Report  (SFCTA,  2008).  This  section  summarizes  the  alternatives  that 
were  not  carried  forward  for  analysis  in  the  EIS/EIR. 

2.6.1 1  Fatal  Flaw  Alternatives 

Some  alternatives  failed  to  address  one  or  more  project  screening  criteria  (Table  2-1)  or 
would  worsen  existing  conditions.  The  inability  to  provide  improvement  with  respect  to  one 
or  more  of  the  screening  criteria  was  considered  a  fatal  flaw.  Any  alternative  that  would  fail 
to  meet  one  or  more  of  the  screening  criteria  was  dropped  from  further  consideration.  In 
other  words,  only  alternatives  that  addressed  all  elements  of  the  project  purpose  and  need 
were  carried  forward,  along  with  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  following  alternatives  were 
dropped  from  further  consideration  due  to  a  fatal  flaw. 

2.6.1.1  I  CURB-LANE  BRT,  NO  PARALLEL  PARKING 

A  curb-lane  BRT  with  no  parallel  parking,  which  involved  running  transit  in  the  existing 
parking  lane  in  each  direction  to  maintain  three  mixed  travel  lanes  in  each  direction,  was  nol 
recommended  for  further  analysis  in  the  EIS/EIR  because  although  this  alternative  would 
provide  transit  benefits,  it  would  worsen  pedestrian  safety  conditions  and  would  eliminate 
393  parking  spaces  that  also  provide  drop-off  and  loading/unloading  access  to  businesses 
and  residences  fronting  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

This  alternative  would  require  the  removal  of  existing  pedestrian  safety  treatments,  including 
curb  bulbs  and  median  refuges  where  left  turns  are  provided,  and  it  would  preclude  installation 
of  any  new  curb  bulbs.  Removal  of  the  parking  lane  would  result  in  no  buffer  between 


Removal  of  the  parking  lane 
would  result  in  no  buffer 
between  pedestrians  on  the 
sidewalk  and  moving  traffic  for 
the  entire  length  of  the  corridor, 
which  would  substantially 
degrade  the  pedestrian 
environment. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


2  19 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

pedestrians  on  the  sidewalk  and  moving  traffic  for  the  entire  length  of  the  corridor,  which 
would  substantially  degrade  the  pedestrian  environment.  It  would  also  increase  the  number  of 
traffic  lanes  that  pedestrians  would  be  exposed  to  when  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue,  requiring 
pedestrians  to  cross  nine  lanes  of  traffic  without  a  median  refuge  where  left  turns  are 
provided.  Because  the  parking  lanes  themselves  are  not  wide  enough  to  serve  as  bus  lanes 
and  the  width  of  the  sidewalks  is  fixed,  the  center  landscaped  median  would  be  reduced  by  3 
feet  along  its  entire  length  and  eliminated  altogether  where  left-turn  pockets  are  provided. 

2.6.1.2  I  SURFACE  LIGHT  RAIL  AND  SUBWAY 

Surface  light  rail  and  subway  alternatives  were  not  recommended  for  further  analysis  based 
on  cost-effectiveness  analysis  performed  for  the  Alternatives  Screening  Report  and  BRT 
Feasibility  Study.  Rail  technology  would  provide  high  levels  of  transit  benefits  but  with 
significandy  more  capital,  operating,  and  construction  costs. 

Light  rail  technology  costs  average  more  than  $100  million  per  mile  and  subway  technology 
more  than  $500  million  per  mile;  and  light  rail  and  subway  also  have  higher  operating  costs 
than  Muni  bus  technology.  With  $90  million  in  Proposition  K  funds  available  through  2030 
to  implement  strategic  transit  expansion  projects  (by  matching  federal  funds),  a  subway 
alternative  would  exhaust  citywide  funds  on  one  corridor  and  generate  a  $900  million 
funding  gap,  half  of  which  would  need  to  be  covered  locally.  Furthermore,  cost  effectiveness 
is  one  of  the  criteria  FTA  uses  to  evaluate  Small  Starts  and  New  Starts  projects.  BRT  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue  has  been  demonstrated  to  be  a  more  cost-effective  alternative  than  more 
expensive  rail  technologies. 

2.6.2  I  Low- Perform  a  nee  Alternatives 

Some  alternatives  had  no  fatal  flaws,  but  they  would  provide  only  slight  or  modest  levels  of 
improvement.  Projects  that  did  little  to  meet  the  screening  criteria  were  eliminated  from 
further  consideration.  In  other  words,  only  alternatives  that  would  provide  the  greatest 
ability  to  meet  all  aspects  of  the  project  purpose  and  need  were  carried  forward.  The 
following  alternatives  are  considered  low  performance;  therefore,  they  were  eliminated  from 
further  consideration. 

TPS  Treatments  without  a  Dedicated  Bus  Lane.  These  alternatives,  which  included  treatments 
such  as  TPS  and  bus  bulbs,  were  not  recommended  for  further  evaluation  because  the 
magnitude  of  expected  benefits  is  low.  TPS  treatments  without  provision  of  a  dedicated  bus 
lane  are  expected  to  provide  substantially  less  travel  time  reduction  benefits  provided  by 
dedicated  bus  lanes. 

Additionally,  without  a  physically  separated  bus  lane,  buses  would  continue  to  operate  in 
mixed  traffic  and  experience  associated  reliability  impacts.  Of  all  transit  delays,  mixed-traffic 
delays  have  the  greatest  variability  and  result  in  the  greatest  unreliability  in  service;  therefore, 
TPS  treatments  without  provision  of  a  dedicated  transit  lane  would  provide  minimal  benefit 
and  are  not  sufficient  to  meet  the  project  purpose  and  need. 

Peak-Period  Dedicated  Bus  Lane.  A  peak-period-only  dedicated  bus  lane  would  provide  transit 
travel  time  and  reliability  benefits  only  during  the  peak  period.  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor 
transit  experiences  delays  and  reliability  problems  throughout  the  day.  Additionally,  transit 
ridership  on  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  strong  throughout  the  day,  not  just  during  the 
peak  periods;  therefore,  a  peak-period  dedicated  bus  lane  would  not  meet  the  project 
purpose  and  need,  and  it  would  provide  low  benefit  overall. 


Light  rail  technology  costs 
average  more  than  $100  million 
per  mile  and  subway  technology 
more  than  $500  million  per  mile; 
light  rail  and  subway  also  have 
higher  operating  costs  than 
Muni  bus  technology. 
Three  alternatives  are 
not  cost  effective  compared 
with  BRT 


2-30 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


2.7  Related  and  Planned  Projects 

In  addition  to  the  projects  integrated  in  the  No  Build  Alternative,  several  significant  projects 
are  planned  within  or  near  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  that  could  overlap  with  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  construction  schedule.  Table  2-9  identifies  the  other  planned  projects 
that  could  be  implemented  during  the  same  timeframe  but  independent  of  the  proposed 
BRT  project.  A  discussion  of  these  other  planned  projects  follows,  broken  down  by  local 
transportation  projects,  regional  transportation  projects,  local  public  works  projects,  and 
local  planning  and  development  projects. 

Table  2-9:  Related  and  Planned  Projects 


PROJECT/ 
ACTIVITY 

START/ 
END  DATES1 

PRO|ECT  DESCRIPTION 

Doyle  Drive 
Replacement/ 
Presidio 
Parkway 

2010/2013 

The  Doyle  Drive  approach  to  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge  will  be 

1         j      • .  1                                    1    .1     .             •  1           •  1          j  ■  rr* 

replaced  with  a  new  approach  that  provides  widened  traffic 
lanes,  shoulder,  and  median.  Additional  project  aspects  include 
seismic  and  soil  stability  upgrades  and  improved  landscaping. 

Transbay 

Transit 

Center 

2008/2017 

Modernization  of  the  existing  Transbay  Terminal  in  downtown 
San  Francisco  will  include  a  new  terminal  that  will 
accommodate  the  extension  of  Caltrain  service,  as  well  as  the 
California  High-Speed  Rail  Project. 

California 

Pacific 

Medical 

Center 

(CPMC) 

201l/20l6 

The  CPMC  Cathedral  Hill  Campus  would  expand  its  campus  to 
include  the  entire  block  bounded  by  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Geary, 
Franklin,  and  Post  streets.  The  expanded  campus  includes  a 
new  medical  center  and  medical  offices  of  more  than  1.5  million 
gross  square  feet  (gsf). 

Central 
Subway 

2010/2019 

This  second  phase  of  the  Third  Street  Light  Rail  Project  from 
Fourth  and  King  to  Jackson  and  Stockton  streets  is  an 
underground  subway  project  with  multiple  stations  and  tunnel 
openings. 

Geary  BRT 

2014/2019 

The  Geary  BRT  project  involves  construction  of  a  BRT  system 
on  Geary  Bouievard  between  the  Transbay  Terminal  and 
33rd  Avenue. 

Hayes  Two- 
Way  Street 
Conversion 

2011/2015 

Conversion  of  Hayes  Street  from  Gough  Street  to  Polk  Street 
from  a  one-way  to  a  two-way  street.  Phase  1  from  Gough  Street 
to  Van  Ness  Avenue  completed  in  2011. 

SFgo  and 
Signal 

Replacement 

Ongoing  in 
coordination 
with  Van  Ness 
BRT 

Replace  traffic  signal  infrastructure  to  provide  fiber-optic 
interconnect  communication  on  Franklin  and  Gough  streets. 

Road 

Repaving  and 
Street  Safety 
Bond  Projects 

Ongoing 

A  $248  million  Road  Repaving  and  Street  Safety  Bond  Program 
to  improve  city  infrastructure,  including  repaving  streets, 
pedestrian  and  bicycle  safety  improvements,  traffic  flow 
improvements,  and  ADA  upgrades.  Near-term  plans  include 
repaving  Gough,  Franklin,  and  Polk  streets,  along  with 
installation  of  pedestrian  enhancements. 

SFpark 

2010/2012 

Pilot  test  project  involving  installation  of  parking  meters  and 
sensors  to  utilize  real-time  parking  data  to  implement  demand- 
responsive  pricing. 

Polk  Street 
Bicycle  Lane 
Extension 

2011/2013 

Addition  of  northbound  bicycle  lane  on  Polk  Street  between 
Market  Street  and  McAllister  Avenue. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 

a  j» 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


RESOURCE 


For  more  information  on  Geary 
BRT,  visit  www.gearybrt.org. 


Table  2-9:  Related  and  Planned  Projects 


PROJECT/ 
ACTIVITY 

START/ 
END  DATES1 

PROJECT  DESCRIPTION 

Mission 

Residential  development  of  approximately  90  units  as  part  of 

Family 

2012 

the  Mission  Family  Housing  Project  at  1040  Mission  Street. 

Housing 

Completed  in  2012. 

Veteran's 

To  be  completed 

Redevelopment  of  community  use  into  76  studio  apartments 

Commons 

in  2014 

for  veterans  at  the  corner  of  Otis  Street  and  Duboce  Avenue. 

1860  Van 
Ness  Avenue 

Completed/Sold 

Development  of  a  35-unit  mixed  residential/commercial  unit  is 
proposed  at  the  northeast  corner  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Washington  Street.  Completed  and  sold  in  2012. 

Eddy  and 

Residential  development  of  approximately  130  units  as  part  of 

Taylor  Family 

20n/Unknown 

the  Eddy  and  Taylor  Family  Apartments  Project  at  168-186  Eddy 

Apartments 

and  Taylor  streets. 

Better  Market 
Street 

2016 

Streetscape  improvement  project  on  Market  Street. 
Environmental  review  is  planned  for  completion  in  2016. 

1800  Van 
Ness 

2011/2014 

Development  of  a  94-unit  mixed-use  building  with  5,000  square 
feet  of  retail  on  the  northeast  corner  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Clay  Street. 

100  Van  Ness  2012/Unknown 


100  Van  Ness  is  an  existing  29-story  office  building  that  is 
currently  96  percent  vacant.  The  proposal  is  to  change  the  use 
from  office  to  multi-family  residential,  and  renovate  the  interior 
of  the  building  to  create  399  multi-family  residential  units  with 
ground  floor  retail,  n8  parking  spaces,  and  a  12,000-square- 
foot  rooftop  resident's  playground  above. 


1285  Sutter 
Street 


Located  at  the  corner  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Sutter  Street  in 
San  Francisco,  this  project  is  a  13-story  apartment  building  with 
2012/2013  10,000  square  feet  of  retail  space  on  the  ground  floor.  The 

concrete-frame  development  includes  107  apartment  units  for 
rent,  as  well  as  two  levels  of  underground  parking. 


1401  Market 
Street 


20n/Unknown 


Construction  of  new  mixed-use  building  containing 
approximately  719  dwelling  units  and  up  to  719  parking  spaces. 


1  Some  projects  have  been  completed  since  circulation  of  the  EIS/EIR.  The  status  of  such  projects  has  been  updated. 


2.7.1 1  Local  Transportation  Projects 

Several  local  transportation  projects  are  planned  that  traverse  or  overlap  the  proposed 
project,  or  are  located  in  the  project  vicinity.  Projects  expected  to  be  implemented  by  the 
time  construction  begins  for  the  BRT  project  are  described  below. 

Geary  BRT  Project.  The  San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  (SFCTA)  and 
SFMTA  propose  to  implement  BRT  along  Geary  Boulevard  between  Van  Ness  and  33rd 
avenues.  SFCTA  completed  a  feasibility  study  for  BRT  in  the  Geary  corridor  in  2007,  and 
environmental  analysis  is  underway.  Construction  of  the  Geary  corridor  BRT  is  anticipated 
to  begin  in  2014  and  would  occur  following  completion  of  construction  of  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT,  with  construction  planned  to  be  completed  in  2019. 

Hayes  Street  Two-Way  Conversion  Project.  SFMTA  proposes  conversion  of  Hayes  Street  from  a 
one-way  street  to  a  two-way  street,  as  called  for  in  the  Market  Octavia  Better  Neighborhoods 
Plan.  The  proposed  project  involves  conversion  of  Hayes  Street  to  two-way  from  Gough 
Street  to  Polk  Street.  Between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Franklin  Street,  there  would  be  three 
westbound  (WB)  lanes  and  one  EB  lane,  with  AM  and  PM  peak  tow-away  restrictions  along 
the  north  side  and  prohibited  parking  along  the  south  side.  Between  Franklin  and  Gough 
streets,  there  would  be  two  lanes  WB  and  one  lane  EB,  with  full-time  metered  parking  along 


2-32 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


the  north  and  south  sides.  Between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Polk  Street,  four  lanes  WB  and 
one  lane  EB  are  andcipated.  In  addition,  Fell  Street  would  become  two-way  between 
Franklin  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue,  with  one  lane  WB  and  two  lanes  EB.  Phase  1  of  the 
project  between  Gough  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  was  implemented  in  2011.  The  project 
implementation  schedule  for  Phase  2  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  Polk  Street  has  not  been 
finalized,  but  it  is  expected  to  be  completed  by  2015. 

SFgo  and  Signal  Replacement.  As  mentioned  in  Sections  2.2.1  and  2.2.2,  the  SFgo  and  Signal 
Replacement  Program  is  comprised  of  many  projects  that  would  be  implemented 
throughout  the  city,  including  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  As  part  of  SFgo  and  Signal 
Replacement,  SFMTA  plans  to  replace  signal  controllers  and  interconnects  with  modern 
controllers  and  a  new  fiber-optic  signal  interconnect  communications  network  on  Franklin 
and  Gough  streets. 

SFpark.  SFpark  is  a  2-year,  parking  management  pilot  test  project  undertaken  by  SFMTA  in 
2010.  In  2010,  new  parking  meters  and  sensors  beneath  parking  spaces  were  installed  that 
collect  real-time  parking  occupancy  data.  The  real-time  occupancy  data  are  being  used  to 
implement  demand-responsive  pricing.  Under  SFpark,  meter  prices  are  adjusted  up  and 
down  to  match  demand.  High-demand  spaces  gradually  go  up  in  price,  while  other  spaces 
decrease  in  cost.  Real-time  data  and  demand-responsive  pricing  work  together  to  readjust 
parking  patterns  in  the  City  so  that  parking  is  easier  to  find  and  drivers  will  do  less  "circling" 
to  find  parking.  Sensor  data  is  uploaded  vvirelessly  to  the  SFpark  data  feed,  which  will  then 
make  that  information  available  to  the  public  via  SFpark.org.  street  signs,  and  smart  phone 
applications.  SFpark  will  be  evaluated  through  mid-2012  for  Citywide  expansion. 

Polk  Street  Bicycle  Lane  -  Market  to  McAllister  Streets.  As  identified  in  the  San  Francisco  Bicycle 
Plan,  the  Polk  Street  Bicycle  Lane  project  would  involve  moving  a  portion  of  the  existing 
NB  Bicycle  Route  #25  from  Market  Street,  Larkin  Street,  and  McAllister  Street  onto  Polk 
Street.  This  project  would  involve  the  installation  of  a  Class  II  bicycle  lane  in  the  NB 
direction  on  Polk  Street  between  Market  Street  and  McAllister  Street.  A  segment  of  this 
Class  II  bicycle  lane  would  be  contra-flow  (i.e.,  it  would  allow  NB  bicycle  travel  on  an 
otherwise  one-way  SB  street).  Polk  Street  is  a  one-way  SB  street  between  Grove  Street  and 
Market  Street.  Polk  Street  (Dr.  Carlton  B.  Goodlett  Place)  is  a  two-way  street  between 
Grove  Street  and  McAllister  Street.  This  project  would  install  a  NB  Class  II  bicycle  lane 
between  McAllister  Street  and  Grove  Street  by  narrowing  travel  lanes.  The  existing  angled 
parking  on  the  east  side  of  Polk  Street  would  be  converted  from  front  pull-in  to  back-in. 

The  segment  between  Grove  Street  and  Market  Street  includes  two  design  options.  Option  1 
would  establish  a  NB  contra-flow  Class  II  bicycle  lane  on  the  east  side  of  Polk  Street  from 
Market  Street  to  Grove  Street.  This  bicycle  lane  would  be  separated  from  traffic  by  a  concrete 
median.  Option  2  would  convert  the  segment  of  Polk  Street,  from  Market  Street  to  Haves 
Street,  to  two-way  operation;  narrow  travel  lanes;  narrow  sidewalk  and  median  widths;  and  it 
would  add  a  NB  travel  lane  on  Polk  Street  between  Market  Street  and  Hayes  Street. 

Road  Repaving  and  Street  Safety  Bond  Projects 

A  $248  million  Road  Repaving  and  Street  Safety  Bond  was  approved  bv  voters  in  November 
2011  (Proposition  B).  Recommended  as  part  of  the  citywide  Ten-Year  Capital  Flan  to 
improve  and  invest  in  the  City's  infrastructure,  the  bond  will  repave  streets,  make  repairs  to 
deteriorating  street  structures,  and  improve  streetscapes  for  pedestrian  and  bicyclist  safety; 
improve  traffic  flow  on  local  streets;  and  install  sidewalk  and  curb  ramps  to  meet  the  (  ity's 
obligations  under  the  ADA.  More  information  on  this  program  can  be  found  .11 
http://sfdpw.orfr/indcx.aspx?piif>t-=lS8n 

As  part  of  this  program,  the  City  has  prioritized  Gough,  Franklin,  and  Polk  streets,  parallel 
to  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  project  study  area,  for  resurfacing  ahead  of  the  construction 
start  date  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT.  l  or  Gough  and  Franklin  streets,  the  projects  arc  being 
coordinated  with  the  installation  of  pedestrian  and  traffic  signal  conduits  to  enable  SPgO  and 


RESOURCE 


For  more  information  on 
SFpark,  visit  www.sfpark.org. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


pedestrian  countdown  signals  for  the  length  of  the  corridor.  The  Franklin  Street  project, 
which  is  scheduled  to  begin  in  2013,  has  also  included  pedestrian  bulbs  at  two  intersections 
in  the  Market  and  OctaviaPlan  study  area.  Other  improvements  on  Gough  and  Polk  streets, 
including  pedestrian  and  bicycle  amenities,  are  being  planned  and  coordinated  by  multiple 
City  departments  (Polk  Street  Corridor  Improvement  Project). 

2.7.2  I  Regional  Transportation  Projects 

Planned  projects  of  regional  importance  located  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  area 
or  otherwise  affecting  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  area  are  discussed  below. 

Doyle  Drive  Replacement/Presidio  Parkway  Project.  SFCTA,  in  cooperation  with  SFMTA, 
Caltrans,  and  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge,  Highway  and  Transportation  District,  is  replacing  the 
Doyle  Drive  approach  to  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge.  The  Doyle  Drive  approach  was  built  in 
1937  as  part  of  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge  and  is  part  of  US  101.  The  Doyle  Drive 
Replacement  Project,  also  known  as  the  Presidio  Parkway  Project,  will  provide  seismic  and 
operational  safety  with  widened  traffic  lanes  and  provision  of  shoulders  and  a  median.  The 
project  will  also  include  landscaping  to  better  blend  into  its  surroundings  in  the  Presidio 
National  Park.  Project  construction  began  in  2010,  and  the  replaced  Doyle  Drive  approach 
is  expected  to  open  to  traffic  in  2015. 

Transbay  Transit  Center/Caltrain  Downtown  Redevelopment  Project.  The  Transbay  Joint  Powers 
Authority  (TJPA)  is  replacing  the  existing  Transbay  Terminal  located  in  downtown  San 
Francisco  with  a  new  five-story  Transit  Center  with  one  above-grade  bus  level,  ground-floor, 
concourse,  and  two  below-grade  rail  levels  serving  Caltrain  and  future  California  High-Speed 
Rail.  A  Redevelopment  Area  Plan  has  been  established  for  transit-oriented  development  in 
the  vicinity  of  the  Transbay  Transit  Center,  including  residential,  office,  and  general 
commercial  uses.  The  project  is  intended  to  revitalize  the  surrounding  area  and 
accommodate  future  transit  projects,  including  the  Caltrain  Extension  Project  and  the 
California  High-Speed  Rail  Project.  The  Transbay  Transit  Center  will  provide  a  train  depot 
for  future  high-speed  rail.  As  part  of  Phase  II,  Caltrain  commuter  rail  service  will  be 
extended  from  its  current  terminus  outside  the  downtown  area  (at  4th  and  King  streets)  to 
the  Transbay  Transit  Center.  Construction  of  the  Transbay  Transit  Center  is  underway  and 
expected  to  be  completed  in  2017. 

Central  Subway  Project.  The  Central  Subway  Project  is  the  second  phase  of  the  Third  Street 
Light  Rail  Project  that  links  the  Little  Hollywood  and  Visitation  Valley  communities  with 
Union  Square  and  Chinatown.  This  project  will  better  connect  San  Francisco's  civic, 
business,  and  cultural  centers  with  the  diverse  communities  along  the  Central  Subway 
corridor.  Once  complete,  the  project  will  improve  service  reliability  and  travel  times, 
enhance  transit  connections,  and  provide  economic  opportunities  and  access  to  jobs  for 
local  residents.  The  Central  Subway  Project  corridor  is  located  along  Third/Fourth  Streets, 
Stockton  Street,  and  Columbus  Avenue  from  Fourth/King  (the  terminus  of  Phase  1  of  the 
Third  Street  Light  Rail)  to  Jackson/Stockton  Streets,  with  a  construction-related  tunnel  to 
Columbus  Avenue/Union  Street  near  Washington  Park.  Project  construction  began  in  2010 
and  is  expected  to  be  completed  in  2019. 

.  2.7.3  I  Local  Planning  Projects 

Planned  projects  of  generally  local  importance  located  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project 
area  are  discussed  below. 

Van  Ness  Avenue  Area  Plan.  The  City  adopted  the  Van  Ness  Area  Plan  in  1986  and  created  a 
Van  Ness  Avenue  Special  Use  District  to  the  Planning  Code  in  1988  to  implement  the  plan. 
The  plan  is  intended  to  promote  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  the  City's  most  prominent  north- 
south  boulevard,  lined  with  high-density  mixed-use  development  that  encourages 
transformation  of  the  street,  with  its  more  formal  design  features  and  relatively  wide 


2-34 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


sidewalks,  into  a  transit-served  pedestrian  promenade.  Chapter  4.1,  Land  Use,  provides  a 
summary  of  the  Van  Ness  Area  Plan  key  objectives.  Since  adoption  of  the  special-use 
district,  approximately  1,000  housing  units  have  been  developed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.14 
The  following  such  projects  are  located  in  the  vicinity  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project: 

•  Mission  Family  Housing.  Approximately  90  units,  which  are  to  be  located  at  the  existing 
parking  lot  at  1036-1040  Mission  Street,  are  proposed  as  part  of  the  Mission  Family 
Housing  Project.  This  project  was  completed  in  2012. 

•  Eddy  and  Taylor  Family  Apartments.  Approximately  130  units,  which  are  to  be  located  at 
the  existing  parking  lot  at  168-186  Eddy  and  Taylor  streets,  are  proposed  as  part  of  the 
Eddy  and  Taylor  Family  Apartments.  Project  construction  is  anticipated  to  be 
completed  in  2012. 

•  i860  Van  Ness  Avenue.  This  project  involves  development  of  a  35-unit  mixed 
residential/commercial  unit  proposed  at  the  northeast  corner  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Washington  Street.  This  project  was  completed  and  sold  in  2012. 

Market  and  Octavia  Better  Neighborhoods  Plan.  The  City  adopted  the  Market  and  Octavia 
Better  Neighborhoods  Plan  in  2007  to  encourage,  among  other  things,  the  transformation  of 
the  area  around  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  Market  to  Division  streets,  known  as  "SoMa 
West,"  into  a  new  mixed-use  residential  neighborhood.  This  area  encompasses  the  southern 
end  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  A  key  driver  of  the  plan  is  to  help  transform  the 
vacant  land  created  by  the  recent  dismantling  of  the  Central  Freeway,  including  Octavia 
Boulevard,  into  a  pedestrian-friendly  neighborhood.  The  Market  and  Octavia  Better 
Neighborhoods  Plan  proposes  new  zoning  for  appropriate  residential  and  commercial  uses, 
prescribes  streetscape  and  open  space  improvements,  and  places  high-density  land  uses  close 
to  transit. 

The  plan  enables  creation  of  2,500  new  housing  units  around  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Mission  Street.  To  ensure  pedestrian- friendly  design,  the  plan  developed  a  policy  to  limit  the 
parking  supply  to  one  space  per  unit.  Extensive  public  investments  in  streets,  pedestrian 
crossings,  and  streetscapes  are  envisioned,  some  of  which  have  been  completed.15  A 
development  impact  fee  was  instituted  to  support  transportation,  open  space,  and 
recreational  improvements  identified  in  the  plan.  Veteran's  Commons  in  an  example  of  a 
project  consistent  with  the  Market  and  Octavia  Better  Neighborhoods  Plan  and  is  located  in 
the  vicinity  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project. 

•  Veteran's  Commons.  The  Veteran's  Commons  project  involves  redevelopment  of 
community  use  into  76  studio  apartments  for  veterans  at  the  corner  of  Otis  Street  and 
Duboce  Avenue.  Construction  of  this  project  is  planned  for  completion  in  2014. 

•  100  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  100  Van  Ness  Avenue  project  involves  an  existing  29-story 
office  building  that  is  currently  96  percent  vacant.  The  proposal  is  to  change  the  land 
use  from  office  to  multi-family  residential,  and  renovate  the  interior  of  the  building  to 
create  399  multi-family  residential  units  with  ground  floor  retail,  1 18  parking  spaces,  and 
a  12,000-squarc-foot  rooftop  resident's  playground  above.  Construction  of  this  project 
began  in  2012. 

•  1285  Sutter  Street.  The  1285  Sutter  Street  project  is  located  at  the  corner  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  Sutter  Street  in  San  Francisco.  This  project  involves  redevelopment  of  B  1 3 
story  apartment  building  that  will  have  1 11,000  square  feet  of  retail  space  on  the  ground 
floor.  It  will  include  107  apartment  units  for  rent,  as  well  as  two  levels  of  underground 
parking.  Construction  of  this  project  is  planned  for  completion  in  2013. 

.  1401  Market  Street.  The  1401  Market  Street  project  is  located  at  the  intersection  ol 
Market  and  10*  streets.  It  involves  construction  of  a  new  mixed-use  building  containing 


'I  JJ"  ';,n.N,css  fTZiT  Pla"  i  EK*  a!:  WhaautaumUmim  1  in  mad  w 

1S    I  he  Marker  and  ( )ctavia  Hcttcr  Neighborhood*  Plan  is  available  at: 
httD://\v\vw.sti;ov.ori?/sitc/ph»nnini>  ind<-«  upfld=251flfl 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


approximately  719  dwelling  units  and  up  to  719  parking  spaces.  Construction  began  in 
2011. 

Better  Market  Street  Project.  Led  by  SFDPW,  the  Better  Market  Street  Project  is  part  of  the 
City's  mission  to  transform  the  streetscape  and  improve  the  public's  experience  along  the 
public  realm.  The  Better  Market  Street  Project  is  expected  to  include  improvements  on 
Market  Street  supported  by  sustainable  urban  design  and  mobility  principles  that  facilitate 
promenading  opportunities  and  an  enlivened  sidewalk  life;  reliable  and  efficient  transit 
service;  and  a  safe,  comfortable,  and  appealing  bicycle  facility  along  its  entire  length. 

California  Pacific  Medical  Center  (CPMC)  Cathedral  Hill  Campus.  As  a  component  of  the  CPMC 
Long  Range  Development  Plan  Project,  the  CPMC  proposes  to  establish  a  new  medical 
campus  that  would  include  a  new  hospital  and  new  medical  office  building  in  the  Cathedral 
Hill  area  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  limits. 
The  new  hospital  would  replace  the  existing  Cathedral  Hill  Hotel  and  the  1255  Post  Street 
Office  Building,  which  comprise  the  entire  block  bounded  by  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Geary 
Boulevard,  and  Post  and  Franklin  streets.  Across  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  the  proposed 
hospital,  on  the  western  portion  of  the  block  formed  by  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary, 
Cedar,  and  Polk  streets,  the  CPMC  proposes  to  replace  seven  existing  buildings  with  the 
proposed  medical  office  building.  The  CPMC  Cathedral  Hill  Campus  proposes  to  have  a 
pedestrian  tunnel  under  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  connect  the  hospital  and  medical  office 
building. 

The  proposed  hospital  would  be  15  stories  and  contain  approximately  1,202,500  gross 
square  feet  (gsf)  with  2  underground  floors,  and  it  would  provide  approximately  555  hospital 
beds'6.  The  2  underground  floors  would  provide  approximately  253,400  gsf  and  513  off- 
street  parking  spaces.  Entry  to  the  parking  garage  would  be  from  Post  Street  and  Geary 
Boulevard.  Separate,  off-street  emergency  drop-off  from  Franklin  Street  for  patients  arriving 
by  car  would  lead  to  the  parking  garage.  The  proposed  pedestrian  tunnel  under  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  connect  with  the  bottom  underground  floor/ parking  level  P3. 

The  proposed  medical  office  building  would  be  9  stories  and  would  contain  approximately 
381,000  gsf  of  office  space  and  parking  to  support  the  proposed  hospital.  The  proposed 
medical  office  building  would  have  9  parking  levels  that  would  provide  approximately  542 
parking  spaces,  which  would  be  accessed  via  Geary  Street.  Parking  Level  A  would  provide  a 
loading  dock  with  access  via  Cedar  Street.  All  vehicle  entries  on  Geary  and  Cedar  streets 
would  be  right  turns  because  Cedar  Street  is  one-way  EB  and  Geary  Street  is  one-way  WB. 

Van  Ness  Avenue  would  provide  the  main  pedestrian  entrances  for  both  the  proposed 
hospital  and  medical  office  building.  Construction  of  the  hospital,  medical  office  building, 
and  tunnel  is  anticipated  to  begin  in  2011  and  continue  through  2016. 

Central  Freeway  and  Octavia  Boulevard  Circulation  Study.  The  Central  Freeway  and  Octavia 
Boulevard  Circulation  Study  will  evaluate  and  address  transportation  issues  that  remain 
following  completion  of  the  Octavia  Boulevard/Central  Freeway  project  in  2005.  These 
multimodal  transportation  issues  include  transit  routing  and  reliability,  automobile  traffic 
circulation,  pedestrian  crossings,  connectivity  to  regional  transit  stations,  bicycle  access, 
general  wayfinding,  and  travel  demand  management  strategies.  The  study  will  help  support 
and  advance  key  priorities  of  the  2008  Market  and  Octavia  Better  Neighborhood  Plan, 
including  improved  pedestrian  circulation  and  transit  facilities,  as  well  as  conversion  of 
streets  from  one-way  to  two-way  operation.  Because  the  study  area  is  an  active  local 
neighborhood,  as  well  as  a  critical  element  of  the  transportation  system  for  regional  traffic 
coming  to,  from,  or  through  the  area,  the  study  will  strive  to  address  the  complexity  of 
transportation  needs  at  both  the  local  and  regional  levels.  Ongoing  stakeholder  and  public 


 RESOURCE  

For  more  information  on 
Better  Market  Street,  visit 
www.bettermarlcetstreetsf.org. 


In  April,  2013,  CPMC  announced  that  it  was  revising  its  proposal  to  reduce  the  hospital  from  555  beds  to  up  to  304 
beds.  Where  the  EIS/EIR  takes  the  CPMC  project  into  account  in  its  cumulative  analysis,  it  assumes  the  original  larger 
hospital  size,  thereby  providing  a  conservative  assessment. 


2-36 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


outreach  will  assist  in  prioritizing  projects.  The  study  team  will  guide  selected  projects 
through  the  funding  and  approval  process. 

2.8  Next  Steps  and  Project  Timeline 

This  Final  EIS/EIR  was  completed  following  selection  of  the  LPA  in  accordance  with  23 
CFR  Part  771.125(a).  This  Final  EIS/EIR,  in  compliance  with  NEPA  and  CEQA,  responds 
to  comments  received  during  circulation  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR  (Appendix  I),  incorporates 
additional  analysis  and/or  text  explanation  in  response  to  comments  received,  and  provides 
information  demonstrating  that  the  LPA  is  within  the  scope  of  the  project  alternatives 
considered  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR. 

Following  completion  of  the  Final  EIS/EIR,  the  SFCTA  as  the  lead  agency  under  CEQA, 
and  FTA  as  the  lead  agency  under  NEPA,  would  proceed  to  certify  the  document  and 
approve  the  project.  FTA  would  provide  approval  by  signing  and  dating  the  cover  page  of 
the  Final  EIS/EIR.  FTA  would  then  submit  the  Final  EIS/EIR  to  the  U.S.  Environmental 
Protection  Agency  (EPA),  which  places  a  NEPA  Notice  of  Availability  of  the  Final  EIS  for 
public  review  in  the  Federal  Register.  Additionally,  the  Final  EIS/EIR  is  distributed  to 
agencies  that  previously  commented  on  the  Draft  EIS/EIR.  Advertisements  in  local 
publications  would  also  be  placed  to  announce  project  approval  and  availability  of  the  Final 
EIS/EIR.  No  less  than  30  days  after  the  Notice  of  Availability  is  published  in  the  Federal 
Register,  FTA  may  sign  the  Record  of  Decision  (ROD),  which  is  a  NEPA  document  that 
states  the  EIS/EIR  approval,  identifies  the  alternatives  considered,  and  discusses  mitigation 
plans  and  monitoring  commitments.  The  ROD  describes  the  considerations  in  reaching 
project  approval  and  why  any  identified  measures  to  mitigate  or  minimize  environmental 
harm  were  not  adopted. 

The  SFCTA  Board  of  Commissioners  would  certify  the  Final  EIS/EIR  through  adoption  of 
a  resolution.  The  SFCTA  would  also  adopt  appropriate  CEQA  Findings,  including  a 
Mitigation  Monitoring  and  Reporting  Program  and  a  Statement  of  Overriding 
Considerations  if  adopted  mitigation  measures  or  project  alternatives  will  not  reduce  all 
impacts  to  a  less  than  significant  level.  The  SFCTA  Board  would  approve  the  project 
through  formal  selection  of  a  preferred  alternative  as  the  project  definition.  SFMTA  would 
also  adopt  CEQA  Findings  in  its  role  as  a  responsible  agency  under  CEQA  and  approve  the 
project  through  selection  of  a  preferred  alternative.  Within  5  days  of  project  approval,  .1 
CEQA  Notice  of  Determination  is  filed  with  the  San  Francisco  County  Clerk,  which  starts  a 
30-day  statute  of  limitations  for  court  challenges  to  the  EIR. 

Various  other  agencies  would  also  take  approval  actions  related  to  the  project,  as  explained 
in  Section  2.2,  including  Caltrans,  who  will  continue  to  own  the  ROW  in  the  project 
corridor.  Caltrans  and  the  SFMTA  would  enter  into  a  Cooperative  Agreement  to  cover 
responsibilities  and  funding  for  the  construction  phase  of  the  proposed  project.  The 
SFMTA  will  own  the  constructed  BRT  improvements,  with  exception  to  improvements  to 
the  BRT  transitway,  which  will  be  owned  by  Caltrans.  The  SFMTA  will  operate  ami 
maintain  the  BRT  transitway  and  facilities  post  construction.  The  major  approvals  required 
of  Caltrans  are  listed  in  Table  2-10. 

Approximately  85  percent  of  the  needed  capital  funding  tor  the  build  alternatives  has  been 
identified,  as  described  in  Section  2.5  and  Chapter  9.  The  project  build  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  would  be  funded  with  a  combination  of  local  and  federal  sources.  Approximately 
$20  million  from  the  Prop  K  Expenditure  Plan  is  allocated  for  BRT  on  Van  NeSS  Wenue. 
This  amount  will  serve  as  a  local  match  to  leverage  up  to  S74,,)')<),<)<)<)  million  from  the 
FTA's  Small  Starts  Program.  During  the  design  phase  of  the  project,  SFCTA  and  SFMTA 
will  apply  for  additional  grants  from  various  sources  to  complete  the  funding  plan.  The 
annual  O&M  costs  associated  with  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  I. PA.  are  significant!} 
lower  than  those  of  the  No  Build  Alternative,  with  cost  savings  ranging  from  M  to  29 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternate 


es 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


percent.  Operation  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  come  from  existing 
revenue  sources  for  SFMTA,  which  include  fare  and  parking  revenues,  operating  grants  (e.g., 
State  Transit  Assistance),  traffic  fees,  and  fines. 

Sufficient  conceptual  engineering  design  of  the  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  has  been 
completed  to  approximately  the  10  percent  level,  to  determine  environmental  impacts  and 
mitigation  measures  for  this  EIS/EIR.  The  SFMTA  would  prepare  30  percent  plans  and  the 
Conceptual  Engineering  Report  (CER).  The  design  process  requires  phased  development  of 
project  plans  and  specifications,  subject  to  review  and  approval  by  permit  authorities  at  the 
30-,  65-,  95-,  and  100-percent  design  levels.  The  primary  elements  of  the  30  percent  design 
include  roadway  and  pavement,  sidewalks  and  medians,  utilities  base  map  updating, 
architectural  and  landscape  design,  and  ongoing  public  outreach.  Accommodation  of  ADA 
requirements  would  also  occur  at  this  stage  when  designing  curb  bulbs  and  curb  ramps.  The 
design  schedule  is:  30-percent  design  2013-2014,  65-  through  100-percent  design  documents 
2014-2015,  and  advertisement  for  construction  in  2015. 

When  design  reaches  a  sufficient  level  of  detail  that  the  project  cost,  scope,  and  schedule  are 
firm  and  final  (usually  around  65  percent)  and  when  project  funding  has  been  fully  identified 
for  the  entirety  of  the  project,  the  FTA  may  issue  a  Small  Starts  Grant  Agreement  (SSGA), 
which  would  commit  FTA  funding  of  the  project  to  the  full  amount  planned  (up  to 
$74,999,999  million).  The  SFCTA  may  allocate  Prop  K  sales  tax  funding  to  SFMTA  to 
provide  local  match  for  all  FTA  grants  received  by  the  SFMTA.  Currently,  the  Prop  K 
Strategic  Plan  programs  approximately  $20.5  in  sales  tax  funds  to  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
BRT  Project  (see  Chapter  9  of  this  EIS/EIR  for  more  details  on  funding). 

The  architectural  and  landscape  design  included  as  part  of  the  30  percent  design/CER 
would  provide  details  on  station  elements,  including  platform  plans  and  cross  sections. 
Landscape  requirements  for  plantings,  irrigation,  and  hardscape  would  be  determined  during 
this  phase.  OCS  design,  including  poles,  would  be  determined  as  part  of  the  30  percent 
design/CER.  There  would  be  ongoing  coordination  with  SFDPW  for  landscape  and 
OCS/light  pole  design.  Major  utilities  and  potential  hazardous  waste/materials  would  also 
be  initially  addressed  as  part  of  completion  of  the  CER.  Sewer  line  relocation  would  be 
determined  under  stations/platforms  or  underneath  the  BRT  lane,  in  close  consultation  with 
the  SFPUC.  Recognized  Environmental  Concerns  (RECs)  pertaining  to  hazardous  materials 
remediation  would  be  addressed  in  accordance  with  federal  and  state  hazardous  materials 
and  waste  laws. 

A  schedule  and  cost  Risk  Assessment  update  for  the  FTA  would  be  completed  as  part  of  the 
65  percent  plans,  and  then  95  percent  plans  would  be  prepared  including  construction 
permit  applications  for  local,  state,  and  federal  agencies.  The  final,  or  100  percent  plans, 
specifications  and  estimate  would  include  final  permits,  maintenance  agreements,  ROW 
certification,  and  contractor  bid-ready  plans  and  specifications. 

Following  completion  of  design,  construction  of  the  project,  is  planned  to  begin  in  2016  and 
last  approximately  14  to  21  months.  BRT  service  is  anticipated  to  begin  in  2018.  Caltrans 
and  SFDPW  would  provide  approvals  for  construction  as  noted  below. 

2.9  Permits  and  Approvals 

Prior  to  commencement  of  construction  activities,  the  following  environmental-related 
approvals  shown  in  Table  2-10  would  be  required.  Formal  permits  may  not  be  required  in  all 
cases.  The  SFMTA  would  pursue  obtaining  required  permits. 


2-38 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Table  2-10:  Anticipated  Environmental-Related  Permits  and  Approvals 


AGENCY 

APPROVAL  OR  PERMIT 

Approves  tree  removals  and  replanting  in  public  ROW. 

SFDPW 

Approves  landscape  design  plan,  including  tree  type  and  planting 
r/-homp  fnr  mprlian«;  sidewalks  and  stations. 

The  Director  of  Public  Works  must  Approve  nighttime  construction 
work. 

Approves  street  excavation  work. 

\—a  1  LI  d  1  1  j 

Approves  Project  Study  Report/Project  Report,  including  conceptual 
design  of  the  project. 

Approves  MOU  for  conversion  of  a  traffic  lane  to  dedicated  transit  use. 

Approves  Cooperative  Agreement  for  construction. 

San  Francisco  Planning 
Department 

Prepares  General  Plan  Referrals  that  determine  consistency  of  project 
with  General  Plan,  which  support  Board  of  Supervisors  approval  of 
sidewalk  and  grade  changes. 

San  Francisco  Arts 
Commission 

Approves  design  of  public  structures. 

San  Francisco  Historic 
Preservation  Commission 

Approves  certificate  of  appropriateness  regarding  design  of  landscape 
and  structures  in  the  Civic  Center  Historic  District. 

City  Hall  Preservation 

A  H  \/ 1  c     r\/  1   f\  m  m  ittoa 
rMJVIowiy  v_u  r  1 1 1 1 1 1 1 LCC 

Reviews  design  of  project  structures  within  the  Civic  Center  Historic 
District  adjacent  to  City  Hall  and  advises  the  San  Francisco  Historic 
Preservation  on  the  certificate  of  appropriateness  approval. 

SFPUC,  San  Francisco  Fire 
Department,  PG&E,  and 
SFDPW 

Coordination  with  utility  providers  regarding  temporary  or  permanent 
relocation  of  utilities  (including  sewer  line)  through  NOI  and  other 
filings  with  the  San  Francisco  Street  Construction  Coordination  Center 
and  participation  in  the  Committee  for  Utility  Liaison  on  Construction 
and  Other  Projects  (CULCOP).  In  addition,  coordination  with  the  San 

Franfi^m  Firp  r}f*r\3rtme*nY  r&anrAmn  tFio  Aiivili-^rw  W/ntar  Ciir\r-Jw 

r  iain.iiLu  rue  L/cpd 1 1 1 1  i trr  1 1  rctLaruiiig       Muxiiidry  water  supply 
System. 

Approves  discharge  for  release  of  any  construction  wastewater, 
including  groundwater,  into  the  City's  Combined  Sewer  System. 

SFPUC 

Determines  compliance  with  National  Pollutant  Discharge  Elimination 
System  (NPDES)  Permit  requirements  for  construction  activities 
including  contractor's  preparation  of  a  Stormwater  Pollution 
Prevention  Plan  (SWPPP). 

San  Francisco  Bay  Area 
Regional  Water  Quality 
Control  Board  (RWQCB) 

Receives  General  Construction  Activity  Stormwater  Permit.  An  NOI  to 
construct,  which  includes  the  SWPPP,  must  be  filed  with  the  San 
Francisco  Bay  RWQCB  at  least  30  days  prior  to  any  soil-disturbing 
activities. 

San  Francisco  Board  of 
Supervisors 

Approves  sidewalk  and  grade  changes. 

MTC 

Air  Quality  Conformity  Determination. 

Source:  Parsons,  joij. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


>  )9 


Chapter  2:  Project  Alternatives 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


This  page  intentionally  left  blank. 


2-40 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3 
Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


CHAPTER  SUMMARY:  The  chapter  is  presented  in  five  sections:  Corridor  Travel  Patterns,  Transit,  Private 
Vehicle  Traffic,  Nonmotorized  Travel,  and  Parking.  Each  section  discusses  existing  conditions  and  the 
potential  benefits  and  impacts  (i.e.,  positive  and  negative)  of  implementation  of  each  of  the  BRT 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA.  Consistent  with  CEQA/NEPA  requirements,  each  section  also 
discusses  the  environmental  impacts  of  each  of  the  build  alternatives  in  both  the  near-term  (2015)  and 
long-term  (2035)  horizon  years  and  addresses  significant  impacts. 


CHAPTER 


3 


Transportation  Analysis 

Environmental  analyses  presented  in  this  chapter  are  primarily  based  on  the  Vehicular 
Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum17  (CHS,  2013)  prepared  for  the  proposed  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project,  and  the  Analysis  of  Nonmotorized  Transportation  Impacts 
Technical  Report  prepared  in  support  of  the  proposed  project  (Arup,  2013).  These  technical 
studies  are  incorporated  in  this  EIS/EIR  by  reference. 

The  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  provides  an  overview  of  the 
methodology  to  create  travel  demand  forecasting,  traffic  analysis,  and  microsimulation 
modeling  inputs  to  represent  future  year  conditions,  along  with  the  resulting  traffic  related 
environmental  impacts.  It  also  includes  a  validation  report  for  the  San  Francisco  Chained 
Activity  Modeling  Process  (SF-CHAMP),  San  Francisco's  travel  demand  forecasting  model, 
which  is  referenced  directly  throughout  Chapter  3.  Similarly,  the  report  includes  a  data 
portfolio  for  the  VISSIM  microsimulation  model  used  to  better  understand  the  performance 
of  BRT.  The  VISSIM  model  is  referenced  directly  in  this  chapter  as  well. 

The  Vehicular  Traffic  Technical  Memorandum  and  Nonmotorized  Transportation  Impacts 
Technical  Report  are  available  upon  request  to  SFCTA  through  the  following  contact: 

Michael  Schwartz 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 
1455  Market  Street,  22nd  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94103 
415-522-4823 

michael.schwartz@sfcta.org 

3.0  Introduction 

The  Locally  Preferred  Alternative  (EPA)  is  a  refinement  of  the  two  center-running  build 
alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B).  Pot 
nearly  all  of  the  environmental  impact  areas  and  BRT  performance  areas  described  in 
Sections  3.1  through  3.3,  the  I. PA  has  similar  consequences  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B.  In  one  instance  (platform  crowding  in  Section  3.2).  the  LPA 
performs  similarly  to  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B,  but  not  Build  Alternative  » 
with  Design  Option  B,  and  is  so  noted.  The  LPA  performs  differently  thin  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  for  metrics  discussed  in  Sections  3.4  ami  V.\  but 
the  environmental  consequences  are  consistent  with  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B.  In  addition,  the  Vallcjo  Northbound  Station  Variant  performs  similarly  to  the 
LPA  on  almost  even-  environmental  impact  area  and  BRT  performance  area  in  Chapter  V 


A  draft  Of  thil  study  was  prepared  for  the  Draft  I- IS/KIR  and  it  has  been  rcv.scd  and  f.nah/ed  ...  iddlCM  the  1  I'  \  ind 
responses  to  comments  for  the  Final  FIS/FIR. 


Lombard  - 


n     31  < 

•g— i— 5- 

=  z 

2 


Broadway 


California  - 


Ceary- 


McAllirter  • 


TIAMK 

tTVOT 


Figure  3.1-1: 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue 

Corridor  Study  Area 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Where  there  could  be  some  minor  differences  in  performance  between  the  LPA  and  the 
Design  Variant  (mostly  for  transit  travel  time  and  reliability  as  discussed  in  Chapter  3.2),  the 
text  notes  these  differences. 

3.1  Corridor  Travel  Patterns 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  key  thoroughfare  within  San  Francisco's  roadway  grid  system.  It 
functions  as  a  major  transit  spine  in  San  Francisco's  Muni  network,  and  it  is  also  part  of  the 
US  101  regional  road  system.  This  section  provides  an  overview  of  the  existing  and  future 
travel  patterns  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  on  parallel  streets,  and  in  the  surrounding 
neighborhoods,  with  or  without  BRT.  The  travel  demand  projections  discussed  in  this 
section  serve  as  the  basis  for  the  operations  models  described  in  Sections  3.2  and  3.3,  and 
provide  several  measures  of  performance  of  the  build  alternatives. 

For  Sections  3.1  through  3.3,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  are  described  together  because  these 
alternatives  are  not  distinguishable  by  the  travel  demand  forecasting,  traffic  analysis,  or 
microsimulation  models.  Similarly,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  along 
with  the  LPA,  are  described  together  for  Sections  3.1  though  3.3.  For  Section  3.1  in 
particular,  many  of  the  figures  reported  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  also  apply  to  Design 
Option  B  (and  the  LPA)  because  travel  demand  forecasting  estimates  were  not  sensitive  to 
the  differences  in  travel  patterns  between  those  alternatives.  For  these  analyses,  the  center- 
running  alternatives  are  described  together. 

3.1.1 1  Existing  Travel  Patterns 

This  section  on  existing  travel  patterns  presents  the  following  data  to  illustrate  existing  and 
future  travel  patterns:  travel  demand,  regional  versus  local  travel  patterns,  divertibility  of 
trips,  and  mode  splits.  Most  of  the  data  for  this  section  were  obtained  from  SF-CHAMP. 

SF-CHAMP  is  the  San  Francisco  travel  demand  forecasting  model,  and  it  was  used  to 
determine  how  the  project  would  change  traffic  patterns  or  modes  of  transport  as  described 
in  Chapter  3  of  the  EIS/EIR.  SF-CHAMP  is  a  computer-based  tool  that  can  be  used  to 
assess  the  impacts  of  land  use,  socioeconomic,  and  transportation  system  changes  on  the 
performance  of  the  local  transportation  system.  SF-CHAMP  was  developed  to  reflect  San 
Francisco's  unique  transportation  system  and  socioeconomic  and  land  use  characteristics. 
The  relationships  and  parameters  in  SF-CHAMP  were  statistically  estimated  from  San 
Francisco  residents'  observed  travel  patterns  and  then  tested  to  make  sure  the  model 
matched  observed  transit  line  boardings,  roadway  volumes,  and  numbers  of  vehicles.  For 
each  modeled  scenario,  it  uses  a  detailed  representation  of  San  Francisco's  transportation 
system,  as  well  as  population  and  employment  characteristics,  to  produce  measures  relevant 
to  transportation  and  land  use  planning.  Using  future  year  transportation,  land  use,  and 
socioeconomic  inputs,  the  model  forecasts  future  travel  demand.  A  full  description  of  SF- 
CHAMP  and  its  validation  report,  the  modeling  inputs  used  in  SF-CHAMP,  including  the 
representation  of  BRT  in  the  model,  and  details  about  the  modeling  process  used  for  this 
EIS/EIR  can  be  found  in  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS, 
2013). 

For  the  purposes  of  this  section,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  study  area  is  defined  as  Van 
Ness  Avenue  and  five  parallel  streets,  including  Gough  and  Franklin  streets  to  the  west  and 
Polk,  Larkin,  and  Hyde  streets  to  the  east.  Figure  3.1-1  shows  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor 
travel  pattern  study  area  and  the  analysis  screenlines.  Turning  movement  traffic  volume 
counts'8  collected  in  2007  and  the  SF-CHAMP  travel  demand  forecasting  model  were  used 


1N  These  traffic  turning  movement  counts  were  taken  at  91  intersections  and  were  a  separate  effort  from  the  24-hour 
traffic  counts  collected  in  March  2007  at  5  locations  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  1  location  each  along  Franklin  and 
Gough  streets  to  determine  the  peak  traffic  hour. 


3-2 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


to  examine  motorized  traffic  (i.e.,  auto  and  transit)  volumes  at  various  screenlines  (i.e.,  cross 
streets)  along  the  corridor  from  Market  Street  to  Lombard  Street. 

3.1.1.1  I  DEMAND 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  major  street  within  San  Francisco's  transportation  network  earning 
on  average  55,000  trips  via  motorized  modes  for  a  roadway  segment  on  an  average  weekday 
of  travel  (see  Table  3.1-1).  At  an  average  screenline,  39,000  people  travel  by  private  vehicle19 
daily  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  referred  to  by  shorthand  in  this  section  as  "automobile."  This  is 
approximately  31  percent  of  the  total  number  of  private  vehicle  trips  made  even  day  along 
the  entire  corridor.  By  contrast,  at  an  average  screenline,  more  than  16,000  people  travel  via 
transit  daily  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  which  comprises  80  percent  of  all  transit  trips  in  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  corridor  study  area.  Franklin  and  Gough  average  a  combined  59,000  daily 
automobile  person  trips,  50  percent  more  than  Van  Ness  Avenue,  making  this  pair  the 
primary  automobile  route  within  the  corridor  study  area. 

Table  3.1-1:  Existing  Weekday  Motorized  Travel  Demand  at  Average  Screenline 


PRIVATE  VEHICLE 

TRANSIT 

TOTAL 

Van  Ness  Avenue                          39,000  (71%) 

16,000  (29%) 

55,000  (lOO%) 

Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor                ,  ,„,„,, 
Pl  j   .                                     126,000  86% 
Study  Area                                            v  ' 

20,000  (14%) 

146,000  (ioo%) 

Note:  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  study  area  is  defined  as  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  five  parallel  streets,  including  Cough  and  Franklin  streets 
to  the  west  and  Polk,  Larkin,  and  Hyde  streets  to  the  east,  Screenlines  were  defined  as  motorized  traffic  that  crossed  specific  streets  up  and 
down  the  corridor,  specifically  Fell,  McAllister,  Geary,  California,  Broadway,  and  Lombard. 

Source:  SF-CHAMP 


Private  vehicle  trips  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  substantially  higher  in  the  southern  portion 
of  the  study  area  near  Fell  and  McAllister  streets  (see  Figure  3.1-2)  than  in  the  northern 
portion.  Van  Ness  Avenue  automobile  person  trips  peak  at  Fell  Street,  which  has  60  percent 
more  automobile  trips  than  at  Lombard  Street;  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  inclusive 
of  the  parallel  streets,  there  are  more  than  twice  as  many  daily  automobile  trips  at  Fell  Street 
than  at  Lombard  Street.  Transit  person  trips  have  a  different  pattern.  While  the  transit 
person  trips  are  also  higher  in  the  southern  section  near  Fell  Street  than  in  the  northern 
section,  the  peak  for  transit  demand  is  in  the  mid  section  between  California  and  McAllister 
streets. 


Franklin  and  Cough  average 
a  combined  59,000  daily 
automobile  person  trips, 
which  is  50  percent  more 
than  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
making  this  pair  the 
primary  automobile  route 
within  the  corridor  study  area. 


"  Private  vehicles  include:  automobiles,  trucks,  taxis,  and  motorcycles 
San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Figure  3.1-2:  Existing  (2005)  Daily  Motorized  Person-Trips 
for  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Select  Screenlines 


Although  Van  Ness  Avenue  is 
designated  a  regional  arterial 
road  in  the  San  Francisco 
General  Plan  and  is  part  of 
the  US  ioi  system,  the  two 
parallel  streets  to  the  west, 
Franklin  and  Gough  streets, 
carry  more  regional  automobile 
trips  than  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


50,000  -| 

45,000 

40,000  H 

35,000 

30,000 
25,000 
20,000  - 
15,000  - 

10,000  - 

5,000  - 
0 


•Private  Vehicle  Person-Trips 
•Transit  Person-Trips 


Fell  McAllister  Geary  California 

Screenline 

Note:  The  existing  conditions  SF-CHAMP  modeling  is  year  2005. 


Broadway 


Source:  SF-CHAMP 


Regional  versus  Local  Trip  Making 


Although  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  designated  a  regional  arterial  road  in  the  San  Francisco 
General  Plan  and  is  part  of  the  US  101  system,  the  two  parallel  streets  to  the  west,  Franklin 
and  Gough  streets,  carry  substantially  more  regional  automobile  trips  than  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Local  trips  are  defined  as  having  their  origin  and  destinations  within  San  Francisco; 
regional  trips  are  defined  as  having  at  least  one  trip  endpoint  (i.e.,  origin  or  destination) 
outside  of  San  Francisco;  pass-through  trips  are  a  subset  of  regional  trips  that  have  both 
endpoints  outside  San  Francisco  (e.g.,  a  trip  from  Marin  County  to  San  Mateo  County).  The 
one-way  orientation  of  Franklin  and  Gough  streets20  (Franklin  NB,  Gough  SB),  comprising 
four  lanes  in  each  direction  during  the  peak  with  coordinated  signal  timing,  explains  the 
higher  attractiveness  of  the  couplet  to  regional  motorists. 

Table  3.1-2  shows  the  typical  origins  and  destinations  of  automobile  drivers  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  Franklin  and  Gough  streets  during  the  PM  peak  period  (i.e.,  3:30  p.m.  to  6:30 
p.m.).  The  table  shows  that  in  the  northern  end  of  the  corridor  at  Broadway,  Franklin  and 
Gough  carry  a  higher  number  of  regional  auto  trips  than  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  a 
significantly  higher  number  of  pass-through  trips,  even  though  there  are  fewer  total  vehicles 
during  the  PM  peak.  In  the  southern  portion  of  the  study  area,  Franklin/Gough  carry  a 
similar  portion  of  regional  auto  trips,  but  a  significantly  higher  number  and  percentage  of 
pass-through  auto  trips.  This  indicates  that  during  weekdays,  Franklin  and  Gough  streets 
serve  as  a  regional  connection  for  autos  between  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge,  the  Bay  Bridge, 
and  the  rest  of  the  Bay  Area,  even  more  so  than  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Gough  Street  is  two-way  north  of  Sacramento  Street. 


3-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Table  3.1-2:  Regional  versus  Local  Auto  Trips  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Franklin/Cough  Streets  during  the  PM  Peak 


TOTAL  VEHICLE  TRIPS 

ALL  LOCAL  TRIPS1 

ALL  REGIONAL 
TRIPS? 

RECIONAL  PASS 
THROUGH  TRIPS' 

At  Broadway  Screenline 

Van  Ness  Avenue 

8,200 
(100%) 

5.500 
(67%) 

2,600 

(33%) 

<ioo 

(<!%) 

Franklin/Gough  Streets 

6,500 
(lOO%) 

3JOO 
(58%) 

2,800 
(43%) 

4OO 

(6%) 

Between  Hayes  and  Grove 

Van  Ness  (SB  only) 

4;  6OO 
(lOO%) 

3,700 
(80%) 

900 
(20%) 

<50 

(<!%) 

Franklin/Gough 

13,000 

(100%) 

lOJOO 
(80%) 

2,600 
(20%) 

300 

(2%) 

1.    All  Local  Trips  are  defined  as  trips  beginning  in  San  Francisco,  passing  through  the  screenline  on  Van  Ness  or  Franklin/Cough,  and 
ending  in  San  Francisco. 


2.  All  Regional  Trips  are  defined  as  trips  that  cross  the  screenline  on  Van  Ness  or  Franklin/Cough  and  have  at  least  one  of  their  end  points 
in  San  Francisco. 

3.  Regional  Pass-Through  Trips  are  defined  as  trips  that  begin  outside  San  Francisco,  cross  the  screenline  on  Van  Ness  or  Franklin/Cough, 
pass  through  the  corridor,  and  end  outside  San  Francisco.  This  is  a  subset  of  All  Regional  Trips. 

Source:  SF  CHAMP. 


Trip  Divertibility 

San  Francisco  has  a  grid  structure  that  allows  drivers  the  opportunity  to  choose  from  manv 
routes  to  get  to  their  destinations.  As  shown  in  Table  3.1-3,  SF-CHAMP  forecasts  indicate 
that  less  than  half  of  local  drivers  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  have  origins  or  destinations  in 
neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue.  This  percentage  is  higher  for  regional 
travelers  with  an  origin  or  desdnadon  outside  of  San  Francisco.  This  means  that  these 
drivers  could  divert  to  a  variety  of  routes  outside  of  the  main  parallel  streets  in  the  corridor 
in  the  event  BRT  is  implemented  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Table  3.1-3:  Divertible  and  Nondivertible  Trips 
(North  of  Broadway)  during  PM  Peak  Period 

along  Van  Ness  Avenue 

TOTAL 

LOCAL 

RECIONAL 

Divertible  Trips  52% 

41% 

76% 

Nondivertible  Trips  48% 

59% 

24% 

Total  100% 

100% 

100% 

1     Divertible  trips  are  trips  that  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  pass  through  the  corridor  without  either  end  point  in  a  neighborhood  surrounding 
Van  Ness  Avenue. 

2.    Nondivertible  trips  are  trips  that  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  have  at  least  one  end  point  in  a  neighborhood  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
so  the  trips  must  use  the  corridor  to  depart  from  their  origin  and/or  arrive  at  their  destination. 

Source:  SF  CHAMP 

3.1.1.2  !  MODE  SPLIT 

Figure  3.1-3  shows  the  neighborhoods  that  surround  Van  Ness  Avenue,  .is  used  111  tin- 
following  analysis  of  mode  split.  The  trips  made  «>,  from,  and  within  the  neighborhood-, 
that  surround  Van  Ness  Avenue  arc  roughly  evenly  divided  between  private  vehicle  (rips  ..nil 
other  modes  (i.e.,  transit,  walking,  or  bicycling  trips).  Table  3.1-4  shows  the  mode  split  tor 
trips  that  have  an  origin  and/or  a  destination  in  a  neighborhood  surrounding  Van  NeM 
Avenue.  Roughly  20  percent  of  trips  to,  from,  or  within  these  neighborhoods  occur  In 
transit.  Regional  trips  arc  slightly  more  likely  than  local  trips  be  on  transit,  in  part  due  .0  the 


Figure  3.1-3: 
Neighborhoods 
Surrounding  Van  Ness 
Avenue  used  for  Mode 
Analysis 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


catchment  area  of  the  Civic  Center  BART  station.  More  than  25  percent  of  all  the  trips  that 
start  or  end  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  neighborhoods  are  nonmotorized  (mainly  pedestrian 
trips).  More  than  half  of  all  trips  that  start  and  end  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  neighborhoods 
(not  shown  in  table)  are  walk  or  bike  trips. 


Table  3.1-4:  Mode  Split  for  Daily  Trips  To,  From,  or  Within  Neighborhoods 
Surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue 


TOTAL  DAILY  PERSONAL  TRIPS 

PRIVATE  VEHICLE  TRIPS 

TRANSIT 
TRIPS 

WALK/BIKE 
TRIPS 

All  Trips 

597,000 

54% 

20% 

26% 

Local  Trips 

518,000 

51% 

20% 

30% 

Regional  Trips 

78,600 

78% 

22% 

<1% 

Source:  SF-CHAMP 


3.1.1.3  I  COLLISIONS 

Within  the  2-mile  length  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  study  area,  nearly  all  collisions  over  a 
six  year  period  (approximately  97  percent  or  252  of  261)  occurred  at  intersections,  based  on 
the  most  recent  data  available  (2003-2008).  The  most  common  types  of  collisions  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue  over  this  period  were  broadside  (41  percent),  which  occurred  during  vehicle 
turns,  especially  left-turn  movements;  rear  end  (29  percent),  which  occurred  due  to  sudden 
stops  and  poor  traffic  signal  visibility;  auto-pedestrian  (11  percent),  all  of  which  occurred  in 
the  roadway  and  most  of  which  occurred  in  crosswalks;  and  sideswipe  (11  percent),  which 
occur  mostly  during  vehicle  lane  changes.  Pedestrian  collision  injuries  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 
have  increased  between  2008  and  2010,  in  spite  of  the  implementation  of  a  double-fine  zone 
for  speeding  along  the  length  of  the  study  area. 

The  build  alternatives  incorporate  design  features  intended  to  reduce  the  likelihood  of  each 
of  these  collision  types,  especially  collisions  between  vehicles  and  pedestrians.  The  reducdon 
of  left-turn  pockets,  combined  with  provision  of  dedicated  left-turn  signals,  would 
significandy  reduce  the  likelihood  of  broadside  collisions.  The  traffic  signal  mast  arms  and 
new  signal  heads  provided  as  part  of  SFgo  would  significandy  improve  signal  visibility, 
reducing  the  likelihood  of  rear-end  collisions.  Pedestrian  countdown  signals,  improved 
signal  timing,  and  shorter  crossing  distances  would  reduce  the  likelihood  of  collisions 
between  vehicles  and  pedestrians  (a  more  detailed  analysis  of  pedestrian  conditions, 
including  collisions,  is  provided  in  Section  3.4).  Finally,  removing  bus  vehicles,  which 
frequendy  merge  in  and  out  of  traffic,  from  the  mixed  traffic  lanes  would  contribute  to 
reduced  sideswipe  collisions. 


3.1.2  I  Future  Travel  Patterns 


The  build  alternatives 
incorporate  design  features 
intended  to  reduce  the 
likelihood  of  the  most  common 
types  of  vehicles  collisions, 
especially  collisions  between 
vehicles  and  pedestrians. 


This  secdon  discusses  future  travel  patterns  in  2015  and  2035  for  the  No  Build  Alternadve 
and  the  three  build  alternadves  (Build  Alternative  2  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  including 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LP  A).  Data  for  this  section  were  obtained  from  the  SF-CHAMP 
travel  demand  forecasting  model. 

3.1.2.1  I  PLANNED  NETWORK  IMPROVEMENTS 

SF-CHAMP,  in  its  analysis  of  travel  patterns  in  future  years,  incorporates  transportation 
network  improvements  that  are  likely  to  be  implemented  independently  of  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT.  Between  2005  and  2015,  the  key  changes  to  the  transportation  network 
assumed  in  the  baseline  and  all  of  the  build  alternatives  include: 

•     Two-way  circulation  on  Hayes  and  Fell  by  2015  (see  Chapter  2,  Project  Description,  for 
more  details). 


3-6 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  Central  Subway  rail  project  by  2035.  This  project  involves  an  extension  of  the 
T-Third  light-rail  line  underground  in  the  SoMa  area  beneath  Fourth  and 
Stockton  Streets  to  Chinatown.  For  more  information  on  this  project,  visit 
www.sfmta.com/ cms/mcsp/ cspover.htm. 

•  Geary  BRT  by  2035.  This  project  involves  similar  improvements  as  the  proposed 
project  for  Van  Ness  Avenue,  including,  a  dedicated  transit  lane,  proof  of  payment/ all- 
door  boarding,  and  TSP.  For  more  information  on  the  Geary  BRT,  visit 
www.gearybrt.org. 

In  addition,  SF-CHAMP  forecasts  of  future  travel  patterns  assume  growth  in  regional 
population  and  employment  provided  by  ABAG  (p2007),  as  used  in  the  most  recently 
adopted  Regional  Transportation  Plan  (RTP),  Transportation  2035,  for  which  an  EIR  was 
prepared21.  The  projections  anticipate  significant  population  and  employment  growth  along 
the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  and  throughout  San  Francisco.  State  of  California 
Government  Code  65089  states  that  databases  (i.e.,  land  use  inputs)  for  models  such  as  SF- 
CHAMP  used  to  determine  quantitative  impacts  of  development  on  the  circulation  system 
"...shall  be  consistent  with  the  databases  used  by  the  regional  planning  agency  [i.e.,  MTC]". 
For  this  reason,  land  use  projections  used  in  the  SF-CHAMP  model  for  EIRs  led  by  the  San 
Francisco  Planning  Department,  as  well  as  this  EIS/EIR,  are  within  1  percent  of  regional 
ABAG  projections.  The  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  takes  San  Francisco's 
employment  and  housing  growth  forecast  by  ABAG  at  the  county  level  and  distributes  the 
growth  within  the  county  to  reflect  anticipated  developments  in  San  Francisco,  such  as  the 
CPMC  and  approved  and  planned  projects  within  the  Market  and  Octavia  Area  Plan  study 
area.  This  methodology,  which  is  consistent  with  local  and  regional  best  practices,  has  been 
approved  by  the  MTC  such  that  SF-CHAMP  was  found  to  be  regionally  consistent  with 
MTC  in  San  Francisco's  Congestion  Management  Program  Update.  More  information  on 
the  methodology  to  account  for  future  land  use  growth  in  SF-CHAMP  can  be  found  in  the 
Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

3.1.2.2  I  SYSTEM  PERFORMANCE:  PERSON  THROUGHPUT,  MODE  SHARE,  LANE 
PRODUCTIVITY,  AND  VEHICLE  OCCUPANCY 

Mode  Share.  With  the  BRT  project,  a  greater  percentage  of  trips  in  the  corridor  and  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue  will  be  made  via  transit  relative  to  automobile  than  in  the  no-build  scenario. 

With  the  implementation  of  BRT,  transit  ridership  would  increase  by  28  percent  (Build 
Alternative  2)  to  35  percent  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B, 
and  the  FPA);  SF-CHAMP  outputs  indicate  that  up  to  50  percent  of  these  new  transit  riders 
could  be  former  private  vehicle  (auto)  occupants,  contributing  to  one  of  the  major  goals  of 
the  project  and  the  City's  Transit  First  policy  by  reversing  the  trend  towards  declining  mode 
share. 

As  a  result  of  the  increased  ridership,  average  share  of  trips  made  by  transit  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  increase  from  29  percent  to  40  percent  (Build  Alternative  2)  or  44  percent 
(Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  and  the  I. PA)  of  all 
motorized  trips  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  itself;  at  some  locations,  transit  riders  would  comprise 
more  than  50  percent  of  all  motorized  trips,  meaning  the  two  transit  lanes  w  ould  be  parrying 
more  people  than  the  four  remaining  mixed-traffic  lanes  combined. 

Person-Throughput.  Person-throughput  refers  to  the  number  of  people  that  travel  through  .1 
corridor  (e.g.,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  from  dough  to  Hyde  streets)  on  a  d.uK  basis. 
Using  outputs  from  SF-CHAMP,  Figure  3.1-4  shows  how  average  person-throughput  levels  | 
are  expected  to  change  with  the  BRT  alternatives.  With  Build  Alternative  2,  avenge  (fail) 
person  throughput  in  2015  would  decline  slightly  (4  percent)  relative  to  the  no  project  W  ith 
the  center  BRT  alternatives  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  ( Jptiorj  B.  | 


Transit  ridership  would  increase 
by  28  to  35  percent  with  the 
implementation  of  BRT;  more 
than  50  percent  of  these  new 
transit  riders  would  be  former 
private  vehicle  (auto)  occupants. 


The  RTP  and  its  associated  lilR  arc  available  to  the  public  at  the  MTC  office  a,  101  |jKh,h  .street.  (  Ukla.nl  «  \  "  I 
anil  on  the  Ml(.  \Vch  site  at  www.mtc.ca.tfov 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013  ,  7 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


and  the  LP  A)  average  daily  person-throughput  is  maintained  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
corridor  in  the  2015  time  horizon.  This  means  that  the  corridor  would  carry  as  many  people 
with  center-running  BRT  as  it  would  without  the  project.  In  2035,  all  of  the  build 
alternadves  maintain  person  throughput  in  the  corridor  versus  2035  No  Project  (change  is 
less  than  1  percent).  While  person-throughput  levels  are  maintained  (for  Center  BRT  and 
the  LP  A)  in  the  corridor  on  average  between  Market  and  Lombard,  changes  in  person- 
throughput  levels  do  vary  from  locadon  to  locadon  due  to  changes  in  traffic  patterns  (see 
Secdon  3.1.2.3). 

Figure  3.1-4:  Average  Daily  Auto  and  Transit  Trips  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor 
at  Average  Screenline* 

160,000 


140.000 


I  100,000 


.9-  80,000 


40,000 


■  Transit 


Private 
Vehicles 


2005  Existing  2015  No  Project 

-The  LPA  performs  the  same  as  Center  BRT. 


2015  Side  BRT 


2015  Center  BRT 


Source:  SFCHAMP 


It  should  be  noted  that  this  analysis  reports  forecasted  travel  demand  based  on  the 
assumption  that  the  transit  network  and  bus  frequencies  stay  similar  to  existing  conditions; 
however,  BRT  would  create  the  capacity  to  carry  more  person-throughput  than  conservative 
assumptions  forecast.  Transit  network  improvements,  such  as  the  implementation  of  the 
Transit  Effectiveness  Project's  Rapid  Network,  would  also  contribute  to  person-throughput 
increases  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  more  cost  effectively  than  in  the  No  Build 
Alternative,  and  without  additional  vehicular  traffic  impacts.  Preliminary  results  indicate  that 
1  to  2  more  buses  per  hour  could  be  added  on  both  the  47  and  49  BRT  routes  at  no 
additional  operating  cost  based  on  the  travel  time  savings  in  2015  (see  Section  3.2  and 
Chapter  9  of  this  EIS/EIR). 

Lane  Productivity.  As  shown  in  Table  3.1-5,  SF-CHAMP  outputs  indicate  that  due  to  the 
increase  in  transit  ridership  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  BRT  service,  each  travel  lane  would 
carry  more  people  per  hour  (both  private  vehicles  and  transit)  as  a  result  of  BRT  when 
compared  with  the  No  Build  Alternative.  While  there  would  be  a  decrease  in  the  number  of 
mixed  traffic  lanes  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  resulting  auto  travel  lanes  would  carry  more 
people  on  average  than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  Transit  would  carry  1 3  percent  to  36 
percent  more  people  in  its  dedicated  lane  than  each  mixed  traffic  lane  carries,  and  it  would 
provide  the  capacity  to  carry  many  more  trips  per  hour  as  Muni's  Rapid  Network  and  the 
City's  population  grow. 


3-8 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Table  3.1-5:  PM  Peak  Person  Trips/Lane/Hour 

at  Average  Screenline 

AVERAGE  PM  PEAK  TRIPS/LANE/HOUR 

TRANSIT 

PRIVATE  VEHICLES 

0 DOC  F v i cti n n 
a- WW}  LAI  i  LI  1 1  y 

5°5 

55° 

2015  No  Build  Alternative 

6lO 

620 

2015  Build  Alternative  2 

780 

670 

2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4* 

930 

670 

*The  LPA  performs  the  same  as  Center  BRT. 

Source:  SF-CHAMP 

Vehicle  Occupancy.  Vehicle  occupancy  is  another  measure  of  roadway  efficiency.  In  the  2015 
No  Build  Alternative,  an  average  of  1.7  people  occupies  each  motorized  vehicle  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue,  inclusive  of  private  and  transit  vehicles.  With  the  implementation  of  BRT  and 
the  increased  number  of  people  riding  transit  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  vehicle  occupancy 
would  increase  to  2.0  (Build  Alternative  2)  or  2.1  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA) 
people  per  vehicle.  This  means  the  street  would  function  on  average  at  typical  high- 
occupancy  vehicle  (HOV)  facility  levels. 

3.1.2.3  I  VEHICLE  DIVERSIONS 

By  converting  one  of  the  mixed  travel  lanes  in  each  direction  to  a  transit-only  lane,  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  would  reduce  the  private  vehicle  capacity  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.22  To 
predict  the  traffic  volumes  for  all  intersections  under  any  scenario,  a  four-step  process  was 
followed  and  is  described  below.  A  complete  description  of  this  process  can  be  found  in  the 
Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Traffic  turning  movement  counts  were  collected  at  91  of  the  139  intersections  in  the 
traffic  study  area  (see  Figure  3.3-1  for  a  map  of  intersections  in  the  traffic  study  area)  in 
spring  2007,  with  a  few  additional  intersections  collected  in  2008  and  2009  to  better 
model  the  traffic  south  of  Market  Street.  The  counts  were  collected  at  all  intersections 
on  Gough,  Franklin  and  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  at  an  additional  1 1  intersections  on 
Polk,  Larkin,  and  Hyde  streets  within  the  vehicular  traffic  study  area.  Traffic  counts 
were  also  collected  at  the  intersection  of  the  Duboce/13,h/US  101  Freeway  off- ramp. 
Intersections  where  turning  movement  counts  were  collected  can  be  found  in  Appendix 
4  of  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013).23 

The  specific  turning  movement  counts  collected  as  part  of  Step  1  were  used,  along  with 
a  signal  timing  plan  provided  by  the  SFMTA,  to  calibrate  the  existing  conditions  (20(F) 
Synchro  traffic  analysis  model  for  all  intersections  in  the  vehicular  traffic  study  area. 
This  original  set  of  volumes  was  balanced  for  all  139  study  area  intersections  between 
the  total  number  of  vehicles  arriving  at  an  intersection  and  departing  from  an 
intersection.  For  study  area  intersections  along  Polk,  I.arkin,  and  Hyde  streets  where 
existing  condition  volumes  were  not  collected  using  turning  movement  counts  this 
balancing  exercise  was  used  to  estimate  the  amount  of  traffic  in  the  existing  conditions 
Synchro  Model.  Section  2.2  of  the  Vehicular  Traff.c  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum 
(CHS,  2013)  describes  the  results  of  the  existing  conditions  (2007)  Synchro  traffic 
model. 


1. 


The  traffic 
-term  2 

m  volumes)  between  2005"  and  2015  and  between  2005  and  2035  for  each  north  south 


ie  traffic  volume  cshma.es  generated  by  SF-CHAMP  for  the  near-term  2<>IS  and 
long-term  2035  horizon  years  were  used  to  calculate  growth  factors  (Lc,  percent  change 


"  £P5  is  fClluCCJ fi       "T  0BMhW  b»ih  I"*  «ul  private  vehicle,  current  use  ,he  ntf,.  m.».  ,r«cl 

I  lease  note  fall  these  manual  m.ersecUon  level  traffic  coum,  are  dH.crcn,  ,han  .he  24- hour  ,u!k  cum,  u.,1  ... 

IdZ'^^^  2005  ~ «  *"*  -,h  ,hc  j.r  ,m, 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  )uly  2013 


68  to  81  percent  of  all  private 
vehicle  (auto)  trips  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue  under  the 
No  Build  Alternative  would 
continue  to  use 

Van  Ness  Avenue  if  BRT  were  to 
be  implemented  in  2015.  The 
remaining  19  to  32  percent  drive 
on  a  parallel  street  within  the 
corridor,  use  transit;  walk  or 
bike;  change  the  time  of  day  of 
their  trip;  forego  the  trip,  or 
continue  driving  using  routes 
in  another  part  of  the  city 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


street  in  four  different  sections  of  the  corridor  from  the  Duboce/13th/US  101  Freeway 
off-ramp  to  Lombard  Street,  and  for  the  east-west  streets  by  facility  type  (e.g.,  arterial, 
collector,  and  local  streets)  in  the  traffic  study  area  from  Mission  to  Lombard  streets. 
These  growth  factors  were  applied  to  the  2007  traffic  volumes  and  calibrated  the 
existing  conditions  (2007)  Synchro  model  to  estimate  2015  near-term  No  Build  and 
2035  long-term  No  Build  traffic  volumes  to  minimize  margins  of  errors.  The  initial  set 
of  future  traffic  volumes  was  balanced  between  the  upstream  departure  volumes  and 
downstream  arrival  volumes  to  ensure  equilibrium  of  traffic  volumes  within  the  study 
area.  Similarly,  traffic  volumes  generated  by  SF-CHAMP  were  used  to  create  growth 
factors  on  the  parallel  streets  and  side  streets  for  BRT  project  scenarios.  These  growth 
factors  were  applied  to  the  calibrated  Synchro  existing  conditions  model  to  estimate 
traffic  volumes  for  each  intersection  in  2015  and  2035  for  all  of  the  build  alternatives. 
The  next  two  steps  involved  adjustments  to  the  raw  model  outputs  that  account  for 
differences  in  turning  opportunities  to  more  realistically  represent  diverted  traffic  within 
the  corridor. 

Using  the  raw  estimated  traffic  volumes  created  through  Steps  1  through  3  above,  a 
series  of  adjustments  were  made  based  on  knowledge  of  San  Francisco  traveler 
behavior. 

The  traffic  diversion  analyses  indicate  that,  on  average,  private  vehicles  would  decrease  by  19 
percent  to  32  percent  in  2015  during  the  PM  peak  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  any  of  the 
build  alternatives  (including  the  LP  A),  or  by  roughly  315  to  650  vehicles  per  hour.25  This 
means  that  68  percent  to  81  percent  of  all  private  vehicle  trips  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  under 
the  No  Build  Alternative  would  continue  to  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  if  BRT  were  to  be 
implemented.26 

The  remaining  19  percent  to  32  percent  of  private  vehicle  trips  that  would  otherwise  have 
used  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  1  (i.e.,  former  Van  Ness  Avenue 
drivers)  would  change  their  tripmaking  in  a  number  of  different  ways.  The  changes  are 
forecast  to  mostly  be  split  between  the  following  choices: 

•  Continue  to  make  the  trip  during  the  PM  peak  period,  but  use  one  of  the  parallel  streets 
I         (i.e.,  Gough,  Franklin,  Polk,  Larkin,  or  Hyde  streets)  in  the  corridor  instead;  or 

•  Use  transit  (see  increase  in  ridership  described  in  Section  3.2);  walk  or  bike;  change  the 
time  of  day  of  their  trip;  forego  the  trip;  or  continue  to  drive  during  the  PM  peak,  but 
use  a  route  through  another  part  of  the  city. 

Changes  in  Circulation  Patterns  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor.  With  implementation  of 
BRT,  some  drivers  are  expected  to  change  routes,  or  divert,  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to 
parallel  streets  due  to  the  reduction  in  overall  vehicle  capacity,  as  well  as  the  reduction  of 
left-turn  opportunities  from  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  reduction  in  left  turns  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  may  make  the  accessibility  of  parallel  streets  relatively  more  attractive  for  local 
drivers  in  comparison,  even  at  similar  speeds.  The  operational  effects  and  traffic  impacts  of 
diversions  within  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  are  discussed  in  greater  detail  in  Sections 
3.3.3.2  and  3.3.3.3.  In  2015,  under  Build  Alternatives  2-4,  including  the  LPA,  approximately 
105  to  450  total  vehicles  in  both  directions  (2  to  7  vehicles  per  minute)  could  divert  away 
from  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  make  their  trip  on  a  parallel  street  within  the  corridor  during  the 
PM  Peak  instead.  Franklin  Street  would  be  the  parallel  route  most  frequently  used  during  the 

.  PM  peak  hour,  compared  with  Gough,  Polk,  Larkin,  and  Hyde  streets.  The  amount  of 
additional  private  vehicle  traffic  varies  widely  up  and  down  the  2-mile  stretch  of  corridor 

j   analyzed,  but  any  given  segment  of  Polk,  Franklin,  or  Gough  streets  could  experience  an 


25  The  number  of  vehicles  and  trips  affected  varies  along  the  2-mile  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  analyzed. 

,26  For  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  the  elimination  of  additional  left  turns  would  cause  vehicles  to  find  alternative 
routes  before  they  enter  South  Van  Ness  and  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  very  southern  end  of  the  corridor  near  Market 
Street,  having  a  significandy  greater  reduction  in  vehicle  traffic  volumes  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  particularly  in  the  NB 
direction  (up  to  965  fewer  vehicles  per  hour  than  in  the  No  Build  Alternative  -hearty  50  percent  of  the  vehicular  traffic 
that  would  have  used  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  No  Build  Alternative). 


3-10 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


additional  50  to  250  vehicles  per  hour  (vph),  or  roughly  one  to  four  additional  vehicles  per 
minute  during  the  PM  peak  hour  in  2015.  Larkin  and  Hyde  could  also  see  an  increase  in 
traffic  volume  of  approximately  20  to  100  vph  (less  than  two  vehicles  per  minute  between 
the  two  streets  combined  during  the  PM  peak  hour).27 

Again,  the  effect  of  these  increases  on  traffic  speeds  and  delays  are  discussed  in  detail  in 
Section  3.3.  With  the  other  transportation  system  improvements  that  the  Authority  and  the 
City  are  studying,  such  as  those  discussed  in  Section  3.3.4,  the  number  of  added  vehicles  on 
Franklin  and  Gough  streets  may  be  reduced,  along  with  an  improvement  in  pedestrian 
conditions  on  these  streets.  Intersection  level  turning  movement  traffic  volumes  for  existing 
conditions  and  each  alternative  in  2015  and  2035  for  the  entire  traffic  study  area  can  be 
found  in  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Changes  in  Circulation  Patterns  outside  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Corridor.28  SF-CHAMP  results  also 
indicate  that  drivers  are  also  expected  to  divert  to  routes  outside  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
corridor.  These  changes  are  expected  as  a  response  to  travelers  changing  destinations  or 
routes  because  of  left-turn  reductions  and  relative  increase  in  the  attractiveness  of  other 
corridors  compared  to  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  These  drivers,  who  in  the  absence  of 
the  BRT  would  have  used  Van  Ness  Avenue,  would  have  a  number  of  alternate  routes  to 
choose  from.  SF-CHAMP  results  indicate  that,  with  implementation  of  BRT,  in  2015, 
streets  outside  the  corridor  (east  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  The  Embarcadero  and  west  of  Van 
Ness  Avenue  to  Pre'sidio  Avenue)  may  see  a  total  increase  in  traffic  of  approximately  2(Hi 
vehicles  in  each  direction  with  no  street  experiencing  more  than  a  50  vph  increase  in  each 
direction.  This  increase  represents  a  relatively  small  percentage  of  the  overall  volumes  in 
those  corridors. 

3.1.2.4  I  EFFECTS  ON  TAXI  AND  SHUTTLE  OPERATIONS 

The  BRT  alternatives  would  not  affect  taxi  or  shuttle  operations  beyond  the  effects  on 
private  vehicle  traffic  described  above  and  in  Section  3.3.  Private  shuttles  are  currently 
prohibited  from  using  transit  lanes  or  stops  citywide.  With  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  both 
shuttle  services  and  taxis  would  continue  to  operate  in  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes.  In  201 1,  the 
Authority  completed  a  Strategic  Analysis  Report  (SAR)  on  the  Role  of  Shuttle  Services  in 
San  Francisco's  Transportation  System.29  The  report  examined  existing  shuttle  sen-ices  and 
regulations  and  developed  policy  recommendations.  The  SFMTA  is  currently  developing  the 
Muni  Partners  Program,  a  component  of  the  multi-agency  Transportation  Demand 
Management  Partnership  Project  led  by  the  Authority.30  The  Partnership  Project  will 
examine  the  feasibility  of  allowing  private  shuttles  to  use  transit  lanes  and  stops.  The  design 
of  the  BRT  system  does  not  preclude  the  use  of  the  facilities  by  private  shuttles  if  it  is  later 
adopted  as  a  City  policy. 

3.1.2.5  I  EFFECTS  ON  TRUCK  TURNING  MOVEMENTS  AND  DIVERSIONS 

The  BRT  alternatives  would  result  in  some  changes  to  truck  circulation  from  changes  to 
curbed  medians  and  curb  bulbs,  specifically  restrictions  in  truck  turns  onto  Van  Ness 
Avenue  due  to  smaller  turning  radii.  Preliminary  engineering  and  analysis  indicate  the 
following  truck  turn  restrictions  may  be  required  for  all  build  alternatiyes:  WB  right  turn  to 
NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Market  Street,  KB  left  turn  to  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  I  B  right 


The  greatest  increase  in  traffic  volumes  in  the  study  area  would  he  on  Iranklin  Street,  north  of  Market  Street  fol 
Design  <  )ption  B  and  the  LPA.  Due  in  larKe  part  to  the  reduction  of  left-turn  pockets  along  Van  \osv  Uenuc  let. 
tummg  vehicles  under  the  Design  ( )pt.on  H  and  I.PA  would  use  that  segment  of  I  ranklin  Street  to  go  north  and  thus 
would  experience  an  increase  ol  up  to  M0  vehicles  in  2015  and  620  vehicles  in  20VS  with  the  implementation  ol  the 
I.PA.  l-hcsc  increase,  in  traffic  volumes  are  s.gn.ficantlv  higher  than  the  tncreascs  at  other  segments  along  I  anklin 
Street  (more  than  .1  times  the  average  of  increased  volumes  at  other  scrccnlmc  intersections  ah.nn  the  comdo,  and 
even  h.ghcr  than  intersections  on  other  parallel  streets  (more  than  5  times  the  increase  on  ( lough  Street    Pus  ■  «IKI 
operations  at  the •intersection  of  Iranklin  and  Market  Street  .0  operate  at  U  >S  P,  with  more  than  100  seconds  nl  dela> 
tor  the  left  turn  trom  Market  Street  onto  I  ranklin  Street  in  2015  (sec  Section  V  V  V2) 
Diversions  outside  the  corridor  were  found  to  he  similar  for  all  of  the  huild  alternatives 
The  SAR  is  available  at  www.sfcta.orp/,h...rtn 
Available  on  the  project  wchsitc  at  w^-w  sfrta  oiy /!,|nl 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


KEY  FINDINGS 


Van  Ness  BRT  is  the  primary 
transit  street  in  the  corridor,  as 
opposed  to  Franklin  and  Cough 
streets,  which  are  the  primary 
private  vehicle  streets.  BRT 
would  help  Van  Ness  Avenue 
function  more  efficiently  and 
increase  transit  ridership. 
Vehicle  diversions  to  all  other 
streets  in  the  corridor  would  add 
up  to  less  than  7  vehicles  per 
minute  under  the  build 
scenarios.  The  project  design 
would  improve  conditions  that 
factor  into  the  primary  collision 
types  that  currently  occur  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue. 


turn  to  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  O'Farrell  Street,  WB  left  turn  to  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at 
Geary  Street,  EB  right  turn  to  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Union  Street,  EB  right  turn  from  NB 
Van  Ness  Avenue  and  WB  right  turn  from  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Eddy  Street,  EB  right 
turn  from  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  California  Street.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (and  the 
LPA)  are  anticipated  to  require  truck  turn  restrictions  to  EB  right  turn  to  NB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  at  Clay  Street,  EB  right  turn  to  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  WB  right  turn  to  NB  Van 
Ness  Avenue  at  Pacific  Avenue,  EB  right  turn  to  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Broadway, 
Greenwich  Street  and  Filbert  Street,  EB  right  turn  from  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  \\rrB 
right  turn  from  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Hayes  Street,  WT3  right  turn  from  SB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  at  Grove  Street,  McAllister  Street  and  Clay  Street,  EB  right  turn  from  NB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  WB  right  turn  from  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Pacific  Avenue,  Vallejo  Street, 
Green  Street,  Union  Street,  Filbert  Street,  and  Greenwich  Street.  Under  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant,  WB  trucks  on  Vallejo  Street  would  not  be  able  to  turn  right 
onto  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

The  proposed  Hayes  Two-Way  Street  Conversion  Project  that  is  planned  for  completion  in 
2015  (see  Section  2.7)  is  expected  to  preclude  truck  turns  for  all  right  turns,  with  the 
exception  of  the  WB  turn  to  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue.  In  addition,  advisor}7  signs  stating 
"Right  Turn  for  Buses/Trucks  Not  Advised"  are  proposed  at  two-way  street  crossings  at 
Pacific,  Broadway,  Vallejo,  Green,  Union,  Filbert,  Greenwich,  and  Lombard  streets  under  all 
alternatives  because  of  encroachment  into  opposing  lanes.  This  is  in  addition  to  the  existing 
advisor}'  signs  currently  posted  at  Grove,  McAllister,  Eddy,  California,  and  Clay  streets.  The 
aforementioned  truck  turning  restrictions  have  been  identified  as  potential  turn  restrictions 
during  preliminary  design.  All  truck  turning  restrictions  would  be  identified  during  final 
design,  and  solutions  will  be  sought  to  avoid  prohibiting  truck  turns. 

Under  all  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  it  is  unlikely  that  most  trucks  would 
divert  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  parallel  streets  due  to  the  increased  grade/ slope  on  parallel 
streets  (trucks  are  currently  prohibited  on  Franklin  Street  north  of  California  Street  and  are 
also  prohibited  on  Gough  Street  north  of  Sacramento  Street  for  this  reason),  and  because 
they  are  either  traveling  regionally  on  US  101  or  making  deliveries  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.1.3  I  Summary  of  Corridor  Travel  Patterns 

The  following  are  key  findings  about  existing  and  future  travel  patterns  in  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor  and  benefits  of  the  proposed  BRT  project: 

•  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  the  primary  transit  street  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  study 
area  (see  Figure  3.1-1).  Under  typical  existing  conditions  along  the  corridor,  Van  Ness 
Avenue  carries  more  than  55,000  people  daily,  with  29  percent  of  them  on  transit. 

•  Franklin  and  Gough  streets  are  the  primary  private  vehicle  (auto)  streets  in  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor  study  area.  In  2005,  Van  Ness  Avenue  carried  less  than  31  percent  of 
the  corridor's  automobile  traffic,  but  more  than  80  percent  of  the  transit  riders. 

•  In  existing  conditions,  Franklin  and  Gough  streets  are  the  primary  regional  routes  for 
private  vehicles  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  This  pair  currently  carries  a  higher 
number  and  proportion  of  regional  private  vehicle  (auto)  traffic  than  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  Less  than  half  of  travelers  in  private  vehicles  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  existing 
conditions  have  an  origin  or  destination  in  neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  meaning  many  of  them  could  divert  to  streets  throughout  San  Francisco  rather 
than  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  or  streets  immediately  parallel. 

•  Pedestrian  and  bicycle  trips  comprise  approximately  25  percent  of  trips  to,  from,  or 
within  the  neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

•  With  BRT,  transit  trips  would  comprise  an  average  of  40  percent  (Build  Alternative  2) 
to  44  percent  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  and  the 
LPA)  of  motorized  trips  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  At  select  locations,  transit  trips  would 
comprise  more  than  50  percent  of  motorized  trips,  meaning  the  two  transit  lanes  would 
carry  more  people  than  the  remaining  four  mixed  travel  lanes  combined. 


3-12 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project  Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

•  With  BRT,  person  throughput  (total  number  of  motorized  trips  on  transit  or  in  private 
vehicles)  would  decrease  slighdy  under  Build  Alternative  2  and  would  be  generally 
maintained  in  the  center  BRT  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  compared  to  the  No 
Build  Alternative;  however,  the  number  of  trips  made  by  transit  would  increase 
significandy. 

•  The  BRT  lane  has  significantly  higher  service  capacity  than  the  service  assumed  in  the 
model.  Future  service  investments  would  increase  person-throughput  without  additional 
traffic  operations  impacts. 

•  With  BRT,  each  remaining  private  vehicle  lane  would  carry  more  people  than  under  the  No 
Build  Alternative;  however,  transit  would  carry  an  average  of  1 3  percent  (Build  Alternative 
2)  to  36  percent  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA)  more  people  in  each  of  its  J 
dedicated  lanes  than  each  private  vehicle  lane  would  carry,  and  it  would  provide  the 
capacity  to  carry  many  more  trips  per  hour  as  Muni's  Rapid  Network  and  the  City's 
population  grow. 

•  BRT  would  increase  the  vehicle  occupancy  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  1.7  people  per 
vehicle  (existing  and  No  Build  Alternative)  to  2.0  (Build  Alternative  2)  or  2.1  (Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA)  people  per  vehicle.  The  street  would  function  on 
average  at  typical  HOV  facility  levels  of  approximately  2  people  per  vehicle. 

•  The  proposed  project  would  address  all  of  the  primary  collision  types  that  currently 
occur  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


JM 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3.2  Transit  Conditions 


SFMTA  operates  two  Muni  bus 
routes  along  the  entire  length  of 
Van  Ness  Avenue  within  the 
project  limits:  Routes  47  and  49, 
which  convert  into  one  route, 
OWL  90,  between  i:oo  a.m. 

and  6:00  a.m. 


This  section  provides  a  discussion  of  the  local  and  regional  transit  systems  presently  serving 
the  corridor  and  the  planned  transit  improvements  that  may  affect  the  corridor;  identifies 
and  evaluates  the  potendal  environmental  consequences  of  each  of  the  alternadves  on  transit 
service;  and  describes  mitigadon  measures  that  would  reduce  or  avoid  significant  impacts. 
Other  performance  measures  are  shown  in  this  secdon  for  planning  purposes  and  to  aid  in 
the  alternadves  performance  evaluadon  documented  in  Chapter  9. 

The  Locally  Preferred  Alternadve  (LP A)  is  a  refinement  of  the  two  center-running  build 
alternadves  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B).  For 
nearly  all  of  the  environmental  impact  areas  and  BRT  performance  areas  described  in 
Section  3.2,  the  LPA  (including  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)  has  similar 
environmental  consequences  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  and  is  so 
noted.  In  one  instance  (platform  crowding),  the  LPA  performs  the  same  as  Build  Alternative 
3  with  Design  Option  B,  but  not  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B,  and  is  so  noted. 
Unless  otherwise  noted,  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  is  anticipated  to  perform 
similarly  to  the  LPA.  Some  small  differences  in  BRT  performance  (i.e.,  travel  time  and 
reliability  benefits)  between  the  LPA  and  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  are  noted 
in  the  text. 

3.2.1  I  Existing  Transit  Services,  Ridership,  and  Performance 

This  section  describes  the  existing  transit  setting  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  including 
existing  transit  services  offered,  demand,  and  transit  operating  performance.  Two  operators 
provide  transit  service  along  Van  Ness  Avenue:  (1)  SFMTA  operates  Muni  buses;  and  (2) 
Golden  Gate  Bridge,  Highway  and  Transportation  District  (GGBHTD)  operates  Golden 
Gate  Transit  (GGT)  buses. 

3.2.1.1  I  SAN  FRANCISCO  MUNICIPAL  TRANSPORTATION  AGENCY 

SFMTA  operates  two  24/7  (i.e.,  24  hours  per  day,  7  days  per  week)  Muni  bus  routes  along 
the  entire  length  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  within  the  project  limits:  Routes  47  and  49,  which 
convert  into  one  route,  OWL  90,  between  1:00  a.m.  and  6:00  a.m.  Five  other  Muni  routes, 
including  one  Sunday-only  route,  serve  a  portion  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  one  (#19) 
operates  along  Polk  Street,  which  runs  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  the  east.  In  addition, 
32  Muni  transit  routes,  including  all  6  Metro  lines  traveling  under  Market  Street,  cross  Van 
Ness  Avenue  at  various  intersections  along  the  corridor,  providing  transfer  opportunities  to 
other  Muni  routes.  The  subsections  below  describe  each  route  that  runs  along  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor  in  detail,  including  sendee  coverage,  hours  of  operation,  and  headways. 

The  ridership  data  for  Muni  routes  were  obtained  from  SFMTA's  TEP;  the  cited  data  were 
collected  in  2006-2007.  As  part  of  the  TEP,  automatic  passenger  counter  (APC)  devices 
equipped  with  a  GPS  were  installed  on  a  statistically  representative  sample  of  the  Muni  bus 
fleet.  These  devices  recorded  the  number  of  passengers  boarding  and  alighting  buses  over  a 
24-hour  period. 

Current  Muni  fares  are  $2.00  for  adults;  $0.75  for  seniors,  people  with  disabilities,  and  youths 
(ages  5  to  17);  and  free  for  children  under  the  age  of  5.  Transfer  receipts  are  issued  on  board, 
free  of  charge,  and  are  valid  on  any  Muni  route  for  up  to  90  minutes  from  the  time  of 
boarding.  Monthly  passes  are  $64.00  for  adults  ($74.00  for  passes  that  include  BART  fare 
within  San  Francisco  city  limits)  $22.00  for  seniors,  youths,  and  persons  with  disabilities;  and 
$32.00  for  qualified  low-income  passengers.  These  basic  fares  apply  to  all  buses,  Metro/light 
rail  lines,  and  historic  streetcars,  except  cable  cars.  One-way  cable  car  fares  are  $6.00  for 
those  over  the  age  of  5,  and  $3.00  for  seniors  and  people  with  disabilities  before  7:00  a.m. 


3-14 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


and  after  9:00  p.m.  A  proof-of-payment  system  is  in  effect  on  all  Metro  lines.  Any  person  on 
an  SFMTA  vehicle  or  in  the  paid  area  of  a  Metro  subway  station  must  possess  valid  proof  of 
fare  payment  in  the  form  of  a  transfer/receipt,  a  monthly  pass,  or  a  Clipper  (formerly 
Translink)  card. 


Existing  Routes 

Several  Muni  routes  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  provide  regional  transit  connections  to  BART, 
AC  Transit,  Caltrain,  GGT,  and  SamTrans.  Figure  3.2-1  shows  the  existing  transit  routes 
along  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  corridor. 

Figure  3.2-1:  Existing  Transit  Routes  along  and  crossing 
Van  Ness  Avenue  (does  not  include  Market  Street) 


Van  Ness  Avenue 
Muni  Transit 
Service  and 
Frequency  2009 

Black  and  orange  routes  indicate 
transit  routes  that  travel  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  Gray  routes  indicate 
transit  routes  that  cross  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  The  19-Polk  route  has  been 
included  for  reference,  as  a  parallel 
route  to  Van  Ness. 

OWL  (late  night)  service  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue  is  provided  by  90-Owl 
from  North  Point  Street  south  past 
Market  Street 

'Routes  that  travel  along  Market 
Street  are  not  marked  on  Market, 
but  included  elsewhere. 


PM  Peak  Period  Frequency 

— 20  minutes  or  more 
12-1 5  minutes 
10  minutes 
^^^^  9  minutes  or  less 
— —   Sundays  only 


N 


A 


Source  San  Francisco  Municipal 
Transportation  Agency  December  2009 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Routes  Operating  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 

Table  3.2-1  presents  the  routes  operating  along  and  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Routes  47 
and  49  are  the  principal  transit  routes  serving  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 


Table  3.2-1:  Existing  Muni  Lines  along  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor 


ROUTES 

SEGMENT  WITHIN 
PROJECT  AREA 

WEEKDAY 
HOURS  OF 
OPERATION 

WEEKDAY 
AM/PM  PEAK 
HEADWAYS 
(MIN) 

AVERAGE 
WEEKDAY  DAILY 
RIDERSHIP  M 

BOARDINGS 
BETWEEN 
MISSION  & 
LOMBARD 
STREETS 

ROUTES  OPERATINC  ALONG  VAN  NESS  AVENUE  BRT  PROJECT  AREA 

47  -  Van  Ness 
(MC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Mission  Street 

6:00  a.m.  - 
1:05  a.m. 

8 

12, 800 

7,800 

49  -  Van  Ness  - 
Mission  (TC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Mission  Street 

5:40  a.m.  - 
1:12  a.m. 

8 

25,300 

9,000 

90  -  San  Bruno 
Owl  (MC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Mission  Street 

1:18  a.m.  - 
4:40  a.m. 

N/A 

350 

200 

76  -  Marin 
Headlands  (MC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Sutter  Street 

Sundays 
Only 

N/A 

N/A 

N/A 

30X  -  Marina 
Express  (MC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Broadway 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  -  5 
PM  -  10 

2,400 

150 

12  -  Folsom  - 
Pacific  (MC) 

Pacific  Avenue  to 
Washington  Street 

6:00  a.m.  - 
12:30  a.m. 

20 

6,900 

360 

27-  Bryant  (MC) 

Jackson  Street  to 
Washington  Street 

5:47  a.m.  - 
12:57  a.m. 

12 

7,400 

230 

ROUTES  OPERATING  PARALLEL  TO  VAN  NESS  AVENUE 

19-  Polk  (MC) 

Lombard  Street  to 
Eddy  Street 

5:21  a.m.  - 
1:23  a.m. 

12 

9,200 

2,600 

Note: 

W  Ridership  accounts  for 

the  total  daily  boardings,  in  both  the 

inbound  and  outbou 

nd  directions. 

MC  =  Motor  Coach;  TC  = 

Trolley  Coach 

Sources:  Muni  Schedule  (December  2009);  Transit  Effectiveness  Project/APC  Data  (2006-2007) 


47  -  Van  Ness.  Muni  Route  47  bus  line,  using  diesel  and  diesel-hybrid  buses,  provides  local 
service  from  Fisherman's  Wharf  to  the  Caltrain  Station  at  Fourth  and  Townsend  streets, 
passing  through  a  mix  of  commercial,  institutional,  and  residendal  uses  along  Van  Ness  and 
South  Van  Ness  avenues  and  across  SoMa  areas  on  Bryant  and  Harrison  streets.  Route  47 
runs  along  the  entire  length  of  the  proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 

49  -  Van  Ness  -  Mission.  Muni  Route  49  trolleybus  line  provides  local  service  between  Fort 
Mason  and  City  College  of  San  Francisco  via  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Mission  Street;  it  serves 
as  a  primary  north-south  arterial  transit  route  in  the  city. 

90  -  San  Bruno  (Owl  Service).  Muni  Route  90  Owl  service  is  provided  at  night  between  North 
Point  and  Arleta  via  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Potrero  Avenue,  Bayshore  Boulevard,  and  San 
Bruno  Avenue.  Route  90  Owl  replaces  Routes  47  and  49  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  1:00 
a.mt  and  5:00  a.m. 

76  -  Marin  Headlands.  Route  76  provides  local  service  between  the  Marin  Headlands  and  the 
Caltrain  Station  via  the  Golden  Gate  Bridge  and  downtown,  only  on  Sundays  and  some 
holidays. 

30X  -  Marina  Express.  Route  30X  operates  over  a  limited  portion  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
provides  express  bus  service  during  weekday  AM  and  PM  peak  periods  only,  connecting  the 
Marina  and  Financial  districts. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Routes  12  and  27.  These  two  lines  operate  over  a  limited  portion  of  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Route 
12  operates  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Pacific  Avenue  and  Washington  Street,  and 
Route  27  operates  between  Jackson  and  Washington  streets. 

Routes  12,  27,  30X,  76,  and  90  use  standard  (40-  foot)  motor  coach  buses. 


Routes  Operating  Parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue 

19  -  Polk.  Route  19  provides  service  between  the  Marina  District  and  Hunters  Point  along 
Polk  Street,  7th/ 8th  streets,  various  streets  in  Potrero  Hill,  and  then  Evans  Street  to  the 
Hunters  Point  Shipyard.  Route  19  runs  on  Polk  Street,  one  block  east  of  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
serving  as  an  alternative  north-south  transit  route  next  to  Routes  47  and  49.  Route  19 
operates  every  10  minutes  during  the  AM  and  PM  peak  periods,  every  24  minutes  during 
midday  (or  every  12  minutes  to  the  north  of  Townsend),  and  every  20  minutes  from  6:00 
p.m.  to  1:30  a.m.  Route  19  averages  9,200  daily  passengers,  2,600  of  whom  board  between 
Lombard  and  Eddy  streets  on  Polk  Street. 


Routes  Crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue 

There  are  32  Muni  transit  lines  that  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Mission  and  Lombard 
streets,  including  24  bus  routes,  6  light-rail  transit  lines  (Metro),  one  historic  streetcar 
(F-Line)  and  one  cable  car  (C).  Table  3.2-2  shows  the  basic  characteristics  of  these  lines. 
Appendix  A  gives  more  detailed  description  of  each. 


Table  3.2-2:  Existing  Muni  Service  crossing  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Corridor 


ROUTES  CROSSING  VAN 
NESS  AVENUE 

CROSS  STREET(S) 
AT  VAN  NESS/ 
SOUTH  VAN  NESS  AVENUE 

WEEKDAY  HOURS 
OF  OPERATION 

WEEKDAY  AM/PM 
PEAK  HEADWAYS 
(MiN) 

AVERAGE 
WEEKDAY 
RIDERSHIP  " 

1  -  California  (TC) 

Sacramento  Street  (outbound)/ 
Clay  Street  (inbound) 

5:22  a.m.  - 
1:25  a.m. 

3-8 

23,600 

lAX  -  California 
'A'  Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)/  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  -  10 
PM  -  15 

76O 

i  BX  -  California 
'B'  Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)/  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  -  6 
PM  -  15 

1,700 

2  -  Clement  (MC) 

Sutter  Street  (outbound)/  Post 
Street  (inbound) 

5:17  a.m.  - 
7:18  p.m. 

10 

7,100 

3  -  Jackson  (TC) 

Sutter  Street  (outbound)  /  Post 
Street  (inbound) 

7:06  a.m.  - 
1:05  a.m. 

TO 

4,200 

5  -  Fulton  (TC) 

McAllister  Street 

24  Hours 

AM  -6 
PM  -  5 

14,000 

6  -  Parnassus 
(TC) 

Market  Street 

6:20  a.m.  - 
12:22  a.m. 

10 

7,200 

10  -  Townsend 
(MC) 

Jackson  Street  (outbound)/ 
Washington  Street  (inbound) 

5:06  a.m.  - 
8:44  p.m. 

20 

3,200 

14  -  Mission  (TC) 

Mission  Street 

24  Hours 

AM  -  12 
PM  -6 

32,800 

14L  -  Mission 
Limited  (MC) 

Mission  Street 

8:40  a.m.  - 
3:51  p.m. 

N/A 

4.900 

16X  -  Noriega 
Express  (MC) 

Turk  Street  (outbound)/ 
Golden  Gate  Avenue  (inbound) 

AM  and&  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  -  10 
PM  -  15 

910 

21  -  Hayes  (TC) 

Hayes  Street  (outbound)/ 
Grove  Street  (inbound) 

5:36  a.m.  - 
12:52  a.m. 

7 

8,800 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.2-2:  Existing  Muni  Service  crossing  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Corridor 


ROUTES  CROSSING  VAN 
NESS  AVENUE 

CROSS  STREET(S) 
AT  VAN  NESS/ 
SOUTH  VAN  NESS  AVENUE 

WEEKDAY  HOURS 
OF  OPERATION 

WEEKDAY  AM/PM 
PEAK  HEADWAYS 
(MIN) 

AVERAGE 
WEEKDAY 
RIDERSHIPl'l 

30  -  Stockton  (TC) 

Chestnut  Street  and  North 
Point  Street 

4:49  a.m.  - 
1 130  a.m. 

3-6 

23,700 

31  -  Balboa  (TC) 

Eddy  Street 

5:25  a.m.  - 

12:39  3-m- 

12 

9,000 

31  AX  -  Balboa  'A' 
Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)/  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM 

fly 

HM  - 

-8 
-  io 

900 

3iBX-  Balboa  'B' 
Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)/  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  - 

rW\  - 

- 10 
- 15 

770 

38 -Geary  (MC) 

Geary  Boulevard  (outbound)/ 
O'Farrell  Street  (inbound) 

24  Hours 

6- 

-  12 

33,000 

38L  -  Geary 
Limited  (ivii_} 

Geary  Boulevard  (outbound)/ 
O'Farrell  Street  (inbound) 

6:00  a.m.  - 
6:40  p.m. 

5 

-7 

21,300 

38AX  -  Geary  'A' 
Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)  /  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM  - 
PM  - 

- 10 

-15 

990 

38BX- Geary  'B' 
Express  (MC) 

Pine  Street  (outbound)  /  Bush 
Street  (inbound) 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM 
PM  • 

-8 
-15 

1,200 

41  -  Union  (TC) 

Union  Street 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

AM 
PM 

-  b 
-7 

3,000 

45  -  Union  - 
Stockton  (TC) 

Union  Street 

6:10  a.m.  - 
1:03  a.m. 

9 

12,100 

71  -  Haight  - 
Noriega  (MC) 

Market  Street 

Non-peak 
Hours 

10 

10,300 

71 L  -  Haight- 
Noriega  Limited 
(MC) 

Market  Street 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

io 

2,  IOO 

J  -  Church  (LRV) 

Market  Street 

5:09  a.m.  - 
12:16  a.m. 

9 

16,700 

K  Ingleside/ 
T  Third  (LRV) 

Market  Street 

5:09  a.m.  - 
12:16  a.m. 

9 

32,700 

L-Taraval  (LRV) 

Market  Street 

24  Hours 

8 

29,800 

IVI  —  wCcdrl  View 

(LRV) 

Market  Street 

5:42  a.m.  — 
12:10  a.m. 

9 

28,700 

N  - Judah  (LRV) 

Market  Street 

24  Hours 

7 

45,300 

S  -  Castro  Shuttle 
(LRV) 

Market  Street 

7:32  a.m.  - 
6:55  p.m. 

9- 

-n 

N/A 

F-  Market  & 
Wharves  (HSC) 

Market  Street 

5:47  a.m.- 
12:38  a.m. 

7 

18,500 

C  -  California  (CC) 

California  Street 

6:23  a.m.  - 
12:32  a.m. 

AM 
PM 

-6 
-8 

3,700 

Note: 

W  Ridership  accounts  for  the  total  daily  boardings  in  both  the  inbound  and  outbound  directions. 

MC  =  Motor  Coach;  TC  =  Trolley  Coach;  LRV  =  Light  Rail  Vehicle;  HSC  =  Historic  Street  Car;  CC  -  Cable  Car 


Sources:  Muni  Schedule  (December,  2009);  Transit  Effectiveness  Project/APC  Data  (2006-2007). 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


3.2.1.2  I  REGIONAL  TRANSIT  SERVICES 


Golden  Gate  Transit 

The  GGBHTD  provides  regional  transit  services  between  San  Francisco,  Marin,  and 
Sonoma  counties  with  GGT  buses  and  Golden  Gate  ferries.  The  information  listed  in  this 
section  reflects  service  levels  as  of  2007.  Twenty- two  (22)  GGT  bus  routes  serve  San 
Francisco:  3  basic  routes  and  19  commute  routes.  Buses  on  the  basic  routes  run  daily  at  60- 
minute  headways,  while  commute  buses  run  during  peak  periods  in  the  peak  direction  only 
(to  San  Francisco  in  the  morning;  to  Marin  and  Sonoma  in  the  afternoon/evening)  with 
more  frequent  service. 

Of  the  22  GGT  bus  routes,  8  routes  (Routes  10,  54,  70,  72,  73,  76,  80,  93,  and  97)  travel 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  south  of  Lombard  Street,  and  one  route  (Route  10)  crosses  Van 
Ness  Avenue  at  Golden  Gate  Avenue  (inbound)  and  at  McAllister  Street  (outbound).  The 
other  13  routes,  as  well  as  most  trips  on  routes  54,  72,  and  76,  travel  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  north  of  Lombard  Street,  using  Beach  and  Battery  streets  inbound  and  Sansome  and 
North  Point  streets  outbound  to  serve  the  Financial  District. 

Routes  10,  70,  and  80  are  basic  routes;  all  of  the  other  routes  are  commute  routes.  Routes 
70,  73,  80,  and  93  travel  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Lombard  and  Golden  Gate 
Avenue  (inbound)  and  McAllister  Street  (outbound);  Route  97  travels  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  between  Lombard  Street  and  Broadway.  Table  3.2-3  shows  the  basic  characteristics 
of  these  lines. 

Table  3.2-3:  Existing  Golden  Gate  Transit  Service  in  or  near  the 
Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor 


ROUTE 

SERVICE  AREA 

TYPICAL  WEEKDAY 
HOURS  OF 
OPERATION 

WEEKDAY  PM  PEAK 
HEADWAYS  W 
(MIN) 

AVERAGE  PM  PEAK 
RIDERSHIP 
(SF  BOARDINC 
ONLY) 

PM  PEAK 
LOAD 
FACTOR  W 

IO 

Marin  City  -  Sausalito  - 
San  Francisco 

6:38  a.m.  - 
7:31  p.m. 

6O 

45% 

70 

Novato  -  San  Rafael  - 
Marin  City  -  San  Francisco 

5:16  a.m.  - 
12:43  a-m- 

30 

15 

61% 

8O 

Santa  Rosa  -  Novato  -  San 
Rafael  -  San  Francisco 

4:01  a.m. 
11:43  P-m- 

60 

15 

81% 

54 

San  Marin  -  Novato  - 
San  Francisco 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

IO 

179 

45% 

72 

Santa  Rosa  -  San  Francisco 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

20 

80 

47% 

73 

Santa  Rosa  -  San  Francisco 
Civic  Center 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

3° 

25 

54% 

76 

East  Petaluma  - 
San  Francisco 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

20-30 

20 

40% 

93 

Golden  Gate  Bridge  Toll 
Plaza  -  Van  Ness  Ave  -  San 
Francisco  Civic  Center 

AM  and  PM 
Peaks  Only 

3° 

16 

N/A 

97 

Larkspur  Ferry  Terminal  - 
San  Francisco 

5:30  a.m. 

Once  a  day 

N/A 

N/A 

Notes: 

('!  Peak  l-hour  between  4:00  p.m.  and  7:00  p.m. 
I"  Load  factor  refers  to  the  ratio  of  ridership  to  bus  seatin 


The  Golden  Gate  Bridge 
Highway  and  Transportation 
District  provides  regional  transit 
services  between  San  Francisco 
and  Marin  and  Sonoma  counties 
with  Golden  Gate  Transit  buses 
and  Golden  Gate  ferries. 


g  capacity  (Colden  Gate  Transit  policy  does  not  allow  standees) 


Source:  Joshua  Widmann,  Colden  Catc  Transit 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


J<9 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


The  GGT  sendee  area  is  divided  into  seven  fare  zones:  one  in  San  Francisco,  three  in  Marin 
County,  two  in  Sonoma  County,  and  one  in  Contra  Costa  County.  The  fares  vary  depending 
on  trip  length  and  number  of  fare  zones  crossed.  In  2007,  one-way  adult  bus  fares  between 
San  Francisco  and  Marin  County  range  from  $3.60  to  $5.30,  and  one-way  adult  fares  between 
San  Francisco  and  Sonoma  County  range  from  $7.60  to  $8.40.  One-way  adult  fares  between 
San  Francisco  and  Contra  Costa  County  were  $6.60.  Half-price  discount  fares  apply  to  youths 
(ages  8  to  18),  seniors  65  years  and  older,  persons  with  disabilities,  and  Medicare  cardholders. 
In  addition,  purchasers  of  20  tickets  or  more  are  eligible  for  a  20  percent  discount. 


Basic  Service  Routes 

Route  10.  Route  10  provides  daily  service  between  Marin  City,  Sausalito,  and  San  Francisco, 
with  additional  service  on  weekdays  to  Tarn  Valley.  Route  10  travels  on  Park  Presidio 
Boulevard,  Geary  Boulevard,  Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street,  and  Mission  Street 
and  also  serves  the  Transbay  Terminal. 

Route  70.  Route  70  provides  daily  service  between  Novato,  San  Rafael,  Marin  City,  and  San 
Francisco.  Route  70  travels  on  Lombard  Street,  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Golden  Gate  Avenue/ 
McAllister  Street,  and  Mission  Street  and  serves  the  Transbay  Terminal. 

Route  80.  Route  80  provides  daily  service  between  Sonoma,  Marin,  and  San  Francisco 
counties.  Areas  of  service  include  Santa  Rosa,  Rohnert  Park,  Cotati,  Petaluma,  Novato,  San 
Rafael,  Marin  City,  and  San  Francisco  (Civic  Center  and  Financial  District).  Route  80  travels 
on  Lombard  Street,  Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street,  and  Mission  Street  and  serves 
the  Transbay  Terminal. 


Commute  Service  Routes 

Route  54.  Route  54  is  a  weekday  commute  service  that  provides  service  between  Novato  and 
San  Francisco.  Most  trips  serve  the  Financial  District,  but  one  morning  and  one  afternoon 
trip  serve  the  San  Francisco  Civic  Center  via  Lombard  Street,  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and 
Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street. 

Route  72.  Route  72  is  a  weekday  commute  service  that  provides  service  between  Santa  Rosa, 
Rohnert  Park,  Cotati,  and  San  Francisco.  Most  trips  serve  the  Financial  District,  but  one 
morning  and  one  afternoon  trip  serve  the  San  Francisco  Civic  Center  via  Lombard  Street, 
Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street. 

Route  73.  Route  73  is  a  weekday  commute  service  that  provides  service  between  Santa  Rosa, 
Rohnert  Park,  Petaluma,  and  San  Francisco.  It  is  an  exclusive  Civic  Center  service  that 
operates  via  Lombard  Street,  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street. 

Route  76.  Route  76  provides  service  between  East  Petaluma  and  San  Francisco  during  the 
AM  and  PM  peak  periods.  While  most  Route  76  buses  travel  directly  to  the  Financial 
District  via  Battery  and  Sansome  streets,  two  buses  (leaving  Petaluma  at  5:35  a.m.  and  6:13 
a.m.)  are  routed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  Civic  Center. 

Route  93.  Route  93.  Route  93  provides  weekday  commute  shuttle  service  from  the  Golden 
Gate  Bridge  Toll  Plaza  to  the  San  Francisco  Civic  Center  via  Lombard  Street,  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  and  Golden  Gate  Avenue/McAllister  Street. 

Route  97.  Route  97  provides  one  morning  express  trip  on  weekdays  from  the  Larkspur  Fern' 
Terminal  to  the  San  Francisco  Financial  District  via  Lombard  Street,  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and 
Broadway. 


Employer  Shuttle  Services 

Private  shutties,  such  as  employer  buses  traveling  to  and  from  Silicon  Valley  and  the 
Peninsula,  are  a  rapidly  growing  regional  transit  sendee.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  has 


3-20 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


recently  seen  expanded  growth  of  large  employer  shutde  services  traveling  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  in  addition  to  pick-ups  and  drop-offs  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.2.1.3  I  EXISTING  MUNI  OPERATING  CHARACTERISTICS 

This  section  presents  existing  Muni  bus  performance  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  including 
crowding  (i.e.,  load  factor),  travel  speed  and  delay,  travel  time  relative  to  driving,  and 
reliability.  Each  of  these  measures  was  analyzed  using  the  most  recent  data  available. 
Crowding  was  analyzed  using  APC  data  collected  in  2007  by  SFMTA  as  part  of  the  TEP. 
Both  APC  data  (2007)  and  SFCTA's  2004  transit  speed  and  delay  survey  data  were  used  to 
analyze  existing  travel  time,  speed,  and  delay.  Travel  time  and  dwell  time  delay  data  were 
obtained  from  APC  data;  mixed  traffic  and  signal  time  delay  data  are  inferred  from  the  APC 
data  based  on  findings  from  the  2004  transit  speed  and  delay  survey.  Reliability,  which  was 
measured  by  headway  adherence,  was  based  on  headway  data  collected  in  2004.  The  auto 
and  transit  travel  time  comparison  was  based  on  APC  data  (2007)  and  traffic  counts 
performed  in  2008. 


Bus  Stops  and  Transfers 

Figure  3.2-2  presents  the  locations  of  existing  bus  stops  for  the  Muni  lines  operating  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue.  There  are  14  NB  and  14  SB  Muni  bus  stops  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
between  Market  and  Lombard  streets,  and  an  additional  NB  bus  stop  located  at  South  Van 
Ness  and  Mission  Street.  The  average  stop  spacing  is  approximately  700  feet,  which  is  less 
than  the  Muni  service  standard  of  approximately  800  to  1,000  feet  along  streets  with  grades 
less  than  10  percent,  such  as  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Figure  3.2-2:  Existing  Transit  Stops 

for  Muni  Routes  47/49  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Corridor 


3 

z 

B 


Lombard 


lureo" 


Geary 


Iparjf* 
I  Clay 

hi*** 


fSutu* 
!  Of* 

!  Tuf* 


Existing  MUNI  Bus 
Stops  Along  Van 
Ness  Avenue 
BRT  Alignment 


The  location  ol  th«M  tlopt  art  approximate 
The  doseil  crou  streets  to  these  Van  New 
Avenue  bus  stops  are  indicated  by  the  street 
names  highlighted  in  red 


Muni  Routes 
^■47  Van  Nesj 
w  49  Mission 

Direction: 

•  Northbound 

•  Southbound 


Average  Onuince 


1  700' 


Source  San  Francisco 
Munrceja,  T.anaoortaeon  Agency 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


An  onboard  survey  conducted  in  2005  by  SFCTA  shows  that  major  transfers  between  the 
47/49  lines  and  crossing  routes  occur,  in  order  of  transfer  activity,  at  Market  Street,  Geary 
Boulevard,  Mission  Street,  Hayes  Street,  and  California  Street. 

Today,  the  Muni  47  and  49  share  the  same  stops  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  study  area 
between  Mission  and  Greenwich  streets.  Outside  the  study  area,  they  have  different  routes: 
Route  49  begins  at  North  Point  and  travels  south  to  City  College  along  Van  Ness  Avenue, 
Mission  Street,  and  Ocean  Avenue,  whereas  Route  47  starts  in  Fisherman's  Wharf,  meets 
Route  49  at  North  Point  and  Van  Ness  Avenue,  leaves  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Mission 
Street  and  travels  through  SoMa  to  terminate  at  the  4th/ King  Caltrain  station.  The  TEP 
recommended  a  slightly  alternative  route  for  the  47  through  SoMa,  which  this  study  assumes 
is  implemented  in  2015  for  all  future  year  scenarios. 


Ridership  and  Mode  Shares 

The  total  number  of  daily  passenger  boardings  and  loads  on  Routes  47  and  49  are  shown  by 
stop  in  Figure  3.2-3.  As  the  chart  indicates,  boardings  peak  near  Market  Street  in  the  NB 
direction,  likely  due  to  transfer  activity.  There  are  multiple  locations  with  heavy  boardings  in 
the  SB  direction,  and  riders  board  the  bus  fairly  consistently  throughout  the  corridor.  Major 
stops  in  the  corridor  are  similar  for  both  lines,  and  they  consistently  are  at  locations  with 
transfers  to  other  significant  Muni  transit  lines,  (e.g.,  Geary  and  O'Farrell  have  convenient 
transfers  to  the  38-Geary  line). 

Figure  3.2-3:  Daily  Boardings  by  Stop  for  Routes  47  and  49 

4000  1 


Source:  APC  data  (2006-2007). 


Crowding  (Load  Factor) 

Bus  crowding  is  measured  by  load  factor,  which  is  the  number  of  passengers  on  board  a 
transit  vehicle  relative  to  capacity.  Muni's  Short-Range  Transit  Plan  presents  a  definition  of 
maximum  capacity  —  the  total  number  of  passengers  allowed,  including  the  number  of  seats 
and  a  set  number  of  standees  —  and  a  representative  number  for  each  vehicle  type.  Muni 
policy  calls  for  vehicles  to  operate  at  85  percent  or  less  of  the  100  percent,  or  "crush,"  load 


3-22 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


at  the  most  crowded  point  (i.e.,  maximum  load  point  [MLP])  along  a  route  during  the  peak 
period.  Table  3.2-4  shows  the  seating  capacity,  85  percent  capacity,  and  a  100  percent 
capacity  for  Routes  47,  49,  and  19. 


Table  3.2-4:  Passenger  Capacities 


ROUTE 

SEATING  CAPACITY 

85%  CAPACITY 

100%  CAPACITY 

Route  47  (MC) 

39 

54 

63 

Route  49  (AT) 

57 

80 

94 

Route  19  (MC) 

39 

54 

63 

MC  -  motor  coach  (40-foot);  AT  -  articulated  trolley  coach  (60-foot) 

Table  3.2-5  presents  the  PM  peak-hour  ridership  and  vehicle  load  factors  at  the  MLP  for  the 
Muni  lines  operating  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Polk  Street.  For  NB  and  SB  trips,  the  MLP 
for  Routes  47  and  49  occurs  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  McAllister  Street  near  Civic  Center,  as 
seen  in  Figures  3.2-4  and  3.2-5.  During  the  PM  peak  hour  (usually  between  3:00  p.m.  and 
5:00  p.m.),  the  Route  47  MLP  occurs  in  the  NB  direction  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  McAllister 
Street,  averaging  44  passengers  per  bus,  with  a  load  factor  of  0.7.  During  the  PM  peak  period, 
Route  49  can  average  as  many  as  49  people  in  the  NB  direction  at  its  MLP  at  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  McAllister  Street,  with  a  load  factor  of  0.52.  During  the  PM  peak  in  the  NB 
direction,  Route  19  averages  45  passengers  per  bus  at  its  MLP,  with  a  load  factor  of  0.71. 

Table  3.2-5:  Existing  Northbound  PM  Peak-Hour  Muni  Ridership  and  Load  Factor 

ROUTE  W 

MAXIMUM  LOAD  POINT 

PM  PEAK-HOUR 
RIDERSHIP 

%OF 
SEATING 
CAPACITY  AT 
MLP 

%  OF  TOTAL 
CAPACITY  AT 
MLP 

47- Van  Ness  (NB) 

Van  Ness  Avenue  & 
McAllister  Street 

340 

113% 

70% 

49  -  Van  Ness  -  Mission  (NB) 

Van  Ness  Avenue  & 
McAllister  Street 

391 

86% 

52% 

19  -  Polk  Street  (NB) 

7th  Street  & 
Howard  Street 

223 

114% 

71% 

Source:  APC  data  (2006  2007). 


Figure  3.2-4:  Northbound  Daily  Load  (Passenger  Volume)  for  Routes  47  and  49 


Source:  APC  (2006-2007). 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Figure  3.2-5:  Southbound  Daily  Load  (Passenger  Volume)  for  Routes  47  and  49 

5,000  1 

4,500 


Source:  APC  data  (2006-2007) 


The  load  factor  analysis 
indicates  that  Van  Ness  Avenue 
buses  operate  with  crowded, 
but  not  crush  conditions,  which 
is  contrary  to  some  riders' 
experiences.  The  average  load 
factor  for  the  corridor  can 
mask  the  situation  on  any 
individual  bus  and  may  be 
closely  related  to  reliability. 


KEY  FINDING 


Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  spend 
approximately  half  of 
their  travel  time  stopped  in 
some  sort  of  delay. 


The  load  factor  analysis  indicates  that  Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  operate  with  crowded,  but  not 
crush  conditions,  which  is  contrary  to  some  riders'  experiences.  The  average  load  factor  for 
the  corridor  can  mask  the  situation  on  any  individual  bus.  Because  these  loads  are  averaged 
over  the  peak  hour,  the  difference  between  the  data  and  anecdotal  experience  of  crowded 
Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  may  be  explained  by  reliability  issues;  when  headways  are  not  evenly 
spaced,  some  buses  will  be  extremely  crowded  and  others  much  less  crowded.  The  discussion 
of  transit  reliability  is  presented  later  in  this  section  under  Route  Segment  Reliability. 

Travel  Time,  Speed,  and  Delays 

Transit  travel  times  (i.e.,  speeds),  and  the  amount  of  time  spent  in  delay,  is  a  key  indicator  of 
transit  performance.  Transit  delays  come  in  various  forms.  Dwell  time  is  defined  as  the  time 
elapsed  from  the  opening  to  the  closing  of  the  bus  doors.  This  includes  the  onboard  service 
time  associated  with  fare  payment,  as  well  as  boarding  and  disembarking,  and  is  not  all  delay 
time;  however,  delays  do  occur  during  the  dwell  period  associated  with  fare  collection  and 
loading/unloading.  Signal  delay  is  the  time  spent  waiting  at  red  lights.  Mixed  traffic  delay 
includes  time  spent  waiting  to  pull  in  and  out  of  traffic  and  time  spent  behind  parking, 
double-parked,  or  right-turning  cars.  It  should  be  noted  that  mixed  traffic  contributes  to 
some  dwell  time  delays  due  to  bus  bunching  and  difficulties  for  buses  pulling  out  of  stops. 

During  the  PM  peak  period,  travel  speeds  are  marginally  lower  in  the  SB  direction  (i.e.,  5.5 
mph)  than  in  the  NB  direction  (i.e.,  6.3  mph),  and  time  spent  for  various  delays  is  slightly 
greater.  Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  spend  about  half  of  their  travel  time  stopped  in  some  sort 
of  delay.  Signal  and  mixed-traffic  delays  account  for  more  than  50  percent  of  total  delay;  58 
percent  in  the  NB  direction  and  50  percent  in  the  SB  direction. 

'Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  today  spend  approximately  17  seconds  in  delay  at  a  typical 
intersection.  Even  when  dwell  time  is  subtracted  from  transit  travel  times,  buses  remain 
slower  than  autos  because  they  experience  greater  signal  and  mixed  traffic  delays  than 
automobiles. 

Van  Ness  Avenue  buses  currently  average  5.2  mph,  inclusive  of  dwell  time.  Current  transit 
travel  times  on  the  BRT  route  are  17.5  minutes  for  the  Muni  49  segment  between  Clay  Street 
and  Mission/Otis/Duboce  (approximately  1.5  miles)  and  14.4  minutes  for  the  shorter  Route 
47  segment  between  Clay  and  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness  (approximately  1.2  miles). 


3-24 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Route  Segment  Reliability 

Reliability  affects  the  amount  of  time  passengers  must  wait  at  a  transit  stop  for  a  transit 
vehicle  to  arrive,  the  consistency  of  passengers'  arrival  times  at  a  destination  from  day  to 
day,  and  passengers'  total  trip  time.  Reliability  is  measured  here  in  terms  of  travel  time 
variability  and  headway  adherence,  including  percent  of  bunched  buses. 

Headway  adherence  is  a  standard  measure  of  reliability  when  bus  sen-ice  operates  at 
frequencies  of  six  buses  or  more  per  hour.  Headway  adherence  is  important  for  frequent 
service,  because  the  inability  to  keep  a  uniform  headway  is  an  indication  of  bus  bunching, 
which  leads  to  overcrowding  for  the  lead  bus  and  longer  waits  than  expected  for  passengers. 
Bus  bunching  is  caused,  among  other  reasons,  by  buses  operating  in  mixed-traffic  operation. 
When  a  downstream  bus  is  substantially  delayed  because  of  traffic  congestion  or  inefficient 
signal  progression,  it  could  arrive  at  a  bus  stop  at  the  same  time  as  the  next  scheduled  bus. 

A  February  2004  SFCTA  field  survey  illustrates  current  reliability  conditions.  Although 
during  the  PM  peak,  Muni  Routes  47  and  49  are  not  bunched  (i.e.,  defined  as  headways  of 
less  than  1  minute)  at  the  beginning  of  their  routes,  approximately  4  percent  of  SB  buses 
become  bunched  by  the  time  they  reach  O'Farrell  Street,  and  7  percent  become  bunched  by 
the  time  they  reach  Oak  Street.  As  shown  in  Table  3.2-6-6,  45  percent  of  buses  arrive  at 
North  Point  with  fairly  evenly  spaced  headways  between  6  and  9  minutes,  which  is  nearly 
three  times  the  number  of  buses  that  arrive  with  extremely  irregular  headways  of  2  minutes 
or  less  or  13  minutes  or  greater.  By  O'Farrell  Street,  the  buses  are  just  as  likely  to  arrive  with 
extreme  headways  as  they  are  to  arrive  with  even  spacing,  with  the  trend  continuing  to  Oak 
Street.  Furthermore,  because  buses  with  short  headways  are  bunched  closely  together, 
randomly  arriving  passengers  are  more  likely  to  experience  longer  headways  and  on  buses 
that  are  also  more  crowded.  Routes  47  and  49  are  intended  to  operate  in  an  evenly  staggered 
manner  along  the  corridor  because  a  relatively  high  proportion  of  the  passengers  exit  at 
Market  Street;  therefore,  when  the  two  routes  are  considered  together,  the  bunching 
problems  arc  amplified. 


Bus  bunching  is  caused  by  buses 
operating  in  mixed-traffic 
operation.  When  a  downstream 
bus  is  substantially  delayed 
because  of  traffic  congestion 
or  inefficient  signal  progression, 
it  could  arrive  at  a  bus  stop  at 
the  same  time  as  the  next 
scheduled  bus. 


Table  3.2-6:  Headway  Variability  for  Routes  47  and  49,  Southbound  during  PM  Peak 


STOP  LOCATION  (SOUTHBOUND 
DIRECTION  ONLY) 

%  OF  BUSES  ARRIVING  WITH  6- 
TO  9-MINUTE  HEADWAYS 

%  OF  BUSES  ARRIVING  WITH  2  MINUTE  OR  LESS  OR 
13-MINUTE-OR-GREATER  HEADWAYS 

North  Point 

45 

17 

O'Farrell  Street 

31 

28 

Oak  Street 

32 

31 

Source:  SFCTA  Field  Survey  (2004). 


3.2.2  I  Future  SFMTA  Transit  Services,  Ridership,  and  Performance 


3.2.2.1  I  STOP  LOCATIONS 

F,ach  of  the  BRT  alternatives  would  provide  8  station  platform  locations  NB  and  (>  station 
platform  locations  SB  (reduction  of  6  locations  in  each  direction),  as  shown  in  Chapter  2, 
Figure  2-2.  The  LPA  would  provide  8  stations  in  the  NB  direction  and  l>  stations  m  the  SB 
direction  (the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  include  an  atlilition.il  NB  station 
for  a  total  of  9  NB  stations),  with  the  Mission  Street  NB  station  relocated  south  of  the  BR  I 
corridor  (the  47  would  continue  to  stop  at  Mission  Street/South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  but  00 
the  south,  nearside,  of  the  intersection).  BRT  station  platform  locations  were  selected  basal 
on  current  and  expected  future  demand  levels,  as  well  as  to  preserve  kev  transfer  points 
between  the  BRT  and  other  Muni  Rapid  routes.  Further  stop  distances,  and  therefore 
further  walking  distances,  were  taken  into  account  in  ridership  forecasting.  The  BRT  Stop 


Each  of  the  BRT  alternative! 
would  provide  9  station  platform 
locations  northbound  and 
8  station  platform  locations 
southbound  BRT  station 
platform  locations  were  selected 
based  on  current  and  expected 
future  demand  levels,  as  well  as 
to  preserve  key  transfer  points 
between  the  BRT  and  other 
Muni  Rapid  routes. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  joij 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


locations  would  be  spaced  approximately  900  feet  apart  on  average,  which  is  a  spacing  that 
falls  within  SFMTA  standards  for  stop  spacing  on  rapid  routes.  Secondary  effects  on 
pedestrians  and  universal  design  from  increased  walking  distances  are  discussed  in  Section 
3.4,  Nonmotorized  Transportation. 

3.2.2.2  I  TRANSIT  RIDERSHIP 


Methodology 

The  future  year  (2015  and  2035)  Muni  ridership  forecast  was  developed  using  SFCTA's 
travel  demand  forecasting  model  -  SF-CHAMP.  SF-CHAMP  provides  the  percent  change  in 
ridership  on  each  line  for  each  scenario  modeled.  SF-CHAMP  does  not  forecast  any 
difference  in  ridership  between  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  or  without  Design  Option  B, 
which  also  applies  to  the  LPA. 


Transit  Ridership  Forecasts 

SF-CHAMP  results  indicate  that  ridership  on  Routes  47  and  49  would  increase  by  8  percent 
in  2015  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  due  to  an  increase  in  population  and  employment  in 
the  study  area  and  throughout  San  Francisco,  as  well  as  minor  transit  improvements  such  as 
low-floor  buses  and  stop  consolidation  on  Mission  Street.  Systemwide  Muni  ridership  will 
increase  by  5  percent  during  this  time  period  for  similar  reasons. 

With  the  proposed  project,  Year  2015  transit  boardings  on  Routes  47  and  49  would  increase 
by  29  percent  (Build  Alternative  2)  and  37  percent  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or 
without  Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA)  relative  to  existing  conditions  (see  Table  3.2-7).  Of 
the  growth  in  boardings  between  the  Build  and  No  Build  Alternatives,  more  than  80  percent 
is  expected  to  occur  on  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  portions  of  Muni  Routes  47  and  49.  SFMTA 
systemwide  boardings  would  increase  by  6  percent  under  Build  Alternative  2  and  7  percent 
under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA  relative  to 
existing  conditions. 


Table  3.2-7:  Existing  and  Near-Term  (2015)  Daily  Transit  Boardings 
on  Muni  Routes  47  and  49 


2007  EXISTINC 

2015 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

2015 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

201s  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 
(WITH  OR  WITHOUT 
DESICN  OPTION  B)* 

#47 

12,800 

13,600 

15,600 

16,700 

#49 

25,300 

27,300 

33,500 

35,600 

Total 

38,100 

40,900 

49,100 

52,300 

%  Change  relative  to  Existing 

n/a 

8% 

29% 

37% 

*Same  performance  as  LPA. 

Source:  APC  data  (2006-2007)  and  SF-CHAMP. 


^In  the  long-term  horizon  year  (2035),  ridership  increases  further  due  to  population  and 
employment  growth,  in  addition  to  transit  operational  improvements.  As  shown  in  Table 
3.2-8,  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1),  daily  ridership  increases  by  23  percent 
(33  percent  systemwide)  relative  to  existing  conditions.  Under  the  build  alternatives,  daily 
ridership  on  Muni  Routes  47  and  49  increases  by  51  percent  (Build  Alternative  2)  and  59 
percent  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA).  Of  the 
growth  in  boardings  between  the  Build  and  No  Build  Alternatives,  more  than  70  percent  is 
expected  to  occur  on  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  portions  of  Muni  Routes  47  and  49. 


Ridership  on  Routes  47  and  49 
is  projected  to  increase  by 
8  percent  in  2015  under  the 
No  Build  Alternative, 
by  29  percent  under 
Build  Alternative  2,  1 
or  by  37  percent  under  ' 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 


3-26 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Table  3.2-8:  Existing  and  Long-Term  (2035)  Daily  Transit  Boardings 
on  Muni  Routes  47  and  49 


2007  EXISTING 

2035 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

2035 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

2035  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 
(WITH  OR  WITHOUT 
DESIGN  OPTION  B)- 

#47 

12,800 

l6,300 

19,500 

20JOO 

#49 

25,300 

30,600 

37,800 

40,000 

Total 

38,100 

46,900 

56,300 

60,700 

%  Change  relative  to  Existing 

n/a 

23% 

51% 

59% 

*Same  performance  as  LPA. 

Source:  APC  data  (2006-2007)  and  SF-CHAMP. 


3.2.2.3  I  TRANSIT  TRAVEL  TIME,  SPEED,  DELAY,  AND  RELIABILITY 


Methodology 

Future  year  (2015)  Muni  travel  time,  speed,  delay,  and  reliability  were  estimated  using  the 
VISSIM  microsimuladon  model  for  the  weekday  PM  peak  hour  (5:00  p.m.  to  6:00  p.m.). 
VISSIM  is  able  to  represent  transit  operadons,  including  TSP,  as  well  as  dwell  and  mixed 
traffic  delays,  as  its  own  mode.  The  VISSIM  data  portfolio  can  be  found  as  an  appendix  to 
the  Vehicular  Traffic  Transportadon  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013).  The  study  area 
for  the  VISSIM  model  is  along  the  BRT  route  from  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Mission 
Street  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Clay  Street.  The  model  also  includes  the  block  between 
Duboce/Mission/Ods/US  101  off-ramp  and  Mission/Otis/  South  Van  Ness  for  Route  49 
and  autos.  Travel  dme  and  speed  esdmates  from  the  VISSIM  model  presented  here  will  van 
slightly  from  the  Synchro  model  esdmates  presented  in  Secdon  3.3  due  to  different  modeled 
study  areas,  the  simuladon  of  signal  priority  in  VISSIM,  and  other  factors.  The  purpose  of 
the  VISSIM  esdmates  presented  in  this  secdon  is  to  measure  the  reladve  travel  time  and 
speed  difference  between  autos  and  transit  and  differences  in  speeds  and  delays  between  the 
BRT  alternatives,  whereas  the  purpose  of  the  Synchro  model  results  shown  in  Section  3.3  is 
to  analyze  the  relative  difference  in  automobile  intersecdon  Level  of  Service  (LOS). 


Future  Year  (2015)  Transit  Travel  Time,  Speed,  and  Delay 

2015  No  Build  Alternative  transit  travel  dmes  remain  similar  to  existing  conditions.  While 
autos  would  be  able  to  travel  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Clay  Street  and  Duboce/ 
Mission/Otis/US  101  in  approximately  9  minutes,  it  would  take  Route  49  nearly  twice  thai 
amount  of  time  (sec  Figure  3.2-7). 

The  proposed  project  would  increase  the  average  speed  of  Routes  47  and  4l).  As  shown  in 
Figure  3.2-6,  average  bus  speed  would  increase  from  5  mph  under  the  No  Build  Alternative 
to  6  mph  for  Build  Alternative  2  and  to  7  mph  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (with  or 
without  Design  Option  B)  and  under  the  LPA.31  Auto  speeds  would  be  s.milar  between  the 
No  Build  Alternative  and  all  of  the  build  alternative  scenarios  (including  the  LPA 
resulting  in  a  significantly  reduced  speed  gap  between  modes. 


rhc  \  aIKe,,,  Northbound  Sum.™  Varum  doc,  no,  artcci  .he  VISSIM  model  Itud,  area,  wh.ch  Mop,  .„  (  Im  Mrcc,  ,n 
Vallc  o  Northbound  Sttdofl  Varum,  the  BRT  ,pccd  could  he  ,l,gh,lv  ,lower  dun  tor  du-  LP  \  «„l  1  , 

s  ,1.  1 7       ,7  ST  i   uUm           'hi,n  Bl"kl  M*™*™  >  »"d  *        'he  ,u„ , ,™  cl  nm<  , ,  ,,ld  b. 
W S  n  31  uhM     •       •han  .h^  .l.crn-uvc,.  Ttl.  change  WU  ,.kcn  btO  lOOUfl.  fe.  ,hc  „u.w  fa 

Dwign  ( Iption  H  mm'm  "mC  ",C  1    A  Jni1  ^  M***"*  (  '  

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


The  proposed  project  would 
increase  the  average  speed  of 
Routes  47  and  49  by  20  percent 
under  Build  Alternative  2 
and  40  percent  under 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 
Auto  speeds  are  similar  between 
the  No  Build  Alternative 
and  all  of  the  build  alternative 
scenarios,  resulting  in  a 
significantly  reduced  speed  gap 
between  modes 


y*7 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Figure  3.2-6:  Average  Speed  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  Mode  -  Existing,  2015  No 
Build  Alternative,  2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4* 


14 
12 
10 


I  8 
■o 

S.  6 

CO 


11 


AUTO 


10 


10 


BUS 

(ROUTES  47  +  49) 


2007  Existing     Alt  1  (No  Build)  Alt  2  (Side  BRT)     Alts  3  and  4 

(Center  BRT) 

-The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

Source:  VISSIM 


Average  transit  travel  times 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  a 
segment  with  full  BRT 
treatment  decrease  by 
approximately  3  minutes 
with  Build  Alternative  2, 
approximately  4  minutes 
with  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4, 
and  4.5  minutes  with 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B, 
including  the  LPA. 


As  a  result  of  the  faster  speeds  shown  above,  average  transit  travel  times  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  between  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness  and  Clay  (approximately  1.2  miles  in 
length)  for  Route  47  would  decrease  by  2.6  minutes  (18  percent)  with  Build  Alternative  2, 
3.9  minutes  (27  percent)  with  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  4.5  minutes  (32  percent)  with 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  and  with  the  LPA  (see  Figure  3. 2-7). 13  3 1 
As  shown  in  Figure  3.2-8,  Route  49  would  complete  its  longer  segment  to  Duboce 
(approximately  1.5  miles  in  length  and  partially  outside  the  area  with  full  BRT  treatment)  in 
12.9  to  14.3  minutes  in  the  Build  Alternatives  (including  the  LPA)  instead  of  16.8  minutes 
under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  (including 
the  LPA)35  would  cut  in  half  the  travel  time  gap  between  autos  and  the  Route  49  bus 
between  Clay  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis.  This  travel  time  savings  could  be  reinvested  into 
more  frequent  headways  or  could  be  used  as  operational  savings  to  be  used  throughout  the 
Muni  system. 

Person  delay  on  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  provides  a  metric  indicating  the  overall 
impact  of  the  BRT  project  on  the  efficiency  of  traveling  in  the  corridor  for  people  on  transit, 
in  private  vehicles,  and  on  foot.  Figure  3.2-9  summarizes  average  intersection  delays  per 
person  between  Clay  and  McCoppin  streets  by  mode  during  the  PM  peak. 

With  the  BRT  alternatives,  the  average  amount  of  delay  per  person  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
intersections  (18  seconds  per  person)  would  stay  at  similar  levels  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative.  Person-delay  would  decrease  slightly  with  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 


33  Travel  times  shown  are  bidirectional  averages.  The  BRT  travel  time  savings  are  only  for  the  segment  of  the  corridor 
that  contains  the  VISSIM  model  (Mission  to  Clay  Street).  If  similar  benefits  (i.e.,  a  32  percent  reduction  in  travel  time) 
were  to  be  assumed  for  the  corridor  all  the  way  to  Lombard  Street,  transit  travel  time  would  be  reduced  by  6  to  7 
minutes  for  the  LPA  versus  existing  conditions  (a  reduction  from  20  minutes  for  existing  conditions  versus  13  minutes 
for  the  LPA);  this  would  represent  a  reduction  of  up  to  14  minutes  round  trip.  (Source  for  existing  conditions  travel 
time:  Transit  Effectiveness  Project/ APC  Data,  2006-2007.) 

34  See  note  33  above. 

35  See  note  33  above. 


3-28 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Design  Option  B  (including  the  LPA)36  to  approximately  17  seconds  per  person  rather  than 
18.  Delays  would  decrease  for  travelers  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  whether  on  transit  or  in 
private  vehicles,  as  shown  in  Figure  3.2-9.  Build  Alternative  2  shows  a  greater  decrease  in 
delay  due  to  the  flexibility  of  having  permissive  left  turns  in  addition  to  fully  protected  left 
turns,  whereas  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  can  only  have  fully  protected  left  turns  for  autos. 
Travelers  on  cross  streets  see  slight  increases  in  delays  (approximately  5  percent)  as  a  result. 


Cross-Transit  Delay 

Cross-transit  delay  was  calculated  using  the  same  methodology  employed  by  the  San 
Francisco  Planning  Department  for  the  San  Francisco  Bicycle  Plan  EIR.  The  delay 
calculation  consists  of  (1)  changes  in  mixed-traffic  delay,  (2)  changes  in  dwell  times  due  to 
increased  boardings,  and  (3)  changes  in  time  to  pull  out  from  stops  due  to  increased  traffic 
delays.  The  analysis  indicates  that  only  one  route  on  the  SFMTA  rapid  network  that  crosses 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  would  have  an  increase  in  mixed  traffic  delay  and  dwell  time  delay 
across  the  traffic  study  area  of  more  than  60  seconds  with  the  implementation  of  BRT  when 
compared  with  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  2035.  For  this  analysis,  Year  2035  with  Design 
Option  B  and  the  LPA  was  used  because  it  represents  the  largest  increase  in  ridership  and 
the  largest  increase  in  traffic  delays  (see  Section  3.3).  The  one  cross  route  with  greater  than  a 
60-second  increase  in  delay  during  the  PM  peak  hour  with  the  implementation  of  BRT 
would  be  the  31  inbound.  The  delay  for  this  route  in  2035  would  increase  by  just  more  than 
3  minutes  (190  seconds)  with  the  implementation  of  BRT.  This  is  nearly  3  minutes  less  than 
the  threshold  established  by  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  (1/2  of  the  12-minute 
headway  or  6  minutes)  that  would  create  a  potentially  significant  impact.  Pullout  time  would 
need  to  increase  significantly  for  all  routes  (more  than  50  seconds)  for  the  delay  to  reach  a 
threshold  of  significance. 

Figure  3.2-7:  Average  Travel  Time  in  Both  Directions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  for  Route 
47  between  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness  and  Clay/Van  Ness  -  Existing,  2015  No 
Build  Alternative,  2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 


16 
14 
12 
1  10 

0) 

E 


14.4 


14.2 


BUS 

(ROUTE  47) 


11.6 


10.3 


2007  Existing     Alt  1  (No      Alt  2  (Side    Alts  3  and  4    Alts  3  and  4 
Build)  BRT)       (Center  BRT)  with  Design 

Variation  B 

Travel  time  is  between  Mission/South  Van  Ness  and        (Center  B) 
Clay. 

**The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternates  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B. 

Source:  VISSIM  "  "  


The  LPA  would  have  fewer  right-turn  pockets  than  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  thus,  the  auto  travel  tune  nm  he  sl.^hth 
different  for  the  LPA  than  those  alternatives.  This  change  was  taken  into  account  for  the  nUD  traffic  Ullyri  ,n 
Section  3.3. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


3  J9 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Figure  3.2-8:  Average  Travel  Time  in  Both  Directions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  Mode 
from  Duboce/Mission/Otis  to  Clay  and  Van  Ness-  -  Existing,  2015  No  Build 
Alternative,  2015  Build  Alternative  2,  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4** 


E 

i— 

I 

2 


20 
18 
16 
14 
12 
10 
8 
6 


17.5 
BUS 

(ROUTE  49) 
AUTO 


16.8 


14.3 


13.7 


12.9 


8.8 


9.3 


9.4 


9.3 


8.6 


2007  Existing     Alt  1  (No 
Build) 


Alt  2  (Side     Alts  3  and  4    Alts  3  and  4 
BRT)       (Center  BRT)  with  Design 

Variation  B 
(Center  B) 

'Travel  time  is  between  Mission/Duboce  and  Clay.  Route 
47  is  not  included  because  it  travels  a  shorter  route. 


j     **The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B. 
Source:  VISSIM 


Figure  3.2-9:  Average  Delay  by  Mode  for  All  Intersections  between  Clay  and 
McCoppin* 


□  2007  Existing 
Alt  1  (No  Build, 

■  Alt  2  (Side  BRT) 

■  Alts  3  and  4  (Center  BRT) 

B  Alts  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B 


All  Persons  Autos  BRT  (47/49) 

••The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B. 

Source:  VISSIM 


3-30 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Reliability 

Bus  reliability  is  most  easily  measured  in  VISSIM  by  the  number  of  unexpected  stops 
experienced  by  the  BRT  service  due  to  traffic  signals,  congestion,  and  mixed  traffic 
movements.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  2015,  Muni  buses  would  have  a  70  percent 
chance  of  at  least  one  unexpected  stop  along  any  given  block.  With  the  proposed  project, 
the  likelihood  of  an  unexpected  stop  would  be  reduced  to  50  percent  under  Build 
Alternative  2  and  to  approximately  35  percent  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  or  without 
Design  Option  B,  and  for  the  LPA.37  This  is  a  strong  indication  that  reliability  would 
increase  and  headway  variation  would  decrease  significantly  with  BRT. 

Similar  travel  time  savings  and  reliability  improvements  are  also  expected  for  GGT,  whose 
buses  would  benefit  from  traveling  in  the  exclusive  lane  and  TSP  (see  Table  3.2-9). 

Table  3.2-9:  Unexpected  Delays  Impacting  Reliability  of  BRT  Routes 


SCENARIO 

LIKELIHOOD  OF  AN  UNEXPECTED  STOP  (PER  BLOCK) 
FOR  47  AND  49  ROUTES 

2015  No  Build  Alternative 

71% 

2015  Build  Alternative  2 

51% 

2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 

36% 

2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (with  Design  Option  B)* 

34% 

*The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Des 
could  cause  a  slight  increase  (up  to  10  seconds,  on  average)  in  travel  time  for  GGT 
NB  Vallejo  Street  station. 

gn  Option  B.  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant 
passengers  due  to  Muni  buses  being  stopped  at  the 

Source:  VISSIM. 


3.2.3  I  Future  Regional  Transit  Services 

This  section  describes  potential  changes  in  service  for  regional  transit  service  that  operates 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  presents  detailed  future  transit  ridership  and  performance  (i.e., 
travel  time,  speed,  delay,  and  reliability)  conditions  for  Muni  transit  operations  under  each 
proposed  BRT  project  alternative.  As  with  Section  3.1,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  the 
LPA,  are  described  together  because  transit  ridership  and  performance  are  not  measurably 
different  for  each  within  the  constraints  of  the  models. 


Golden  Gate  Transit 

The  proposed  BRT  transitway  would  accommodate  SFMTA  and  GGT  vehicles  under  all 
build  alternatives,  and  GGT  service  would  continue  to  operate  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  with 
implementation  of  the  BRT  project.  The  existing  GGT  curbside  stops  would  be  eliminated, 
and  GGT  would  likely  use  the  closest  BRT  stations.  Under  all  BRT  project  alternatives, 
GGT  travel  times  and  reliability  would  improve,  benefitting  from  use  of  the  BRT  transitway, 
separation  from  mixed-flow  traffic,  and  TSP.  While  the  existing  GGT  routes  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  would  not  change  under  Build  Alternatives  2  and  3,  and  the  LPA,  the  routing  under  | 
Build  Alternative  4  may  be  modified  to  provide  a  northern  stop,  as  described  further  below. 

Table  3.2-10  shows  the  changes  in  station  locations  that  would  occur  under  each  build 
alternative.  Approximately  80  percent  of  GGT  riders  on  routes  that  travel  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  either  use  the  Geary/O'Farrell  stop  or  use  stops  off  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  (i.e.,  in  the 
financial  district);  thus  maintaining  the  existing  Geary/OTarrcll  stop  and  stops  that  prov  ide 
access  to  the  northern  end  of  the  BRT  project  area  (an  important  transit  transfer  point),  as 


The-  \  illejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  does  not  affect  the  VISSIM  model  study  area,  which  Stop!  II  (  l.,v  S.rcc.  in 
the  north  Due  to  the  need  tor  the  BRT  to  stop  one  additional  time  in  the  NB  direction  a.  VlUejo  S.ree.  under  .he 
Valle,.,  Northbound  Station  Variant,  the  BRT  reliability  benefits  could  be  slightly  lower  than  lor  .he  I  T  \  without  -he 
variant. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


well  as  stops  near  City  Hall,  were  identified  as  critical  to  GGT  operations,  and  all  build 
alternatives  would  achieve  this.  Under  all  build  alternatives,  the  existing  GGT  Turk  stop 
would  be  eliminated,  although  GGT  could  utilize  the  proposed  Eddy  Street  BRT  station  one 
block  north  of  Turk  Street  under  Build  Alternatives  2  and  3,  and  the  LPA. 


Table  3.2-10:  Likely  GGT  Stop  Locations  with  BRT  Project  by  Project  Alternative 


EXISTING  OCT  STOPS  ON 

PROPOSED  CCT  STOP  LOCATIONS  WITH  BRT  PROJECT 

VAN  NESS  AVENUE 

CCT  STOP  WITH  ALTERNATIVE  2 

CCT  STOP  WITH  ALTERNATIVE  3 

CCT  STOP  WITH  ALTERNATIVE  4 

Chestnut  Street 

Union  Street 

Union  Street  Station 

Union  Street  Station 

curbside  stops  -or- 

(NB&SB) 

(NB&SB) 

(NB  &  SB) 

Union  Street  Station 
(NB&SB)4 

Broadway  Street/ 
Pacific  Avenue 
(NB/  SB) 

Jackson  Street  Station 
(NB  &  SB) 

Jackson  Street  Station 
(NB  &SB) 

stop  eliminated** 

Clay  Street/ 
Sacramento  Street 
(NB/SB) 

Sacramento  Street 

Sacramento  Street 

stop  eliminated 

Station  (NB  &  SB) 

Station  (NB&SB) 

Sutter  Street 

Sutter  Street  Station 

Sutter  Street  Station 

stop  eliminated 

(NB  &  SB) 

(NB  &  SB) 

(NB&SB) 

Geary  Street/ 
O'Farrell  Street 
(NB/SB) 

Geary/O'Farrell  Street 
Station  (NB  &SB) 

Geary/O'Farrell  Street 
Station  (NB  &SB) 

Geary/O'Farrell  Street 
Station  (NB&SB) 

Turk  Street  (NB) 

Eddy  Street  Station 
(NB) 

Eddy  Street  Station 
(NB) 

stop  eliminated 

Notes: 

Under  Build  Alternative  4,  either  CCT  would  use  curbside  stops  at  Chestnut  Street  in  association  with  a  rerouting  of  GGT  service  along 
four  blocks  of  Chestnut  Street  or  GGT  would  utilize  the  BRT  Union  Street  Station. 

Under  Build  Alternative  4,  existing  GGT  stops  would  be  eliminated,  with  the  exception  of  a  stop  at  Union  Street  and  Geary/O'Farrell 
Street.  Approximately  80  percent  of  GGT  patrons  either  use  the  Geary/O'Farrell  stop  or  do  not  stop  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Because  GGT  plans  to  use  existing  vehicles  that  do  not  permit  left-side  boardings,  GGT 
routes  would  only  stop  at  the  Geary/O'Farrell  BRT  station  within  the  BRT  project  area 
under  Build  Alternative  4.  They  would  continue  to  utilize  McAllister  and  Golden  Gate  stops, 
just  off  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  in  the  southern  end  of  the  corridor.  GGT  routing  to  the  north 
for  Build  Alternative  4  may  utilize  a  new  stop  on  Chestnut  Street  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the 
northern  end  of  the  corridor. 

To  create  the  new  Chestnut  Street  stop  under  Build  Alternative  4,  GGT  buses  would  travel 
along  Chestnut  Street  instead  of  Lombard  Street  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Laguna 
Street.  The  GGT  buses  would  share  the  existing  EB  curbside  Muni  stop  with  the  Muni  30 
and  30X  buses,  possibly  requiring  a  lengthening  of  the  stop,  resulting  in  the  removal  of  one 
to  two  street  parking  spaces  next  to  these  stops.  For  the  creation  of  the  new  WB  stop  on 
Chestnut  Street,  another  one  to  three  spaces  may  be  removed. 

This  proposed  Chestnut  Street  rerouting  would  result  in  approximately  5  GGT  vehicles  per 
hout  in  each  direction  on  Chestnut  Street  during  peak  periods,  with  lower  frequencies 
during  off  peak  times.  GGT  operating  hours  in  San  Francisco  for  routes  that  would  be 
affected  are  from  approximately  6:00  a.m.  to  12:00  a.m.,  similar  to  current  Muni  service 
hours  on  Chestnut  Street.  As  standard  practice,  GGT  rerouting  and  stop  consolidation  that 
would  indirectly  result  from  implementation  of  the  proposed  BRT  project  would  be  subject 
to  the  agency's  standard  procedures  for  such  operational  changes,  including  public  outreach 
to  inform  patrons  of  changes  in  service. 

As  an  alternative  to  the  above  changes,  under  Build  Alternative  4,  a  dual-median  and  center- 
lane  transitway  and  station  configuration  similar  to  Build  Alternative  3  could  be  provided  at 


3-32 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 


I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Union  Street.  This  would  allow  for  right-side  boarding  required  by  GGT  buses;  thus,  GGT 
would  share  the  Union  Street  Station  with  BRT.  Under  this  scenario,  GGT  buses  would 
continue  to  travel  along  Lombard  Street  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Laguna  Street. 

Under  all  BRT  project  alternatives,  GGT  travel  times  and  reliability  would  improve  because 
service  would  benefit  from  use  of  the  BRT  transitway,  separated  from  mixed-flow  traffic,  as 
well  as  TSP,  even  considering  additional  walk  time  due  to  elimination  of  existing  GGT 
stops,  under  each  build  alternative,  as  well  as  the  potential  change  in  routing  onto  Chestnut 
Street  under  Build  Alternative  4  (see  Section  10.2.4.1). 

Because  the  LPA  would  have  right-side  boarding,  it  would  not  require  the  above-described 
variation  in  GGT  routing. 


Employer  Shuttle  Services 

Private  shuttles  are  currently  prohibited  from  using  transit  lanes  or  stops  citywide.  With 
implementation  of  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  employer  and  other  private  shuttles  traveling 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  continue  to  operate  in  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  and  would 
not  travel  within  the  BRT  transitway  or  use  BRT  stations.  In  201 1,  the  Authority  completed 
an  SAR  on  the  Role  of  Shuttle  Services  in  San  Francisco's  Transportation  System,38  which 
examined  existing  shuttle  services  and  regulations  and  developed  policy  recommendations. 
The  SFMTA  is  currently  developing  the  Muni  Partners  Program,  a  component  of  the  multi- 
agency  Transportation  Demand  Management  Partnership  Project  led  by  the  Authority.39  The 
Partnership  Project  will  examine  the  feasibilities  of  allowing  private  shuttles  to  use  transit 
lanes  and  stops.  The  design  of  the  BRT  system  does  not  preclude  the  use  of  the  facilities  by 
private  shuttles  if  it  is  later  adopted  as  a  City  policy. 

3.2.3.1  I  ENVIRONMENTAL  IMPACTS  -  NEAR-TERM  HORIZON  YEAR  (2015) 

This  section  discusses  Muni  transit  operations  and  cumulative  impacts  for  the  near-term 
(2015)  No  Build  Alternative  and  the  build  alternatives. 


Platform  Crowding  (2015) 


Alternative  1:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative) 

In  existing  conditions,  there  are  no  platforms.  Instead,  the  bus  stops  make  use  of  the 
existing  16-foot-wide  sidewalk  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  (on  South  Van  Ness  Avenue 
between  Market  and  Mission  streets,  the  sidewalk  is  22  feet  wide  on  both  sides).  This  width 
is  effectively  reduced  at  bus  stop  locations.  While  there  is  evidence  of  crowding  along 
sidewalks  at  high  ridership  stops  (e.g.,  Oak/Market,  Geary),  there  is  sufficient  sidewalk  space- 
farther  down  the  block  for  passengers  to  wait  in  the  event  of  extreme  crowding.  At  the 
busiest  stops,  such  as  Market  and  Geary,  waiting  bus  riders  conflict  with  pedestrians  trying 
to  use  the  sidewalk.  In  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  scenario,  the  increase  in  transit 
ridership  would  worsen  these  situations. 


Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Build  Alternative  2  would  create  right-side  boarding  platforms  through  sidewalk  extensions 
(bus  bulbs)  approximately  9  feet  in  width  and  160  feet  in  length.  Expected  passenger  loads 
at  the  busiest  station  platform,  Market  Street,  were  analyzed  to  determine  the  likelihood  of 
crowding  under  the  project  scenarios.  Build  Alternative  2  in  2015  would  provide  27  to  30 
square  feet  per  passenger  on  the  Market  Street  station  platforms,  liven  in  the  event  of 
extreme  bus  bunching,  where  the  platform  could  be  as  much  as  twice  as  crowded,  the 
amount  of  space  would  be  greater  than  13  square  feet  per  person,  which  is  higher  than 


The  SAR  is  available  at  w\v\v.sfrta.on>/shuttlrs 
Available-  on  the  project  website  at ' 


Under  all  the  Build  Alternatives, 
there  would  not  be  a  significant 
platform  crowding  impact. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


3  )J 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


national  standard  guidelines  and  more  than  twice  as  much  as  local  guidelines  of  5  square  feet 
per  person.  There  would  not  be  a  significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2015. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B,  including  the  LPA) 

Build  Alternative  3  would  create  dual  platforms,  each  with  similar  dimensions  and  amount 
of  usable  space  as  Build  Alternative  2  (25  to  28  square  feet  per  passenger  on  the  Market 
Street  station  platforms).  The  LPA  platforms  would  have  similar  dimensions  to  Build 
Alternative  3,  although  the  LPA  would  provide  an  additional  1-foot  buffer  between  the 
station  and  the  adjacent  traffic  lane,  for  a  total  of  5.5  feet  of  buffer  between  the  center  of  the 
platform  and  traffic.  Even  in  the  event  of  bus  bunching,  where  the  platform  could  be  as 
much  as  twice  as  crowded,  the  amount  of  space  would  be  greater  than  12  square  feet  per 
person,  which  is  higher  than  national  standard  guidelines  and  more  than  twice  as  much  as 
local  guidelines  (5  square  feet  per  person).  There  would  not  be  a  significant  platform 
crowding  impact  in  2015. 

The  LPA  platform  crowding  conditions  would  be  the  same  as  Build  Alternative  3.  There 
would  not  be  a  significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2015. 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B) 

Build  Alternative  4  would  create  platforms  on  the  existing  single  center  median.  Each 
platform  would  be  13  feet  to  14  feet  wide  and  160  feet  in  length  and,  in  many  cases,  it  would 
serve  passengers  in  both  directions.  Build  Alternative  4  would  provide  22  to  26  square  feet 
per  passenger  on  the  Market  Street  station  platforms.  Even  in  the  event  of  bus  bunching, 
where  the  platform  could  be  as  much  as  twice  as  crowded,  the  amount  of  space  would  be 
greater  than  1 1  square  feet  per  person,  which  is  higher  than  national  standard  guidelines  and 
more  than  twice  as  much  as  local  guidelines  (5  square  feet  per  person).  There  would  not  be  a 
significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2015. 


Crowding/Vehicle  Load  Factors  (2015) 

The  future  year  (2015)  load  factor  analysis  is  presented  in  Table  3.2-11.  Note  that  peak  load 
factor  refers  to  occupancy  of  the  vehicle;  thus,  the  peak  load  at  a  particular  location  is  not 
necessarily  the  same  as  the  station  with  the  most  boardings. 


Table  3.2-n:  Year  2015  Muni 

Load  Factor  Analysis 

PEAK  HOUR  (5:00  PM  TO  6:00  PM) 

EXISTING* 

2015 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE" 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 
(INCLUDING 
DESIGN 
OPTION  B)** 

Load  Factor  at  Peak  ^7 

SB 

O.39  O.46 

O.32 

O.32 

NB 

o.6i  0.76 

O.53 

O.8O 

Location  (%  of  total   

vehicle  capacity)  ^ 

SB 

O.44  O.43 

0.71 

O.8O 

NB 

O.45  O.5O 

O.68 

O.8O 

*  Existing  Load  Factors  are  different  than  in  Section  3.2.1.3  because  the  VISSIM  model  was  co 
instead  of  3:00  pm  to  4:00,  which  is  the  peak  transit  hour  in  existing  conditions. 
**The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  8uild  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

ded  with  a  peak  hour  of  5:00  pm  to  6:00  pm 

Source:  APC  data  (2006-2007)  and  SFCHAMP. 

# 

3-34 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Alternative  1:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative) 

The  crowding  (i.e.,  Load  Factor)  increases  slighdy  on  the  47  to  0.46  SB  and  0.76  NB  under 
the  No  Build  Alternative  relative  to  the  existing  conditions.  The  load  factor  for  Route  49 
stays  similar  to  existing  conditions  (0.43  SB  and  0.5  NB).  All  of  these  load  factors  are  below 
Muni's  0.85  load  factor  standard. 


Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Using  SF-CHAMP  ridership  forecasts,  Build  Alternative  2  would  show  a  decrease  in  load 
factors  for  Route  47  (0.32  SB  and  0.53  NB)  due  to  the  greater  effective  capacity  caused  by 
increasing  the  vehicle  size  from  40  feet  (existing)  to  60  feet.  Route  49  would  show  increased 
load  factors  under  Build  Alternative  2  (0.71  SB  and  0.68  NB).  The  MLP  is  expected  to  be  at 
either  Market/Oak  or  McAllister  under  this  alternative.  These  load  factors  are  still  below 
Muni's  0.85  load  factor  standard,  so  there  would  not  be  a  significant  crowding  impact  due  to 
Build  Alternative  2.  As  indicated  in  Section  3.2.1.3,  reliability  is  a  significant  contributor  to 
vehicle  crowding  levels  in  operation,  so  the  reliability  improvements  (i.e.,  decrease  in 
headway  variation)  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  (see  Section  3.2.2.2)  could  result  in  a 
less-crowded  passenger  experience  even  though  the  average  loads  would  be  higher. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B) 

Using  SF-CHAMP  ridership  forecasts,  Build  Alternative  3  would  show  a  decrease  in  load  | 
factors  for  Routes  47  (0.32  SB  and  0.80  NB)  due  to  the  greater  effective  capacity  caused  by 
increasing  the  vehicle  size  from  40  feet  (existing)  to  60  feet.  Route  49  would  show  increased 
load  factors  under  Build  Alternative  2.  Route  49  would  show  increased  load  factors  under 
Build  Alternative  3  (0.80  SB  and  0.80  NB).  The  MLP  is  expected  to  be  at  Market/Oak  or 
McAllister  for  this  alternative.  These  load  factors  are  still  below  Muni's  0.85  load  factor 
standard,  so  there  would  not  be  a  significant  in-vehicle  crowding  impact.  As  discussed 
above,  reliability  is  a  significant  contributor  to  vehicle  crowding  levels  in  operation,  so  the 
reliability  improvements  (i.e.,  decrease  in  headway  variation)  relative  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative  (see  Section  3.2.2.2)  could  result  in  a  less-crowded  passenger  experience  even 
though  the  average  loads  would  be  higher. 

Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA 

The  findings  for  Build  Alternative  4  and  the  LPA  are  the  same  as  for  Build  Alternative  3. 
There  would  not  be  a  significant  crowding  impact  in  2015. 

The  LPA  vehicle  crowding  conditions  would  be  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 
There  would  not  be  a  significant  vehicle  crowding  impact  in  2015. 


3.2.3.2  I  ENVIRONMENTAL  IMPACTS  -  LONG-TERM  HORIZON  YEAR  (2035) 

This  section  discusses  transit  operations  and  cumulative  impacts  for  the  near-term  (2035) 
No  Build  Alternative  and  the  build  alternatives. 


s  in  2015,  no  separated  platforms  would  be  built  for  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  2035; 


Alternative  1:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative) 


Platform  Crowding  (2035) 


Reliability  improvements 
relative  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative  could  result  in 
a  less-crowded  passenger 
experience  even  though  the 
average  hourly  loads  would 
be  higher  under  the 
Build  Alternatives. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

The  size  and  usable  space  on  the  platforms  would  not  differ  from  year  2015,  but  the  busiest 
station  platform  location  is  expected  to  be  at  Geary  and  O'Farrell  due  in  part  to  the 
expected  completion  of  the  CPMC  hospital,  and  BRT  on  Geary  Boulevard  (note  that  this 
peak  boarding  location  is  different  than  the  MLP,  which  would  continue  to  be  at  Oak/ 
Market  or  McAllister,  as  described  later  in  this  section).  Build  Alternative  2  in  2035  would 
provide  25  to  29  square  feet  per  passenger  on  the  Geary  and  O'Farrell  station  platforms. 
Even  in  the  event  of  extreme  bus  bunching,  where  the  platform  could  be  as  much  as  twice 
as  crowded,  the  amount  of  space  would  be  greater  than  13  square  feet  per  person,  which  is 
higher  than  national  standard  guidelines  and  more  than  twice  as  much  as  local  guidelines. 
There  would  not  be  a  significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2035. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B) 

I  The  amount  of  space  on  the  station  platforms  in  Build  Alternative  3  and  the  LPA  would  not 
change  between  2015  and  2035,  but  like  Build  Alternative  2,  the  busiest  platform  is  expected 
to  be  at  Geary  and  O'Farrell.  Even  in  the  event  of  bus  bunching,  where  the  platform  could 
be  as  much  as  twice  as  crowded,  the  amount  of  space  would  be  greater  than  12  square  feet 
per  person,  which  is  higher  than  national  standard  guidelines  and  more  than  twice  as  much 
as  local  guidelines.  There  would  not  be  a  significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2035. 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA 

Build  Alternative  4  would  provide  similar  platforms  at  the  Geary  and  O'Farrell  location  as 
under  Build  Alternative  3  due  to  the  need  to  accommodate  Golden  Gate  Transit  vehicles. 
Thus,  the  crowding  analysis  and  results  for  Build  Alternative  4  (with  or  without  Design 
Option  B)  would  be  the  same  as  Build  Alternative  3.  There  would  not  be  a  significant 
platform  crowding  impact  in  2035. 

The  LPA  platform  crowding  conditions  would  be  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4, 
although  the  LPA  would  provide  an  additional  1-foot  buffer  between  the  station  and  the 
adjacent  traffic  lane,  for  a  total  of  5.5  feet  of  buffer  between  the  center  of  the  platform  and 
traffic.  There  would  not  be  a  significant  platform  crowding  impact  in  2035. 


Crowding/Vehicle  Load  Factors  (2035) 

The  future  year  (2035)  load  factor  analysis  is  presented  in  Table  3.2-12. 


Table  3.2-12:  Year  2035  Muni  Load  Factor  Analysis 


PEAK  PERIOD 

EXISTING* 

2035 

NO  BUILD 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3 

ALTERNATIVE 

AND  4 

(WITH  OR  WITHOUT 
DESIGN  OPTION  B)** 

Load  Factor  at 

SB 

O.39 

O.68 

O.37 

O.39 

Peak  (location 
(96  of  total 
vehicle 

47  " 

NB 

0.6l 

O.79 

O.63 

O.gi 

SB 

O.44 

O.5I 

O.67 

O.78 

capacity) 

49  " 

NB 

O.45 

O.56 

O.76 

O.89 

^Existing  Load  Factors  are  different  than  in  Section  3.2.1.3  because  the  VISSIM  model  was  coded  with  a  peak  hour  of  5:00  pm  to  6:00  pm 
instead  of  3:00  pm  to  4:00  pm,  which  is  the  peak  transit  hour  in  existing  conditions. 
**The  LPA  is  anticipated  to  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 


Source:  APC  data  (2006  2007)  and  SF-CHAMP. 


3-36 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Alternative  1:  No  Build  (Baseline  Alternative) 

The  load  factors  for  both  Routes  47  (0.68  SB  and  0.79  NB)  and  49  (0.51  SB  and  0.56  NB) 
would  increase  in  2035  relative  to  existing  conditions.  All  of  these  load  factors  are  below 
Muni's  0.85  load  factor  standard. 

Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Build  Alternative  2  would  increase  load  factors  on  both  Routes  47  and  49,  as  shown  in  Table 
3.2-12.  The  MLP  is  expected  at  either  Oak  or  McAllister  in  this  alternative.  These  load 
factors  would  still  be  below  Muni's  0.85  load  factor  standard,  so  there  would  not  be  a 
significant  in-vehicle  crowding  impact.  As  indicated  for  the  near-term  horizon  year, 
reliability  is  a  significant  contributor  to  vehicle  crowding  levels  in  operation,  so  the  reliability 
improvements  (i.e.,  decrease  in  headway  variation)  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  (see 
Section  3.2.2.2)  could  result  in  a  less-crowded  passenger  experience  even  though  the  average 
loads  would  be  higher. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B) 

Build  Alternative  3  would  show  an  increase  in  load  factors  on  both  Routes  47  and  49.  The 
MLP  is  expected  be  at  Market  or  McAllister  for  this  alternative.  The  2035  0.91  load  factor 
for  the  NB  Route  47  and  the  0.89  load  factor  for  the  NB  Route  49  would  exceed  Muni's 
0.85  threshold  and  would  constitute  a  significant  in-vehicle  crowding  impact.  As  indicated  in 
Section  3.2.1.3,  reliability  is  a  significant  contributor  to  vehicle  crowding  levels  in  operation, 
so  the  reliability  improvements  (i.e.,  decrease  in  headway  variation)  relative  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative  (see  Section  3.2.2.2)  could  result  in  a  less-crowded  passenger  experience  even 
though  the  average  loads  would  be  higher. 


KEY  FINDING 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median  (with  or  without 
Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA 

The  findings  for  Build  Alternative  4  are  the  same  as  for  Build  Alternative  3.  There  is  a 
potentially  significant  vehicle  crowding  impact  in  2035. 

The  LPA  platform  crowding  conditions  would  be  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 
There  is  a  potentially  significant  vehicle  crowding  impact  in  2035. 

3.2.4 1  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 

Implementation  of  the  following  mitigation  measure  would  reduce  or  avoid  significant 
impacts  from  vehicle  crowding,  applicable  to  Build  Alternative  3  and  4,  with  or  without 
Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA: 

M-TR-i:  A  mitigation  measure  of  adding  one  additional  vehicle  operating  on  Routes  47  and 
49  would  decrease  headways  for  each  route  sufficiently  to  bring  the  load  factors  below  the 
0.85  standard.  This  reduction  in  headways  could  be  possible  with  no  additional  operating 
costs  due  to  the  expected  travel  time  savings  forecast  in  that  horizon  year. 

3.2.5  I  Transit  Summary 

Transit  analysis  through  the  use  of  SF-CHAMP,  which  is  San  Francisco's  travel  demand  | 
forecasting  model,  and  the  VISSIM  microsimulation  model  indicates  the  following: 

•     Transit  ridership  would  increase  on  Routes  47  and  49,  as  well  as  svstemwide,  with  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project. 


Implementation  of 
Build  Alternative  2 
would  not  have  a  significant 
impact  on  vehicle  crowding 
in  2015  or  2035. 
Implementation  of 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
(with  or  without  Design 
Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  not 
have  a  significant  impact  on 
vehicle  crowding  in  2015 
but  would  have  a  potentially 
significant  impact  in  2035. The 
impact  could  be  mitigated  by 
adding  an  additional  vehicle  to 
each  route  during  the  peak  to 
decrease  headways  This  may  be 
possible  at  no  additional 
operating  cost  through  the 
reinvestment  of  travel  time 
savings. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


3  }7 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


•  Transit  travel  time  would  decrease  and  speed  would  increase  for  Routes  47  and  49  with 
the  proposed  project,  significantly  closing  the  travel  time  gap  between  autos  and  transit. 

•  Transit  reliability  would  increase,  with  reduced  variation  in  headways,  with  the  proposed 
project. 

•  Implementation  of  the  BRT  under  any  of  the  alternatives  would  not  have  a  significant 
impact  on  platform  crowding  in  either  2015  or  2035. 

•  Implementation  of  Build  Alternative  2  would  not  have  a  potentially  significant  impact 
on  vehicle  crowding  in  2015  or  2035.  Implementation  of  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
(with  or  without  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  not  have  a  significant  impact  on 
vehicle  crowding  in  2015  but  is  anticipated  to  have  a  significant  impact  in  2035.  The 
impact  could  be  mitigated  by  adding  an  additional  vehicle  to  each  route  during  the  peak 
to  decrease  headways  This  may  be  possible  at  no  additional  operating  cost  through  the 
reinvestment  of  travel  time  savings. 

•  Total  GGT  passenger  travel  times  and  reliability  would  improve  under  all  of  the  build 
alternatives  because  service  would  benefit  from  use  of  the  BRT  transitway  separated 
from  mixed-flow  traffic,  as  well  as  TSP. 


3-38 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


3.3  Traffic 


This  section  presents  the  local  and  regional  roadway  systems  in  the  traffic  study  area  and 
planned  roadway  improvements  that  may  affect  the  study  area;  evaluates  potential  traffic 
impacts;  and  presents  mitigation  measures  that  would  mitigate  significant  traffic  impacts. 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  traffic  study  includes  six  north-south  streets  that  would 
most  likely  be  affected  by  the  proposed  project:  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Franklin  Street,  and 
Gough  Street  from  Mission  Street  to  Lombard  Street;  Polk  Street  from  Market  Street  to 
Pacific  Avenue;  Larkin  Street  from  Market  Street  to  California  Street;  and  Hyde  Street  from 
Market  Street  to  Pine  Street  (Figure  3.3-1).  Please  note  that  in  this  section  "traffic"  refers  to 
private  vehicle  traffic  (i.e.,  automobiles,  trucks,  motorcycles,  shuttles,  and  taxis)  only  unless 
otherwise  explicitly  stated. 

This  section  also  presents  the  potential  traffic  impacts  of  the  Locally  Preferred  Alternative 
(LP A)  that  was  approved  by  the  SFMTA  Board  in  May  2012.  The  LPA  is  a  refinement  of 
the  two  center-running  build  alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B).  For  nearly  all  of  the  environmental  impact  areas  described  in 
Section  3.3,  the  LPA  (including  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)  has  similar 
environmental  consequences  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  and  is  so 
noted. 

3.3.1 1  Traffic  Evaluation  Methodology 

Traffic  operations  were  analyzed  for  the  existing  conditions  and  future  years  2015  and  2035, 
for  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  three  build  alternatives,  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Traffic  volumes  used  in  the  existing  conditions  analysis  were 
based  on  field  counts  collected  mostly  in  2007,  and  future  traffic  volumes  were  developed 
using  the  SF-CHAMP  travel  demand  forecasting  model  described  in  Section  3.1  and  in  the 
Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  201 3).40  Traffic  volumes  for  the 
intersections  in  the  vicinity  of  the  proposed  CPMC  hospital  and  medical  office  building  were 
modified  to  reflect  the  projected  vehicle  trip  generation  for  these  two  buildings  in  the 
CPMC  EIR  for  the  2035  build  alternatives  and  manually  adjusted  for  reasonableness.  Traffic 
operations  analysis  for  existing  and  future  year  analyses  used  a  SYNCHRO  operations 
model  created  by  CHS  Consulting  Group  and  further  described  in  the  Vehicular  Traffic 
Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Future-year  intersection  traffic  volumes  were  developed  based  on  growth  factors  obtained 
from  the  SF-CHAMP  model  between  the  years  of  2005  and  2015,  and  between  2005  and 
2035.  The  SF-CHAMP  model  uses  the  forecast  population  and  employment  produced  by 
ABAG  as  the  basis  for  future  traffic  volume  forecasts.  ABAG,  the  regional  planning 
organization,  provides  biannual  population  and  employment  forecasts  for  each  city  in  the 
Bay  Area.  The  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  further  breaks  down  the  estimated  total 
population  and  employment  in  San  Francisco  by  various  traffic  analysis  zones  (TAZ)  for  the 
SF-CHAMP  model  based  on  zoning  limitations  and  known  development  projects.  For  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  modeling,  the  projected  land  use  data  for  both  the  Year  2015  and 
2035  scenarios  were  used  as  inputs  in  the  SF-CHAMP  model  and  were  based  on  ABAG's 
Projections  2007.  The  Projection  2007  land  use  inputs  were  also,  used  in  the  most  reccnth 
adopted  RTP,  Transportation  2035,  for  which  an  EIR  was  prepared. 

SFCTA  provided  growth  factors  from  the  SF-CHAMP  model  for  each  north-south  street  in 
four  different  sections  -  northern,  mid,  and  southern  sections  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  the 
SoMa  -  in  the  traffic  study  area  and  for  the  east-west  streets  by  facility  type  (e.g.,  arterial. 


DEFINITION 


In  this  section,  "traffic"  refers 
to  private  vehicle  traffic 
(i.e.,  automobiles,  trucks, 
motorcycles,  shuttles,  and 
taxis)  only  unless  otherwise 
explicitly  stated. 


40  As  described  in  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CI  IS,  2013),  the  existing  condidl  «U 
SYNCHRO  Model  includes  the  following  field  counts:  traffic  turning  movements  at  <>I  intersections,  pedestrian 
counts,  parking  maneuver  counts,  and  travel  time  and  queue  length  data. 


The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT 
Project  traffic  study  included  six 
north-south  streets:  Van  Ness 
Avenue  (top),  Franklin  Street 
(middle),  and  Cough  Street 
from  Mission  to  Lombard;  Polk 
Street  from  Market  to  Pacific; 
Larkin  Street  (bottom)  from 
Market  to  California;  and  Hyde 
Street  from  Market  to  Pine. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


1J9 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


collector,  and  local  streets).  These  growth  factors  were  applied  to  the  existing  counts  to 
obtain  future  traffic  volumes  for  each  intersection.  The  initial  set  of  forecast  traffic  volumes 
were  balanced  within  the  traffic  study  area  to  ensure  equilibrium  of  traffic  volumes  within 
the  study  area.  The  process  for  developing  the  traffic  volumes  used  in  the  existing  and 
future  conditions  traffic  operations  (i.e.,  SYNCHRO)  models  is  more  fully  explained  in 
Section  3.1  and  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Figure  3.3-1:  Street  Network  in  the  Proposed  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project 
Corridor  Traffic  Study  Area 


4 


3-40 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Future-year  signal  timing  and  phasing  data  were  initially  provided  by  SFMTA  and  then 
optimized  using  the  SYNCHRO  model,  which  uses  the  same  methodology  specified  in  the 
Highway  Capacity  Manual  (HCM)  2000.  For  the  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA, 
intersection  geometries  were  modified  in  the  SYNCHRO  model  for  certain  intersections 
where  left-turn  pockets  were  removed  as  a  result  of  the  proposed  project.  Details  of  the  left- 
turn  pocket  locations  are  presented  in  Chapter  2,  Table  2-3  and  Figure  2-2. 

As  presented  in  Section  3.2,  a  VISSIM  simulation  model  was  created  primarily  for  assessing 
the  project's  benefits  to  transit  operations.  VISSIM  is  a  microsimulation  model  that  is 
utilized  for  modeling  transit,  automobile,  and  pedestrian  operations;  simulating  parking 
operations;  and  incorporating  signal  priority  systems.  This  section,  however,  uses  a 
SYNCHRO  traffic  operations  model  to  assess  intersection  LOS  impacts  caused  by  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  build  alternatives  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  the  five  parallel 
north-south  streets  east  and  west  of  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Signalized  intersection  operations  are  evaluated  based  on  average  vehicular  delay  (seconds 
per  vehicle).  Unsignalized  intersections  are  analyzed  using  an  LOS  based  on  the  approach 
with  the  highest  delay.  The  LOS  is  used  to  describe  how  efficiently  an  intersection  operates 
for  private  vehicle  traffic.  The  method  used  for  signalized  intersections  generally  defines 
LOS  in  terms  of  "control  delay  per  vehicle,"  which  refers  to  the  average  time  spent  by 
vehicles  decelerating,  stopping,  and  accelerating  at  traffic  signals.  Signalized  intersection 
LOS  is  affected  by  traffic  volumes,  intersection  lane  configuration,  and  signal  timing  and 
coordination  in  a  corridor.  Unsignalized  intersection  LOS  is  defined  in  terms  of  average 
delay  experienced  per  vehicle  along  the  stop-controlled  approach(es)  at  the  intersection. 
Intersection  LOS  designations  range  from  "A,"  which  indicates  negligible  delays  with  free- 
flow speed  (i.e.,  less  than  10  seconds  per  vehicle  for  signalized  intersections  and  unsignalized 
approaches)  to  "F,"  which  indicates  delays  with  queuing  that  may  block  upstream 
intersections  (i.e.,  greater  than  80  seconds  per  vehicle  for  signalized  intersections  and  greater 
than  50  seconds  for  unsignalized  approaches).  Criteria  used  to  assess  the  significance  of 
private  vehicle  traffic  impacts  are  presented  in  Section  3.3.3. 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  traffic  study  area  includes  139  intersections:  134 
signalized  intersections  and  5  unsignalized  intersections.  Due  to  the  large  number  of 
intersections  in  the  traffic  study  area,  the  discussion  of  existing  and  future  intersection  and 
approach  LOS  focuses  on  those  signalized  intersections  or  worst  approaches  at  unsignalized 
intersections  operating  at  LOS  E  and  F.  The  City  and  County  of  San  Francisco  uses  LOS  D 
as  a  threshold,  so  signalized  intersections  or  worst  approach  at  unsignalized  intersections 
operating  at  LOS  E  or  F  are  discussed  in  this  chapter.  Details  of  the  intersection  LOS  for  all 
139  intersections  in  the  traffic  study  can  be  found  in  Appendix  8  of  the  Vehicular  Traffic 
Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Average  vehicular  travel  speed  is  presented  in  this  EIS/EIR  for  planning  and  informational 
purposes.  There  are  no  criteria  established  by  SFCTA  or  by  the  City  and  County  of  San 
Francisco  to  assess  vehicular  traffic's  CEQA  impacts  using  average  travel  speeds.  Travel 
speed  data  provided  in  this  EIS/EIR  are  presented  for  planning  and  informational  purposes 
to  compare  overall  changes  in  the  operating  conditions  of  roadway  operations. 


DEFINITION 


LOS:  Level  of  Service 

Unsignalized  Intersection 

Delay  Criteria  

LOS  AVERAGE  DELAY  (SEC/VEH) 

A  0-10 


>  10  - 15 


>i5-25 


>  25  •  35 


>  35  -  50 


>50 


Signalized  Intersection 
Delay  Criteria 


LOS 

AVERACE  DELAY  (SEC/VEH) 

A 

B 

>  IO  -  20 

C 

>  20  •  35 

D 

>  35  -  55 

E 

>  55  •  80 

F 

>  80 

Source:  Highway  Capacity  Manual,  aooo 


3.3.2  I  Existing  Conditions 

This  section  describes  the  existing  roadway  operating  conditions  (including  traffic  volumes, 
travel  speed,  and  intersection  LOS)  of  the  regional  roadways  and  local  streets  in  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  area.  Additional  information  on  existing  travel  patterns  111  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  traffic  study  area  can  be  found  in  Section  3.1,  Corridor  Travel 
Pattern  ( )verview. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


J  4> 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3.3.2.1  I  ROADWAY  NETWORK 

The  discussion  in  this  section  presents  only  the  role  of  the  roadways  in  the  traffic  study  area 
for  private  vehicle  traffic.  These  roadways  also  serve  various  roles  for  transit,  pedestrian,  and 
bicycle  traffic;  those  roles  are  described  in  Sections  3.2  and  3.4. 


Regional  Roadways 

Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue 
within  the  traffic  study  area  are  part  of  US  101,  which  is  a  north-south  principal  arterial  on 
the  NHS  whose  purpose  is  to  provide  international,  interstate,  interregional,  and 
intraregional  travel  (i.e.,  commute  and  non-commute)  and  goods  movement.  It  is  also  a 
Strategic  Highway  Network  (STRAHNET)  Route  and  part  of  the  Interregional  Road  System 
(IRRS).  In  1998,  the  State  specified  certain  portions  of  the  IRRS  as  "Focus  Routes"  -  State 
highway  segments  that  are  critical  to  the  interregional  movement  of  people  and  goods.  This 
segment  of  US  101  was  identified  as  a  high-emphasis  "Focus  Route."  In  the  project  region, 
US  101  is  a  conventional  highway  that  connects  San  Francisco  with  Marin  County  to  the 
north  and  the  Peninsula  to  the  south. 

Along  the  project  alignment,  Van  Ness  Avenue  typically  has  six  traffic  lanes,  a  landscaped 
median,  and  parking  on  both  sides.  The  San  Francisco  General  Plan  classifies  Van  Ness 
Avenue  as  a  Major  Arterial  Road  and  Freight  Traffic  Route  between  North  Point  and 
Market  streets.  It  is  also  part  of  the  Congestion  Management  Program  (CMP)  and 
Metropolitan  Transportation  System  (MTS)  network,  and  it  is  designated  as  a  Primary 
Transit  Street  (Transit  Important)  and  a  Citywide  Pedestrian  Network. 


Local  Roadways 

There  are  5  north-south  parallel  streets  and  28  major  east-west  streets  crossing  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  traffic  study  area;  their  function  and 
characteristics  are  described  below. 


North-South  Streets 

Cough  Street.  Gough  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road  and  Freight  Traffic  Route  between  Pine 
and  Market  streets,  a  secondary  arterial  road  between  Sacramento  and  Pine  streets,  and  a 
local  street  north  of  Sacramento  Street.  It  is  also  part  of  the  CMP  and  MTS  network.  It  is  a 
two-way  street  north  of  Sacramento  Street  and  a  one-way  SB  street  south  of  Sacramento 
Street.  On-street  parking  is  prohibited  on  some  sections  during  the  AM  and  PM  peak 
periods  to  create  additional  lanes  for  traffic  circulation. 

Franklin  Street.  Franklin  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road  between  Market  and  Lombard  streets 
and  a  Freight  Traffic  Route  between  Market  and  California  streets  and  a  secondary  arterial 
road  between  Lombard  and  Bay  streets.  It  is  also  part  of  the  CMP  and  MTS  network.  It  is  a 
one-way  NB  street  from  Market  to  Lombard  streets  and  a  two-way  street  north  of  Lombard 
Street.  Franklin  Street  has  three  travel  lanes.  On-street  parking  is  prohibited  on  some 
sections  during  the  AM  and  PM  peak  periods  to  create  additional  lanes  for  traffic 
circulation. 

Polk  Street.  Polk  Street  is  a  two-way  street  north  of  Grove  Street,  with  one  lane  NB  and  one 
lane  SB,  and  becomes  a  one-way  SB  street  south  of  Grove  Street.  It  is  part  of  Citywide 
Bicycle  Route  25,  including  a  combination  of  Class  II  and  Class  III  bicycle  facilities. 

Larkin  Street.  Larkin  Street  is  a  Secondary  Arterial  street  between  Market  and  Pine  streets. 
Larkin  Street,  between  Pine  and  Market  streets,  is  part  of  the  MTS  network.  It  is  a  one-way 
NB  street  with  three  lanes  from  Market  to  California  streets,  and  a  two-way  street  north  of 
California  Street  and  between  McAllister  and  Grove  streets. 


3-42 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Hyde  Street.  Hyde  Street  is  a  Secondary  Arterial  from  Pine  to  Market  streets,  a  Transit- 
Oriented  Street  from  Beach  to  Washington  streets,  and  part  of  the  MTS  network  between 
Pine  and  Market  streets.  It  is  a  one-way  street  with  three  SB  lanes  between  California  and 
Market  streets,  and  a  two-way  street  with  one  lane  in  each  direction  between  Jefferson  and 
California  streets.  It  shares  the  ROW  with  cable  cars  between  Beach  and  Washington  streets. 


East- West  Streets 

There  are  28  east-west  streets  in  the  traffic  study  area  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue:  15  are 
arterial  roads  defined  by  the  San  Francisco  General  Plan,  and  13  are  collector  and  local 
streets.  The  following  provides  a  brief  description  of  the  arterial  roads. 

Lombard  Street.  Lombard  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road,  Freight  Traffic  Route,  and  Transit 
Important  Street  west  of  Van  Ness  Avenue.  It  is  also  part  of  the  CMP  and  MTS  networks. 
Lombard  Street  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Richardson  Avenue  is  part  of  US  101. 

Broadway.  Broadway  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road  and  Freight  Traffic  Route,  and  it  is  part  of  the 
CMP  and  MTS  networks  between  Franklin  Street  and  The  Embarcadero.  Broadway  is  part 
of  Citywide  Bicycle  Route  10  east  of  Webster  Street. 

Pine  Street.  Pine  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road,  a  Freight  Traffic  Route,  and  a  Transit 
Important  Street  east  of  Sansome  Street.  It  is  also  part  of  the  CMP  and  MTS  networks.  Pine 
Street  is  a  WB  one-way  roadway  with  three  traffic  lanes. 

Bush  Street.  Bush  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  Road,  a  Freight  Truck  Route,  and  a  Transit 
Important  Street  east  of  Kearny  Street.  It  is  also  part  of  the  CMP  and  MTS  networks.  Bush 
Street  is  an  EB  one-way  roadway  with  three  traffic  lanes 

Geary  Street.  Geary  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial,  a  Transit  Important  Street,  and  a  Freight 
Traffic  Route.  It  has  a  bus-only  lane  between  Gough  and  Market  streets.  East  of  Gough 
Street,  it  is  a  one-way  WB  street  with  two  mixed  travel  lanes  and  a  bus-only  lane. 

O'Farrell  Street.  O'Farrell  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial,  a  Transit  Important  Street,  and  a  Freight 
Traffic  Route.  It  is  a  one-way  EB  arterial  from  Market  Street  to  Franklin  Street.  O'Farrell 
Street  forms  a  one-way  couplet  with  Geary  Street.  Between  Gough  and  Powell  streets, 
O'Farrell  Street  has  two  EB  travel  lanes  and  a  bus-only  lane. 

Hayes  Street.  Hayes  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  and  a  Freight  Traffic  Route  between  Market 
and  Gough  streets.  It  is  a  one-way  WB  street  from  Market  Street  to  Gough  Street,  with  three 
to  five  travel  lanes.  West  of  Gough  Street,  it  has  one  traffic  lane  in  each  direction. 

Fell  Street.  Fell  Street  is  a  Major  Arterial  and  Freight  Traffic  Route.  It  is  also  pun  of  the  CMP 
and  MTS  networks.  Fell  Street  is  a  one-way  WB  street  west  of  Gough  Street.  It  forms  a  one- 
way couplet  with  Oak  Street. 

Market  Street.  Market  Street  is  a  Primary  Transit  Street,  a  Freight  Traffic  Rome  west  of 
Franklin  Street,  and  a  Citywide  Bicycle  Route.  Market  Street  is  a  two-way,  four-lane  street 
with  a  120-foot  ROW  and  wide  sidewalks  in  downtown.  It  also  has  exclusive  transit  lanes 
from  12,h  to  5th  streets  in  the  EB  direction  and  from  8,h  Street  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the 
WB  direction,  boarding  islands,  and  marked  Class  I  and  Class  II  bicycle  lanes  west  of  8* 
Street.  Market  Street  primarily  serves  as  a  transit  corridor,  providing  rail  and  bus  transit 
service  on  the  surface  and  two  underground  levels  of  rail  service  -  Muni  Metro  and  BART. 

Mission  Street.  Mission  Street  is  a  Transit-Oriented  Street.  It  generally  has  two  travel  lanes  in 
each  direction,  including  transit-only  lanes  between  I  1th  and  Beale  streets  in  the  EH 
direction  and  between  Spear  and  11th  streets  in  the  WB  direction.  It  also  has  let.  turn 
restrictions  between  Main  and  1 1th  streets. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  201 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Van  Ness  Avenue  carries 
approximately  37,500  to  41,500 
vehicles  daily  in  the  northern 
and  mid-sections.  Traffic 
volumes  are  generally  higher  in 
the  southern  portion  of  the 
corridor,  with  approximately 
44,500  daily  vehicles  in  both 
directions.  The  PM  peak  hour 
represents  the  worst-case 
scenario  to  assess  vehicular 
traffic  impacts  and  is  used  for 
the  intersection  LOS  analysis. 


3.3.2.2  I  ROADWAY  TRAFFIC  VOLUMES  FOR  DETERMINING  THE  PEAK  TRAFFIC  HOUR 

Twenty-four  (24) -hour  traffic  counts  were  collected  in  March  2007  at  five  locations  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  and  one  location  each  along  Franklin  and  Gough  streets.41  The  purpose  of 
the  24-hour  counts  was  to  determine  the  peak  traffic  hour.  The  twenty-four  (24)-hour  traffic 
count  locations  were  selected  because  they  represent  blocks  in  the  traffic  study  area  with 
arterial  roads  as  cross  streets  in  the  northern,  mid-,  and  southern  sections.  These  counts  were 
taken  to  determine  the  peak  hour  for  the  intersection  LOS  analysis.  Table  3.3-1  shows  that 
Van  Ness  Avenue  carries  approximately  37,500  to  41,500  vehicles  daily  in  the  northern  and 
mid-sections;  approximately  7  percent  of  this  volume  occurs  during  the  PM  peak  hour  (5:00 
p.m.  to  6:00  p.m.),  and  approximately  6  percent  occurs  during  the  AM  peak  hour.  Traffic 
volumes  are  generally  higher  in  the  southern  portion  of  the  corridor,  with  approximately 
44,500  daily  vehicles  in  both  directions.  The  bidirectional  Van  Ness  Avenue  traffic  volumes 
are  higher  during  an  average  weekday  PM  peak  hour  than  during  an  average  weekday  AM 
peak  hour  and  weekend  peak  hours;  therefore,  the  PM  peak  hour  represents  the  worst-case 
scenario  to  assess  vehicular  traffic  impacts  of  the  proposed  project  and  is  used  for  the 
intersection  LOS  analysis.  The  two  arterial  roads  to  the  west  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Franklin 
and  Gough  streets,  carry  approximately  31,000  and  27,000  daily  vehicles,  respectively. 

Table  3.3-1:  Existing  (2007)  Traffic  Counts:  Average  Weekday,  Saturday,  and  Sunday 
Daily,  AM  and  PM  Peak-Hour  Traffic  Link  Volumes 


STREET  SEGMENT 

AVERAGE  WEEKDAY 

SATURDAY 

SUNDAY 

DAILY 

AM  PEAK 
HOUR 

PM  PEAK 
HOUR 

DAILY 

AM  PEAK 
HOUR 

PM  PEAK 
HOUR 

DAILY 

AM  PEAK 
HOUR 

PM  PEAK 
HOUR 

VAN  NESS  AVENUE  NORTHBOUND  AND  SOUTHBOUND 

Greenwich 
and  Filbert 

38,28l 

2,541 

2,625 

38,977 

1,363 

2,523 

33.042 

969 

2,257 

Pacific  and 
Broadway 

36,487 

1,98l 

2,553 

39,394 

l,36l 

2,351 

34,275 

932 

2,336 

Geary  and 
Post 

41.499 

2,356 

2,762 

39.357 

1,042 

2,500 

Hayes  and 
Grove 

42,910 

2,662 

2,947 

Market  and 
Fell 

44.499 

2J02 

2,966 

COUCH  STREET  SOUTHBOUND 

Ellis  to  Geary 

27,007 

i,959 

1,787 

25,435 

920 

1,637 

21,315 

510 

1,425 

FRANKLIN  STREET  NORTHBOUND 

Post  to  Sutter 

30,901 

2,309 

2,225 

29,681 

1-335 

1,857 

24,556 

735 

1,725 

Source:  SFCTA,  March  2007. 


3.3.2.3  I  VEHICULAR  TRAVEL  SPEED 

Table  3.3-2  provides  the  average  vehicular  travel  speeds  for  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  the  five 
major  north-south  parallel  streets  in  the  traffic  study  area  for  the  2007  existing  PM  peak- 
hour  conditions.  Under  the  2007  existing  conditions,  the  speed  within  the  traffic  study  area 
is  lowest  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  SB  direction  and  highest  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in 
the  NB  direction.  This  is  because  during  the  PM  peak  hour,  traffic  signals  are  synchronized 
in  the  NB  direction,  but  not  in  the  SB  direction.  In  other  words,  vehicles  in  the  NB 
direction  can  have  a  relatively  uninterrupted  flow  of  traffic,  but  vehicles  in  the  SB  direction 
often  have  to  stop  at  a  red  traffic  light  because  of  the  lack  of  synchronization. 


These  24-hour  traffic  counts  were  a  separate  effort  from  the  turning  movement  counts  taken  at  91  intersections  by  the 
Authority  in  spring  2007  (and  some  additional  counts  in  2008  and  2009)  to  calibrate  the  existing  conditions  (2007) 
SYNCHRO  model.  More  information  on  traffic  counts,  including  a  figure  showing  the  traffic  count  locations,  is 
provided  in  the  Traffic  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 


3-44 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Table  3.3-2:  Average  Speed  -  2007  Existing  Conditions 


STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

SOUTHBOUND 

NORTHBOUND 

Cough 

8.4 

Franklin 

TO.! 

Van  Ness 

7-7 

10-5 

Polk 

8.9 

Lark  in 

9-5 

Hyde 

8.5 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup  (2013) 

3.3.2.4  I  PM  PEAK-HOUR  INTERSECTION  LEVELS  OF  SERVICE 

All  of  the  intersections  in  the  traffic  study  area,  except  for  the  intersecdon  of  Gough  Street 
and  Green  Street,  operate  at  LOS  D  or  better  conditions  in  2007.  The  SB  Gough  approach 
is  the  only  approach  that  operates  at  LOS  F  at  the  four-way  stop-controlled  intersection  of 
Gough  Street  and  Green  Street.  This  is  mainly  due  to  the  high  volumes  of  SB  traffic  (531 
vehicles)  that  must  stop  at  the  intersection.  Figure  3.3-2  shows  the  intersection  LOS  for  all 
139  intersections  analyzed  for  the  2007  existing  conditions  scenario. 


3.3.3  I  Environmental  Consequences 

Year  2015  represents  the  near-term  year  for  traffic  analysis,  as  project  construction  is 
scheduled  to  begin  in  2015.  Year  2035  represents  the  long-term  horizon  year  of 
approximately  20  years  after  the  opening  of  the  project.  This  section  presents  the  anticipated 
traffic  conditions  in  2015  and  2035  for  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  the  three  build 
alternatives,  including  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  It  presents  the  future-year  traffic 
volumes,  and  assumptions  used  to  forecast  future  volumes,  future  travel  speeds,  intersection 
LOS  for  signalized  intersections,  and  approach  LOS  for  unsignalized  intersections. 

Traffic  analysis  results  are  presented  in  this  section.  For  this  EIS/EIR,  the  project-specific 
impacts  were  determined  by  comparing  the  existing  conditions  to  the  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  in  Year  2015.  It  is  important  to  note  that  this  approach  is  a  conservative 
way  to  define  traffic  impacts  because  the  build  alternatives  in  Year  2015  reflect  traffic 
volumes  and  operations  associated  with  population  and  employment  growth  in  the  study 
area  expected  between  2007  and  2015,  in  addition  to  the  traffic  volumes  and  operational 
changes  associated  with  the  project.  For  this  reason,  industry  standard  practice  is  to  compare 
the  build  alternatives  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  the  future  baseline  year;  however,  to 
comply  with  the  California  Court  of  Appeal  ruling  for  Sunnyvale  West Neisjiborbood  Association 
v.  City  of  Sunnyvale  City  Council  regarding  selection  of  a  CEQA  baseline  year,  traffic  impacts  in 
this  EIS/KIR  were  identified  by  comparing  scenarios  as  follows: 

•  Project-Specific  Impacts:   Existing  conditions  compared  with  existing  plus  project* 
conditions; 

•  Cumulative  Impacts:  Existing  conditions  compared  with  Year  2035  Build  Alternatives 
(including  the  LPA)  conditions; 

•  Project  Contribution  to  Cumulative  Impacts:  2035  No  Build   Alternative  conditions 
compared  with  Year  2035  Build  Alternatives  (including  the  LPA)  conditions. 

Traffic  operating  conditions  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  are  also  presented  in  Year  201  5 
tor  informational  purposes. 


Although  most  intersections 
within  the  traffic  study  area 
operate  with  minimal  delays 
overall,  certain  specific 
movements  along  the  six 
north-south  roadways  operate 
in  stop-and-go  conditions. 


!>r!^,\™  '"r  ™  "PCraT  ^  2015  bui'd  altema,ivcS  ™"         <"  represent  .he  Bating  pk» 

operations  or  have  a  lower  I .(  \s  than  l-.xiMinK  plus  Project  conditions. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3-46 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Although  most  intersections  within  the  traffic  study  area  operate  with  minimal  delays 
overall,  certain  specific  movements  along  the  six  north-south  roadways  operate  in  stop-and- 
go  conditions,  especially  the  southern  sections  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Gough  Street.  As 
presented  above,  the  primary  reasons  for  the  differences  are  (1)  higher  traffic  volumes  in 
multiple,  conflicting  directions  in  this  section,  and  (2)  a  lack  of  signal  synchronization  in  the 
SB  direction. 

This  section  presents  the  criteria  used  to  assess  traffic  impacts  and  identifies  significant 
impacts  and  less-than-significant  traffic  impacts  per  the  impact  thresholds  described  above  j 
in  Section  3.3.1  and  below  in  Section  3.3.3.1.  As  described  in  Chapter  2,  Project  Description, 
there  are  three  build  alternatives:  Build  Alternative  2  (Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking), 
Build  Alternative  3  (Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians),  and 
Build  Alternative  4  (Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median).  There  is 
also  the  LPA  (Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left 
Turns)  and  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 

This  section  presents  traffic  impacts  for  existing  conditions,  No  Build  Alternative,  Build 
Alternative  2,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  together,  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  (and  the  LPA)  together.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  have  identical  vehicular 
traffic  operations,  with  the  exception  of  right-turn  movements  at  the  intersection  of  Van 
Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street;  therefore,  traffic  impacts  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  are 
presented  together.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  may  incorporate  a  design  variation  -  Design 
Option  B.  Along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Design  Option  B  for  these  two  build  alternatives  has 
only  one  SB  left-turn  opportunity  (at  Broadway)  and  only  one  NB  left-turn  opportunity  (at 
Lombard  Street).  All  of  the  other  left-turn  pockets  in  the  NB  and  SB  directions  would  be 
removed  under  Design  Option  B  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

The  LPA  has  nearly  identical  traffic  operations  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B,  except  that  the  LPA  only  has  right-turn  pockets  at  three  intersections  on  Van 
Ness  Avenue,  all  in  the  SB  direction,  at  Mission/Otis/South  Van  Ness,  Market  Street,  and 
Pine  Street.  In  addition,  the  LPA  retains  the  two  SB  left-turn  pockets  at  Broadway,  similar  to 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Therefore,  traffic  impacts  for  the  LPA  and  Build  Alternatives  3 
and  4  with  Design  Option  B  are  presented  together  with  any  differences  between  the 
alternatives  noted  in  the  chapter43.  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  one 
fewer  (2  versus  3)  mixed  traffic  lane  in  the  SB  direction  for  the  block  between  Vallejo  and 
Green  streets  versus  the  LPA.  Under  the  LPA  without  the  variant,  this  lane  would  be  used 
to  store  left-turning  traffic  onto  Broadway.  Under  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant, 
this  roadway  space  would  be  used  by  the  far  side  NB  station  at  Vallejo  Street.  In  addition, 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  require  a  turning  restriction  preventing 
trucks  traveling  WB  on  Vallejo  Street  from  turning  right  onto  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Otherwise, 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  operate  identically  to  the  LPA.  A  full 
description  of  each  of  the  alternatives,  including  the  LPA  and  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Station  Variant,  can  be  found  in  Chapter  2. 

3.3.3.1  I  SIGNIFICANCE  CRITERIA 

To  assess  the  environmental  significance  of  traffic  impacts  for  signalized  and  unsignalizcd 
intersections,  the  Authority  uses  the  same  criteria  used  by  the  San  Francisco  Planning 
Department,  presented  in  the  San  Francisco  Traffic  Impact  Analysis  Guidelines  for  Environmental 
Review. 


«  A  detailed  comparison  of  the  traffic  operat.ons  and  the  traffic  impacts  between  ,1k  LPA  ind  Build  Alu  rn.im  o  I  ind  I 
with  Design  ( )p„or ,  B  ,»  provided  under  the  LPA  traffic  impacts  discussion  in  the  Vehicular  Tr.U.u  \nahata  Technical 
Memorandum  ((  .I  IS,  2013). 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Project-Specific  Impacts 


DEFINITION 


U.TRANS  SIGNAL  WARRANTS: 
Caltrans  thresholds  for 
determining  when  a  signal 
should  be  installed. 


DEFINITION 


tITICAL  MOVEMENTS:  Critical 
movements  are  movements  by 
vehicles  at  intersections  with 
LOS  E  or  F  that  would  most 
greatly  contribute  to  the 
degradation  of  LOS  at  those 
intersections. 


Signalized]  Intersections 

1.  If  the  intersection  LOS  declines  from  LOS  A,  B,  C,  or  D  in  existing  conditions  to  LOS 
E  or  F  in  the  existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives), 
then  the  project  would  cause  a  significant  project-specific  impact. 

2.  If  the  intersection  LOS  declines  from  LOS  E  in  existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  in  the 
existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives),  then  the 
project  would  cause  a  significant  project-specific  impact. 

3.  If  the  intersection  performs  the  same  at  either  LOS  E  or  F  in  both  existing  condition 
and  existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives),  then  the 
project's  contribution  to  significant  impacts  (i.e.,  contribution  calculations)  are 
performed  as  follows: 

"-  If  the  project  does  not  contribute  to  critical  movements  at  failing  intersections  or 
contributes  vehicles  to  critical  movements  that  operate  at  LOS  D  or  better  in 
existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives),  then  the 
project  impact  is  considered  less  than  significant. 

If  the  project  contributes  5  percent  or  more  of  the  vehicles  to  a  failing  critical 
movement  of  a  failing  intersection  in  the  existing  plus  project  scenarios 
(represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives),  then  the  project  would  cause  a 
significant  project-specific  impact. 

Unsignalized  Intersections 

1 .  If  the  LOS  of  the  worst  operating  approach  declines  from  LOS  A,  B,  C,  or  D  in  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015 
build  alternatives),  and  the  intersection  meets  the  Caltrans  signal  warrants,  then  the 
project  would  cause  a  significant  project-specific  impact. 

2.  If  the  worst  operating  approach  performs  at  LOS  E  or  F  in  both  existing  conditions 
and  existing  plus  project  scenarios  (represented  by  the  2015  build  alternatives)  and  the 
project  traffic  causes  the  Caltrans  signal  warrants  to  be  met,  then  the  project  would 
cause  a  significant  project-specific  impact. 

Cumulative  Impacts 

If  in  the  Year  2035  there  is  a  significant  project-specific  impact,  then  there  is  significant 
cumulative  impact. 

Significant  cumulative  impacts  for  all  other  signalized  and  unsignalized  intersections  are 
assessed  in  two  steps  as  follows: 

1.  Cumulative  impacts  are  assessed  by  utilizing  the  same  procedure  discussed  under 
Project-Specific  Impacts,  except  that  the  existing  conditions  scenario  is  compared  with 
the  long-term  (2035)  with-project  scenario  instead  of  the  existing  plus  project  scenario 
to  assess  cumulative  impacts. 

2.  Significant  cumulative  impacts  are  assessed  by  calculating  the  project  contribution  to 
cumulative  impacts  for  signalized  and  unsignalized  intersections  as  follows: 

Signalized  Intersections 

1.  If  the  intersection  LOS  declines  from  LOS  A,  B,  C,  or  D  in  the  long-term  (2035)  No 
Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  Year  2035  build  alternatives,  then  the  project 
would  cause  a  significant  cumulative  impact. 

If  the  intersection  LOS  declines  from  LOS  E  in  the  long-term  horizon  year  (2035)  No 
Build  Alternative  to  LOS  F  in  the  Year  2035  build  alternatives,  then  the  project  would 
cause  a  significant  cumulative  impact. 

If  the  intersection  performs  the  same,  at  either  LOS  E  or  F,  in  the  long-term  horizon 
year  (2035)  for  both  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  build  alternatives,  then  the  same 


2. 


3. 


3-48 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


procedure  is  used  as  in  Criterion  #3  under  Project-Specific  Impacts  for  signalized 
intersections  to  determine  the  project's  contribution  to  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

Unsignalized  Intersections 

1 .  If  the  LOS  of  the  worst  operating  approach  declines  from  LOS  A,  B,  C,  or  D  in  the 
long-term  horizon  year  (2035)  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  Year  2035 
build  alternatives,  and  the  intersection  meets  the  Caltrans  signal  warrants,  then  the 
project  would  cause  a  significant  cumulative  impact. 

2.  If  the  worst  approach  performs  at  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  long-term  horizon  year  (2035)  for 
both  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  build  alternatives,  and  the  project  traffic  causes  the 
Caltrans  signal  warrants  to  be  met,  then  the  project  would  cause  a  significant  cumulative 
impact. 

3.3.3.2  I  NEAR-TERM  (2015) 

This  section  reports  projected  traffic  conditions  in  the  near-term  (Year  2015)  for  the  No 
Build  Alternative  and  the  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA.  It  presents  near-term  (Year  2015) 
traffic  volumes  and  assumptions  used  in  traffic  projections,  future  roadway  performance, 
and  summary  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  impacts.44 


2015  Alternative  1:  No  Build  Alternative 

The  2015  No  Build  Alternative  assumes  the  roadway  network  in  2015  would  be  identical  to 
the  2007  existing  conditions,  with  the  exception  of  Hayes  and  Fell  streets.  SFMTA  proposes 
to  convert  Hayes  Street  between  Gough  and  Polk  streets  to  two-way  streets  by  converting 
one  of  the  WB  lanes  to  an  EB  lane.  SFMTA  also  proposes  to  convert  Fell  Street  between 
Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Franklin  Street  to  a  two-way  street  by  converting  one  of  the  EB  lanes 
in  this  block  to  WB.  Details  of  the  Hayes  Street  and  Fell  Street  two-way  conversions  are 
provided  in  Section  2.2. 

Signal  timing  and  phasing  for  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  were  initially  optimized  based 
on  the  minimum  amount  of  time  needed  for  pedestrian  crossing  based  on  national  and  City 
standards,  as  provided  by  SFMTA,  and  future  No  Build  Alternative  traffic  volumes  were 
estimated  using  the  SF-CHAMP  model. 

Under  the  near-term  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  traffic  volumes  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
would  increase  by  approximately  0.5  to  1 .9  percent  annually  from  the  2007  levels,  based  on 
the  SF-CHAMP  model  forecasts.  Traffic  along  the  east-west  streets  would  increase  by 
approximately  0.4  to  2.7  percent  annually. 

Vehicular  Travel  Speed.  Tables  3.3-3  and  3.3-4  show  that  vehicular  travel  speeds  would 
decrease  slightly  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Franklin  Street,  Gough  Street,  Polk  Street  (SB) 
and  Hyde  Street  from  the  2007  Existing  Conditions.  This  decrease  in  travel  speeds  would  be 
caused  by  the  increases  in  traffic  volumes  in  the  traffic  study  area.  In  the  2015  No  Build 
Alternative,  vehicular  travel  speeds  would  increase  from  the  2007  existing  conditions  along 
two  NB  streets:  NB  Polk  Street  and  Larkin  Street.  This  is  primarily  because  synchronization 
of  the  traffic  signals  along  these  streets  can  be  improved  over  the  current  conditions. 


**  As  noted  previously,  traffic  operations  for  the  Year  2015  build  alternatives  were  used  to  represent  the  Kxist.iu;  plti. 
Project  scenarios  for  purposes  of  impact  analysis.  Conditions  for  the  201 5  build  alternatives  arc  equivalent  traffic 
operations  or  have  a  lower  LOS  than  Kxisting  plus  Project  conditions. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


3  49 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-3:  2015  No  Build  Alternative  Southbound  Average  Speed 


STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2015  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

Cough 

8.4 

7-8 

Franklin 

Van  Ness 

7-7 

7.0 

Polk 

8.9 

8.5 

Larkin 

Hyde 

8.5 

8.4 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 

Table  3.3-4:  2015  No  Build  Alternative  Northbound  Average  Speed 

STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2015  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

Cough 

Franklin 

lO.I 

9-8 

Van  Ness 

TO.5 

lO.I 

Polk 

9-1 

9-8 

Larkin 

9-5 

TO.O 

Hyde 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Group,  2013. 


Intersection  Levels  of  Service.  In  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1),  all  but  four 
intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  D  or  better  condition  during  the  PM  peak  hour.  Figure 
3.3-3  presents  the  intersection  LOS  for  the  139  study  intersections.  The  traffic  study  area 
intersections  that  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  are 
described  below. 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  existing  conditions  and  the  2015  No 
Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1). 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  signalized  intersection's  operation  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1). 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramps.  This  signalized  intersection's  operation  would 
decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  No  Build 
Alternative  (Alternative  1). 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  signalized  intersection's  operation  would  decline  from 
LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative 
(Alternative  1). 


2015  Build  Alternatives 

I  As  described  in  Chapter  2,  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  include  a  full 
complement  of  BRT  improvements  in  the  project  area,  including  signal  priority  for  buses, 
new  BRT  bus  stops  and  level  or  near  level  boarding,  and  dedicated  bus  lanes  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would 
convert  two  mixed-travel  lanes  to  bus-only  lanes  (i.e.,  one  lane  each  in  NB  and  SB 
directions)  and  reduce  left-turn  opportunities  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  following 
summarizes  the  changes  in  roadway  geometry  and  circulation  patterns  for  the  Year  2015 
build  alternatives  and  methods  used  to  modify  traffic  circulation  patterns  and  volumes  for 
the  SYNCHRO  traffic  analysis. 


3-50 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


•  Reduction  in  Roadway  Capacity  for  Mixed  Traffic.  The  proposed  project  would  reduce  the 
mixed-traffic  capacity  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  by  slighdy  less  than  one-third. 

The  decrease  in  roadway  capacity  would  cause  motorists  to  divert  from  Van  Ness 
Avenue  to  avoid  delays.  The  traffic  analysis  indicates  that  with  the  implementation 
of  BRT  in  2015,  an  average  of  19  to  32  percent  of  traffic  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 
(depending  on  the  location)  would  change  their  travel  patterns,  including  driving  on 
other  streets,  shifting  the  trip  to  other  times  of  day,  or  shifting  to  other  modes,  such 
as  transit,  walking,  and  bicycling.45  Further  discussion  of  diversions  can  be  found  in 
Section  3.1. 

The  volume  of  traffic  that  would  divert  to  the  five  parallel  streets  and  study 
intersections  in  the  project  area  was  initially  obtained  from  the  SF-CHAMP  model 
and  then  manually  adjusted  for  reasonableness. 

•  Left-Turn  Prohibitions.  The  build  alternatives  would  include  elimination  of  13  left-turn 
bays  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  both  NB  and  SB  directions.  Chapter  2,  Project 
Description,  provides  a  detailed  list  of  prohibited  left-turn  bays  for  each  of  the  build 
alternatives  without  Design  Option  B,  presented  in  Table  2-4.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
could  incorporate  a  design  variation  (Design  Option  B)  where  left-turn  bays  would  only 
be  provided  at  Broadway  in  the  SB  direction  and  at  Lombard  in  the  NB  direction.  The 
LPA  incorporates  Design  Option  B. 

With  the  reduced  number  of  left-turn  opportunities,  some  motorists  wishing  to  make  a 
left  turn  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  alter  behavior,  including  using  a  downstream  or 
upstream  left-turn  opportunity'  or  circulating  around  the  block  to  reach  their  destination. 

•  Left-Turn  Lane  Reduction.  There  are  two  locations  where  the  number  of  left-turn  bays 
would  be  reduced  from  two  to  one: 

Hayes  Street  in  the  NB  direction  for  all  build  alternatives; 
Mission  Street  in  the  EB  direction  for  all  build  alternatives;  and 

Similar  to  existing  conditions  and  the  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1),  under  Build 
Alternative  2  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  have  one  exclusive  left-turn  lane  and  one  shared 
left-turn/ through  lane  at  the  SB  approach  to  Broadway.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and 
4,  and  the  LPA,  there  would  be  two  exclusive  SB  left-turn  lanes  at  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  SB  approach  to  Broadway.46  The  reason  for  the  difference  in  design  at  this 
approach  between  Build  Alternative  2  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  is  because  under 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  left-turn  movements  can  only  be  made  during  the  dedicated 
left-turn  signal  phase  to  not  cause  potential  collisions  with  SB  Muni  and  GGT  buses  in 
the  BRT  lane.  This  is  different  than  Build  Alternative  2,  under  which  SB  left-turn 
vehicles  can  make  a  turn  when  there  is  a  gap  in  the  traffic  stream  in  the  NB  direction, 
resulting  in  a  higher  capacity  for  the  exclusive  left-turn  lane  and  shared  left- 
turn/  through  lane  under  Build  Alternative  2,  similar  to  existing  conditions. 

•  Right-Turn  Lane  Reduction.  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  under 
Build  Alternative  4  (Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median) 
would  have  the  same  geometric  design  as  Build  Alternative  3  (Center-Lane  BRT  with 
Dual  Medians).  Due  to  the  transition  of  Build  Alternative  4  from  a  single-median  BRT 
north  of  Geary  Street  to  a  dual-median  BRT  for  this  block,  the  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue 
exclusive  right-turn  lane  to  Geary  Street  would  not  be  provided  under  Build  Alternative 
4  or  its  design  variation,  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B.  This  right  turn 
would  also  be  eliminated  under  the  LPA. 


The  decrease  in  roadway 
capacity  associated  with  the 
build  alternatives  would  cause 
motorists  to  divert  from 
Van  Ness  Avenue  to  avoid 
icreased  congestion  and  delays. 


With  the  reduced  number  of 
left-turn  opportunities,  some 
motorists  wishing  to  make  a  left 
turn  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
would  alter  behavior,  including 
sing  a  downstream  or  upstream 
eft-turn  opportunity  or  circulate 
around  the  block  to  reach  their 
destination. 


For  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  the  reduction  of  additional  left  turns  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  cause  NB 
drivers  to  divert  to  other  parallel  streets  before  they  enter  South  Van  Ness  and  Van  Ness  avenues.  Consequently,  the 
very  southern  end  of  the  corridor  near  Market  Street  would  experience  a  significantly  greater  reduction  in  vehicle 
traffic  volumes  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  particularly  in  the  NB  direction  (up  to  965  fewer  vph  than  in  the  No  Build 
Alternative  -  nearly  50  percent). 

This  additional  left-turn  lane  would  require  removal  of  on-street  parking  spaces  on  the  east  and  west  sides  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  north  of  Broadway. 


3-52 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


The  process  used  to  develop  future-year  traffic  volumes  for  the  build  alternatives  is  similar 
to  that  used  for  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  percentage  change  in  traffic  volumes  between 
the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  and  each  2015  build  alternative  was  applied.  These 
percentages  were  provided  by  the  SF-CHAMP  model.  Subsequent  manual  adjustments  were 
made  based  on  professional  judgment  and  best  practice.  See  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis 
Technical  Memorandum  for  more  detail  (CHS,  2013). 

Traffic  signal  cycle  length  and  phasing  for  the  build  alternatives  were  modeled  the  same  as 
the  No  Build  Alternative,  except  at  the  intersections  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Filbert  Street 
and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  Mission  and  Otis  streets  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4, 
including  the  LPA.  The  traffic  signal  phasing  at  these  intersections  was  modified  to  allow  j 
buses  to  transition  between  a  center-running  configuration  and  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue,  South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  Mission  Street,  and  Otis  Street.  Additionally, 
traffic  signals  were  optimized  and  coordinated  for  each  of  the  build  alternatives. 


Travel  Speed:  Build  Alternatives 

As  in  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  the  average  travel  speed  for  all  of  the  SB  streets  and 
NB  Franklin  Street  and  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  2015  build  alternatives  would  decline  in 
comparison  to  existing  conditions.  As  seen  in  Tables  3.3-5  and  3.3-6,  a  comparison  of  the 
existing  conditions  and  the  2015  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  speed  shows  the  following: 

•  Speed  along  SB  Gough,  SB  Polk,  and  NB  Franklin  would  decrease  by  approximately  0.5 
mph  under  the  Year  2015  build  alternatives  when  compared  with  the  existing 
conditions.  Speed  along  these  corridors  would  decrease  slightly  more  (up  to  0.8  mph) 
under  Year  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  due  to 
the  diversion  of  left-turning  traffic  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  these  parallel  streets. 

•  Speed  along  SB  Hyde  Street  would  decrease  by  0.2  mph  from  8.5  mph  in  existing 
conditions  to  8.3  mph  in  all  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  in  Year  2015. 

•  Speed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  both  directions  would  decrease  between  0.1  and  0.5 
mph  in  Year  2015  Build  Alternative  2  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option 
B  and  the  LPA  when  compared  with  the  existing  conditions.  Speed  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  in  both  directions  would  decrease  the  most  (1  to  1.3  mph)  under  Year  2015 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This  is  mainly  due  to  the  increase  in  traffic  volumes  for  NB 
left  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  changes  in  signal  timing  and  phasing  for  these  left 
turns.  Left  turns  at  these  intersections  can  only  be  made  under  a  protected  phase.  The 
LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  speed  as  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  for  all  streets  except  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Under  the  2015  LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant,  the  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue- 
speed  would  be  the  same  as  2015  Build  Alternative  4.  The  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  speed 
would  decrease  slightly  from  10.2  mph  in  Design  Option  B  to  10.1  mph  in  the  LPA  (0.1 
mph  decrease).  These  small  changes  in  speed  may  be  attributed  to  the  increase  in  right- 
turn  traffic  making  turns  from  the  shared  lane  under  the  LPA  and  thus  slightly 
decreasing  the  speed  of  all  movement  in  the  curb  lane. 

•  Speed  along  NB  Polk  and  Larkin  streets  would  increase  between  0.4  and  0.8  mph  when 
compared  with  the  existing  conditions.  This  is  primarily  because  synchronization  of  the 
traffic  signals  along  these  streets  can  be  improved  over  the  current  conditions. 

•  In  many  instances,  there  is  almost  the  same  amount  of  reduction  in  speed  between 
existing  conditions  and  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1)  as  there  is 
between  existing  conditions  and  the  2015  build  alternatives.  In  other  words,  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  alternatives  do  not  impact  speeds  any  more  than  general 
growth  in  citywide  traffic  in  the  No  Build  Alternative  scenario  would  affect  speeds.  In 
some  instances,  speed  actually  increases  under  the  2015  build  alternatives  versus  the 
2015  No  Build  Alternative.  With  the  exception  of  NB  Franklin  Street  and  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  project  contributions  to  speed  reductions  are  0.3  mph  or  less. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-5:  Private  Vehicle 

2015  Southbound  Average  Speed 

STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

1 

EXISTINC 
CONDITIONS 

NO  BUILD 
(ALTERNATIVE  l) 

SIDE-LANE  BRT            CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVE  2)  (ALTERNATIVES 
3AND4) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
WITH  DESIGN 
OPTION  B 
(ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4)  AND  THE  LPA 

Cough 

8.4 

7.8 

7-9 

8.0 

7-6 

Franklin  * 

Van  Ness 

7-7 

7.0 

7-2 

6.7/6.6* 

7-6/7.5* 

Polk 

8.9 

8.5 

8.4 

8.3 

8.2 

Larkin  ... 

Hyde 

8.5 

8.4 

8.3 

8.3 

8.3 

*The  two  speeds  shown  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  represent  Build  Alternative  3/Build  Alternative  4.  The  difference  in 
speed  is  due  to  the  lack  of  a  right-turn  pocket  for  SB  traveling  vehicles  at  Geary  and  Van  Ness  under  Build 
Alternative  4.  Speeds  are  the  same  between  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  for  all  other  streets.  The  LPA  and  the 
Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  average  speed  SB  as  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B. 

Table  3.3-6:  Private  Vehicle  2015  Northbound  Average  Speed 

STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING 
CONDITIONS 

NO  BUILD 
(ALTERNATIVE  l) 

SIDE-LANE  BRT             CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVE  2)              (ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
WITH  DESIGN 
OPTION  B 
(ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4)  AND  THE  LPA 

Cough  ... 

Franklin 

lO.I 

9.8 

9-5 

9.6 

9-3 

Van  Ness 

10-5 

lO.I 

IO.3 

9.2 

10.2/  lO.I* 

Polk 

9-1 

9.8 

9-5 

9.8 

9-9 

Larkin 

9-5 

lO.O 

9-9 

lO.I 

lO.I 

Hyde  .... 

-The  two  speeds  shown  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  represent  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the 
LPA.  The  difference  in  speed  is  due  to  the  lack  of  right-turn  pockets  along  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  the  LPA.  The 
LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  average  speed  as  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Traffic  Impacts:  2015  Build  Alternatives 

This  section  presents  the  projected  vehicular  traffic  impacts  in  year  2015  for  the  build 
alternatives  (including  the  LPA).  Implementation  of  each  of  the  proposed  build  alternatives 
(including  the  LPA)  is  anticipated  to  result  in  adverse  traffic  effects,  some  of  which  are 
considered  significant  impacts  based  on  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in 
Section  3.3.3.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  cause  significant  traffic  impacts 
only  if  the  LOS  for  the  2015  build  alternatives  would  be  worse  than  the  existing  conditions 
based  on  the  significance  criteria  presented  in  Section  3.3.3.  Intersections  that  would 
continue  to  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  build  alternatives,  but  which  are  not  impacted  by 
project  traffic  based  on  the  significance  criteria  presented  in  Section  3.3.3,  are  also  identified 
below  as  less  than  significant  impacts. 


3-54 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking47 

Under  Build  Alternative  2,  three  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the  PM 
peak  hour  in  Year  2015.  Table  3.3-7  presents  a  comparison  of  the  average  intersection  delay 
and  intersection  LOS  for  the  intersections  that  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  conditions 
under  existing  conditions,  2015  No  Build  Alternative  or  2015  Build  Alternative  2.  Figure 
3.3-4  presents  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2  intersection  LOS  for  all  study  intersections. 


Table  3.3-7:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternative  2  (Side-Lane  BRT),  and  No  Build 
Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 


INTERSECTION 

LOS  (DELAY) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2015  NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

2015  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE  2 

Cough/Green-- 

F  (76.5) 

F  (80.3) 

F  (86.3) 

Cough/Hayes 

D  (45.9) 

F  (86.7) 

E  (79-0) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39.3) 

D  (43.2) 

E  (60.6) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.1) 

E  (59-3) 

D  (45-7) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp 

D  (44.4) 

E  (67.1) 

D  (51-3) 

*  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection. 
Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  sig 

nalized  intersections. 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 

Significant  Project-Specific  Impacts.  The  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  project-specific 
impacts  at  two  study  intersections  under  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2  as  follows: 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  the  existing  conditions 
to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2  (representing  existing  plus  project 
conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  project-specific 
impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  the  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2  (representing  existing  plus  project 
conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  project-specific 
impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  D  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative. 

Less  than  Significant  Project-Specific  Impacts.  Build  Alternative  2  would  cause  less  than 
significant  traffic  impacts  at  the  intersection  of  Gough  and  Green  streets  as  presented  below: 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  the  existing  conditions  and  the  2015 
Build  Alternative  2  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  however,  the 
intersection  would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant  under  both  the 
existing  conditions  and  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2  scenario,  and  would  therefore  not 
be  significant  per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in  Section  3.3.3.  The 
intersection  would  also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  as 
would  the  SB  approach.  There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operation  at 
this  intersection,  including  adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-strcct  parking 
spaces  to  create  an  additional  SB  approach  lane;  however,  removing  parking  would  | 
worsen  pedestrian  conditions  by  eliminating  the  buffer  provided  by  parked  cars 
separating  the  sidewalk  from  the  traffic  lane,  as  discussed  in  Section  3.3.4  (see  also 
Section  3.4,  Nonmotorized  Transportation),  and  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  that 
the  community  prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 


«   As  stated  previously,  for  the  purposes  of  environmental  impact  analysis,  2015  near  term  build  alternatives  RSpKSeni 

existing  plus  project  conditions.  Conditions  for  the  2015  build  alternatives  are  equivalent  .rathe  operations  oi  have  . 

lower  l.(  )S  than  existing  plus  project  conditions. 
San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3-56 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  iot  Off-Ramp.  The  intersections 
of  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  off-ramp  would 
decline  from  LOS  D  under  the  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2015  No  Build 
Alternative,  and  then  improve  to  LOS  D  under  the  2015  Build  Alternative  2.  This 
decline  in  performance  between  the  existing  conditions  and  the  2015  No  Build 
Alternative  is  due  to  growth  in  background  traffic.  The  improved  performance  between 
the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  and  2015  Build  Alternative  2  is  mainly  due  to  traffic 
diversion  from  the  study  area.  As  discussed  in  Section  3.1,  the  SF-CHAMP  model 
estimated  that  due  to  the  reduction  of  a  mixed-traffic  lane  in  each  direction  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue,  approximately  24  to  32  percent  of  traffic  would  divert  their  trips  away  | 
from  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  PM  peak  period,  including  diverting  to  other  modes  or 
other  times  of  the  day.  Traffic  diversion  to  streets  outside  of  the  project  area  could 
potentially  improve  the  operations  of  some  intersections  within  the  traffic  study  area, 
such  as  the  intersections  of  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and 
Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  off-ramp. 

Sensitivity  Analysis  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection:  In  anticipation  of  expected 
developments,  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  proposes  to  widen  the  sidewalk  on 
the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Post  and  Geary  streets.  This  proposed  widening 
would  necessitate  the  removal  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  SB  exclusive  right-turn  lane  onto 
Geary  Street.  A  sensitivity  analysis  has  been  performed,  assuming  the  proposed  sidewalk 
widening  occurs.  With  the  approved  sidewalk  widening  and  removal  of  exclusive  right-turn 
lane,  LOS  at  this  intersection  would  remain  unchanged  at  LOS  B. 


2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  Configuration48 

Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  four  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the 
PM  peak  hour  in  Year  2015  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions).  Table  3.3-8 
provides  a  comparison  of  the  average  intersection  delay  and  intersection  LOS  for  the 
intersections  that  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  the  existing  conditions,  the  2015  No 
Build  Alternative,  or  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  scenarios.  Figure  3.3-5  graphically 
presents  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  intersection  LOS  for  all  intersections. 


Table  3.3-8:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT),  and 
No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 


INTERSECTION 

LOS  (DELAY) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2015  NO  BUILD        201s  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  3  AND  4 
ALTERNATIVE 

Cough/Green''' 

F  (76.5) 

F  (80.3) 

F  (80.7) 

Gough/Hayes 

D  (45-9) 

F  (86.7) 

E  (79-7) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39.3) 

D  (43.2) 

E  (57-2) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.!) 

E  (59-3) 

E  (68.8) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/ 
US  101  Off-Ramp 

D  (44.4) 

E  (67.1) 

D  (47.2) 

*  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  signalized  intersections. 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 


■|8  As  stated  previously,  for  the  purposes  of  environmental  impact  analysis,  2015  near-term  build  alternatives  represent 
existing  plus  project  conditions.  Conditions  for  the  2015  build  alternatives  are  equivalent  traffic  operations  or  olVC  .1 
lower  LOS  than  existing  plus  project  conditions. 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013  J-57 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3-58 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Significant  Project-Specific  Impacts.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  would  cause  significant  project- 
specific  impacts  at  three  study  intersections  in  Year  2015. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to 
LOS  E  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (representing  existing  plus  project 
conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  project-specific 
impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build 
Alternative. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (representing  existing  plus 
project  conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  project- 
specific  impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  D  under  the  2015  No  Build 
Alternative. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D 
under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (representing 
existing  plus  project  conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant 
project-specific  impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  E  under  the  2015  No 
Build  Alternative. 

Less  than  Significant  Project-Specific  Impacts.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  would  cause  less  than 
significant  traffic  impacts  at  the  intersection  of  Gough  and  Green  streets,  and  the 
intersection  of  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  off-ramp,  as  presented  below: 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  the  existing  conditions  and  the  2015 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  however,  the 
intersection  would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant  under  both  existing 
conditions  and  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  would  therefore  not  be  significant 
per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in  Section  3.3.3.  The  intersection  would 
also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  as  would  the  SB  approach. 
There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operations  at  this  intersection,  including 
adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-street  parking  spaces  to  create  an  additional 
SB  approach  lane;  however,  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  that  the  community 
prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp.  Similar  to  Build  Alternative  2,  the  intersection  of 
Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  off-ramp  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  the  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  and  then  improve  to  LOS  D 
under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  in  Year  2015. 

•  Design  Variation  between  Build  Alternative  3  and  Build  Alternative  4  and  Sensitivity  Analysis  at 
Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection.  As  discussed  in  Chapter  2,  Van  Ness 
Avenue  between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  under  Build  Alternative  4  would  have  the 
same  geometric  design  as  Build  Alternative  3.  Due  to  this  transition  from  a  center- 
running  BRT  with  a  single  median  north  of  Geary  Street  to  a  right-side  loading  BRT 
with  two  medians  for  this  block,  the  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  exclusive  right-turn  lane  to 
Geary  Street  would  not  be  provided  under  Build  Alternadve  4.  This  intersection 
operates  at  LOS  B  under  2015  Build  Alternadve  3.  Without  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn 
lane,  LOS  at  this  intersection  would  remain  at  LOS  B  under  2015  Build  Alternative  4. 
The  analysis  for  Build  Alternative  4  also  serves  as  the  sensitivity  analysis  if  the  San 
Francisco  Planning  Department  were  to  approve  the  proposed  widening  of  the  sidewalk 
under  Build  Alternadve  3,  thus  requiring  the  elimination  of  the  exclusive  SB  right -turn 
lane  onto  Geary  Street  from  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


i  S9 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B:  Center-Lane  BRT  (including  the 
LPA)49 

The  LPA  (including  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)50  would  have  the  same  traffic 
impacts  in  2015  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  Because  the  LPA  would 
have  11  fewer  right-turn  pockets,  there  are  minor  differences  in  approach  average  delay 
between  the  LPA  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  However,  none  of  these  differences  would  cause  a  new  significant  intersection  LOS 
impact  or  worsen  a  significant  intersection  LOS  impact  compared  to  the  impacts  outlined 
for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  For  details  on  LPA  performance  in 
2015,  please  see  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  four  intersections 
would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the  PM  peak  hour  in  Year  2015.  Table  3.3-9  presents  a 
comparison  of  the  average  intersection  delay  and  intersection  LOS  for  the  intersections  that 
would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  the  existing  conditions,  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative, 
or  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  including  the  LPA  scenarios. 
Figure  3.3-6  presents  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B,  including  the 
LPA,  intersection  LOS. 


Table  3.3-9:  Existing  Conditions,  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT)  with 
Design  Option  B,  and  No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections 
that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 


INTERSECTION 

LOS  (DELAY) 

EXISTING 
CONDITIONS 

201s  NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

201S  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4  WITH 
DESIGN  OPTION  B  AND  THE  LPA 

Cough/Green* 

F  (76.5) 

F  (80.3) 

F  (108.1) 

Cough/Hayes 

D  (45-9) 

F  (86.7) 

E  (74.6) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39-3) 

D  (43.2) 

E  (55-9) 

Franklin/ Market/ Page 

C  (27.2) 

C  (28.7) 

F  (103.7) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.!) 

E  (59-3) 

D  (5i-4) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/ 
US  ioi  OfF-Ramp 

D  (444) 

E  (67.1) 

D  (46.4) 

*  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  signalized  intersections. 


Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Group,  2013 

Significant  Project-  Specific  Impacts.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the 
LPA  would  cause  significant  project-specific  impacts  at  three  intersections  in  Year  2015  as 
follows: 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to 
LOS  E  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA 
(representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would 
cause  significant  project-specific  impacts.  This  intersection  would  operate  at  LOS  F 
under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative. 


As  stated  previously,  for  the  purposes  of  environmental  impact  analysis,  2015  near-term  build  alternatives  represent 
existing  plus  project  conditions.  Conditions  for  the  2015  build  alternatives  are  equivalent  traffic  operations  or  have  a 
lower  LOS  than  existing  plus  project  conditions. 

The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  one  fewer  (2  versus.  3)  mixed  traffic  lanes  in  the  SB  direction  for 
the  block  between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  versus  the  LPA.  Under  the  LPA  without  the  variant,  this  lane  would  be 
used  to  store  left-turning  traffic  onto  Broadway.  Under  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  that  roadway  space 
would  be  used  for  the  additional  far  side  NB  station  at  Vallejo  Street.  In  2015,  the  Vallejo  intersection  would  operate  at 
LOS  A  during  the  PM  peak  under  the  LPA  and  would  operate  at  a  similar  LOS  with  implementation  of  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
condidons  to  LOS  E  under  2015  Build  Alternadves  3  and  4  with  Design  Opdon  B  and 
the  LPA  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed  project 
would  cause  significant  project-specific  impacts.  This  intersection  would  perform  at 
LOS  D  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Franklin/ Market.  This  signalized  intersection  would  degrade  from  LOS  C  under  the 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option 
B  and  the  LPA  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  therefore,  the  proposed 
project  would  cause  significant  project-specific  impacts.  This  intersection  would 
perform  at  LOS  C  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative. 

Less  than  Significant  Project-Specific  Impacts.  In  Year  2015,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  would  cause  less  than  significant  traffic  impacts  at  the 
intersection  of  Gough  and  Green  streets,  and  at  the  intersection  of  South  Van  Ness/ 
Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  off-ramp,  as  presented  below: 

Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  performing  approach  at  this  four-way  stop- 
controlled  intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  existing  conditions  and  2015 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  however,  the  intersection 
would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant  under  both  the  existing  conditions 
and  the  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  and  would 
therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in  Section  3.3.3. 
The  intersection  would  also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  as 
would  the  SB  approach.  There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operation  at  this 
intersection,  including  adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-street  parking  spaces  to 
create  an  additional  SB  approach  lane;  however,  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  that  the 
community  prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 

South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  OfF-Ramp.  Similar  to  Build 
Alternative  2,  the  intersections  of  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  and  Duboce/Mission/ 
Otis/US  101  off-ramp  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E 
under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  and  then  improve  to  LOS  D  under  Build  Alternatives 
3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  in  Year  2015. 

Design  Variation  between  Build  Alternative  3  and  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B  and 
Sensitivity  Analysis  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection.  As  discussed  in  Chapter  2, 
Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  under  Build  Alternative  4  with 
Design  Option  B  would  have  the  same  geometric  design  as  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design 
Option  B.  Due  to  this  transition  from  a  center- running  BRT  with  a  single  median  north  of 
Geary  Street  to  a  right-side  loading  BRT  with  two  medians  for  this  block,  the  SB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  exclusive  right-turn  lane  to  Geary  Street  would  not  be  provided  under  Build 
Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B.  This  intersection  operates  at  LOS  B  under  2015  Build 
Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B.  Without  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn  lane,  LOS  at  this 
intersection  would  remain  at  LOS  B  under  2015  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B. 
The  analysis  for  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B  also  serves  as  the  sensitivity 
analysis  if  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  were  to  widen  the  sidewalk  under  Build 
Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B,  thus  requiring  the  elimination  of  the  exclusive  SB  right- 
turn  lane  onto  Geary  Street  from  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  LPA  would  include  removal  of  the 
right-turn  pocket  at  this  location. 

LPA  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant.  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have 
one  fewer  (two  versus  three)  mixed  traffic  lanes  in  the  SB  direction  for  the  block  between 
Vallejo  and  Green  streets  versus  the  LPA.  Under  the  LPA  without  the  variant,  this  lane 
would  be  used  to  store  left-turning  traffic  onto  Broadway.  Under  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Station  Variant,  that  roadway  space  would  be  used  for  the  additional  far  side  NB  station  at 
Vallejo  Street.  In  2015,  the  Vallejo  intersection  would  operate  at  LOS  A  during  the  PM  peak 
under  the  LPA  and  would  continue  to  operate  at  LOS  A  with  implementation  of  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant. 


3-62 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


3.3.3.3  I  LONG-TERM  HORIZON  YEAR  (2035) 

This  section  presents  projected  traffic  conditions  in  the  long-term  horizon  Year  2035  for  the 
No  Build  Alternative  and  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA.  It  presents  long-term  j 
horizon  year  (2035)  traffic  volumes  and  assumptions  used  in  traffic  projection,  future 
roadway  performance,  and  a  summary  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  impacts. 


2035  Alternative  1:  No  Build 

No  specific  roadway  capacity  modifications  within  the  traffic  study  area  are  known  between 
2015  and  2035,  except  the  Geary  Corridor  BRT  Project;  hence,  the  2035  No  Build 
Alternative  would  have  the  identical  roadway  network  as  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  as 
discussed  under  Section  3.3.3.1. 

Signal  timing  and  phasing  for  the  2035  No  Build  Alternative  were  initially  optimized  based 
on  the  minimum  amount  of  time  needed  for  pedestrian  crossings  provided  by  SFMTA  and 
future  No  Build  Alternative  traffic  volumes  estimated  using  the  SF-CHAMP  model. 

Under  the  long-term  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  traffic  volumes  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
would  increase  by  approximately  0.42  to  1.12  percent  annually  from  the  2007  levels  based 
on  SF-CHAMP  model  forecasts.  Traffic  along  the  east-west  streets  would  increase  by 
approximately  0.35  to  1.49  percent  annually.  There  would  be  higher  increases  along  collector 
streets  than  arterial  roads. 

Vehicular  Travel  Speed.  Under  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  vehicular  travel  speeds  would 
decrease  along  all  north-south  streets  in  the  traffic  study  area.  Tables  3.3-10  and  3.3-1 1  show 
SB  and  NB  average  speeds,  respectively. 


Table  3.3-10:  2035  No 

Build  Alternative  Southbound  Average  Speed 

STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2035  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

Cough 

8.4 

7-5 

Franklin 

Van  Ness 

7-7 

6.6 

Polk                                                                     8.9  8.1 

Larkin 

Hyde 

8.5 

7-6 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 

Table  3.3-1 1:  2035  No 

Build  Alternative  Northbound  Average  Speed 

STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2035  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

Cough 

Franklin 

lO.I 

9-1 

Van  Ness 

IO.5 

8.9 

Polk 

91 

8.8 

Larkin 

9-5 

9-5 

Hyde 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


363 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Intersection  Levels  of  Service.  Under  the  long-term  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  all  but  seven 
intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  D  or  better  during  the  PM  peak  hour.  Figure  3.3-7  presents 
the  intersection  LOS  for  the  study  intersections  for  2035  No  Build  Alternative.  The  traffic  study 
area  intersections  that  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  LOS  F  conditions  are  described  below. 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  existing  conditions  and  the  2015  and  2035 
No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  both  the  2015  and  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Franklin/Pine.  This  signalized  intersection  would  slightly  improve  from  LOS  D  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  C  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  and  decline  to 
LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  and  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Van  Ness/Pine.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  existing 
conditions  and  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D 
under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  the  2015  and  2035  No  Build  Alternatives. 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from 
LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  and  LOS  E  under  the  2015  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 


2035  Build  Alternatives 

The  long-term  2035  build  alternatives  would  have  the  same  BRT  configuration  as  in  the 
near-term  Year  2015  build  alternatives.  The  changes  in  roadway  geometry  and  circulation 
patterns,  the  methodology  used  to  develop  intersection  traffic  volumes,  and  traffic  signal 
operation  assumptions  for  the  build  alternative  SYNCHRO  traffic  analysis  are  summarized 
under  Section  3.3.3.1,  2015  Build  Alternatives. 

The  following  sections  analyze  the  cumulative  traffic  impacts  of  the  three  build  alternatives  and 
the  LPA,  describing  anticipated  changes  to  vehicular  travel  speed,  intersection  delay,  and  LOS. 

Travel  Speed:  Build  Alternatives.  As  seen  in  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  the  average  travel  speed 
for  all  the  NB  and  SB  streets  in  the  2035  build  alternatives  would  decline  in  comparison  to 
the  existing  condition.  As  seen  in  Tables  3.3-12  and  3.3-13,  a  comparison  of  the  existing 
condition  and  2035  build  alternatives  speed  shows  the  following: 


Table  3.3-12:  2035  Horizon  Year  Southbound  Average  Speed 


STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING 
CONDITIONS 

NO  BUILD 
(ALTERNATIVE  1) 

SIDE-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVE  2) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4) 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 
AND  THE  LPA 

Gough 

8.4 

7-5 

6.1 

6.5 

5-9 

Franklin  ... 

Van  Ness 

7-7 

6.6 

6.5 

5.6/  5-6* 

6.6/  6.5* 

Polk 

8.9 

8.1 

7-7 

7.8 

7-6 

Larkin  ... 

Hyde 

8.5 

7-6 

7.0 

7-2 

7-2 

-•The  two  speeds  shown  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  represent  Build  Alternative  3/Build  Alternative  4.  The  difference  in 
speed  is  due  to  the  lack  of  a  right-turn  pocket  for  SB  traveling  vehicles  at  Geary  Street  and  Van  Ness  Avenue  under 
Build  Alternative  4.  Speeds  are  the  same  between  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  for  all  other  streets.  The  LPA  and  the 
Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  average  speed  SB  as  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B. 


3-64 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-13:  2035  Horizon  Year  Northbound  Average  Speed 


STREET 

AVERAGE  SPEED  (MPH) 

EXISTING 
CONDITIONS 

NO  BUILD 
(ALTERNATIVE  l) 

SIDE-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVE  2) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4) 

CENTER-LANE  BRT 
(ALTERNATIVES  3  AND  4) 
WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 
ANDTHELPA 

Cough  ... 

Franklin 

TO.! 

9-i 

7-1 

7-3 

6.2 

Van  Ness 

10.5 

8.9 

8.6 

7-5 

9-0/8.8* 

Polk 

8.8 

8.5 

8.5 

8.5 

Larkin 

9-5 

9-5 

9.2 

8.8 

8.7 

Hyde  ... 

-The  two  speeds  shown  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  represent  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the 
LPA.  The  difference  in  speed  is  due  to  the  lack  of  right-turn  pockets  along  NB  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  the  LPA.  The 
LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  average  speed  as  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


•  The  speed  along  SB  Gough  Street  would  decrease  by  approximately  2  mph,  and  the 
speed  along  NB  Franklin  Street  would  decrease  between  2.8  mph  and  3  mph  under 
Year  2035  Build  Alternative  2  and  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  respectively,  when 
compared  to  the  existing  condition.  Speed  along  these  corridors  would  decrease  the 
most  (2.5  mph  on  Gough  Street  and  3.9  mph  on  Franklin  Street)  under  Year  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  This  would  occur  due  to  the 
diversion  of  most  left-turning  traffic  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  these  parallel  streets 
after  the  elimination  of  most  left-turn  opportunities  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  Year 
2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  with  Design  Option  B. 

•  Speed  along  SB  Polk  and  Hyde  streets  would  decrease  between  1.1  mph  and  1.5  mph  in 
all  three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  in  Year  2035  when  compared  with  the  existing 
conditions. 

•  Speed  along  NB  Polk  and  Larkin  streets  would  decrease  between  0.3  and  0.8  mph  in  all 
three  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA  in  Year  2035  when  compared  with  the  existing 
conditions.  Speed  along  NB  Polk  Street  under  the  build  alternatives  would  be  similar  to 
the  speed  in  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  Speed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  both  directions  would  decrease  between  1.2  and  1.9 
mph  in  Year  2035  for  Build  Alternative  2  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B  (including  the  LPA),  respectively,  when  compared  with  the  existing 
conditions.  This  speed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  these  two  alternatives  would  be 
similar  to  the  speed  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  (±  0.3  mph).  Speed  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue  in  both  directions  would  decrease  the  most  (2.1  to  3  mph)  under  Year 
2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This  is  mainly  due  to  the  increase  in  traffic  volumes  for 
NB  left  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  changes  in  signal  timing  and  phasing  for 
these  left  turns.  Left  turns  at  these  intersections  can  only  be  made  under  a  protected 
phase.  The  LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  the  same  speed  as 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  for  all  streets  except  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  Under  the  2015  LPA  and  the  Northbound  Station  Variant,  the  SB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  speed  would  be  the  same  as  2015  Build  Alternative  4.  The  NB  Van  Ness 
Avenue  speed  would  decrease  slightly  from  9.0  mph  in  Design  Option  B  to  8.8  mph  in 
the  LPA  (0.2  mph  decrease).  These  small  changes  in  speed  may  be  attributed  to  the 
increase  in  right-turn  traffic  making  turns  from  the  shared  lane  under  the  LPA  and  thus 
slightly  decreasing  the  speed  of  all  movement  in  the  curb  lane. 


3-66 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


>,  «  r.     r>     j  t    -~  t-  o,~;art  Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 

Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project  v      ■>  v  1 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 

Environmental  Impact  Report 


Traffic  Impacts:  2035  Build  Alternatives 

This  section  presents  the  cumulative  traffic  impacts  and  the  project  traffic  impacts  in  year 
2035  for  the  build  alternatives.  Implementation  of  each  of  the  proposed  build  alternatives  is 
anticipated  to  result  in  adverse  traffic  effects,  some  of  which  are  considered  significant 
impacts  based  on  the  impact  significance  thresholds  established  in  the  San  Francisco  Traffic 
Impact  Analysis  Guidelines  for  Environmental  Review  (see  Section  3.3.3).  The  cumulative 
traffic  growth  due  to  development  projects  by  year  2035  would  cause  cumulative  significant 
impacts  only  if  the  LOS  for  the  2035  build  alternatives  would  be  worse  than  the  existing 
conditions.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  cause  significant  project  impacts  only 
if  the  LOS  for  the  2035  build  alternatives  would  be  worse  than  2035  No  Build  Alternative 
based  on  the  significance  criteria  presented  in  Section  3.3.3  or  if  a  project-specific  impact 
was  already  identified  in  Year  2015  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions).  Other 
adverse  traffic  effects  considered  less  than  significant  per  the  San  Francisco  impact 
significance  thresholds  that  would  result  from  the  proposed  build  alternatives  are  also 
identified  in  the  following  subsections.  Intersections  that  would  continue  to  operate  at  LOS 
E  or  F  in  the  build  alternatives,  but  are  not  impacted  by  project  traffic  based  on  the 
significance  criteria,  are  identified  below  as  less  than  significant  impacts. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Under  Build  Alternative  2,  nine  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the  PM 
peak  hour  in  Horizon  Year  2035.  Figure  3.3-8  graphically  presents  2035  Build  Alternative  2 
intersection  LOS  for  all  intersections.  Table  3.3-14  presents  a  comparison  of  the  average 
intersection  delay  and  LOS  for  the  intersections  that  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  for  the  existing 
conditions,  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  and  2035  Build  Alternative  2  scenarios. 


Table  3.3-14:  Existing  Condition,  2035  Build  Alternative  2  (Side-Lane  BRT),  and  No 


Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 

INTERSECTION 

EXISTINC  CONDITIONS 

2035  NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

2035BUILD  ALTERNATIVE  2 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

Cough/Green* 

F  (76.5) 

F  (93-6) 

F  (1310) 

Cough/Clay* 

c  (23.9) 

D  (29.8) 

E  (38.5) 

Gough/Hayes 

D  (45-9) 

F  (98.1) 

F  (177-4) 

Franklin/Pine 

D  (39-5) 

E  (66.7) 

F  (88.7) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39  3) 

E  (77-5) 

F  033  ') 

Franklin/Eddy 

B  (10.7) 

C  (24.1) 

F  (105.9) 

Franklin/McAllister 

B  057) 

c  (29.7) 

F  (90.2) 

Van  Ness/Pine 

C  (26.!) 

E  (64.9) 

D  (53-9) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.1) 

E  (74-0) 

E  (65  7) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101 
Off-Ramp 

D  (44.4) 

F  (115  2) 

F  (93-5) 

>'r  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  signalized  intersections. 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  201). 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


i6; 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3-68 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  Based  on  the  significance  criteria,  the  project  traffic  under 
Build  Alternative  2  in  the  2035  horizon  year  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts  at 
five  intersections  as  follows: 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific  impacts 
under  2015  Build  Alternative  2.  Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria  (Section  3.3.3), 
the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/Pine.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  this  intersection  would 
have  significant  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2.  Furthermore,  this 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific 
impacts  under  2015  Build  Alternative  2.  Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria 
(Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/Eddy.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  this  intersection  would 
have  significant  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2.  Furthermore,  this 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/McAllister.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  the 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  this  intersection 
would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2.  Furthermore,  this 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

Less  than  Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  Five  additional  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E 
or  F  under  Build  Alternative  2  in  the  2035  Horizon  Year;  however,  the  contribution  of 
project  traffic  is  not  significant  based  on  the  significance  criteria.  The  intersections  with  less 
than  significant  project  impacts  include: 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  the  existing  condition  and  2035  Build 
Alternative  2;  however,  the  intersection  would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal 
warrant  under  both  the  existing  conditions  and  2035  Build  Alternative  2,  and  would 
therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in  Section 
3.3.3.  The  intersection  would  also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative, 
as  would  the  SB  approach.  There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operation  at 
this  intersection,  including  adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-street  parking 
spaces  to  create  an  additional  SB  approach  lane;  however,  removing  parking  would  | 
worsen  pedestrian  conditions  by  eliminating  the  buffer  provided  by  parked  cars 
separating  the  sidewalk  from  the  traffic  lane,  as  discussed  in  Section  3.3.4  (see  also 
Section  3.4,  Nonmotorized  Transportation),  and  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  thai 
the  community  prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 

•  Cough/Clay.  The  WB  Clay  Street  approach  at  this  unsignalizcd  intersection  would 
perform  at  LOS  C  under  the  existing  conditions  and  would  decline  to  LOS  E  at  the 
worst  approach  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2;  however,  the  intersection  would  not 
meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant  under  both  the  existing  conditions  and  2035 
Build  Alternative  2,  and  would  therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  significance 
thresholds  described  in  Section  3.3.3.  Potential  options  that  may  be  used  to  improve 
traffic  operations  of  this  intersection  include  adding  a  traffic  signal,  removing  some  on 
street  parking  spaces  on  Clay  Street  to  create  an  additional  WB-tO-SB  approach  lane,  or 
widening  Gough  Street  SB  to  two  lanes  by  removing  on-strcct  parking  spaces;  however, 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


these  improvements  would  have  the  adverse  effect  of  parking  removal  on  pedestrian 
conditions  along  Clay  and/or  Gough  Streets  and  are  not  recommended. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  D 
under  existing  conditions  and  would  decline  to  LOS  E  under  Build  Alternative  2; 
therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternative 
2.  Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  E  under  both  2035 
No  Build  Alternative  and  Build  Alternative  2  conditions;  however,  the  contribution  of 
project  traffic  is  less  than  5  percent  to  all  critical  movements.  Thus,  based  on  the 
significance  criteria,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  less  than  significant  cumulative 
impacts.  The  LOS  cannot  be  improved  because  there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes 
at  this  intersection,  and  the  traffic  signal  timings  are  constrained  by  the  pedestrian 
minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested  movements. 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramps.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from 
LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  Build  Alternative  2;  therefore,  this 
intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternative  2. 
Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  2035  No 
Build  Alternative  and  Build  Alternative  2;  however,  the  project  does  not  contribute 
traffic  to  any  critical  movement  that  performs  at  LOS  E  or  F.  Thus,  based  on  the 
significance  criteria,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  less  than  significant  cumulative 
impacts.  The  LOS  cannot  be  improved  because  there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes 
at  this  intersection,  and  the  traffic  signal  timings  are  constrained  by  the  pedestrian 
minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested  movements. 

•  Van  Ness/Pine.  The  intersections  of  Van  Ness  and  Pine  would  decline  from  LOS  C 
under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  and  then  improve 
to  LOS  D  under  Build  Alternative  2.  This  decline  in  performance  between  the  existing 
conditions  and  2035  No  Build  Alternative  is  due  to  growth  in  background  traffic.  The 
improved  performance  between  2035  No  Build  Alternative  and  2035  Build  Alternative 
2  is  mainly  due  to  traffic  diversion  away  from  the  intersection. 

Sensitivity  Analysis  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection:  In  anticipation  of  expected 
developments,  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  proposes  to  widen  the  sidewalk  on 
the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Post  and  Geary  streets.  This  proposed  widening 
would  necessitate  removal  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  SB  exclusive  right-turn  lane  onto  Geary 
Street.  A  sensitivity  analysis  has  been  performed,  assuming  the  proposed  sidewalk  widening 
occurs.  With  the  approved  sidewalk  widening  and  removal  of  exclusive  right-turn  lane,  LOS 
at  this  intersection  would  remain  unchanged  at  LOS  B. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  Configuration 

Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  12  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the 
PM  peak  hour  in  Horizon  Year  2035.  Table  3.3-15  provides  a  comparison  of  the  average 
intersection  delay  and  LOS  for  the  intersections  that  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  the 
existing  conditions,  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  and  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
scenarios.  Figure  3.3-9  presents  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  intersection  LOS  for  all 
intersections. 


3-70 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-15:  Existing  Conditions,  2035  Bu''d  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT),  and 
No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for  Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 


INTERSECTION 

EXISTING  CONDITIONS 

2035  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

2035  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

Gough /C  reen  " 

h  17°-5J 

P  Im  &\ 
h  193°) 

h  (IO5. 8) 

Gough/Sacramento 

\27->) 

C  (25.2) 

P  /R-i  fi\ 
r  ^ol.Dj 

oOUgn  J tuQy 

A  (6.9) 

R  h  a  X\ 
d  y 

oougn/nayes 

u  \45-9) 

r  ^  1  zz.u  1 

Franklin/Pine 

u  139-5) 

t  ^DD.7J 

P  (-7-7  ^\ 

b  (77-7) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39-3) 

E  (77-5) 

F  (125-7) 

Franklin/Eddy 

B  (10.7) 

C  (24.1) 

F  (102.0) 

Franklin/McAllister 

B  (15-7) 

C  (29.7) 

F(9i-4) 

Van  Ness/Pine 

C  (26.1) 

E  (64.9) 

F-  (59-4) 

Van  Ness/Hayes 

B  (17.9) 

D  (47-7) 

E  (74.0) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.1) 

E  (74.0) 

F  (128.2) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/US 
101  Off-Ramp 

D  (44.4) 

F  (115.2) 

F  (97-9) 

*  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  signalized  intersections. 


Source:  SYNCHRO  model.  CHS  Consulting  Croup,  2013. 

Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  cause  significant 
cumulative  impacts  at  eight  study  intersections  under  2035  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternatives 
3  and  4: 

•  Cough/Sacramento.  This  signalized  intersecdon  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this 
intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 
Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No 
Build  Alternative  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  the 
proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Cough/Eddy.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  A  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this  intersection 
would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This  signalized 
intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E 
under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific  impacts 
under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria  (Section 
3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific 
impacts  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria 
(Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/Eddy.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this  intersection 
would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This  signalized 
intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  F 
under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 


3-72 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  8us  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  Franklin/McAllister.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this 
intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would 
cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Van  Ness/Hayes.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this  intersection 
would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  This  signalized 
intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  E 
under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project- 
specific  impacts  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Hence,  based  on  the  significance 
criteria  (Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

Less  than  Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  Four  additional  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS 
E  or  F  under  Build  Alternative  2  in  the  2035  Horizon  Year;  however,  the  contribution  of 
project  traffic  is  not  significant  based  on  the  significance  criteria.  The  intersections  with  less 
than  significant  project  impacts  include: 

•  Cough/Green.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  existing  conditions  and  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4;  however,  the  intersection  would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour 
signal  warrant  under  both  existing  conditions  and  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and 
would  therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in 
Section  3.3.3.  The  SB  approach  would  also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build 
Alternative.  There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operations  at  this 
intersection,  including  adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-street  parking  spaces  to 
create  an  additional  SB  approach  lane;  however,  removing  parking  would  worsen 
pedestrian  conditions  by  eliminating  the  buffer  provided  by  parked  cars  separating  the 
sidewalk  from  the  traffic  lane,  as  discussed  in  Section  3.3.4  (see  also  Section  3.4, 
Nonmotorized  Transportation),  and  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  that  the 
community  prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 

•  Franklin/Pine.  This  signalized  intersection  would  degrade  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this  intersection 
would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Furthermore, 
this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative 
and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  however,  the  project  does  not  contribute  traffic  to  any 
critical  movement  that  performs  at  LOS  E  or  F.  Thus,  based  on  the  significance  criteria, 
the  proposed  project  would  cause  less  than  significant  cumulative  impacts.  One 
potential  improvement  measure  is  providing  an  exclusive  WB  right-turn  lane  from  Van 
Ness  Avenue  to  Franklin  Street.  This  can  be  implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak- 
hour  tow-away  zone  along  the  north  side  of  Pine  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
Franklin  Street;  however,  this  would  have  the  adverse  effect  of  parking  removal  on 
pedestrian  conditions  along  Franklin  Street. 

•  Van  Ness/Pine.  This  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  C  under  existing 
conditions  and  degrade  to  LOS  E  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4;  therefore,  this 
intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 
Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build 
Alternative  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  The  contribution  of  project  traffic  10  the 
critical  movement  is  not  significant  (i.e.,  no  project  traffic  added  to  any  critical 
movement);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  not  cause  significant  cumulative 
impacts.  One  potential  improvement  measure  is  providing  an  exclusive  WB  right-turn 
storage  lane  of  50  feet.  This  can  be  implemented  by  eliminating  two  parking  spaces  on 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  201 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


the  north  side  of  Pine  Street;  however,  this  mitigation  measure  is  not  recommended  due 
to  the  adverse  effects  of  parking  removal  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Pine  Street. 
•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramps.  This  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at 
LOS  D  under  existing  conditions  and  degrade  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives 
3  and  4;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4.  Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  F 
under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  However,  the  project 
does  not  contribute  traffic  to  any  critical  movement  that  performs  at  LOS  E  or  F; 
therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  not  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts.  The 
LOS  cannot  be  improved  because  there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes  at  this 
intersection,  and  the  traffic  signal  timings  are  constrained  by  the  pedestrian  minimum 
timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested  movements.  This  intersection  would 
experience  a  reduction  in  traffic  volumes  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  in  2035 
caused  by  the  diversion  of  traffic  volumes  from  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Design  Variation  between  Build  Alternative  3  and  Build  Alternative  4  and  Sensitivity  Analysis  at  Van 
Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection.  As  discussed  in  Chapter  2,  Van  Ness  Avenue 
between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  under  Build  Alternative  4  would  have  the  same 
geometric  design  as  Build  Alternative  3.  Due  to  this  transition  from  a  center-running  BRT 
with  a  single  median  north  of  Geary  Street  to  a  right-side  loading  BRT  with  two  medians  for 
this  block,  the  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  exclusive  right-turn  lane  to  Geary  Street  would  not  be 
provided  under  Build  Alternative  4.  This  intersection  operates  at  LOS  B  under  2035  Build 
Alternative  3.  Without  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn  lane,  LOS  at  this  intersection  would 
operate  at  LOS  C  under  2035  Build  Alternative  4.  The  analysis  for  Build  Alternative  4  also 
serves  as  the  sensitivity  analysis  if  the  San  Francisco  Planning  Department  were  to  widen  the 
sidewalk  under  Build  Alternative  3,  thus  requiring  elimination  of  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn 
lane  onto  Geary  Street  from  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA: 
Center-Lane  BRT 

The  LPA  (including  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)51  would  have  the  same  traffic 
impacts  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  Because  the  LPA  would  have 
11  fewer  right-turn  pockets,  there  are  minor  differences  in  approach  average  delay  between 
the  LPA  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
However,  none  of  these  differences  would  cause  a  new  significant  intersection  LOS  impact 
or  worsen  a  significant  intersection  LOS  impact  compared  to  the  impacts  outlined  for  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  For  details  on  LPA  performance  in  2035,  please 
see  the  Vehicular  Traffic  Analysis  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS,  2013). 

Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  12  intersections  would 
operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  during  the  PM  peak  hour  in  Horizon  Year  2035,  which  is  the  same 
number  of  intersections  operating  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4.  Table 
3.3-16  presents  a  comparison  of  the  average  intersection  delay  and  LOS  for  the  intersections  that 
would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  the  existing  conditions,  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  and  2035 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  LPA  scenarios.  Figure  3.3-10  presents 
2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  intersection  LOS  for  all  intersections. 


The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  one  fewer  (2  versus  3)  mixed  traffic  lanes  in  the  SB  direction  for  the  block 
between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  versus  the  LPA.  Under  the  LPA  without  the  variant,  this  lane  would  be  used  to  store 
left-turning  traffic  onto  Broadway.  Under  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  that  roadway  space  would  be  used  for 
the  additional  far  side  NB  station  at  Vallejo  Street.  In  2015,  the  Vallejo  intersection  would  operate  at  LOS  A  during  the  PM 
peak  under  the  LPA  and  would  operate  at  a  similar  LOS  with  implementation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 


3-74 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  !  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.3-16:  Existing  Conditions,  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (Center-Lane  BRT) 
with  Design  Option  B,  and  No  Build  Alternative  Intersection  LOS  (Delay)  for 
Intersections  that  Operate  at  LOS  E  or  F 


INTERSECTION 

EXISTING             2035  NO  BUILD 
CONDITIONS  ALTERNATIVE 

2035  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4  WITH  DESIGN  OPTION  B 
AND  THE  LPA 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

LOS  (DELAY) 

Gough/Green* 

F  (76.5) 

F  (93.6) 

F  (142.7) 

Gough/Clay* 

C  (23.9) 

D  (29.8) 

E  (44-5) 

Gough/Sacramento 

C  (27.1) 

C  (25.2) 

F  (102.2) 

Gough/Eddy 

A  (8.9) 

B  (14.8) 

F  (107.3) 

Gough/Hayes 

D  (45-9) 

F(98.i) 

F  (126.2) 

Franklin/Pine 

D  (39-5) 

E  (66.7) 

E  (78.8) 

Franklin/O'Farrell 

D  (39-3) 

E  (77-5) 

F  (115-3) 

Franklin/Eddy 

B  (10.7) 

C  (24.1) 

F  (113.1) 

Franklin/McAllister 

B  057) 

C  (29-7) 

F  (143.1) 

Franklin/Market 

B  07-9) 

C  (33-1) 

F  (148.3) 

Van  Ness/Pine 

C  (26.1) 

E  (64.9) 

C  (21.4) 

Otis/Mission/S.  Van  Ness 

D  (46.1) 

E  (74.0) 

E  (79-0) 

Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramp 

D  (44.4) 

F  (115.2) 

F  (97-2) 

*  Unsignalized  intersection. 

Table  shows  worst  approach  LOS  (Delay)  for  an  unsignalized  intersection 
Table  shows  intersection  LOS  (intersection  average  vehicular  delay)  for  si; 

;nalized  intersections. 

Source:  SYNCHRO  model,  CHS  Consulting  Group,  2013. 


Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and 
the  LPA,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  cause  significant  traffic  impacts  at  the 
following  eight  intersections  in  2035. 

•  Gough/Sacramento.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option 
B  and  the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Furthermore,  this 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA; 
therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Gough/Eddy.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  A  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and 
the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Furthermore,  this  signalized 
intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  F 
under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  therefore, 
the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Gough/Hayes.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific  impacts 
under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Hence, 
based  on  the  significance  criteria  (Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific 
impacts  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 
Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria  (Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would 
cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 


3-76 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  Franklin/Eddy.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and 
the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4.  Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS 
C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  Franklin/McAllister.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  B  under 
existing  conditions  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option 
B  and  the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Furthermore,  this 
signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  C  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  to 
LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  | 
therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  significant  traffic  impacts. 

•  Franklin/Market/Page.  This  intersection  is  assessed  to  have  significant  project-specific 
impacts  under  2015  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 
Hence,  based  on  the  significance  criteria  (Section  3.3.3),  the  proposed  project  would 
cause  significant  cumulative  impacts. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  This  signalized  intersection  would  decline  from  LOS  D 
under  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B  and  the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts 
under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 
Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build 
Alternative  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  The 
contribution  of  project  traffic  to  the  critical  movement  is  significant  (i.e.,  greater  than  5 
percent).  Thus,  based  on  the  significance  criteria,  the  proposed  project  would  cause 
significant  cumulative  impacts. 

Less  than  Significant  Cumulative  Impacts.  Four  additional  intersections  would  have  less  than 
significant  impacts.  These  intersections  would  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  under  Build  Alternatives 
3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  in  2035;  however,  the  contribution  of  project  j 
traffic  would  not  be  significant.  The  intersections  with  less  than  significant  project  impacts  are: 

•  Cough/Creen.  The  SB  approach,  the  worst  approach  at  this  four-way  stop-controlled 
intersection,  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  both  the  existing  condition  and  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  however,  the  intersection 
would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant  under  both  the  existing  condition 
and  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  and  would 
therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  significance  thresholds  described  in  Section 
3.3.3.  The  intersection  would  also  operate  at  LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative, 
as  would  the  SB  approach.  There  are  several  possibilities  to  improve  traffic  operations 
at  this  intersection,  including  adding  a  traffic  signal;  removing  some  on-street  parking 
spaces  to  create  an  additional  SB  approach  lane;  however,  removing  parking  would 
worsen  pedestrian  conditions  by  eliminating  the  buffer  provided  by  parked  cars 
separating  the  sidewalk  from  the  traffic  lane,  as  discussed  in  Section  3.3.4  (see  also 
Section  3.4,  Nonmotorized  Transportation),  and  past  public  outreach  has  indicated  that 
the  community  prefers  the  stop-sign  control  of  the  intersection. 

•  Cough/Clay.  The  WB  Clay  Street  approach  at  this  unsignalized  intersection  would 
perform  at  LOS  C  under  the  existing  conditions  and  would  decline  to  LOS  L.  at  1  In- 
worst  approach  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  ami  the 
LPA;  however,  the  intersection  would  not  meet  the  Caltrans  peak-hour  signal  warrant 
under  both  the  existing  condition  and  2035  Build  Alternative  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B  and  the  LPA,  and  would  therefore  not  be  significant  per  the  impact  | 
significance  thresholds  described  in  Section  3.3.3.  Potential  options  that  may  be  used  to 
improve  traffic  operations  of  this  intersection  include  adding  a  traffic  signal,  removing 
some  on-street  parking  spaces  on  Clay  Street  to  create  an  additional  \\  B  to  SB 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


KEY  FINDINGS 


Under 

Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
without  Design  Option  B  in  the 
near-term  Year  2015,  traffic 
conditions  at  three  intersections 
would  be  significantly  impacted. 

Under 

Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  in  the  near- 
term  Year  2015  (including  the 
LPA),  traffic  conditions  at  two 
intersections  would  be 
significantly  impacted. 

Under  Build  Alternative  2,  in  the 
near-term  Year  2015,  the  project 
would  cause  significant  traffic 
impacts  at  two  intersections. 

Under  the  long-term 
Horizon  Year  2035, 
the  project  would  cause 
significant  traffic  impacts  at 
five  to  eight  intersections, 
depending  on  the  alternative. 


approach  lane,  or  widening  Gough  Street  SB  to  two  lanes  by  removing  on-street  parking 
spaces;  however,  these  improvements  would  have  the  adverse  effect  of  parking  removal 
on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Clay  and/ or  Gough  Streets  and  are  not  recommended. 

•  Franklin/Pine.  This  signalized  intersecdon  would  decline  from  LOS  D  under  existing 
conditions  to  LOS  E  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the 
LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative  impacts  under  2035  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA.  Furthermore,  this  signalized 
intersection  would  operate  at  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative  and  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  however,  the  contribution  of 
project  traffic  to  the  critical  movements  performing  at  LOS  E  or  F  would  not  be 
significant  (i.e.,  less  than  5  percent);  therefore,  the  proposed  project  would  cause  less 
than  significant  cumulative  impacts.  One  potential  improvement  measure  is  providing 
an  exclusive  WB  right-turn  lane  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Pine  Street.  This  can  be 
implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  north  side  of 
Pine;  however,  this  improvement  would  have  the  adverse  effect  of  parking  removal  on 
pedestrian  conditions  along  Pine  Street  and  is  not  recommended. 

•  Duboce/Mission/Otis/US  101  Off-Ramps.  This  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS 
D  under  existing  conditions  and  decline  to  LOS  F  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  therefore,  this  intersection  would  have  cumulative 
impacts  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 
Furthermore,  this  signalized  intersection  would  perform  at  LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build 
Alternative  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA;  however, 
the  contribution  of  project  traffic  to  the  critical  movements  would  not  be  significant  (i.e., 
less  than  5  percent,  or  LOS  D  or  better).  The  LOS  cannot  be  improved  because  there  is  no 
ROW  available  to  add  lanes  at  this  intersection  and  the  traffic  signal  timings  are  constrained 
by  the  pedestrian  minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested  movements. 

•  Beneficial  Impacts.  The  intersections  of  Van  Ness  and  Pine  would  decline  from  LOS  C 
under  the  existing  conditions  to  LOS  E  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative,  and  then 
improve  to  LOS  C  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the 
LPA.  This  decline  in  performance  between  the  existing  conditions  and  2035  No  Build 
Alternative  is  due  to  growth  in  background  traffic.  The  improved  performance  between 
2035  No  Build  Alternative  and  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B 
and  the  LPA  is  mainly  due  to  traffic  diversions  away  from  the  intersection. 

Design  Variation  between  Build  Alternative  3  and  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B  and 
Sensitivity  Analysis  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Geary  Street  Intersection.  As  discussed  in  Chapter  2,  Van 
Ness  Avenue  between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  under  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design 
Option  B  would  have  the  same  geometric  design  as  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B. 
Due  to  this  transition  from  a  center-running  BRT  with  a  single  median  north  of  Geary  Street 
to  a  right-side  loading  BRT  with  two  medians  for  this  block,  the  SB  Van  Ness  Avenue  exclusive 
right-turn  lane  to  Geary  Street  would  not  be  provided  under  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design 
Option  B.  This  intersection  operates  at  LOS  B  under  2015  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design 
Option  B.  Without  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn  lane,  LOS  at  this  intersection  would  operate  at 
LOS  C  under  2015  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B.  The  analysis  for  Build  Alternative 
4  with  Design  Option  B  also  serves  as  the  sensitivity  analysis  if  the  San  Francisco  Planning 
Department  were  to  widen  the  sidewalk  under  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B,  thus 
requiring  elimination  of  the  exclusive  SB  right-turn  lane  onto  Geary  Street  from  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  The  LPA  would  include  the  removal  of  the  right-turn  pocket  at  this  intersection. 

LPA  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant.  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  have  one 
fewer  (2  versus  3)  mixed  traffic  lanes  in  the  SB  direction  for  the  block  between  Vallejo  and 
Green  streets  versus  the  LPA.  Under  the  LPA  without  the  variant,  this  lane  would  be  used  to 
store  left-turning  traffic  onto  Broadway.  Under  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  that 
roadway  space  would  be  used  for  the  additional  far  side  NB  station  at  Vallejo  Street.  In  2035, 
the  Vallejo  intersection  would  operate  at  LOS  A  during  the  PM  peak  under  the  LPA  and 
would  deteriorate  to  LOS  B  with  implementation  of  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 


3-78 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


3.3.3.4  I  SUMMARY  OF  VEHICULAR  TRAFFIC  IMPACTS 

This  section  provides  a  summary  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project's  vehicular  traffic 
impacts  for  the  three  project  alternatives  for  the  near-term  2015  and  long-term  Horizon 
Year  2035.  Table  3.3-17  provides  a  summary  of  traffic  impacts  at  all  intersections  that  would 
operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  existing,  No  Build,  or  Build  Alternative  conditions.  Key 
findings  are  listed  below.  As  explained  in  Section  3.3.2.2,  the  PM  peak  hour  represents  the 
worst-case  scenario  to  assess  vehicular  traffic  impacts  of  the  proposed  project  and  is  used 
for  the  intersection  LOS  analysis. 

•  In  the  existing  conditions,  only  the  intersection  of  Gough  and  Green  streets  would 
perform  at  LOS  E  or  F. 

•  In  2015  No  Build  Alternative,  four  intersections  would  perform  at  LOS  E  or  LOS  F. 
The  intersection  of  Mission/South  Van  Ness/ Otis  is  the  only  intersection  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  that  would  perform  at  LOS  E. 

•  In  the  near-term  2015  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions),  the  project  would 
cause  significant  project-specific  impacts  at  the  intersections  of  Gough/Hayes  and 
Franklin/O'Farrell  under  all  three  build  alternatives.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4, 
the  project  would  also  cause  significant  project-specific  impacts  at  the  intersection  at  the 
South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis  intersection.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  the  project  would  also  cause  significant  project-specific 
impacts  at  the  intersection  of  Franklin  and  Market  streets. 

•  In  2015,  the  performance  of  the  Mission/South  Van  Ness/Otis  intersection  would 
improve  from  LOS  E  to  LOS  D  under  Build  Alternative  2,  and  Build  Alternatives  3  and 
4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  versus  Alternative  1  (No  Build  Alternative),  and 
the  performance  of  the  Mission/Duboce/Otis/US  101  off-ramps  would  also  improve 
from  LOS  E  to  LOS  D  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives  versus  Alternative  1  (No  Build 
Alternative).  This  is  due  to  the  diversion  of  traffic  using  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  2015 
No  Build  Alternative  to  other  modes,  other  times  of  the  day,  and  streets  outside  the 
traffic  study  area  because  of  the  implementation  of  BRT. 

•  Under  both  near-term  2015  and  long-term  2035  horizon  years,  Build  Alternative  2 
would  have  the  least  traffic  impacts  because  of  the  availability  of  higher  capacity  for 
vehicles  making  turns  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  protect-permitted  left  turns,  thus 
reducing  diversions  to  other  parallel  streets. 

•  Under  the  long-term  Horizon  Year  2035  No  Build  Alternative  (Alternative  1),  seven 
intersections  would  perform  at  LOS  E  or  LOS  F.  This  is  three  more  than  in  the  2015  build 
alternatives.  The  intersection  of  Mission/South  Van  Ness/Otis  is  the  only  intersection  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue  that  would  perform  at  LOS  E  or  LOS  F  under  2035  No  Build  Alternative. 

•  In  the  long-term  Horizon  Year  2035,  the  project  would  cause  significant  traffic  impacts 
at  five  to  eight  locations  depending  on  the  alternative. 

•  The  project  traffic  in  2035  would  cause  significant  cumulative  impacts  at  seven  of  these 
same  intersections  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  or  without  Design  Option  B, 
including  the  LPA.  One  additional  intersection,  the  Van  Ness/Hayes  intersection, 
would  be  impacted  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  without  Design  Option  B.  Under 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  one  additional 
intersection,  the  Franklin/Market  intersection,  would  be  impacted  by  project  traffic. 

3.3.4 1  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 

This  section  describes  avoidance,  minimization,  and  mitigation  measures  that  would  lessen 
traffic  impacts  for  each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA.  Whether  to  adopt  mitigation 
measures  will  be  decided  by  the  decision  makers  (i.e.,  the  Authority  Board).  Decision  makers 
will  consider  the  Final  RIS/EIR  prior  to  deciding  whether  to  approve  the  project.  As  part  of 
that  process,  decision  makers  will  make  any  required  findings  and,  for  CEQA  purposes, 
those  will  include  determining  whether  mitigation  measures  are  feasible  or  infeaaible, 
considering  specific  economic,  legal,  social,  technological,  or  other  considerations.  It  the 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Each  build  alternative,  including 
the  LPA,  already  incorporates 
features  that  help  avoid  or 
minimize  traffic  impacts. 
Nevertheless,  the  build 
alternatives  are  forecast  to  cause 
traffic  delay  impacts  at  certain 
locations.  Engineering  measures 
could  mitigate  some  of  these 
delay  impacts  in  the  near  term 
but  are  not  feasible  due  to  policy 
conflicts,  specifically  the  need  to 
balance  traffic  circulation  with 
pedestrian  and  transit 
circulation  and  safety. 
In  addition,  these  engineering 
techniques  function  by 
increasing  automobile  traffic 
capacity  and  are  unlikely  to  be 
effective  in  the  long  term  due  to 
the  risk  of  induced  demand 

3  79 


O 
CL 
01 

a: 


—  u  u 

</l  *->  TO 

c  on  q_ 

u:  u  — 

-a 

cu  aj 

™  c  c 

00  E  - 
ij  i  > 

1  2- 

<  C 
^  LU 
LO   


> 


a. 
E 
u 

n 


3 
U 

IE 
> 

<4- 

o 

^ 

ra 
E 
E 

3 

to 


-O 

I— 


Ul  7  UJ  < 

1  S3  a 

£  Q  z 

£  i  1 

5  t « 

u  Jz 

o»t 

5  o 


a  >2  p 

=1  >  Q  ce 

3  g  Z  « 

00  5  <  ui 
m  Z  Z 
O  ce  5 


I  j  >  o 

CD  |-  ui 

I  3 

UJ  • 

b  S 

<  « 


*"  => 

si 

< 


?3S 
3  c;  ui 


Q  co  Z 
Z  O 


<  — r  — 
a 

3 


>  Q  Z  ce 

fz5B 


IT  Q  «  C 
o  =i  ui  S 

N    -j    >  CD 


13 

<  w 


^  Q  UJ 

5  ^  > 

a  < 

O  1 

Z  ui 


o  z 

Z  O 


U 


u 


u 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 

I/O 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 


U 

00 


U 

00 


U 
oo 


U 

00 


U 
oo 


U 

00 


CL 
00 


CL 

00 


CL 

00 


CL 
00 


CL 
00 


CL 

00 


Cl 

00 


Cl 

z 


CL 

z 


U 


o 
U 


■a 


o 

a 


c 

CL 


■a 


o 
U 


z 


o 

3 

a 


o  z> 


a  9  s  ! 


5  3 


—  P 


a.  a  — 


E  —  2 


~  .E 
< 


o  a 


S.  5  1  T  S 


-  U 
CD  LO 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


decision  makers  determine  that  mitigation  measures  or  project  alternatives  that  reduce  or 
avoid  significant  impacts  are  feasible,  they  will  be  adopted  and  incorporated  into  the  project. 
If  the  decision  makers  determine  that  mitigation  measures  are  infeasible  and  that  significant 
and  unavoidable  impacts  will  occur,  decision  makers  will  need  to  adopt  findings  that  the 
project  will  result  in  economic,  legal,  social,  technological,  or  other  benefits,  notwithstanding 
the  unavoidable  environmental  risks  of  the  project. 

The  discussion  also  identifies  engineering  mitigation  measures,  which  may  ultimately  be 
found  by  the  Authority  Board  to  be  infeasible,  to  document  the  Authority's  effort  to 
consider  means  of  lessening  or  avoiding  the  significant  traffic  impacts  anticipated  under 
each  proposed  build  alternative,  and  to  explain  in  each  case  some  of  the  policy  and 
engineering  challenges.  The  circulation  and  public  comment  period  of  this  Draft  EIS/EIR 
provided  an  opportunity  for  input  on  this  approach. 

Each  build  alternative,  including  the  LP  A,  would  incorporate  features  that  help  avoid  or 
minimize  traffic  impacts  through  project  design,  in  keeping  with  the  project's  objective  to 
accommodate  traffic  circulation.  These  include  area-wide  signal  timing  and  optimization; 
signal  priority  for  BRT  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  which  also  benefits  (north/south)  mixed 
traffic;  reducing  left-turn  movements  along  the  project  alignment;  and  right-turn  pockets  at 
high-demand  locations. 

Nevertheless,  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  are  forecast  to  cause  traffic  delay  | 
impacts  at  the  locations  identified  in  Section  3.3.3.  As  discussed  in  more  detail  below, 
engineering  measures  could,  at  some  affected  intersections,  mitigate  these  delay  impacts  in  the 
near  term.  The  engineering  mitigation  measures  primarily  include  removal  of  parking  tow-away  j 
lanes  or  traffic  turn  pockets,  which  increase  roadway  capacity  at  the  affected  intersections.52 
Such  mitigation  measures  were  identified  and  tested  for  each  project  scenario.53 

These  types  of  mitigation  measures,  while  reducing  localized  traffic  delays  in  the  short  term, 
may  ultimately  be  found  by  the  Authority  Board  to  not  be  feasible  due  to  policy  conflicts, 
specifically  the  need  to  balance  traffic  circulation  with  pedestrian  and  transit  circulation  and 
safety.  In  addition,  these  engineering  techniques  function  by  increasing  automobile  traffic 
capacity  and  are  unlikely  to  be  effective  in  the  long  term  due  to  the  risk  of  induced  demand. 

Pedestrian  Conflicts.  The  use  of  tow-away  zones  and  the  addition  of  right-turn  pockets  would 
worsen  pedestrian  conditions  by  removing  on-street  parking,  which  acts  as  a  buffer  from 
moving  traffic,  increasing  the  levels  of  moving  traffic  itself  and  the  associated  conflicts  with 
pedestrians  at  intersections,  and  raising  exposure  of  pedestrians  to  motorized  traffic  where 
turn  pockets  are  added.  These  outcomes  would  not  support  the  project  purpose  and  need  to 
improve  pedestrian  comfort  and  safety  (see  Section  1.3). 

The  San  Francisco  General  Plan  Transportation  Element  specifically  notes  the  important  role 
of  on-street  parking  as  a  buffer  between  pedestrians  and  traffic.  Policy  18.2  provides  that  no 
additional  tow-away  zones  should  be  instituted  if  they  would  worsen  pedestrian  safety  and 
comfort.  The  buffer  provided  by  parallel  parking  is  especially  important  on  Franklin  and 
Gough  streets,  which  have  narrower  sidewalks  than  the  standards  recommended  in  the  San 
Francisco  Better  Streets  Plan,  and  higher  traffic  volumes  than  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

When  evaluating  this  tradeoff  between  mitigating  traffic  delays  and  inducing  new  automobile 
trips,  or  worsening  pedestrian  conditions  through  parking  removal,  the  Authoritj  is  guided 
by  the  Transit  First  Policy  in  the  City  Charter.  The  Transit  First  Policy  states  that  "Decisions 
regarding  the  use  of  limited  public  street  and  sidewalk  space  shall  encourage  the  use  of 
public  rights-of-way  by  pedestrians,  bicyclists,  and  public  transit"  (Citv  Charter  Article 
VIII  A,  115,  Transit  First  Policy). 


52  Other  mitigation  measures  include  conversion  of  Otis  Street  to  two-way  and  closing  Page  Street  t<>  vehicukl  Btffic  tor 

some  project  scenarios;  these  arc  discussed  in  detail  in  this  section. 
a  Traffic  signal  timings  and  offsets  were  optimized  for  all  mitigation  measures. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


)8. 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

Induced  Demand.  Substantial  evidence  indicates  that  expanding  roadway  capacity  induces  new 
vehicle  trips  and  is  not  an  effective  way  to  address  congestion  over  the  long  term.  New 
roadway  capacity  generates  new  automobile  trips  that  were  not  previously  made,  returning 
delays  to  previous  levels.  Researchers,  including  Robert  Cervero,  Mark  Hansen,  and  Robert 
Noland,  published  key  findings  on  this  topic  starting  in  1995. 

In  2009,  the  California  Resources  Agency  adopted  revisions  to  the  State  CEQA  guidelines 
that  recognize  the  "induced  demand"  that  results  from  typical  traffic  mitigation  measures. 
The  revisions  removed  from  the  Guidelines  a  suggestion  to  measure  and  mitigate  traffic 
impacts  with  automobile  LOS  or  volume  to  capacity  ratios,  citing  induced  demand  as  a  key 
rationale  for  the  change  (December,  2009  Final  Statement  of  Reasons, 
http://ceres.ca.gov/ceqa/docs/Final  Statement  of  Reasons.pdf). 

The  following  sections  identify  those  locations  that  would  experience  a  significant  and 
unavoidable  automobile  traffic  delay  impact  by  2015  and/or  2035.  Even  without  the 
engineering  mitigation  measures  described  below,  the  number  of  intersections  operating  at 
LOS  E  or  LOS  F  under  the  build  alternatives  in  Year  2015  is  no  greater  than  the  number  of 
intersections  operating  at  LOS  E  or  F  in  the  No  Build  Alternative  scenario. 

3.3.4.1  I  NEAR-TERM  (2015)  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES 

This  section  identifies  measures  to  reduce  or  eliminate  Near-Term  (2015)  intersection 
impacts  under  the  build  alternatives  (representing  existing  plus  project  conditions);  however, 
the  Authority  Board  may  find  these  mitigation  measures  to  be  infeasible  as  explained  below. 


2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

As  presented  in  Section  3.3.3.2,  two  intersections  would  have  a  significant  and  unavoidable 
traffic  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  primarily  result  from  the  Gough 
Street  SB  approach.  Provision  of  a  fourth  SB  through  lane  on  Gough  Street  through  the 
implementation  of  PM  peak-period  tow-away  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street  between 
Ivy  and  Linden  would  further  improve  the  intersection's  level  of  service  to  LOS  D. 
However,  a  tow-away  lane  would  worsen  pedestrian  conditions  along  the  east  side  of 
Gough  Street  by  removing  parking  during  the  peak  period  (see  Section  3.4). If  the  Authority 
Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic 
would  cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  primarily  result  from  the 
approximately  360  vehicles  making  the  EB  left  turn  from  O'Farrell  Street  during  the  PM 
peak  hour  and  incurring  extensive  delays.  Adding  an  exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  would 
restore  the  LOS  at  this  intersection  to  an  acceptable  level;  however,  this  mitigation 
measure  would  cause  adverse  impacts  on  Muni  bus  services.  O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus- 
only  lane  on  the  south  side  of  O'Farrell.  Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  at  Franklin 
Street  would  require  this  bus-only  lane  to  be  converted  to  a  general-purpose  lane. 
Losing  this  bus  lane  would  adversely  impact  Muni  bus  speed  and  cause  delays.  This  is  an 
especially  difficult  tradeoff  given  the  planned  Geary  BRT  service..  If  the  Authority 
Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic 
would  cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternative  2. 


2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4:  Center-Lane  BRT 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.3.3.2,  project  traffic  in  Year  2015  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
would  cause  a  significant  impact  at  three  intersections. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  Gough 
Street  SB  approach..  Provision  of  a  fourth  SB  through  lane  on  Gough  Street  through  the 
implementation  of  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street 


Even  without  these  engineering 
mitigation  measures,  the 
number  of  intersections 
operating  at  LOS  E  or  LOS  F 
under  the  build  alternatives 
in  Year  2015  is  no  greater  than 
the  number  of  intersections 
operating  at  LOS  E  or  F 
in  the  No  Build  Alternative 
scenario. 


3-82 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


between  Ivy  and  Linden  would  improve  the  intersection's  LOS  to  LOS  D.  However,  a 
tow-away  lane  would  worsen  pedestrian  conditions  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street 
by  removing  parking  during  the  peak  period  (see  Section  3.4) .If  the  Authority  Board 
finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would 
cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  primarily  result  from  the 
approximately  360  vehicles  making  the  EB  left  turn  from  O'Farrell  Street  during  the  PM 
peak  hour  and  incurring  extensive  delays.  Adding  an  exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  would 
restore  LOS  at  this  intersection  to  an  acceptable  level.  However,  this  mitigation  measure 
would  cause  adverse  impacts  on  Muni  bus  services.  O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus-only  lane 
on  the  south  side.  Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  at  Franklin  Street  would  require  this 
bus-only  lane  to  be  converted  to  a  general-purpose  lane.  Losing  this  bus  lane  would 
adversely  impact  Muni  bus  speed  and  cause  delays.  This  is  an  especially  difficult  tradeoff 
given  the  planned  Geary  Corridor  BRT  service.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the 
mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  a 
significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  The  LOS  at  this  intersection  cannot  be  improved  because 
there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes.  In  addition,  the  traffic  signal  timings  are 
constrained  by  the  pedestrian  minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested 
movements.  Therefore,  this  intersection  cannot  be  mitigated,  and  project  traffic  would  J 
cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 


Year  2015  Near-Term  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA:  Center-Lane  BRT 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.3.3.1,  project  traffic  in  2015  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA  would  cause  a  significant  impact  at  three  intersections. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
Gough  Street  SB  approach.  Provision  of  a  fourth  SB  through  lane  on  Gough  Street 
through  the  implementation  of  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  east  side  of 
Gough  Street  between  Ivy  and  Linden  would  restore  the  intersection  to  LOS  D. 
However,  a  tow-away  lane  would  worsen  pedestrian  conditions  along  the  east  side  of 
Gough  Street  by  removing  parking  during  the  peak  period  (see  Section  3.4).  If  the 
Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it, 
project  traffic  would  cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
approximately  360  vehicles  making  the  EB  left  turn  from  O'Farrell  Street  during  the  PM 
peak  hour  and  incurring  extensive  delays.  Adding  an  exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  as  a 
mitigation  measure  would  restore  LOS  at  this  intersection  to  an  acceptable  level; 
however,  this  mitigation  measure  would  cause  adverse  impacts  on  Muni  bus  services. 
O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus-only  lane  on  the  south  side.  Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  it 
Franklin  Street  would  require  this  bus-only  lane  to  be  converted  to  a  general-purpose 
lane.  Losing  this  bus  lane  would  adversely  impact  Muni  bus  speed  and  cause  delays. 
This  is  an  especially  difficult  tradeoff  given  the  planned  Geary  Corridor  BRT  service.  If 
the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it, 
project  traffic  would  cause  a  significant  and  unavoidable  impact  in  2015  under  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/Market.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primaril)  .1  result  oi  the 
delays  for  the  EB  left-turn  approach  from  Market  Street.  This  intersection  performs 
poorly  due  to  the  additional  NB  vehicles  making  a  U-turn  onto  Otis  Street  from  Mission 
Street  NB,  turning  right  onto  Gough  Street  NB,  turning  right  onto  EB  Market  Street, 
and  turning  left  onto  NB  Franklin  Street.  Rerouting  Muni  buses  from  EB  Page  Street  to 
the  proposed  two-way  Haight  Street,  closing  Page  Street  to  vehicular  traffic,  and  split- 
phase  timing  for  EB  Page  Street  added  to  the  Market  Street  EB  left-turn  mov  ement  ... 
this  signalized  intersection  This  would  restore  the  intersection's  performance  to  ,.n 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


acceptable  LOS;  however,  it  would  eliminate  the  Page  Street  phase  of  the  traffic  signal, 
which  would  make  it  difficult  for  bicycle  users,  who  heavily  utilize  Page  Street  bike 
lanes,  to  access  Market  Street  bike  lanes.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation 
measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant 
and  unavoidable  impacts  at  this  intersecdon  in  2015  under  Build  Alternadves  3  and  4 
with  Design  Opdon  B  and  the  LPA. 

3.3.4.2  I  LONG-TERM  (2035)  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES 

This  section  identifies  measures  to  reduce  or  eliminate  Long-Term  (2035)  intersection 
impacts  under  the  build  alternatives;  however,  the  Authority  Board  may  find  these  measures 
to  be  infeasible,  as  explained  below. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.3.3.2,  project  traffic  in  2035  under  Build  Alternative  2  would  cause 
a  significant  impact  at  five  intersections. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  delays 
for  the  Gough  Street  SB  approach.  Provision  of  a  fourth  SB  through  lane  on  Gough 
Street  through  the  implementation  of  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  east 
side  of  Gough  Street  between  Ivy  and  Linden  and  a  125-foot  exclusive  EB  right-turn 
lane  created  by  removing  six  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of  Hayes  Street  would 
improve  the  intersection's  level  of  service.  However,  parking  removal  would  worsen 
pedestrian  conditions  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street  and  the  south  side  of  Hayes 
Street  (see  Section  3.4). If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be 
infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  a  significant  and 
unavoidable  impact  in  2035  under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Franklin/Pine.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Pine  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  includes  providing  an 
exclusive  WB  right-turn  lane  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  Franklin  Street.  This  mitigation 
measure  can  be  implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the 
north  side  of  Pine  between  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  Franklin  Street.  The  intersection 
would  operate  at  LOS  D  after  implementation  of  the  mitigation.  However,  the  removal 
of  parking  would  have  adverse  effects  on  pedestrian  conditions.  If  the  Authority  Board 
finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would 
cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  O'Farrell  Street  approach.  Adding  an  exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  is  a 
mitigation  measure  that  would  restore  LOS  at  this  intersection  to  an  acceptable  level; 
however,  it  would  cause  adverse  impacts  on  Muni  bus  services.  O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus- 
only  lane  on  the  south  side  of  O'Farrell.  Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  at  Franklin  Street 
would  require  this  bus-only  lane  to  be  converted  to  a  general-purpose  lane.  Losing  this 
bus  lane  would  adversely  impact  Muni  bus  speed  and  cause  delays.  This  is  an  especially 
difficult  trade-off  given  the  planned  Geary  Corridor  BRT  service.  If  the  Authority 
Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic 
would  cause  significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Franklin/Eddy.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  delays 
for  the  Eddy  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  would  be  to  provide  a  50-foot-long  exclusive 
EB  left-turn  lane  by  eliminating  two  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of  Eddy.  However, 
the  removal  of  parking  would  have  adverse  effects  on  pedestrian  conditions.  If  the 
Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project 
traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035under  Build  Alternative  2. 

•  Franklin/McAllister.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Franklin  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  includes  adding  a  fourth  NB 
through  lane  created  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-hour  tow-away  zone  along  the  west  side 


3-84 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


of  Franklin  Street  between  Fulton  and  McAllister  streets.  This  would  extend  the  existing 
tow-away  zone  by  one  block  south.  However,  the  removal  of  parking  would  have 
adverse  effects  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Franklin  Street  (see  Section  3.4).  If  the 
Authority  Board  chooses  not  to  adopt  the  mitigation  measure,  project  traffic  would 
cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternative  2. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4:  Center-Lane  BRT 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.3.3.2,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project  would  cause  a  significant 
traffic  impact  at  eight  intersections  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Cough/Sacramento.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
Gough  Street  approach.  One  mitigation  measure  is  a  second  SB  through  lane  along 
Gough  Street.  This  can  be  implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone 
on  the  west  side  of  Gough  Street  between  Clay  and  Sacramento  streets.  However,  the 
removal  of  parking  would  have  adverse  effects  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Gough 
Street.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not 
adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Cough/Eddy.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  delays 
for  the  Eddy  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  includes  providing  a  50-foot-long  exclusive 
EB  right-turn  lane  created  by  eliminating  three  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of 
Eddy  Street  and  relocating  the  bus  stop  on  the  near  side  of  Gough  to  the  far  side  of  the 
intersection.  However,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have  the  adverse  effects  of  parking 
removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Eddy  Street  in 
addition  to  potential  transit  access  impacts.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation 
measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant 
and  unavoidable  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Gough  Street  SB  approach.  Conditions  would  be  mitigated  with  provision 
of  a  fourth  SB  through  lane  on  Gough  Street  through  the  implementation  of  a  PM 
peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street  between  Ivy  and 
Linden.  In  addition,  a  100-foot  exclusive  EB  right-turn  lane  would  be  provided  through 
the  removal  of  five  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of  Hayes  Street.  However,  this 
would  have  the  adverse  effects  of  parking  removal  on  pedestrian  conditions  along 
Gough  Street  and  Hayes  Street.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to 
be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  and 
unavoidable  impacts  at  this  intersecdon  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  O'Farrell  Street  approach.  The  performance  of  this  intersection  would  be 
improved  by  increasing  capacity  on  NB  Franklin  Street  and  EB  O'Farrell  Street  through 
additional  lanes;  however,  there  is  no  ROW  available  along  Franklin  Street  and  the 
mitigation  would  impact  transit  along  O'Farrell  Street.  In  addition,  adding  an  exclusive  EB 
left-turn  lane  would  cause  adverse  impacts  on  Muni  bus  services.  O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus- 
only  lane  on  the  south  side  of  O'Farrell.  Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  at  Franklin  Street 
would  require  this  bus-only  lane  to  be  converted  to  a  general-purpose  lane.  Losing  this 
bus  lane  would  adversely  impact  Muni  bus  speed  and  cause  delays.  This  is  an  especially 
difficult  trade-off  given  the  planned  Geary  Corridor  BRT  service.  If  the  Authority  Board 
finds  the  mitigation  measures  to  be  infeasible  and  docs  not  adopt  them,  project  traffic 
would  cause  significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Franklin/Eddy.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Eddy  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  providing  a  50- foot  long 
exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  by  eliminating  two  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of  Eddy 
Street.  However,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have  the  adverse  effects  of  parking 
removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Eddy  Street.  If  the 
Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Franklin/McAllister.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Franklin  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  a  fourth  NB  through 
lane  created  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  west  side  of 
Franklin  Street  between  Fulton  and  McAllister  streets.  This  would  extend  the  existing 
tow-away  zone  by  one  block  south;  however,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have 
adverse  effects  of  parking  removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian 
conditions  along  Franklin  Street.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to 
be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this 
intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  Van  Ness/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  left-turn  approach.  The  reduction  of  two  existing  NB 
left-turn  bays  to  one  would  not  accommodate  the  forecast  traffic  volumes  in  2035.  This 
impact  would  be  mitigated  by  diverting  a  portion  of  the  left-turn  volumes  upstream  in 
the  SoMa  area.  Another  mitigation  measure  would  involve  signage  changes  discussed 
earlier,  from  the  intersection  of  Duboce/Mission/US  101  off-ramps  to  Mission  and 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  conversion  of  Otis  Street  to  a  two-way  street  from 
Duboce/Mission  to  McCoppin.  These  changes  would  divert  some  of  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  NB  left-turn  traffic  at  Hayes  Street  to  Otis,  Gough,  Market,  and  Franklin  streets 
to  reach  their  destinations.  However,  this  mitigation  measure  would  potentially  cause 
secondary  private  vehicle,  transit,  and  bicycle  impacts  at  the  Market  and  Franklin 
intersection  (would  cause  the  intersection  to  decline  to  LOS  E)  and  at  the 
Duboce/Mission  intersection  (would  require  the  removal  of  parking  on  one  side  of  the 
street  between  Duboce/Mission  and  Otis/Gough).  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the 
mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause 
significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/Otis.  No  improvement  is  proposed  for  this  intersection  because 
there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes  to  this  intersection,  and  the  traffic  signal  timings 
are  constrained  by  the  pedestrian  minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested 
movements.  This  intersection  cannot  be  mitigated  without  significant  redesign  of  the 
intersection.  Therefore,  this  intersection  cannot  be  mitigated,  and  project  traffic  would 
cause  significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4. 


2035  Long-Term  Horizon  Year  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA: 
Center-Lane  BRT 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.3.3.2,  project  traffic  under  2035  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  would  cause  a  significant  impact  at  eight  intersections. 

•  Cough/Sacramento.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Gough  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  a  second  SB  through 
lane  along  Gough  Street  implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone 
on  the  west  side  of  Gough  Street  between  Clay  and  Sacramento  streets.  However,  this 
mitigation  measure  would  have  the  adverse  effects  of  parking  removal  for  auto  travel 
lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Gough  Street.  If  the  Authority  Board 
finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would 
cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Cough/Eddy.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  delays 
for  the  Eddy  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  to  provide  a  50-foot-long 
exclusive  EB  right-turn  lane  implemented  by  eliminating  three  parking  spaces  on  the 
south  side  of  Eddy  Street  and  relocating  the  bus  stop  on  the  near  side  of  Gough  to  the 
far  side  of  the  intersection.  However,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have  the  adverse 
effects  of  parking  removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along 
Eddy  Street  in  addition  to  a  potential  transit  access  impact.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds 


3-86 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 


I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause 
significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Cough/Hayes.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Gough  Street  SB  approach.  The  mitigation  is  to  provide  a  fourth  SB 
through  lane  on  Gough  Street  through  the  implementation  of  PM  peak-period  tow- 
away  along  the  eastside  of  Gough  Street  between  Ivy  and  Linden  and  a  100-foot 
exclusive  EB  right-turn  lane  created  through  the  removal  of  five  parking  spaces  on  the 
south  side  of  Hayes  Street.  However,  parking  removal  would  worsen  pedestrian 
conditions  along  the  east  side  of  Gough  Street  and  the  south  side  of  Hayes  Street.  If  the 
Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it, 
project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in  2035  under  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/O'Farrell.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  O'Farrell  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  is  to  increase  capacity  on  EB 
O'Farrell  Street  through  additional  lanes;  however,  ROW  is  unavailable  along  Franklin 
Street.  In  addition,  adding  an  exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  would  cause  adverse  impacts  on 
Muni  bus  services.  O'Farrell  Street  has  a  bus-only  lane  on  the  south  side  of  O'Farrell. 
Providing  an  EB  left-turn  lane  at  Franklin  Street  would  require  this  bus-only  lane  to  be 
converted  to  a  general-purpose  lane.  Losing  this  bus  lane  would  adversely  impact  Muni  bus 
speed  and  cause  delays.  This  is  an  especially  difficult  trade-off  given  the  planned  Geary 
Corridor  BRT  service.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measures  to  be  infeasible 
and  does  not  adopt  them,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  and  unavoidable 
impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/Eddy.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the  delays 
for  the  Eddy  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  to  provide  a  50-foot-long 
exclusive  EB  left-turn  lane  by  eliminating  two  parking  spaces  on  the  south  side  of  Eddy 
Street.  However,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have  the  adverse  effects  of  parking 
removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along  Eddy  Street  (see 
Section  3.4).  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and 
does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in 
2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/McAllister.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  Franklin  Street  approach.  The  mitigation  measure  is  a  fourth  NB  through 
lane  implemented  by  instituting  a  PM  peak-period  tow-away  zone  along  the  west  side  of 
Franklin  Street  between  Fulton  and  McAllister  Street.  This  would  extend  the  existing  tow- 
away  zone  by  one  block  south;  however,  this  mitigation  measure  would  have  the  ad\  erse 
effects  of  parking  removal  for  auto  travel  lane  purposes  on  pedestrian  conditions  along 
Franklin  Street.  If  the  Authority  Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and 
does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic  would  cause  significant  impacts  at  this  intersection  in 
2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 

•  Franklin/Market.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  primarily  a  result  of  the 
delays  for  the  EB  Market  left-turn  approach.  This  intersection  would  perform  poorly 
mainly  due  to  the  additional  NB  vehicles  making  a  U-turn  onto  Otis  Street  from 
Mission  Street  NB,  turning  right  onto  Gough  Street,  right  onto  EB  Market  Street,  and 
left  onto  NB  Franklin  Street.  Traffic  impacts  at  this  intersection  would  be  significant 
and  unavoidable.  While  traffic  operations  would  be  improved  by  closing  Page  Street  to 
EB  vehicular  traffic  and  adjusting  signal  timing  at  this  intersection  to  provide  more  time 
for  Market  Street  EB  left-turn  movements,  these  changes  would  adversely  affect 
bicyclists  using  the  Page  Street  bike  lanes  to  access  Market  Street.  If  the  Authority 
Board  finds  the  mitigation  measure  to  be  infeasible  and  does  not  adopt  it,  project  traffic 
would  cause  significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and 
4  with  Design  (  >ptdon  B  and  the  I  PA. 

•  South  Van  Ness/Mission/otis.  The  LOS  at  tins  intersection  cannoi  be  improved  because 
there  is  no  ROW  available  to  add  lanes,  and  the  traffic  signal  timings  are  constrained  In 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


the  pedestrian  minimum  timings  and  cannot  be  allocated  to  congested  movements. 
Therefore,  this  intersection  cannot  be  mitigated,  and  project  traffic  would  cause 
significant  and  unavoidable  impacts  in  2035  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA. 


Mitigation  Measure  M  -  Traffic  Management  "Toolbox" 

Although  these  mitigations  would  not  mitigate  the  traffic  impacts  to  less  than  significant, 
SFMTA  will  attempt  to  manage  resulting  traffic  through  a  "toolbox"  of  short-term  traffic 
management  strategies  to  improve  traffic  management  in  the  study  area.  The  approaches  in 
the  toolbox  are  not  associated  with  any  specific  intersection  delay,  but  they  would  assist  the 
transition  from  no-build  to  build  circulation  patterns  and  support  smooth  multimodal 
circulation  in  the  corridor  and  citywide  under  a  build  and  cumulative  scenario.  The  toolbox 
effort  includes  raising  public  awareness  of  circulation  changes;  advising  drivers  of  alternate 
routes;  and  pedestrian  improvements.  These  strategies  cannot  be  readily  represented  in 
conventional  traffic  operations  models;  therefore,  their  potential  effect  on  minimizing  traffic 
delay  impacts  has  not  been  quantified. 

•  Driver  Wayfinding  and  Signage.  Driver  guidance  will  especially  assist  infrequent  drivers  of 
the  corridor  who  may  not  be  aware  of  alternate  routes,  such  as  along  the  Larkin/Hyde 
and  Franklin/ Gough  corridors.  Examples  of  wayfinding/ signage  opportunities  include 
guidance  from  the  US  101  off-ramps  to  9th  Street/ Civic  Center  to  the  Hyde/Larkin  NB 
corridor,  and  from  NB  Mission  Street  and  the  Duboce  off-ramp  to  the  Otis  U-turn  with 
access  to  NB  Franklin  Street.  For  infrequent  drivers  heading  SB  from  the  northern  part 
of  the  corridor,  signage/wayfinding  could  include  use  of  North  Point  to  access 
downtown,  or  right  turns  off  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  such  as  at  Pine,  to  access  Gough. 
The  Authority  will  work  with  Caltrans  to  develop  a  driver  wayfinding  and  signage 
strategy  as  part  of  mitigation  measures  M-TR-C2  and  M-TR-C5,  discussed  in  Section 
4.15.1.2.  The  SFMTA  would  continue  to  monitor  traffic  after  construction  and  during 
project  operation.  If  the  above-mentioned  construction  measures  prove  to  be  helpful  in 
minimizing  traffic  delay  impacts,  the  SFMTA  may  choose  to  implement  similar 
strategies  on  an  as-needed  basis  during  project  operation. 

•  Public  Awareness  Campaign  and  Transportation  Management  Plan  (TMP)  during  Project 
Construction.  The  project  construction  period  is  an  ideal  time  to  raise  public  awareness 
of  circulation  changes  resulting  from  the  project  and  to  implement  wayfinding/ signage, 
guidance  to  alternate  routes,  and  use  of  parking  control  officers.  As  discussed  as  part  of 
mitigation  measure  M-TR-C7  in  Section  4.15.1,  a  TMP  would  be  developed  to  implement 
these  concepts  during  construction.  These  information  channels  could  also  create  new 
patterns,  helping  inform  drivers  during  project  operation.  This  campaign  should  be  carried 
out  with  regional  agencies,  including  Caltrans  and  GGT.  The  SFMTA  would  continue  to 
monitor  traffic  after  construction  and  during  project  operation.  If  the  above-mentioned 
construction  measures  prove  to  be  helpful  in  minimizing  traffic  delay  impacts,  the  SFMTA 
may  choose  to  implement  similar  strategies  on  an  as-needed  basis  during  project  operation. 

•  Pedestrian  Amenities  at  Additional  Corridor  Locations.  In  the  long  term,  pedestrian  amenities, 
such  as  countdown  signals  and  pedestrian  curb  bulbs,  could  help  reduce  the  severity  of 
automobile  traffic  delays  through  mode  shift  (i.e.,  drivers  switching  to  walking). 
Recognizing  this  potential,  the  City  has  prioritized  pedestrian  improvements  as  part  of  the 
.Road  Repaving  and  Streets  Safety  Bond  (Proposition  B)  Projects  on  Gough,  Franklin, 
and  Polk  streets  (see  Section  2.7.1).  Ongoing  monitoring  of  travel  in  the  corridor  may 
identify  additional  locations  for  pedestrian  improvements  based  on  a  combination  of 
pedestrian  and  vehicle  volumes,  infrastructure  capabilities,  and  collision  history.  These 
types  of  pedestrian  improvements  cannot  be  represented  in  standard  traffic  or  travel 
demand  models  to  show  a  reduction  in  traffic  on  an  individual  project/intersection 
basis.  Rather,  shifts  from  driving  to  walking  tend  to  occur  as  a  network  of 
improvements  is  implemented.  In  the  near  term,  they  will  not  worsen  traffic  conditions. 


3-88 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  july  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


3.4  Nonmotorized  Transportation 

This  section  summarizes  the  existing  pedestrian  and  bicycle  travel  conditions,  referred  to  as 
nonmotorized  transportation,  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  how  these  conditions  would 
change  with  both  impacts  and  benefits  by  implementation  of  the  BRT  build  alternatives. 
This  section  summarizes  the  findings  of  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Environmental 
Review  -  Analysis  of  Nonmotorized  Transportation  Impacts  Technical  Report  prepared  in 
support  of  the  proposed  project  (Arup,  2013). 

The  LP  A  included  in  this  Final  EIS/EIR  is  a  refinement  of  the  center-running  alternatives 
with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B),  as  described  in 
Chapters  2  and  10.  The  environmental  consequences  related  to  nonmotorized  transportation 
under  the  LPA  and  with  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  are  identified  as  part  of  the 
analysis  presented  for  the  build  alternatives  in  this  chapter.  For  many  of  the  pedestrian  and 
bicycle  conditions  described  in  this  section,  the  LPA  has  identical  environmental 
consequences  to  Build  Alternatives  3  or  4  with  Design  Option  B,  and  is  so  noted. 

3.4.1 1  Regulatory  Setting 

Several  City  policies  and  plans  govern  and  guide  the  nonmotorized  transportation 
environment  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  A  summary  of  these  policies  and  plans  follows. 

3.4.1.1  I  EXECUTIVE  DIRECTIVE  10-03 

On  December  20,  2010,  Mayor  Gavin  Newsom  signed  an  Executive  Directive  (10-03) 
directing  San  Francisco  agencies  to  work  toward  a  citywide  target  of  a  25  percent  reduction 
in  serious  and  fatal  pedestrian  injuries  by  2016  and  a  50  percent  reduction  by  2021.  The 
directive  also  states  that  the  injury  prevention  goals  should  be  linked  with  a  complementary 
citywide  goal  of  increasing  walking  as  a  share  of  trips  in  San  Francisco. 

3.4.1.2  I  SAN  FRANCISCO  BETTER  STREETS  PLAN 

The  San  Francisco  Better  streets  Plan  provides  a  blueprint  for  the  future  of  San  Francisco's 
pedestrian  environment  (San  Francisco  Planning  Department,  2010).  This  citywide  policy 
document  describes  the  City's  vision,  provides  design  guidelines,  and  identifies  next  steps 
toward  creating  an  improved  pedestrian  environment  in  San  Francisco.  The  plan  sets  broad 
guidelines  and  does  not  prioritize  policies  or  street  improvement  projects  or  give  specific 
engineering  guidance.  Major  themes  and  ideas  of  the  San  Francisco  Better  streets  Plan 
guidelines  include: 

•  Distinctive,  unified  streetscape  design; 

•  Space  for  public  life; 

•  Enhanced  pedestrian  safety; 

•  Improved  street  ecology; 

•  Universal  design; 

•  Integrating  pedestrians  with  transit; 

•  Creative  use  of  parking  lanes; 

•  Traffic  calming  to  reduce  speeding  and  enhance  pedestrian  safety; 

•  Pedestrian-priority  designs;  and 

•  Kxtensive  greening  of  street  space. 

3.4.1.3  I  SFCO 

As  described  in  Section  2.2.1,  the  SFgo  program  is  a  package  of  technology-based 
transportation  management  system  tools  being  developed  by  SFMTA.  The  SFgo  Program  is 
comprised  of  many  projects  that  would  be  implemented  throughout  the  City,  Including  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  The  following  infrastructure  elements  of  SFgo  that  are  relevant 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


l«9 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


to  nonmotorized  transportation  are  planned  for  implementation  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue 
corridor  by  2015: 

•  Installation  of  pedestrian  countdown  signals  on  all  crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized 
intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Pedestrian  countdown  signals  increase  pedestrian 
safety  by  giving  clear  and  accurate  information  about  crossing  time  so  that  pedestrians 
can  complete  their  crossing  before  cross  traffic  receives  the  green  light. 

•  Installation  of  APS  at  some  additional  signalized  intersections  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Currently,  APS  is  installed  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  the  intersections  of  Market, 
McAllister,  Hayes,  Grove,  and  Fell  streets. 

•  Upgrade  of  curb  ramps  to  meet  current  City  standards  and  ADA  requirements  at  all 
intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  provide  access  to  people  in  wheelchairs  and 
overall  improved  pedestrian  travel. 

3.4.1.4  I  SAN  FRANCISCO  BICYCLE  PLAN 

The  San  Francisco  Bicycle  Plan  includes  policies  and  goals  that  reflect  the  City's  commitment  to 
expanding  the  role  and  importance  of  bicycle  transportation  in  San  Francisco.  The  plan  presents 
a  framework  for  the  City  to  provide  a  safe  and  attractive  environment  needed  to  promote 
bicycling.  The  plan  includes  81  recommended  action  items  to  guide  the  City  in  becoming  more 
bicycle  friendly  and  specifies  60  near-term  bicycle  network  improvement  projects  and  other 
long-term  improvement  projects.  Specific  goals  of  the  San  Francisco  Bicycle  Plan  include: 

•  Making  bicycling  an  integral  part  of  daily  life  in  San  Francisco; 

•  Increasing  safe  bicycle  use; 

•  Refining  and  expanding  the  existing  bicycle  route  network; 

•  Ensuring  plentiful,  high-quality  bicycle  parking; 

•  Expanding  bicycle  access  to  transit  and  bridges; 

•  Educating  the  public  about  bicycle  safety; 

•  Improving  bicycle  safety  through  targeted  enforcement; 

•  Promoting  and  encouraging  safe  bicycling; 

•  Adopting  bicycle-friendly  practices  and  policies;  and 

•  Prioritizing  and  increasing  bicycle  funding. 

The  extension  of  bicycle  lanes  on  Polk  Street  NB  between  Market  and  Grove  streets  is  a  near- 
term  improvement  project  proposed  near  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Improvements  to  the  bike  route 
on  Polk  Street  are  planned  and  are  described  in  Section  5.3,  Reasonably  Foreseeable  Projects. 

3.4.L5  I  VAN  NESS  AVENUE  AREA  PLAN  (JULY  1995) 

The  City  adopted  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  Area  Plan  in  1986  and  created  a  Van  Ness  Avenue 
Special  Use  District  of  the  Planning  Code  in  1988  to  implement  the  plan.  The  plan  is 
intended  to  promote  Van  Ness  Avenue  as  the  City's  most  prominent  north-south  boulevard, 
lined  with  high-density  mixed-use  development  and  including  design  features  that  support  a 
transit-served  pedestrian  promenade.  The  Van  Ness  Avenue  Area  Plan  identifies  the  following 
objectives  and  policies  relevant  to  streetscape  and  nonmotorized  transportation: 

•  Objective  8.  Create  an  attractive  street  and  sidewalk  space  that  contributes  to  the 
transformation  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  into  a  residential  boulevard. 

-     Policies  8.1  through  8.4  support  landscaping  and  tree  plantings,  as  well  as  maintaining 
existing  sidewalk  space  abutting  major  renovation  or  new  development  projects. 
Policies  8.5  through  8.7  support  maintaining  existing  sidewalk  widths  and  providing 
uniform  aesthetic  sidewalk  treatments. 

•  Objective  9.  Provide  safe  and  efficient  movement  among  all  users  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Policies  9.1   through  9.4  support  transit  service,  including  reducing  conflicts 
between  transit  vehicles  and  other  moving  and  parked  vehicles. 
Policies   9.5   through   9.8  aim   to   reduce  conflicts  between  pedestrians  and 
automobiles  by  calling  for  off-street  parking  access  from  minor  east-west  streets 
and  prohibitions  on  new  parking  access  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


3-90 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


-  Policies  9.10  through  9.12  include  measures  to  enhance  pedestrian  circulation. 

-  Policy  9.13  discourages  freight-loading  facilities  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.4.1 .6  I  MARKET  AND  OCTAVIA  AREA  PLAN  (OCTOBER  2007) 

The  Market  and  Octavia  Area  Plan  guides  future  development  of  the  Market  and  Octavia 
area.  The  area  plan  focuses  on  improving  and  creating  new  opportunities  for  nonmotorized 
travel  through  infill  redevelopment,  dense  new  housing  development,  and  civic  and  open 
spaces  that  provide  attractive  outdoor  shared  places.  The  plan  specifically  promotes  high- 
density  housing  near  transit  to  encourage  more  transit,  pedestrian,  and  bicycle  trips. 

3.4.1.7  I  TENDERLOIN  -  LITTLE  SAIGON  NEIGHBORHOOD  TRANSPORTATION  STUDY 

The  Tenderloin  -  Little  Saigon  Neighborhood  Transportation  Study  identifies  the 
community's  high-priority  transportation  needs  and  develops  conceptual  designs  and 
strategies  for  transportation  improvements  to  the  Tenderloin  and  Little  Saigon 
neighborhoods.  The  community's  top  priorities  for  improvement  include  pedestrian  safety, 
slower  traffic,  transit  reliability  and  access,  and  streetscape. 

3.4.1.8  I  ADA  COMPLIANCE 

In  the  past,  it  was  generally  accepted  that  upgrades  to  meet  ADA  requirements  were  made 
on  the  basis  of  "touch  it,  fix  it,"  and  identified  deficiencies  beyond  the  construction 
footprint  could  be  added  to  a  Transition  Plan  and  deferred  to  a  subsequent  improvement 
project;  however,  following  a  recent  Cal trans  court  settlement,  this  approach  has  been 
replaced  with  one  wherein  all  noncompliant  features  within  a  project  limit  should  be 
addressed  to  the  maximum  extent  feasible.  In  Caltrans  Design  Bulletin  83-04,  which  covers 
issues  of  accessibility,  Caltrans  specifically  recognizes  that  pavement  resurfacing  and 
rehabilitation  projects  now  trigger  ADA  upgrades,  even  though  curbs  and  sidewalks  are  not 
typically  modified  under  such  projects.  Although  preventive  maintenance  and  routine 
maintenance  work  are  not  considered  an  alteration  and  are  not  required  to  follow  the 
guidance,  the  San  Francisco  City  Attorney  has  interpreted  that  pavement  resurfacing  work 
does  trigger  compliance  with  ADA  requirements. 


The  Market  and  Octavia  Area 
Plan  focuses  on  creating 
new  opportunities  for 
nonmotorized  travel 
through  infill  development 
and  outdoor  shared  spaces. 


3.4.2  I  Affected  Environment 

This  section  describes  the  existing  pedestrian  and  bicycling  conditions  or  the  "affected 
environment"  for  nonmotorized  transportation  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 
Pedestrian  trips  make  up  26  percent  of  total  trips  to,  from,  and  within  the  neighborhoods 
surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue  on  a  daily  basis,  exceeding  the  citywide  average  of  18 
percent.  Neither  of  these  figures  accounts  for  walking  to  reach  transit,  which  is  the  primary 
mode  for  20  percent  of  trips  in  the  neighborhoods  that  surround  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  17 
percent  citywide.  Because  every  transit  trip  begins  and  ends  as  a  pedestrian  trip,  altogether 
up  to  46  percent  of  trips  to,  from,  or  within  the  neighborhoods  surrounding  Van  Ness 
Avenue  include  a  walking  or  bicycling  component,  indicating  the  importance  of 
nonmotorized  travel  in  the  area  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.4.2.1  I  PEDESTRIAN  CONDITIONS 

The  existing  pedestrian  conditions  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  the  proposed  BRT  project  area 
arc  described  in  this  section. 


Pedestrian  trips  make  up 
26  percent  of  total  trips  to,  from, 
and  within  the  neighborhoods 
surrounding  Van  Ness  Avenue 
on  a  daily  basis,  exceeding  the 
citywide  average  of  18  percent. 
Because  every  transit  trip  begins 
and  ends  as  a  pedestrian  trip, 
altogether  up  to  46  percent  of 
trips  to,  from,  or  within  the 
neighborhoods  surrounding 
Van  Ness  Avenue  include  a 
walking  or  bicycling  component. 


Pedestrian  Volumes  and  Crowding 

Van  Ness  Avenue  is  characterized  by  dense  development,  mixed  uses,  short  block  lengths, 
gentle  grades,  short  distances  between  destinations,  and  frequent  transit  service,  both  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  and  on  connecting  cross  streets  (e.g.,  Market,  Geary,  OTarrcll,  and 
California  streets).  These   factors  combine   to  generate  significant   pedestrian  traffic 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


J9« 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Pedestrians 
crowding  in 


do  not  experience 
Van  Ness  Avenue 
crosswalks. 


throughout  the  corridor.  The  highest  volumes  of  pedestrian  crossings  are  in  the  Civic  Center 
area  from  Grove  Street  to  Market  Street.  Moderate  activity  is  observed  between  California 
and  O'Farrell  streets,  while  lower  activity  intersections  are  located  north  of  Sacramento 
Street,  coinciding  with  largely  residential  areas.  In  summary,  pedestrian  crossing  activity 
largely  occurs  in  three  areas:  (1)  Civic  Center  near  City  Hall;  (2)  Market  Street  due  to 
numerous  transit  connections;  and  (3)  major  transit  cross-corridors  such  as  Geary  Boulevard 
and  O'Farrell  Street  (Arup,  2013). 

Pedestrians  do  not  experience  crowding  in  Van  Ness  Avenue  crosswalks.  Crosswalk  density 
is  a  measure  of  the  "maneuvering  area"  provided  for  each  pedestrian  crossing  the  street, 
indicating  the  level  of  crowding,  and  it  is  a  function  of  pedestrian  volumes,  crosswalk 
dimensions,  green  time,  and  expected  walking  speeds.  Table  3.4-1  shows  the  HCM  pedestrian 
crowding  LOS  thresholds.  Table  3.4-2  displays  the  pedestrian  crowding  LOS  calculated 
using  the  HCM  method  for  the  five  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  the  highest 
recorded  pedestrian  count  volumes.  There  are  two  key  assumptions:  (1)  that  pedestrian 
volumes  counted  at  each  intersection  are  evenly  distributed  across  all  four  crossings;  and  (2) 
that  pedestrians  arrive  evenly  spaced  at  the  intersections  rather  than  in  platoons  due  to 
upstream  traffic  signals.  In  cases  where  crosswalk  dimensions  differ,  the  LOS  rating  reflects 
the  crossing  with  the  lowest  score.  Given  these  assumptions,  crosswalk  density  does  not 
appear  to  be  a  significant  issue  at  these  intersections.  All  crossings  have  an  LOS  A  except  at 
Grove  Street,  which  receives  an  LOS  C  due  to  a  relatively  long  and  narrow  crosswalk  on  the 
south  side  of  the  intersection  and  a  shorter  pedestrian  green  time  than  at  other  intersections. 

Table  3.4-1:  Pedestrian  Crowding  LOS  Thresholds 


LOS 

MANEUVERING  AREA  PER  PERSON 
(SQUARE  FEET) 

A 

>  60 

B 

40  -  60 

C 

24-4O 

D 

15-24 

E 

8-15 

F 

<8 

Source:  Highway  Capacity  Manual  (HCM),  Transportation  Research  Board  (TRB). 


Table  3.4-2:  Pedestrian  Crowding  LOS  at  High  Pedestrian  Count  Intersections 


INTERSECTION 

DENSITY  LOS  CROSSINC  VAN  NESS 

DENSITY  LOS  CROSSINC  SIDE  STREET 

Geary 

A 

A 

O'Farrell 

A 

A 

Golden  Gate 

A 

A 

Grove 

C 

A 

Market 

A 

A 

Source:  VISSIM  simulation,  HCM. 


Crosswalk  Conditions 

Marked  crosswalks  are  present  on  all  four  sides  of  every  signalized  intersection  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  Crosswalk  width  across  Van  Ness  Avenue  (i.e.,  the  north  and  south  legs  of 
the  intersection)  vary  considerably,  from  10  feet  at  the  Fell,  Golden  Gate,  Post,  Bush,  Pine, 
and  Lombard  street  intersections  to  22  feet  at  McAllister  Street  and  24  feet  at  Market  Street. 


3-92 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Typical  crosswalks  widths  are  between  12  and  15  feet  across  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Crosswalks 
running  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  (i.e.,  on  the  west  and  east  legs  of  the  intersection)  are 
on  average  16  feet  wide,  which  corresponds  with  adjoining  sidewalk  widths. 

Two  types  of  crosswalks  are  used  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  -  traditional  parallel  line  crosswalks 
and  high-visibility  "ladder"  crosswalks.  Ladder  crosswalks  are  located  at  Golden  Gate,  Turk, 
Pacific,  and  Broadway;  all  other  intersections  employ  traditional  parallel  line  crosswalks. 
Pedestrians  have  sufficient  maneuvering  space  in  crosswalks,  even  at  the  busiest  crossings. 

Each  street  corner  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  at  least  one  curb  ramp,  allowing  access  by 
people  in  wheelchairs,  as  well  as  providing  easier  travel  for  those  with  strollers,  carts,  and  the 
like;  however,  many  ramps  have  not  yet  been  upgraded  to  current  City  standards,  which 
include  the  installation  of  tactile  domes  for  easy  identification  by  visually  impaired 
pedestrians.  Many  intersections  also  have  only  one  ramp,  which  necessitates  more 
maneuvering  of  a  wheelchair  to  cross  the  street,  places  users  closer  to  moving  traffic,  and 
can  be  disorienting  to  visually  impaired  pedestrians. 


Sidewalk  Conditions 

Along  most  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  sidewalks  are  16  feet  wide  on  both  sides  of  the  street. 
On  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Market  and  Mission  streets,  the  sidewalk  is  22  feet 
wide  on  both  sides.  According  to  the  Better  streets  Plan,  Van  Ness  Avenue  sidewalks  should 
be  a  minimum  of  15  feet  wide.  The  existing  sidewalks  exceed  the  City's  standard  of  15  feet 
for  a  sidewalk  along  a  commercial  thoroughfare  (San  Francisco  Planning  Department,  2010). 
Effective  sidewalk  width,  however,  is  sometimes  reduced  due  to  various  streetscape 
elements,  such  as  bus  shelters  and  passenger  waiting  areas,  trees  and  landscaping,  parking 
meters,  bicycle  racks,  newspaper  racks,  trash  receptacles,  and  OCS  support  poles/ 
streetlights.  At  the  same  time,  these  features  serve  to  buffer  the  sidewalk  and  pedestrians 
from  vehicular  traffic.  A  buffer,  whether  landscaping  or  curbside  parking,  can  significantly 
improve  the  sidewalk  environment  and  the  perception  of  safety  and  comfort  by  pedestrians 
(PEDSAFE,  2004).  Landscaped  planters  along  the  sidewalk  between  Market  and  McAllister 
streets  in  the  Civic  Center  provide  additional  buffer  between  pedestrians  and  traffic, 
although  these  also  reduce  the  effective  sidewalk  width.  Nearly  all  blocks  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  between  Lombard  and  Mission  streets,  in  both  the  NB  and  SB  directions,  permit 
some  degree  of  curbside  parking  (i.e.,  with  8-foot-wide  parking  lanes).54  ■ 

Street  lighting  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  provided  by  the  OCS  support  pole/streetlight 
network  and  is  supplemented  by  lighting  from  adjacent  properties.  The  existing  streetlight 
network  does  not  meet  Illuminating  Engineering  Society  (IES)  RP-08  minimum  illumination 
levels  for  safe  roadway  lighting  on  a  major  arterial/state  highway  such  as  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
The  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  (SFCTA,  2006)  found  pedestrian-scale  lighting 
to  be  an  important  amenity  that  is  currendy  lacking  on  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  study  explains 
that  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  a  high  level  of  pedestrian  night  activities,  and  there  is  a  need  to 
improve  visibility  for  vehicles  in  the  roadway,  as  well  as  for  pedestrians  on  the  sidewalk. 


Crossing  Distance,  Nose  Cones,  and  Curb  Bulbs 

The  longer  the  distance  needed  to  cross  an  intersection,  the  longer  the  signal  time  is  needed 
and  the  likelihood  increases  that  pedestrians  cannot  complete  the  crossing  in  one  signal 
cycle.  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  wide  roadway  with  six  mixed-flow  traffic  lanes.  The  average- 
crossing  distance  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  90  feet  (Arup,  2013).  The  most  common  crossing  | 
distance  across  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  93  feet,  but  curb  bulbs  located  at  17  crossings  reduce 
that  distance.  In  addition,  the  wide  median  located  on  some  blocks  of  Van  Ness  Avenue 


The  only  block  that  docs  not  permit  parking  along  one  side  is  the  block  ot"  Van  Ness  Avenue  betw  een  I  ell  Uld  I  l.nc- 
streets,  where  no  parking  is  provided  along  the  cast  side  of  the  block. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


serves  as  a  refuge  for  pedestrians  that  are  unable  to  finish  crossing  the  street  during  one  light 
cycle;  however,  the  medians  are  not  consistently  located  and  range  in  width  from  4  to  14 
feet.  In  addition,  many  of  the  medians  do  not  extend  across  the  crosswalk  to  provide  a 
protective  nose  cone  (Arup,  2013).  Nose  cones  provide  a  physical  barrier  from  traffic, 
creating  a  protected  space  at  the  crosswalk  median  to  wait  for  the  next  signal  cycle  to  finish 
crossing  the  street.  They  are  refuges  that  extend  into  the  crosswalk  with  ramps  or  a  level  cut- 
through  for  ADA  access.  Fourteen  (14)  Van  Ness  Avenue  intersections  are  equipped  with  at 
least  one  nose  cone,  with  3  intersections  having  nose  cones  for  both  the  north  and  south 
crosswalks.  The  intersections  with  nose  cones  are  listed  in  Table  3.4-3. 


Table  3.4-3:  Van  Ness  Avenue  Intersections  with  Nose  Cones  -  Existing  Condition 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE  INTERSECTION 

SOUTH  LEG 

NORTH  LEG 

Hayes  Street 

X 

McAllister  Street 

X 

Golden  Gate  Avenue 

X 

Turk  Street 

X 

Ellis  Street 

X 

O'Farrell  Street 

X 

Geary  Street 

X 

Post  Street 

X 

X 

Sutter  Street 

X 

X 

Bush  Street 

X 

Pine  Street 

X 

California  Street 

X 

X 

Sacramento  Street 

X 

Clay  Street 

X 

Total 

8 

9 

Source:  SFMTA  Striping  Plans,  3/2004  and  Tqpographic  Maps  2009. 


Crossing  distances  of  side  streets  along  the  corridor  (i.e.,  the  east  and  west  legs  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  intersections)  are  between  38  and  50  feet.  The  crossing  distance  is  significantly 
longer  in  locations  with  multiple  legs,  such  as  the  west  leg  of  the  Mission  Street  crossing, 
which  includes  the  Duboce  and  Otis  streets  legs.  Crossings  along  the  east  and  west  legs  at 
Market  Street,  Broadway,  and  Lombard  are  longer  than  normal. 

Curb  bulbs,  also  known  as  corner  bulbouts  or  curb  extensions,  extend  the  sidewalk  into  the 
intersection  and  reduce  effective  curb-to-curb  crossing  width.  Curb  bulbs  help  slower- 
moving  pedestrians  finish  crossing  within  one  phase  of  the  traffic  light  cycle.  Additionally, 
curb  bulbs  increase  pedestrian  visibility,  create  a  larger  pedestrian  queuing  area,  provide 
additional  space  for  curb  ramps  (discussed  below),  produce  traffic  calming  impacts  by 
visually  and  physically  narrowing  the  roadway,  and  can  provide  streetscape  and  landscaping 
opportunities.  The  existing,  typical  curb  bulbs  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  extend  7  feet  into  the 
street  and  reduce  the  crossing  distance  to  86  feet  at  17  locations. 


Pedestrian  Signals 

Pedestrian  countdown  signals  visually  display  the  remaining  seconds  to  cross  the  street, 
reducing  risk  for  crossing  pedestrians.  This  is  especially  important  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  due 
to  the  relatively  long  crossing  distances.  At  crossings  without  a  pedestrian  countdown  signal, 
pedestrians  can  be  caught  mid-crossing  when  the  light  turns  yellow  with  as  little  as  4  seconds 
to  reach  a  curb  or  median  refuge,  indicating  the  strong  need  for  pedestrian  signals  at  these 
intersections.  Of  the  29  signalized  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Lombard 


3-94 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


and  Mission  streets,  15  intersections  have  pedestrian  countdown  signals  on  all  crossing  legs, 
3  intersections  have  them  on  some  legs,  while  11  intersections  have  no  pedestrian  signals  of 
any  kind  (Arup,  2013).  Under  SFgo,  plans  call  for  the  installation  of  pedestrian  countdown 
signals  on  all  legs  of  every  intersection  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  by  2015,  as  noted 
in  the  description  for  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  Section  2.2.2. 

Another  type  of  pedestrian  signal  is  the  Accessible  Pedestrian  Signal  (APS).  APS  is  a 
pedestrian  pushbutton  that  communicates  when  to  cross  the  street  in  a  nonvisual  manner, 
such  as  audible  tones,  speech  messages,  and  vibrating  surfaces.  According  to  SFMTA's  APS 
inventory,  the  following  five  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  equipped  with  APS 
on  some  or  all  crossing  legs:  Market,  Fell,  Hayes,  Grove,  and  McAllister  streets.  Under  SFgo, 
plans  call  for  the  installation  of  additional  APS  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  signalized  intersections. 


Signal  Timing 

The  adequacy  of  pedestrian  crossing  time  is  assessed  in  several  ways.  First,  traffic  signals 
must  be  timed  so  that  pedestrians  can  cross  the  entire  street  in  the  time  provided  by  the 
"walk"  signal  time  combined  with  the  "flashing  don't  walk"  signal,  yellow,  and  any  all-red 
time  before  the  green  signal  for  opposing  traffic  begins;  this  time  is  referred  to  as  the  "walk 
split".  The  Federal  Highway  Administration's  (FHWA)  MUTCD  recommends  that 
pedestrian  signals  be  timed  so  that  the  amount  of  crossing  time  is  adequate  for  a  pedestrian 
or  wheelchair  user  starting  6  feet  back  from  the  curb  face  to  complete  the  crossing  at  3  feet 
per  second  (fps).  The  City  of  San  Francisco  seeks  to  provide  enough  time  for  a  pedestrian 
moving  at  2.5  fps,  where  possible. 

In  addition,  guidelines  call  for  pedestrian  timing  to  allow  any  pedestrian  who  begins  crossing 
during  the  "walk"  signal  to  be  able  to  complete  the  crossing  within  the  combined  "flashing 
don't  walk,"  yellow,  and  all-red  time;  this  is  referred  to  as  the  "pedestrian  clearance  time." 
The  MUTCD  recommends  that  pedestrian  signals  be  timed  so  that  a  pedestrian  leaving  the 
curb  at  the  end  of  the  "walk"  signal  and  traveling  at  3.5  fps  reaches  the  opposite  curb  before 
a  green  signal  is  given  to  opposing  traffic.  Only  one  crossing  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  meets 
the  City  standard  for  pedestrian  clearance;  however,  most  crossings  exceed  the  minimum 
"walk"  phase  interval  of  7.0  seconds,  so  pedestrian  clearance  guidelines  likely  could  be  met 
for  some  crossings  by  simply  reducing  the  "walk"  phase  length  and  increasing  the  "flashing 
don't  walk"  phase  length.  Overall,  pedestrian  clearance  times  hover  slightly  above  the  3.5  fps 
standard,  ranging  from  3.5  to  5.0  fps. 

Pedestrian  signal  timing  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  slightly  below  City  and  national  standards 
for  crossing  speeds  at  all  but  one  intersection  with  a  pedestrian  signal,  and  at  40  percent  of 
intersections  without  a  pedestrian  signal.  At  crossings  with  no  pedestrian  signal,  the 
vehicular  yellow  light  phase  is  the  only  indication  that  the  crossing  phase  is  about  to  end. 
The  clearance  time  for  pedestrians  is  effectively  only  3.5  to  4.5  seconds.  Walking  speeds  to 
finish  this  crossing  before  opposing  traffic  receives  a  green  signal  are  up  to  21.8  fps,  more 
than  six  times  the  FHWA  guideline  speed  for  a  pedestrian  signal  clearance  phase.  This 
reinforces  the  importance  of  a  pedestrian  signal  to  provide  information  to  pedestrians  on  the 
amount  of  time  remaining  to  safely  cross  the  street. 

Pedestrian  Delay 

Pedestrian  delay  reflects  the  average  amount  of  time  an  approaching  pedestrian  must  w  ait 
before  crossing  the  street.  Delay  represents  one  way  to  evaluate  LOS  for  pedestrians.  \s 
wait  times  increase,  pedestrians  are  also  more  likely  to  disregard  a  traffic  signal,  potentially 
increasing  the  probability  of  collisions.  In  addition,  pedestrian  delay  reduces  the  efficiency  of 
walking  as  a  travel  mode.  Table  3.4-4  shows  the  pedestrian  delay  LOS  thresholds,  as  well  .is 
the  likelihood  of  pedestrian  noncompliance  provided  in  the  Transportation  Research 
Board's  (TRB)  2000  I  [CM. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.4-4:  Pedestrian  Delay  LOS  Thresholds  for  Signalized  Intersections 


LOS 

AVERAGE  DELAY  (SECONDS) 

LIKELIHOOD  OF  NONCOMPLIANCE 

A 

<  IO.O 

Low 

B 

lO.I  -  20.0 

C 

20. 1  -  30.0 

Moderate 

D 

30.1  -  4O.O 

E 

40.1  -  60.0 

High 

F 

>  60.0 

Very  High 

Source:  Highway  Capacity  Manual  (HCM),  Transportation  Research  Board  (TRB). 


Using  these  thresholds,  the  average  delay  at  all  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  shown 
in  Table  3.4-5,  is  LOS  C.  Pedestrian  delay  was  simulated  using  VISSIM.  Delay  for 
pedestrians  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue  averages  LOS  D,  with  between  30  to  40  seconds  of 
delay  and  a  moderate  to  high  likelihood  of  noncompliance  with  signals.  Pedestrians  crossing 
Mission  Street  at  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  fare  even  worse,  with  delays  between  40  and  60 
seconds  and  a  high  probability  of  noncompliance.  Pedestrians  experience  less  delay 
traversing  north-south  across  cross  streets  along  the  proposed  BRT  segment,  where  delays 
average  21  seconds. 


Pedestrians  typically  experience 
twice  as  much  delay  at  traffic 
signals  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
than  do  vehicle  occupants.  In 
general,  as  wait  times  increase, 
pedestrians  are  less  likely  to 
comply  with  the  traffic  signal, 
potentially  increasing  the 
probability  of  collisions. 


Table  3.4-5:  Pedestrian  Delay  LOS  at  Van  Ness  Avenue  Intersections 


INTERSECTION 

DELAY  LOS  CROSSING  VAN  NESS 

DELAY  LOS  CROSSING  SIDE 
STREET 

AVERAGE  DELAY  LOS 

Clay 

c 

B 

C 

Sacramento 

c 

B 

C 

California 

c 

B 

c 

Pine 

D 

C 

c 

Bush 

D 

C 

c 

Sutter 

D 

B 

c 

Post 

C 

B 

c 

Geary 

D 

B 

c 

O'Farrell 

D 

B 

c 

Ellis 

C 

B 

c 

Eddy 

C 

B 

c 

Turk 

D 

B 

c 

Golden  Gate 

D 

B 

c 

McAllister 

D 

B 

c 

Grove 

D 

B 

c 

Hayes 

D 

C 

c 

Fell 

D 

B 

c 

Market 

D 

C 

c 

Mission 

D 

E 

E 

Average 

D 

C 

c 

Source:  VISSIM  simulation,  Highway  Capacity  Manual  (HCM). 


Pedestrians  typically  experience  twice  as  much  delay  at  traffic  signals  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
than  do  vehicle  occupants.  Pedestrians  must  typically  wait  longer  to  proceed  across  Van 
Ness  Avenue,  with  delays  averaging  33  seconds.  Delays  at  some  crossings  are  much  greater 


3-96 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


than  average;  the  longest  mean  wait  time  is  52  seconds  crossing  Mission  Street  at  South  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  By  comparison,  the  longest  delay  for  vehicles  at  a  single  intersection  approach 
is  35  seconds,  which  is  also  at  Mission  Street  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue. 


Major  Collision  Locations  and  Vehicle  Right-Turn  Volumes 

Collision  information  is  collected  in  the  California  Statewide  Integrated  Traffic  Records 
System  (SWITRS)  database.  According  to  SWITRS  data  from  2003  to  2008,  major  collision 
locations  coincide  with  heavy  pedestrian  volumes  at  Market  Street,  in  the  Civic  Center  area, 
and  major  transit  cross-corridors.  Of  intersections  where  pedestrian  counts  were  conducted, 
the  Broadway,  Geary,  and  O'Farrell  intersections  had  the  highest  number  of  collisions  per 
peak-hour  crossing,  indicating  the  highest  risk. 

Assessing  the  number  of  pedestrian  collisions  by  the  volume  of  pedestrians  highlights 
intersections  that  are  high  risk.  Peak-hour  pedestrian  crossings  at  selected  intersections  are 
used  as  a  level  of  exposure  in  Table  3.4-6.  Of  locations  where  counts  were  conducted, 
pedestrians  crossing  at  the  intersections  of  Broadway,  O'Farrell,  Geary,  and  California 
streets  had  the  highest  risk  of  collision  (note:  SWITRS  data  do  not  collect  time  of  day; 
therefore,  pedestrian  collisions  at  all  times  are  compared  to  peak-hour  crossings). 


Table  3.4-6:  Pedestrian  Collisions  by  Location  (2003-2008) 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE 
INTERSECTION 

NUMBER  OF  PEDESTRIAN 
COLLISIONS 

NUMBER  OF  PEDESTRIAN  COLLISIONS 
INVOLVING  SERIOUS  INJURY 

NUMBER  PEDESTRIAN  COLLISIONS 
PER  1,000  PEAK-HOUR  CROSSINGS 

Mission 

2 

2.4 

Market 

2 

1.1 

Fell 

4 

Hayes 

2 

1 

Grove 

4 

1 

2-7 

McAllister 

2 

Golden  Gate 

2 

2.1 

Turk 

3 

Eddy  1 

Ellis 

O'Farrell 

4 

3 

3-9 

Geary 

4 

3-5 

Post 

3 

Sutter  1 

Bush  1 

Pine 

2 

1 

California 

3 

3-3 

Sacramento 

1 

1.6 

Clay  i 

Washington 

Jackson 

2 

Pacific 

2 

Broadway 

2 

7-1 

Vallejo                                      1  1 

Green 

2 

Union 

1 

2  3 

Filbert 


The  intersections  of  Broadway, 
O'Farrell,  Geary,  and  California 
streets  have  the  highest  risk  of 
collisions  involving  pedestrians 
within  the  study  area. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.4-6:  Pedestrian  Collisions  by  Location  (2003-2008) 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE            NUMBER  OF  PEDESTRIAN 
INTERSECTION  COLLISIONS 

NUMBER  OF  PEDESTRIAN  COLLISIONS 
INVOLVING  SERIOUS  INJURY 

NUMBER  PEDESTRIAN  COLLISIONS 
PER  1,000  PEAK-HOUR  CROSSINCS 

Greenwich 

Lombard 

Total  52 

n 

Source:  SWITRS,  2003-08  and  pedestrian  counts.  Risk  measures 

only  shown  where  pedestrian  counts  collected. 

The  cause  of  many  pedestrian-vehicle  collisions  is  difficult  to  determine  from  SWITRS  data 
because  pedestrians  were  assigned  fault  in  nearly  half  of  all  cases,  and  the  most  common 
infraction  was  an  unspecified  "pedestrian  violation."  Drivers  were  at  fault  in  40  percent  of 
the  collisions,  most  commonly  for  failing  to  yield  ROW  to  pedestrians  while  executing  a  left 
turn.  Drivers  and  pedestrians  were  also  each  cited  in  several  cases  for  failing  to  obey  traffic 
signs  and  signals. 

The  number  of  vehicular  right  turns  is  another  factor  in  pedestrian  safety  at  intersections 
that  affects  pedestrians  crossing  side  streets,  north  or  south  along  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
Locations  with  heavy  right-turn  volumes  generally  have  more  conflicts  between  vehicles  and 
pedestrians  or  bicyclists,  possibly  increasing  the  number  of  collisions  (Arup,  2013).  See 
Table  3.4-12  for  right- turn  volumes  at  each  intersection  (existing  conditions  are  assumed  to 
be  similar  to  the  No  Build  Alternative). 

This  analysis  using  SWITRS  data  does  come  with  a  few  caveats.  First,  there  are  a  range  of 
known  factors  for  pedestrian  and  vehicle  injuries  beyond  what  is  provided  in  SWITRS  data. 
These  include  environmental  factors  such  as  traffic  volumes  and  free-flow  speeds,  vehicle 
factors  such  as  size  and  mass,  institutional  enforcement  of  safety  laws,  roadway  design  and 
geometry,  and  factors  related  to  physical  function  such  as  age  and  disability.  Second, 
pedestrian  injuries  are  undercounted  in  San  Francisco  by  20  to  25  percent,  resulting  in 
underestimation  of  risk.55  Finally,  because  the  number  of  pedestrian  injuries  is  small,  it  is 
possible  that  the  differences  in  pedestrian  injuries  may  not  be  fully  representative  of  the 
difference  in  risk  between  those  intersections. 


DEFINITION 


Universal  Design  is  the  design  of 
facilities  and  environments  that 
are  broadly  and  easily  accessible 
to  all  people  and  do  not  require 
separated  or  specialized 
facilities.  For  more  information, 
visit:  www.ncsu.edu/www/ncsu 
/design/sods/cud. 


Evaluation  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  According  to  Universal  Design  Principles 

Universal  Design  is  the  design  of  facilities  and  environments  that  are  broadly  and  easily 
accessible  to  all  people  and  do  not  require  separated  or  specialized  facilities.  Using  the 
Universal  Design  Principles  developed  by  Ron  Mace  et  al.  at  North  Carolina  State  University, 
existing  pedestrian  conditions  and  access  to  transit  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  was  also  evaluated 
in  terms  of  its  adherence  to  these  principles  (The  Center  for  Universal  Design,  1997). 

Principle  #i:  Equitable  Use.  This  principle  refers  to  a  design  that  is  useful  and  marketable  to 
people  with  diverse  abilities.  Pedestrians  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  not  segregated  either  in 
their  use  of  the  sidewalk  and  street  crossings  or  in  their  access  to  transit  stops.  Locations 
with  curb  ramps  at  all  corners  allow  universal  access  to  the  sidewalk  and  to  crosswalks, 
although  access  is  more  difficult  at  corners  with  only  one  ramp  and  not  all  ramps  meet 
current  City  and  ADA  standards.  Median  refuges  with  protective  nose  cones,  where 
provided  (see  Table  3.4-3),  include  a  level  cut-through  in  the  crosswalk  for  wheelchair 
access.  Most  traffic  signals  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  do  not  provide  equitable  use  by  people 
with  visual  impairments  because  they  do  not  feature  APS.  Bus  stops  are  located  on  the 
sidewalk  with  no  grade  change  and  are  accessed  in  the  same  manner  by  all  transit  users. 
There  is  no  separate  waiting  area  for  passengers  with  disabilities.  All  users  of  buses  currently 
enter  through  the  front  door;  however,  wheelchair  users  must  use  a  ramp  as  opposed  to 


55   http:/ Avww.ncbi.  nlm.ruli.gov/ pubmet/ 16084782 


3-98 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


ambulatory  riders  that  use  the  steps.  In  addition,  passengers  that  require  a  ramp  must  use  the 
front  door  to  exit  the  bus  versus  other  users  that  are  able  to  exit  from  either  the  back  or  the 
front  door.  This  can  limit  boarding  and  exit  opportunities  for  wheelchair  users  if  there  are 
obstacles  at  bus  stops  such  as  street  furniture  or  parked  cars. 

Principle  #2:  Flexibility  in  Use.  This  principle  refers  to  a  design  that  accommodates  a  wide 
range  of  individual  preferences  and  abilities.  Sidewalks  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
accommodate  a  range  of  physical  abilities  and  speeds,  but  street  crossings  do  not  provide  as 
much  flexibility.  Crossings  are  long,  especially  when  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Several 
crosswalks  do  not  have  a  median  refuge,  and  signal  timing  typically  does  not  allow  for  the 
slower  walking  speed  of  2.5  fps  suggested  by  City  guidelines.  Median  refuges  with  railings, 
which  are  provided  on  some  intersection  crossings,  allow  slower  pedestrians  to  rest  before 
completing  the  street  crossing  during  the  following  light  cycle.  Bus  stops  are  not  designed 
for  activities  other  than  waiting;  therefore,  they  are  inflexible  in  use. 

Principle  #3:  Simple  and  Intuitive  Use.  This  principle  describes  a  design  that  is  easy  to 
understand,  regardless  of  the  user's  experience,  knowledge,  language  skills,  or  current 
concentration  level.  The  arrangement  of  pedestrian  facilities  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  is 
generally  standard  and  intuitive,  but  locations  where  a  single  curb  ramp  angles  toward  the 
middle  of  the  intersection  are  more  disorienting  to  pedestrians  with  visual  impairments,  for 
whom  curb  ramps  help  provide  orientation  for  a  street  crossing.  Bus  stops  are  in  typical 
locations  along  the  curb  at  street  corners  and  are  arranged  in  a  conventional  format; 
therefore,  they  are  consistent  with  user  expectations.  Passengers  know  to  wait  on  the 
sidewalk  near  the  bus  stop  sign  or  bus  shelter. 

Principle  #4:  Perceptible  Information.  This  principle  refers  to  a  design  that  communicates 
necessary  information  effectively  to  the  user,  regardless  of  ambient  conditions  or  the  user's 
sensory  abilities.  Crosswalks  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  use  traditional  and  high-visibility 
markings;  however,  most  traffic  signals  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  do  not  feature  APS  and  do 
not  provide  perceptible  information  for  people  with  visual  impairments.  In  addition,  tactile 
domes  are  not  provided  on  all  crosswalks  for  easy  identification  for  people  with  visual 
impairments,  and  the  single  curb  ramps  that  angle  toward  the  middle  of  the  intersection  are 
disorienting.  Bus  stop  signage  and  line  information  is  provided  only  in  a  visual  format  and  is 
not  accessible  to  people  with  limited  sight. 

Principle  #5:  Tolerance  for  Error.  This  principle  refers  to  design  that  minimizes  hazards  and  the 
adverse  consequences  of  accidental  or  unintended  actions.  Sidewalks  are  wide  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  generally  buffered  from  moving  traffic  by  street  parking,  providing  significant 
tolerance  for  error.  Street  crossings  provide  less  tolerance  because  of  heavy  traffic  volumes, 
especially  where  crossings  are  long  and  refuges  are  not  provided.  A  bus  stop  from  the  sidewalk 
requires  minimal  risk  if  the  passenger  is  on  the  same  side  of  the  street  as  the  stop,  but  reaching  a 
bus  stop  on  the  other  side  requires  crossing  six  lanes  of  traffic  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  entailing 
more  risk.  There  is  a  significant  tolerance  for  error  while  at  a  bus  stop  because  the  average 
sidewalk  width  is  16  feet,  and  there  is  traffic  only  on  one  side  of  the  bus  stop  waiting  area. 

Principle  #6:  Low  Physical  Effort.  This  principle  refers  to  design  that  can  be  used  efficiently  and 
comfortably  with  a  minimum  of  fatigue.  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  few  hills,  with  no  grades 
above  10  percent,  and  bus  stops  are  located  approximately  every  700  feet,  necessitating 
relatively  low  levels  of  physical  effort  to  reach  a  transit  stop.  No  significant  effort  is  required 
to  access  a  bus  stop  because  they  are  level  with  the  sidewalk.  Some  bus  stops  are  also 
equipped  with  benches,  allowing  riders  to  sit  and  rest  when  they  arrive. 

Principle  #7:  Size  and  Space  for  Approach  and  Use.  This  principle  refers  to  provision  ol 
appropriate  size  and  space  in  design  for  approach,  reach,  manipulation,  and  use  regardless  of 
a  user's  body  size,  posture,  or  mobility.  The  16-foot-widc  sidewalks  and  bus  stops  along  Van 
Ness  Avenue  provide  adequate  space  to  maneuver  wheelchairs  and  other  assistive  devices. 
Visually  locating  a  bus  stop  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  may  be  challenging  because  StreetSCape 
elements  often  obstruct  a  clear  line  of  sight  to  bus  stop  shelters  and  signs,  and  these  features 
are  small  relative  to  other  structures  on  the  street. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


V99 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

3.4.2.2  I  BICYCLE  CONDITIONS 

Bicyclists  using  Van  Ness  Avenue  must  share  travel  lanes  with  automobiles  because  there 
are  no  designated  bicycle  lanes.  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  not  a  popular  cycling  route  due  to 
heavy  vehicle  volumes  and  the  absence  of  a  bicycle  lane.  Although  some  bicyclists  choose  to 
use  Van  Ness  Avenue,  there  is  no  accurate  accounting  of  the  bicycle  trip  volumes  on  the 
street.  The  San  Francisco  2009  Bicycle  Count  Report  does  not  include  any  data  for  Van 
Ness  Avenue  locations  or  intersections.  Bicyclists  typically  use  the  right-most  travel  lane 
adjacent  to  curbside  parking  (or  adjacent  to  the  curb  where  parking  is  not  permitted),  or  ride 
on  the  sidewalks.  Van  Ness  Avenue  has  some  U-shaped  bicycle  parking  facilities,  and  field 
surveys  indicate  informal  use  of  trees,  posts,  and  news  racks  for  bicycle  parking. 

The  corridor's  designated  bicycle  route  is  a  Class  II/III  dedicated  facility  on  Polk  Street, 
which  runs  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  one  block  east.  This  facility  includes  segments  of 
dedicated  bicycle  lanes  (between  Market  and  Post  and  between  Union  and  Lombard),  as  well 
as  segments  where  vehicles  and  cyclists  must  share  travel  lanes  (from  Union  to  Post). 

Bicycle-related  collisions  are  much  less  common  than  pedestrian-related  ones  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue  due  to  the  lower  volume  of  bicycle  trips.  Bicycle-related  collisions  have  typically 
occurred  in  the  southern  end  of  the  proposed  BRT  segment  between  Mission  Street  and  Civic 
Center,  which  is  an  area  where  several  designated  bicycle  routes  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.4.3  I  Environmental  Consequences 

The  following  analysis  identifies  potential  impacts  and  benefits  for  nonmotorized 
transportation:  pedestrians  and  bicyclists.  The  analysis  compares  each  build  alternative, 
including  the  LPA,  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the 
LPA,  are  evaluated  against  applicable  standards  and,  where  no  quantified  standards  apply, 
against  the  guidance  and  policies  presented  in  Section  3.4.1. 

A  build  alternative  is  considered  to  have  an  adverse  impact  on  pedestrians  or  bicyclists  if  it 
performs  worse  than  the  No  Build  Alternative.  As  stated  in  the  project  purpose  and  need, 
Chapter  I,  the  intent  of  the  build  alternatives  is  to  improve  conditions  for  pedestrians 
compared  to  the  No  Build  Alternative,  in  which  case  a  beneficial  impact  is  identified.  If  a 
build  alternative  performs  the  same  as  the  No  Build  Alternative,  it  is  considered  to  have  no 
impact.  The  impact  and  benefit  evaluation  for  nonmotorized  transportation  follows, 
presented  separately  for  pedestrian  and  bicycle  modes. 

3.4.3.1  I  PEDESTRIAN  IMPACTS 

Potential  impacts  to  pedestrians  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  identified  by  evaluating  crossing 
safety,  sidewalk  safety,  and  accessibility  for  each  build  alternative. 


Pedestrian  Crossing  Safety 

Pedestrian  Volumes.  Table  3.4-7  provides  the  pedestrian  crossing  volume  forecast  for  the 
project  alternatives.  At  a  minimum,  as  shown  in  Table  3.4-7,  the  No  Build  Alternative  and 
Build  Alternatives  2,  3,  and  4  would  have  the  same  pedestrian  crossing  volumes,  with  or 
without  incorporation  of  Design  Option  B,  as  would  the  LPA.  Pedestrian  volumes  would  be 
heaviest  in  the  segment  between  Market  and  Grove  streets,  which  also  has  the  heaviest 
current  crossing  volumes.  Table  3.4-7  shows  that  implementation  of  any  of  the  build 
alternatives  would  not  increase  pedestrian  crossing  volumes  or  cause  crosswalk  crowding.56 


This  does  not  account  for  the  increased  pedestrian  volumes  associated  with  the  increased  transit  ridership  discussed  in 
Chapter  3.2.  • 


Implementation  of  any 
of  the  build  alternatives 
would  not  increase  pedestrian 
crossing  volumes  or  cause 
crosswalk  crowding. 


3-100 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project  Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.4-7:  Forecast  Hourly  Pedestrian  Crossing  Volumes 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE  INTERSECTION 

ALL  PROJECT  ALTERNATIVES  (1-4)- 

Union 

44O 

Clay 

950 

Broadway 

28O 

Sacramento 

64O 

California 

920 

Pine 

560 

Bush 

560 

Sutter 

580 

Post 

600 

Geary 

1,140 

O'Farrell 

1,020 

Ellis 

1,120 

Eddy 

1,120 

Turk 

1,120 

Golden  Gate 

1,160 

McAllister 

1,200 

Grove 

1,870 

Hayes 

670 

Fell 

1,350 

Oak 

870 

Market 

2,280 

Mission  880 

Duboce 

1060 

'^Approximate  forecasted  pedestrian  crossing  volur 

nes  for  the  build  alternatives  are  the  same  as  for  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

Source:  SFCTA,  2012. 


Crosswalk  Conditions  and  Crossing  Experience.  The  crossing  distances  and  crosswalk  width 
would  not  change  from  existing  conditions  under  the  No  Build  Alternadve. 

Under  the  build  alternadves,  including  the  LPA,  crosswalks  would  be  restriped  to  meet  City 
standards  for  crosswalk  widths  and  reduce  pedestrian  crowding.  Crossing  distances  would 
vary  by  build  alternadve  due  to  geometric  design  differences  in  lane  configuration  and 
median  locadon.  Table  3.4-8  shows  the  average  median  refuge  width  and  curb-to-curb 
pedestrian  crossing  distances  for  each  build  alternadve.  The  average  median  refuge  width  tor 
the  LPA  (not  shown  in  the  table)  would  be  9.5  feet,  or  9.6  feet  with  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Stadon  Variant,  which  is  greater  than  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  Build  Alt  ernative  3  but 
less  than  Build  Alternatives  2  and  4. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.4-8:  Average  Median  Refuge  Width  and  Crossing  Distances 


Under  the  build  alternatives,  the 
east-west  crossing  distances 
across 

Van  Ness  Avenue  would  be 
reduced  due  to  the  addition  of 
curb  bulbs.  In  addition,  each  of 
the  build  alternatives,  including 
Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA, 
would  incorporate  median 
refuges  with  nose  cones  at  all 
signalized  intersections. 


The  proposed  build  alternatives, 
including  Design  Option  B, 
would  improve  signal  and  timing 
conditions  and  meet  required 
crossing  speeds  for  pedestrians 
at  nearly  all  intersections. 


ALTERNATIVE 

AVERAGE  MEDIAN  REFUGE 
WIDTH 
(FEET) 

AVERAGE  CROSSING  DISTANCE  (CURB-TO- 
CURB) 
(FEET) 

No  Build  Alternative 

9.0 

91.1 

Build  Alternative  2 

n.8 

OD.4 

Build  Alternative  3 

6.0 

89.5 

Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B 

6.4 

88.7 

Build  Alternative  4 

12.8 

88.8 

Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B 

13.4 

87.6 

Note:  The  average  median  refuge  width  for  Build  Alternative  3  (with  or  without  Design  Option 
approximately  4  and  9  feet  wide. 

B)  includes  both  medians,  which  are 

Source:  SFCTA,  2012. 


The  north-south  crossing  distance  at  side  streets  would  not  change  from  existing  conditions 
under  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA. 

The  distance  to  cross  Van  Ness  Avenue  itself  (east-west)  would  not  change  from  existing 
conditions  under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  Under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA, 
the  east-west  crossing  distances  across  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  be  reduced  due  to  the 
addition  of  curb  bulbs.  The  crossing  distance  for  the  LPA  would  be  89.4  feet,  which  on 
average  is  1.7  feet  less  than  existing  conditions  and  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  crossing 
distance  for  the  LPA  would  be  longer  by  0.6-foot  to  2.9  feet  compared  to  the  other  build 
alternatives,  with  the  exception  of  Build  Alternative  3  without  Design  Option  B,  which  is 
longer  than  the  LPA  by  0.1 -foot.  Notably,  the  pedestrian  conditions  analysis  for  the  LPA 
reflects  Caltrans'  new  guidance  in  the  2012  Highway  Design  Manual,  which  effectively 
results  in  a  narrower  5-foot-wide  dimension  for  curb  bulbs  on  Van  Ness  Avenue57 
compared  to  the  66-foot-dimension  assumed  for  the  other  build  alternatives.  Thus,  Build 
Alternatives  2  through  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  would  have  a  slightly  greater 
crossing  distance  if  the  new  Caltrans  standard  were  to  be  applied  in  a  similar  manner  as  it 
was  applied  to  the  LPA. 

In  addition,  each  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  would 
incorporate  median  refuges  with  nose  cones  at  all  signalized  intersections,  which  would 
substantially  improve  pedestrian  crossing  conditions.  On  average,  Build  Alternatives  2  and  4 
would  provide  median  refuges  wider  than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  Build  Alternative 
3  would  result  in  a  higher  number  of  narrow  median  refuges  than  under  the  No  Build 
Alternative,  as  indicated  in  Table  3.4-8.  The  LPA,  with  or  without  the  Vallejo  Northbound 
Station  Variant,  would  provide  median  refuges  consistendy  6  feet  or  wider  (only  one  refuge 
would  be  narrower  than  6  feet,  at  Mission/South  Van  Ness  Avenue  -  a  result  of  an  existing 
condition)  compared  to  the  No  Build  Alternative,  which  has  27  median  refuges  that  are  less 
than  6  feet  wide. 

Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  SFgo  Program  would  install  pedestrian  countdown 
signals  on  all  crosswalk  legs  and  curb  ramps  with  tactile  domes  that  meet  current  City 
standards  and  ADA  requirements  at  all  signalized  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  as 
well,  as  APS  at  some  additional  signalized  intersections  by  2015.  The  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  would  provide  pedestrian  countdown  signals,  curb  ramp  upgrades,  and 
APS  at  all  signalized  intersections  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  resulting  in  improved  pedestrian 
crossing  safety. 


Caltrans.  2012.  Highway  Design  Manual.  May  7.  fhttp:/ /www.dot,ca.gov/hq/oppd/hdm/hdmtoc.htm#hdm').  Note 
the  standard  is  for  a  3-foot-wide  buffer  between  the  edge  of  the  travelway  and  a  curb  bulb.  Given  the  design 
constraints  along  Van  Ness  Avenue,  the  standard  results  in  a  5-foot-wide  curb  bulb. 


3-102 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Pedestrian  Signals  and  Timing.  To  evaluate  signal  timing,  a  crossing  speed  analysis  was 
undertaken  to  estimate  how  quickly  pedestrians  would  have  to  cross  an  intersection  given 
the  allotted  signal  time,  also  known  as  the  full  walk  split  (Arup,  2013).  To  compare  average  | 
crossing  speed  performance  among  project  alternatives,  the  number  of  intersections  meeting 
FHWA  (3.0  fps  for  full  walk  split)  and  City  (2.5  fps  for  full  walk  split)  targets  is  identified 
and  compared  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  condition.  The  number  of  intersections  meeting 
these  walking  speed  targets  for  side  street  crossings  is  presented  for  each  build  alternative  in 
Table  3.4-9.  All  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  have  the  same  number  of 
side  street  crossings  meeting  the  City  and  FHWA  targets  as  the  No  Build  Alternative  and 
thus  the  same  number  of  crossings  (i.e.,  one,  at  Mission  Street)  that  do  not  meet  the  FHWA 
target  of  3.0  fps  or  slower. 


Table  3.4-9:  Side  Street  Crossings  Meeting  City  and  FHWA  Walking  Speed  Targets 
during  Full  Walk  Split 


MEASURE 

NO  BUILD 
ALT. 

BUILD 
ALT.  2 

BUILD  ALT. 

3 

BUILD  ALT.  3 
WITH  DESIGN 
OPTION  B 

BUILD 
ALT.  4 

ALT.  4  WITH 
DESIGN 
OPTION  B 

Number  of  crossings  meeting 
City  target  of  2.5  fps  for  full 
walk  split 

27 

27 

27 

27 

27 

27 

Number  of  crossings  meeting 
FHWA  guideline  of  3.0  fps  for 
full  walk  split 

28 

28 

28 

28 

28 

28 

Number  of  crossings  exceeding 
FHWA  guideline  of  3.0  fps  for 
full  walk  split1 

1 

1 

1 

1 

1 

1 

1  The  Mission  Street  crossing  exceeds  the  FHWA  target  of  3.0  fps. 

Source:  SFCTA,  2012. 


The  number  of  intersections  meeting  the  FHWA  and  City  targets  for  east-west  Van  Ness 
Avenue  crossings  is  presented  in  Table  3.4-10.  Under  the  LPA  (not  shown  in  the  table),  6 
intersections  would  meet  the  City  target  and  24  intersections  would  meet  the  FHWA  target, 
with  5  not  meeting  the  FHWA  standard.  All  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LP  \. 
would  have  more  east-west  Van  Ness  Avenue  crossings  that  meet  the  Citv  and  FHWA 
targets  than  the  No  Build  Alternative  and,  conversely,  fewer  crossings  exceeding  FHWA 
targets;  therefore,  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  improve  conditions  and 
meet  required  crossing  speeds  for  pedestrians  at  nearly  all  intersections. 


Table  3.4-10:  Van  Ness  Crossings  Meeting  City  and  FHWA  Walking  Speed  Targets 
during  Full  Walk  Split 


MEASURE 

NO  BUILD 
ALT. 

BUILD 
ALT.  2 

BUILD 
ALT.  3 

BUILD  ALT.  3 
WITH  DESIGN 
OPTION  B 

BUILD 
ALT.  4 

ALT.  4  WITH 
DESIGN 
OPTION  B 

Number  of  crossings  meeting  City 
target  of  2.5  fps  for  full  walk  split 

3 

M 

8 

8 

8 

•  1 

Number  of  crossings  meeting  FHWA 
guideline  of  3.0  fps  for  full  walk  split 

21 

27 

25 

25 

25 

Number  of  crossings  exceeding  FHWA 
guideline  of  3.0  fps  for  full  walk  split 

8 

2 

4 

4 

4 

4 

Source:  SFCTA,  2012. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


j  ioj 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis  Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 

Pedestrian  Delay.  TRB's  HCM  provides  thresholds  for  evaluating  pedestrian  delay,  as 
described  in  Section  3.4.2.1.  A  build  alternative  would  be  considered  to  have  an  impact  if  it 
would  cause  an  intersection  that  performs  at  LOS  A  through  D  under  the  No  Build 
Alternative  to  perform  with  a  pedestrian  delay  LOS  of  E  or  F  or  worsens  pedestrian  delay 
by  more  than  5  percent  at  an  intersection  that  is  already  operating  at  pedestrian  delay  LOS  E 
or  F.  Table  3.4-11  shows  how  the  build  alternatives  would  compare  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative  in  terms  of  average  pedestrian  delay  and  resulting  LOS.  The  LPA  (not  shown  in 
the  table)  would  perform  the  same  as  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B. 
Pedestrian  delay  calculations  are  not  available  for  the  ten  northernmost  intersections  in  the 
study  corridor.  Of  the  intersections  where  data  is  available,  only  one  intersection  —  Mission 
Street  -  currently  operates  at  pedestrian  LOS  E.  Based  on  these  criteria,  the  build 
alternatives,  including  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA,  would  not  have  an  impact  because 
they  would  not  increase  pedestrian  delay  at  any  intersection  currently  operating  at  LOS  A 
through  D  to  operate  at  LOS  E  or  F  and  would  not  increase  pedestrian  delay  at  Mission 
Street  by  more  than  5  percent. 


Table  3.4-11:  Pedestrian  Delay  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  (seconds) 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE 
INTERSECTION 

EXISTING 
CONDITION 
(2007) 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4  WITH 
DESICN  OPTION  B 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY1 

LOS 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY 

LOS 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY 

LOS 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY 

LOS 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY 

LOS 

Duboce  (on  Mission) 

25 

C 

36 

D 

26 

C 

27 

c 

27 

c 

Mission 

45 

E 

45 

E 

47 

E 

46 

E 

44 

E 

Market 

29 

C 

33 

D 

35 

D 

35 

D 

35 

D 

Fell 

25 

C 

24 

c 

28 

C 

30 

c 

28 

C 

Hayes 

25 

C 

29 

c 

30 

D 

30 

c 

30 

D 

Grove 

28 

c 

32 

D 

34 

D 

31 

D 

30 

D 

McAllister 

24 

c 

26 

C 

27 

C 

29 

c 

27 

C 

Golden  Gate 

23 

c 

24 

C 

32 

D 

30 

C 

27 

C 

Turk 

23 

c 

24 

c 

26 

C 

24 

c 

26 

C 

Eddy 

22 

c 

22 

c 

27 

C 

27 

c 

25 

C 

Ellis 

22 

c 

21 

c 

22 

c 

22 

c 

23 

C 

O'Farrell 

22 

c 

24 

c 

26 

c 

24 

c 

24 

C 

Geary 

22 

c 

24 

c 

26 

c 

26 

c 

26 

C 

Post 

22 

c 

26 

c 

27 

c 

29 

c 

26 

c 

Sutter 

23 

c 

26 

c 

27 

c 

27 

c 

26 

c 

Bush 

26 

c 

30 

c 

35 

D 

30 

c 

36 

D 

Pine 

29 

c 

33 

D 

32 

D 

28 

c 

33 

D 

California 

22 

c 

255 

c 

27 

C 

27 

c 

26 

C 

Sacramento 

23 

c 

25 

c 

27 

C 

28 

c 

30 

D 

Clay 

22 

c 

23 

c 

26 

c 

26 

c 

24 

c 

Washington  - 
Lombard 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

n/a 

The  build  alternatives  would  not 
increase  pedestrian  delay  at  any 
intersection  to  LOS  E  or  F  and 
would  not  increase  pedestrian 
delay  at  Mission  Street,  which 
already  operates  at  LOS  E,  by 
more  than  5  percent. 


3-104 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project  Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 

Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Table  3.4-11:  Pedestrian  Delay  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  (seconds) 


VAN  NESS  AVENUE 
INTERSECTION 

EXISTING 
CONDITION 
{2007) 

NO  BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVE  2 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES 
3  AND  4 

BUILD 
ALTERNATIVES  3 
AND  4  WITH 
DESICN  OPTION  B 

AVC.  LOS 
PED. 
DELAY1 

AVC.  LOS 
PED. 
DELAY 

AVC. 
PED. 
DELAY 

LOS 

AVC.  LOS 
PED. 
DELAY 

AVC.  LOS 
PED. 
DELAY 

TOTAL  INTERSECTIONS  BY  PEDESTRIAN  DELAY  LOS 

LOS  A 

O 

O 

O 

O 

O 

LOS  B 

O 

O 

o 

O 

O 

LOS  C 

19  • 

15 

13 

13 

17 

LOS  D 

0 

4 

6 

6 

2 

LOS  E 

1 

1 

i 

l 

1 

LOS  F 

0 

O 

o 

o 

O 

-Note:  Pedestrian  delay  is  provided  in  seconds.  The  delay  seconds  are  approximate  and  could  vary  by  ±3.0  seconds.  This  variation  would  not 
affect  impact  findings. 


Major  Collision  Locations,  Vehicle  Right-Turn  Volumes,  and  Left-Turn  Opportunities.  By  reducing 
pedestrian  crossing  risk,  as  discussed  above,  all  BRT  alternatives  would  help  to  reduce  the 
likelihood  of  collisions  with  pedestrians,  including  at  those  locations  identified  in  Section 
3.4.2.1.  In  addition,  vehicle  right-turn  volumes  were  projected  to  determine  areas  with 
higher  right-turn  volumes;  higher  right-turn  volumes  are  associated  with  more  conflicts 
between  vehicles  and  pedestrians  or  bicyclists.  Table  3.4-12  shows  the  number  of  locations 
with  right  turns,  grouped  by  hourly  right-turn  volume  for  each  project  alternative.  The  LPA 
(not  shown  in  the  table),  with  or  without  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  would 
perform  similarly  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  Right  turns,  in  this 
case,  include  vehicles  turning  from  side  streets  onto  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  vehicles  turning 
from  Van  Ness  Avenue  onto  side  streets.  Project  alternatives  with  fewer  high-volume 
turning  locations  and  more  low-volume  locations  are  considered  safer  for  pedestrian 
crossings,  as  well  as  bicycle  travel.  The  table  indicates  an  improvement  in  pedestrian 
conditions:  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA,  there  would  be  fewer  locations 
with  151  or  greater  right  turns  per  hour  and  more  locations  with  50  or  fewer  right  turns  per 
hour  compared  to  the  No  Build  Alternative. 


Table  3.4-12:  Right-Turn  Locations  by  Hourly  Volume 


ALTERNATIVE 

NUMBER  OF  RIGHT-TURN  LOCATIONS  BY  HOURLY  VOLUME 

0-50 

RIGHT  TURNS/ 
HOUR 

51-100  RIGHT 
TURNS/  HOUR 

101-150  RICHT 
TURNS/  HOUR 

151-200  RICHT 
TURNS/  HOUR 

200  ♦ 
RICHT  TURNS/ 
HOUR 

No  Build  Alternative 

13 

23 

11 

11 

5 

Build  Alternative  2 

16 

23 

M 

6 

4 

Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 

16 

23 

M 

6 

4 

Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B 

l6 

21 

16 

6 

4 

Note:  Total  number  of  right-turn  locations 
Source:  SFCTA.  2010. 

varies  slightly  by  project  alternative  as 

simulated  by  the  traffic 

operations  models 

Finally,  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  reduce  the  number  of  left-turn  | 
movements  and  allow  left-turn  movements  only  during  a  dedicated  left-turn  signal  phase  ... 
the  rematning  left-turn  pockets.  This  would  also  reduce  conflicts  between  pedestrians  and 
turning  vehicles.  In  existing  conditions,  the  most  common  reason  cited  for  auto-pcdcs.n.m  | 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


3  »o$ 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


collisions  on  Van  Ness  Avenue,  when  drivers  are  at  fault,  is  that  of  auto  drivers  failing  to 
yield  ROW  to  pedestrians  when  making  left  turns. 

Overall,  all  of  the  build  alternatives  (including  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would 
perform  better  than  the  No  Build  Alternative  for  collision  reduction  on  Van  Ness  Avenue. 
In  addition  to  incorporating  crossing  safety  features  as  discussed  in  previous  sections,  the 
build  alternatives  would  generally  have  fewer  locations  with  high  volumes  of  right-turning 
vehicles  (with  more  than  150  right-turn  movements  per  hour),  more  lower-volume  right- 
turn  locations  (with  150  or  fewer  right-turn  movements  per  hour),  and  fewer  left-turn 
locations  with  vehicles  only  making  left  turns  during  a  dedicated  left-turn  signal  phase  for 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without  Design  Option  B.  In  addition  to  the  above,  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  study  area,  which  encompasses  streets  parallel  to  Van  Ness 
Avenue  from  Gough  to  Hyde  streets  (see  Chapter  3.3),  would  have  an  overall  reduction  in 
private  vehicle  volumes  with  the  implementation  of  BRT.  As  noted  in  Section  3.4.2,  a 
reduction  in  traffic  volumes  is  associated  with  a  reduction  in  pedestrian  collisions. 

It  should  be  noted  that  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  the  LPA,  would  require  all 
passengers  to  cross  a  portion  of  the  street  with  every  boarding  and  alighting  to  access  the 

I  center  platforms.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  the  LPA,  passengers  with  a  one-way 
trip  could  be  exposed  to  additional  traffic  that  they  would  not  be  exposed  to  under  the  side 

I  platforms  of  Build  Alternative  2  and  the  No  Build  Alternative;  however,  most  trips  are 
round-trip,  and  passengers'  exposure  on  the  return  trip  in  the  opposite  direction  would  be 
reduced  by  the  same  amount  (because  the  person  would  only  need  to  cross  from  the  center 
median  to  the  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  instead  of  all  the  way  across  the  road  as  under  Build 
Alternative  2  and  the  No  Build  Alternative).  Thus,  the  net  amount  of  pedestrian  exposure 
would  be  the  same  for  all  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  and  the  No  Build 
Alternative. 


Each  of  the  build  alternatives 
would  result  in  improvements  to 
sidewalk  safety  and  comfort 
through  the  creation  of  curb 
bulbs,  removal  of  existing  bus 
shelters  from  sidewalks,  and 
improved  sidewalk  lighting. 


Sidewalk  Safety 

This  section  evaluates  pedestrian  sidewalk  safety  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Standards  and 
thresholds  have  not  been  established  by  the  City  or  other  regulatory  bodies  to  measure  how 
various  factors  influence  sidewalk  safety,  so  a  qualitative  assessment  of  sidewalk  safety  is 
presented  drawing  upon  City  policies  and  plans  presented  in  Section  3.4.1. 

Pedestrian  sidewalk  safety,  or  the  perception  of  safety,  is  influenced  by  many  factors, 
including  the  width  of  the  sidewalk,  the  level  of  pedestrian  activity  on  the  sidewalk,  the 
amount  of  space  between  moving  traffic  on  the  roadway  and  pedestrians,  and  the  presence 
of  objects  that  help  buffer  roadway  activity  from  pedestrians  on  the  sidewalk  (i.e.,  parked 
cars,  grade  separations,  fences,  trees,  and  landscaping). 

Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  sidewalk  conditions  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  not 
change  from  what  they  are  now,  with  the  exception  of  improved  sidewalk  lighting  that 
would  occur  with  replacement  of  the  OCS  support  pole/streetlight  network.  New  lighting 
would  meet  current  lighting  requirements  for  safety  and  would  improve  the  pedestrian 
environment.  Street  furniture,  sidewalk  width,  and  street  parking  spaces  would  remain. 

Under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  the  average  sidewalk  width  of  16  feet  would 
remain  the  same  throughout  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Replacement  of  the  OCS  support 
pole/streetlight  network  under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  result  in 
improved  pedestrian  lighting,  which  would  improve  sidewalk  safety.  Existing  bus  stop 
shelters  and  signage  would  be  removed  from  the  sidewalk  because  proposed  BRT  stations 
would  be  located  on  curb  extensions  or  in  the  median,  and  they  would  not  take  up  sidewalk 
space  as  do  existing  bus  shelters.  This  would  open  up  sidewalk  space  over  conditions  in  the 
No  Build  Alternative.  Moreover,  curb  bulbs  proposed  under  the  build  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  would  create  additional  sidewalk  space  available  to  pedestrians  compared  to  the 
No  Build  Alternative  condition. 


3-106 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Streetscape  features,  such  as  curbside  parking,  sidewalk  trees,  landscaped  planters, 
newspaper  racks,  and  bicycle  racks,  would  continue  to  serve  as  a  buffer  between  the 
sidewalk  and  vehicular  traffic  throughout  most  of  the  corridor;  however,  each  build 
alternadve,  including  the  LPA,  would  result  in  the  removal  of  curbside  parking  along  some 
blocks  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  as  described  in  Section  3.5,  Parking.  Table  4.2-11  in  Section 
4.2,  Community  Impacts,  lists  the  locations  where  a  substantial  reduction  in  parking  would 
occur  under  each  build  alternative  compared  with  the  existing  condition.  As  noted  in  detail 
in  Table  4.2-10,  parking  would  be  completely  removed,  or  nearly  completely  removed  along  | 
both  sides  of  the  block  on  the  following  blocks  of  Van  Ness  Avenue: 

•  Between  Sutter  and  Bush  streets  under  the  LPA; 

•  Between  Bush  and  Pine  streets  under  Build  Alternative  4  without  Design  Option  B; 

•  Between  Sacramento  and  Clay  streets  under  the  LPA; 

•  Between  Jackson  and  Pacific  streets  under  the  LPA; 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  Street  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  with  or  without 
Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA;  and 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  under  the  LPA,  including  with  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant. 

The  following  blocks  are  the  only  two  locations  where  parking  would  be  removed  on  the 
same  side  of  the  street  for  two  consecutive  blocks.  For  these  blocks  in  the  Civic  Center, 
curbside  planters  are  located  between  the  sidewalk  and  street,  serving  as  a  buffer  between 
the  sidewalk  and  vehicular  traffic.  Under  the  LPA,  the  project  proposes  to  implement  an 
approximate  2-foot-wide  buffer,  possibly  in  the  form  of  planters,  on  the  blocks  between 
Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  and  Broadway  and  Green  Street  on  both  sides  of  the  street  due 
to  the  lack  of  a  buffer  provided  by  a  parking  lane  or  planters  on  those  blocks. 

•  Between  Market  and  Fell  streets  under  Build  Alternative  3  with  or  without  Design 
Option  B  (west  side); 

•  Between  Fell  and  Hayes  streets  under  Build  Alternative  3  without  Design  Option  B,  and 
under  Build  Alternative  4  without  Design  Option  B  (west  side); 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  Street  under  Build  Alternatives  3  (east  and  west  sides) 
and  4  (east  and  west  sides),  with  or  without  Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA  (east  and 
west  sides);58  and 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  under  the  LPA  (east  and  west  sides).59 

Thus,  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  would  retain  a  fairly  even  distribution  of  most  curbside 
parking  throughout  the  corridor  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  and  the 
loss  of  the  street  parking  buffer  on  limited  blocks  under  the  build  alternatives,  including  the 
LPA,  would  not  substantially  change  overall  sidewalk  safety  and  comfort  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue.  The  LPA  would  also  include  guardrails  along  the  sidewalk  side  of  the  platform,  except 
at  station  entrances  next  to  crosswalks,  as  described  for  Alternative  3  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR. 
This  design  would  reduce  the  amount  of  transit  riders  crossing  outside  of  crosswalks  to  reach 
the  station.  In  summary,  each  of  the  build  alternatives  (including  Design  Option  B)  and  the 
LPA  would  result  in  improvements  to  sidewalk  safety  through  the  creation  of  curb  bulbs, 
removal  of  existing  bus  shelters  from  sidewalks,  and  improved  sidewalk  lighting.  Removal  of 
a  street  parking  buffer  would  occur  in  limited  locations  under  the  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA;  however,  most  street  blocks  would  retain  a  street  parking  buffer. 

Pedestrian  Accessibility 

Pedestrian  accessibility  is  evaluated  by  application  of  the  Universal  Design  principles.  The 
seven  principles  of  Universal  Design  described  in  Section  3.4.2.1  are  used  to  evaluate  the 


5S   Parking  would  be  removed  on  both  sides  of  the  street  for  the  L.PA  with  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Design 
Variant. 
Ibid. 


All  of  the  proposed  build 
alternatives  would 
result  in  overall  improvements 
on  the  Universal  Design 
principle  of  Equitable  Use 
on  Van  Ness  Avenue  in 
comparison  to  the 
No  Build  Alternative. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


J-107 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


1  project  alternatives.  This  analysis  reviews  the  extent  to  which  each  alternative  meets  the 
needs  of  all  users,  while  recognizing  that  different  users  may  have  different  concerns.  Some 
may  be  more  interested  in  faster  transit  sendee  through  the  corridor,  while  others  prefer 
more  frequent  transit  stops;  therefore,  the  performance  of  each  alternative  is  evaluated 
qualitatively  with  a  description  of  the  advantages  and  disadvantages  if  offers  to  users  of 
different  preferences. 

Equitable  Use.  Each  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  benefit  wheelchair  users 
by  installing  raised  station  platforms  to  allow  level  or  near  level  boarding.  Wheelchair  users 
would  be  able  to  roll  directly  onto  the  bus,  entering  just  as  other  riders  do,  with  all  of  the  build 
I  alternatives,  including  the  LPA.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  new  buses  planned  for  the 
corridor  by  2015  would  ease  vehicle  access  for  most  passengers  by  providing  low-floor 
boarding;  however,  these  buses  would  not  provide  level  or  near  level  boarding  so  wheelchair 
users  would  continue  to  use  a  separate  wheelchair  lift  or  ramp  to  enter  and  exit  buses. 

Transit  stations  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  would  be  accessed  in  the  same  manner  by  all 
persons,  as  bus  stops  would  remain  as  they  currently  exist.  Under  Build  Alternative  2,  BRT 
stations  would  be  located  on  sidewalk  extensions  that  would  be  accessed  by  a  short  ramp 
from  the  sidewalk  and  would  be  accessible  to  all  persons.  Steps  would  provide  an  additional 
means  for  ambulatory  customers  to  reach  the  platform,  resulting  in  differing  platform  access 
routes.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA,  center-lane  BRT  stations  would  be 
located  on  raised  platforms  accessed  by  a  short  ramp  from  the  crosswalk.  Transit  waiting 
areas  are  shared  between  all  users  under  each  build  alternative,  including  the  LPA. 

Sidewalk  accessibility  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  would  improve  through 
implementation  of  the  following  SFgo  initiatives:  upgrade  of  curb  ramps  at  all  intersections 
along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  allow  universal  access  to  the  sidewalk  and  to  crosswalks, 
including  access  by  people  in  wheelchairs  and  those  with  visual  impairments  through  tactile 
domes;  installation  of  APS  at  some  signalized  intersections  to  ease  street  crossings  and 
transit  access  for  pedestrians  with  limited  vision;  and  installation  of  pedestrian  countdown 
signals  on  all  crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized  intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  build 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  include  the  same  aforementioned  improvements  to 
sidewalk  accessibility,  but  to  a  greater  extent  than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  because 
APS  would  be  installed  at  all  signalized  intersections  and  curb  bulbs  would  be  installed  at 
most  signalized  intersections  to  improve  visibility  between  motorists  and  pedestrians, 
shorten  the  crossing  distance  across  Van  Ness  Avenue,  and  reduce  the  speed  of  right- 
turning  traffic.  In  addition,  the  removal  of  existing  bus  stops  from  the  sidewalk,  as  proposed 
under  the  build  alternatives,  would  open  up  additional  sidewalk  space. 

In  summary,  all  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  result  in  overall 
improvements  to  Equitable  Use  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  comparison  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative. 

Flexibility  in  Use.  The  No  Build  Alternative  would  not  change  Flexibility  in  Use  characteristics 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue.  There  would  be  no  significant  difference  in  Flexibility  in  Use  of  the 
BRT  system  between  the  build  alternatives;  however,  the  BRT  build  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  improve  pedestrian  street  crossings  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  to  accommodate  a 
greater  range  of  physical  abilities.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  average  crossing 
distance  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  remain  approximately  91  feet,  as  summarized  in  Table 
3.4-8.  This  distance  is  reduced  by  an  average  of  nearly  5  feet  under  Build  Alternative  2,  an 
average  of  approximately  1-foot  under  Build  Alternative  3,  an  average  of  approximately  2 
feet  under  Build  Alternative  4  with  incorporation  of  corner  bulbs,  and  an  average  of  1.7  feet 
under  the  LPA.  All  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  reduce  the  crossing 
distances  to  median  refuges  through  construction  of  corner  bulbs,  making  it  easier  for 
slower  pedestrians  to  reach  a  resting  area  if  they  are  unable  to  cross  the  street  during  one 
light  cycle.  Table  3.4-13  provides  the  number  of  corner  bulbs  to  be  provided  under  all  of  the 
build  alternatives.  The  LPA  would  provide  30  corner  bulbs  in  the  SB  direction  and  34 
corner  bulbs  in  the  NB  direction  for  a  total  of  64  corner  bulbs.  The  average  distance  to  a 


The  BRT  build  alternatives 
improve  pedestrian 
street  crossings  along 
Van  Ness  Avenue  to 
accommodate  a  greater 
range  of  physical  abilities. 
All  of  the  proposed  build 
alternatives  would  improve  on 
the  Universal  Design  principle  of 
Flexibility  in  Use  relative  to  the 
No  Build  Alternative. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


refuge  would  remain  41  feet  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  decrease  to  between  37  and 
38  feet  under  Build  Alternatives  2  and  4  (39  feet  with  the  LP  A).  Build  Alternative  3 
(including  Design  Option  B)  has  two  narrower  medians  at  each  intersection  rather  than  a 
single  wide  median  under  other  build  alternatives;  as  a  result,  distances  to  the  nearest  median 
are  shorter,  averaging  27  to  28  feet,  but  there  is  less  refuge  space  at  each  median.  If  the  4- 
foot  medians  in  Build  Alternative  3  are  considered  less  than  standard  from  a  Universal 
Design  standpoint,  then  the  average  distance  to  the  larger,  9-foot  refuge  in  Build  Alternative 
3  (and  the  stations  in  the  LPA)  would  be  similar  to  the  distance  under  Build  Alternatives  2 
and  4;  however,  the  distance  to  the  9-foot  refuge  (or  station  location  for  the  LPA)  from  the 
curb  would  be  different  depending  on  the  direction  of  crossing,  because  the  median  (or 
station  location)  configuration  changes  throughout  the  alignment.  For  example,  the  9-foot 
refuge  is  located  closer  to  the  east  curb  when  it  provides  a  NB  station  and  closer  to  the  west 
curb  when  it  provides  a  SB  station.  Thus,  under  Build  Alternative  3  (and  at  station  locations 
under  the  LPA),  people  would  need  to  travel  a  longer  distance  to  reach  a  refuge  at  some 
intersections  in  comparison  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

All  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  include  the  installation  of  median  j 
nose  cones  at  intersections,  providing  refuge  space  for  slower  pedestrians  to  rest  if  they  are 
unable  to  cross  the  street  during  one  light  cycle.  As  detailed  in  Table  3.4-14,  the  build 
alternatives  would  provide  between  52  and  55  median  nose  cones  (56  for  the  LPA),  with 
one  at  nearly  every  crossing,  compared  with  17  under  the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  LPA 
would  provide  median  nose  cones  at  all  29  intersections,  with  28  median  nose  cones  on  a 
south  leg  of  an  intersection  and  28  median  nose  cones  on  a  north  leg  of  an  intersection  for  a 
total  of  56  median  nose  cones. 


Table  3.4-13:  Number  of  Corner  Bulbs  by  Alternative  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 


ALTERNATIVE 

CORNER  BULBS  IN  SB        CORNER  BULBS  IN  NB        TOTAL  CORNER  BULBS 
DIRECTION  DIRECTION 

No  Build  Alternative 

H 

15 

29 

Build  Alternative  2 

39 

34 

73 

Build  Alternative  3 

25 

26 

51 

Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B 

31 

28 

59 

Build  Alternative  4 

29 

30 

59 

Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B 

35 

35 

70 

Source:  SFCTA,  2010. 

Table  3.4-14:  Number  of  Nose  Cones  along  Van  Ness  Aven 

ue 

ALTERNATIVE                                     INTERSECTIONS  WITH 

NOSE  CONES 

NOSE  CONES  ON 
SOUTH  LEC 
INTERSECTION 

NOSE  CONES  ON 
NORTH  LEC 
INTERSECTION 

TOTAL  NOSE 
CONES 

No  Build  Alternative  14 

8 

9 

17 

Build  Alternative  2  29 

28 

27 

55 

Build  Alternative  3  26 

26 

26 

52 

Build  Alternative  3  with 

Design  Option  B  26 

26 

26 

52 

Build  Alternative  4  28 

27 

27 

54 

Build  Alternative  with 

Design  Option  B  28 

27 

27 

54 

Source:  SFCTA,  2010. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


3109 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and 
4,  locating  and  accessing  transit 
stops  may  be  more  difficult 
for  some  users  than  under 
Build  Alternative  2  and  the 
No  Build  Alternative 
(Alternative  1)  because  the 
center-lane  BRT  stations  would 
not  be  typical.  Passengers  would 
need  to  perceive  that  these 
BRT  stations  are  located  in  the 
center  of  the  street. 


Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
may  provide  slightly  less 
intuitive  transit  access  than 
Build  Alternative  2  and  the 
No  Build  Alternative,  but  the 
Universal  Design  principle  of 
Simple  and  Intuitive  Use  could 
be  optimized  through 
design  measures. 


Under  Build  Alternative  2  an  additional  1 1  Van  Ness  Avenue  intersections  would  meet  the 
City's  standard  for  walking  speed  of  2.5  fps  at  a  crossing,  while  an  additional  5  intersections 
would  meet  this  standard  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (including  Design  Option  B). 
Under  the  LP  A,  an  additional  3  intersections  would  meet  this  standard  compared  to  the  No 
Build  Alternative.  Under  each  build  alternative,  all  of  the  intersections  would  meet  the 
FHWA  guidelines  for  a  walking  speed  of  3  fps  or  less,  with  the  exception  of  crossing  Van 
Ness  Avenue  at  Lombard  and  Mission  streets,  and  crossing  Mission  Street  at  South  Van 
Ness  Avenue.  For  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (including  Design  Option  B  and  the  LP  A), 
crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Jackson  Street  and  Broadway  would  also  require  speeds 
slightly  above  this  threshold  (3.1  and  3.2  fps,  respectively).  The  build  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  would  also  require  a  3.2-fps  speed  crossing  Van  Ness  Avenue  at  Filbert  Street. 
Overall,  the  build  alternatives  would  provide  a  significant  improvement  over  the  No  Build 
Alternative,  which  has  9  intersections  in  the  study  that  exceed  the  FHWA  guidelines. 

All  of  the  build  alternatives  (including  Design  Option  B  and  the  LPA)  would  improve 
Flexibility  in  Use  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

Simple  and  Intuitive  Use.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  arrangement  of  pedestrian 
facilities  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  continue  to  be  generally  simple  and  intuitive,  and  it 
would  improve  through  the  provision  of  SFgo  initiatives,  including  upgrade  of  curb  ramps 
to  remove  ramps  that  point  toward  the  middle  of  the  intersection  and  installation  of  tactile 
domes,  installation  of  APS  at  some  signalized  intersections,  and  installation  of  pedestrian 
countdown  signals  on  all  crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized  intersections. 

Another  change  in  Simple  and  Intuitive  Use  that  would  occur  under  the  build  alternatives  is 
clear  differentiation  of  space  between  pedestrian  areas  and  transit  waiting  areas.  This 
arrangement  is  likely  to  be  more  intuitive  than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  where 
passengers  would  continue  to  wait  on  the  sidewalk  near  the  bus  stop.  Under  Build 
Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA,  locating  and  accessing  transit  stops  may  be  more  difficult 
for  some  users  than  under  Build  Alternative  2  and  the  No  Build  Alternative  because  the 
center-lane  BRT  stations  would  not  be  typical.  Passengers  would  need  to  perceive  that  these 
BRT  stations  are  located  in  the  center  of  the  street.  Build  Alternative  4  may  be  particularly 
challenging  because  users  would  need  to  determine  the  direction  the  bus  platform  serves 
because  similar  looking  platforms  would  serve  NB  only,  SB  only,  or  both  NB  and  SB  bus 
service  at  different  locations.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA,  passengers 
would  also  disembark  buses  on  a  platform  with  traffic  on  both  sides,  which  may  be 
disorienting.  Build  Alternative  3  and  the  LPA  may  be  particularly  challenging  because  the 
platform  is  relatively  narrow.  These  challenges  could  also  be  mitigated  or  minimized  with  a 
comprehensive  wayfinding  system  that  would  allow  all  users  to  navigate  to  and  from  the 
correct  platform.  Moreover,  median  transit  stops  are  not  without  precedent.  Many  existing 
Muni  light  rail  and  bus  stops  are  located  at  center  islands,  including  the  light  rail  stations  on 
the  T-Third,  Market  Street,  19th  Avenue,  and  the  Embarcadero. 

The  low-floor  buses  and  raised  platforms  to  be  used  in  all  of  the  build  alternatives  would 
allow  wheelchairs  to  roll  directly  on  and  off  the  bus  at  BRT  stations  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  providing  easier  access  to  most  patrons  at  all  stops  within  the  BRT  corridor. 
Outside  the  BRT  corridor,  wheelchair  users  would  board  and  exit  through  the  front  right 
door,  which  would  deploy  a  ramp.  Wheelchair  users  would  be  able  to  board  and  exit 
through  the  same  door  under  Build  Alternatives  2  and  3  (including  Design  Option  B)  and 
the  LPA.  Under  Build  Alternative  4,  all  passengers,  including  wheelchair  users,  would  board 
and  exit  from  the  left-side  doors  within  the  BRT  corridor;  these  doors  are  located  behind 
the  driver.  Under  Build  Alternative  4  (including  Design  Option  B),  wheelchair  users  that 
board  within  the  BRT  corridor  to  travel  to  a  destination  outside  the  corridor  would  need  to 
negotiate  to  the  opposite  side  of  the  bus  (and  vice-versa).  Moreover,  they  would  also  need  to 
make  their  way  to  the  front  of  the  bus  to  exit  from  the  right-side  front  door  outside  the 
BRT  corridor  (and  vice-versa).  For  Build  Alternative  4,  bus  design  should  incorporate  an 
intuitive  seating  space  for  users  requiring  level  or  near  level  boarding  that  is  easily  accessible 
to  both  the  front  door  on  the  right  side  and  the  door  behind  the  operator  on  the  left  side.  In 


3-110 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


addition,  stop  announcements  of  which  door  will  open  could  be  used  to  help  clarify 
confusion  for  passengers.  As  part  of  project  implementation,  sufficient  information  would 
be  provided  to  inform  ambulatory  passengers  that  board  at  BRT  stations  that  they  would 
need  to  exit  through  the  front,  right  doors  for  stops  outside  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 

In  summary,  the  arrangement  of  pedestrian  facilities  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  remain 
generally  standard  and  intuitive  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives  (including  Design  Option 
B)  and  the  LPA.  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA  may  provide  slighdy  less  intuitive 
transit  access  than  Build  Alternative  2  and  the  No  Build  Alternative.  Simple  and  Intuitive 
Use  could  be  optimized  through  the  following  design  measures: 

•  Comprehensive  wayfinding  system  allowing  all  users  to  navigate  to  and  from  the  correct 
platform; 

•  For  Build  Alternative  4,  bus  vehicle  design  should  incorporate  an  intuitive  seating  space 
for  users  requiring  level  or  near  level  boarding  that  is  easily  accessible  to  both  the  front 
door  on  the  right  side  and  the  door  behind  the  operator  on  the  left  side; 

•  For  Build  Alternative  4,  stop  announcements  of  which  door  will  open  could  be  used  to 
help  clarify  any  confusion  for  passengers. 

•  Sufficient  information  should  be  provided  to  inform  less  ambulatory  passengers  that 
board  at  BRT  stations  that  they  would  need  to  exit  through  the  front,  right  doors  for 
stops  outside  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 

Perceptible  Information.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  arrangement  of  pedestrian 
facilities  would  remain  generally  standard  and  intuitive,  and  improvements  with  the  SFgo 
initiatives  would  include  upgrade  of  curb  ramps  to  remove  all  existing,  disorienting  curb 
ramps  that  angle  toward  the  middle  of  intersections  and  replace  them  with  curb  ramps 
angled  toward  crosswalks  at  all  intersections;  installation  of  APS  at  some  signalized 
intersections  to  ease  street  crossings  and  transit  access  for  pedestrians  with  limited  vision; 
and  installation  of  pedestrian  countdown  signals  on  all  crosswalk  legs  at  all  signalized 
intersections  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would 
include  the  same  improvements,  but  to  a  greater  extent  than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative 
because  APS  would  be  installed  at  all  signalized  intersections,  and  curb  bulbs  would  be 
installed  at  most  signalized  intersections. 

Under  the  center-lane  configured  BRT  alternatives  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  including 
Design  Option  B,  and  the  LPA),  it  may  be  more  difficult  for  some  users  to  perceive  how  to 
access  the  BRT  stations,  because  the  route  from  the  sidewalk  to  the  platform  is  less  clear 
and  direct  than  to  a  platform  that  is  on  the  sidewalk  or  on  a  curb  extension.  Center-lane 
located  BRT  stations  may  be  more  difficult  for  some  users  to  reach  because  they  would 
require  crossing  a  portion  of  the  street,  then  turning  up  a  ramp  to  enter  the  platform.  To 
maximize  perceptible  information,  all  proposed  BRT  platforms  should  include  ample 
wayfinding  and  nonvisual  detection.  Nonvisual  detections,  such  as  audible  sounds  or 
changes  in  pavement  feel,  could  help  improve  nonvisual  perception  of  the  station  location 
for  center-lane  configured  alternatives. 

Visual  identification  of  transit  stops  would  improve  under  the  proposed  project  due  to 
upgraded  shelters,  platforms,  lighting,  and  signage.  BRT  alternatives  w  ith  center  lane  located 
stations  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA)  would  likely  be  the  easiest  to  identify 
because  their  location  in  the  center  of  the  street  improves  the  line  of  sight  to  stations  and 
lends  additional  visual  prominence  relative  to  stations  on  the  side  of  the  street;  however,  as 
noted  in  the  "Simple  and  Intuitive"  section  above,  under  Build  Alternative  4,  the  direction 
of  bus  travel  at  a  given  platform  could  be  more  difficult  to  perceive  for  some  users. 

In  summary,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  (including  Design  Option  Ii),  and  the  I  PA,  may 
provide  less  perceptible  information  for  transit  station  access  than  the  No  Build  Alternative. 
Build  Alternative  2  would  provide  more  perceptible  information  than  the  No  Build 
Alternative. 


Center-lane  located  BRT  stations 
may  be  more  difficult  for  some 
users  to  reach  because  they 
would  require  crossing  a  portion 
of  the  street,  then  turning  up  a 
ramp  to  enter  the  platform. 
To  maximize  perceptible 
information,  all  proposed  BRT 
platforms  should  include  ample 
wayfinding  and  detection. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Jill 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Build  Alternatives  2  and  4 
would  improve  on  the  Universal 
Design  principle  of  Tolerance 
for  Error  relative  to  the 
No  Build  Alternative  with 
improved  street  crossings,  but 
Build  Alternative  3  and  the  LPA 
would  decrease  tolerance  for 
error  because  of  its  narrower 
platforms  located  between 
traffic  lanes. 


Due  to  the  increased  distance 
between  stops,  none  of  the 
build  alternatives  would 
improve  on  the  Universal  Design 
principle  of  Physical  Effort 
required  to  reach  transit  relative 
to  the  No  Build  Alternative  and 
may  pose  a  burden  on  some 
passengers. 


Tolerance  for  Error.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  sidewalks  would  remain  buffered  from 
moving  traffic  by  street  parking,  which  provides  significant  tolerance  for  error,  and  street 
crossings  would  remain  long,  providing  less  tolerance.  Bus  patrons  would  continue  to  access 
bus  stops  from  the  sidewalk,  which  requires  minimal  risk. 

Bus  patrons  would  continue  to  access  the  BRT  stations  from  the  sidewalk  under  Build 
Alternative  2,  offering  minimal  risk.  Sidewalks  would  generally  remain  buffered  from 
moving  traffic  by  street  parking,  although  some  parking  spaces  would  be  removed  in 
comparison  to  the  No  Build  Alternative,  as  discussed  in  the  sidewalk  safety  section,  above. 
Under  Build  Alternative  2,  street  crossing  distances  would  be  shortened  through  provision 
of  curb  bulbs,  and  median  refuges  would  be  improved  with  protective  nose  cones  and  level 
cut-through  for  wheelchair  access.  These  two  aforementioned  features  would  increase 
Tolerance  for  Error  over  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

The  Tolerance  for  Error  is  less  for  accessing  the  BRT  stations  in  the  center-lane  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  Build  Alternative  2  because 
users  must  cross  a  portion  of  the  street  before  accessing  the  platform.  Under  Build 
Alternative  3  and  the  LPA,  stations  have  the  least  Tolerance  for  Error  because  the  platforms 
are  the  most  narrow  (approximately  9  feet  in  width)  and  because  they  have  moving  traffic  on 
both  sides:  mixed-flow  traffic  on  one  side  and  bus  lane  traffic  on  the  other  side.  Build 
Alternative  4  offers  a  greater  Tolerance  for  Error  for  waiting  passengers  because  the 
platforms  are  wider  (approximately  14  feet),  allowing  passengers  to  wait  farther  from 
moving  traffic.  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA,  sidewalks  would  generally 
remain  buffered  from  moving  traffic  by  street  parking;  however,  some  additional  parking 
spaces  would  be  removed  in  comparison  to  the  No  Build  Alternative,  including  cases  where 
an  entire  street  block  or  one  side  of  a  street  block  would  lose  street  parking  (see  the  sidewalk 
safety  section,  above).  Under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  and  the  LPA,  street  crossing 
distances  would  be  shortened  through  provision  of  curb  bulbs  (see  Table  3.4-12),  and 
median  refuges  would  be  improved  with  protective  nose  cones  and  level  cut-through  for 
wheelchair  access,  which  would  increase  Tolerance  for  Error. 

In  summary  Build  Alternatives  2  and  4  (including  Design  Option  B)  would  increase 
Tolerance  for  Error  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  with  improved  street  crossings,  but 
Build  Alternative  3  (including  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  decrease  tolerance  for 
error  because  of  its  narrower  platforms  located  between  traffic  lanes. 

Low  Physical  Effort.  The  physical  effort  required  to  reach  bus  stops  would  not  change  under 
the  No  Build  Alternative.  The  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  all  require 
increased  physical  effort  for  some  passengers  to  reach  BRT  stations  because  the  number  of 
bus  stops  in  each  direction  between  Mission  and  Lombard  streets  would  be  reduced  from  1 5 
NB  and  8  SB  in  the  No  Build  Alternative  to  9  NB  (8  for  the  LPA,  and  9  for  the  LPA  with 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)  and  8  SB  (9  for  the  LPA  and  also  with  the  Vallejo 
Northbound  Station  Variant)  in  the  build  alternatives;  therefore,  the  average  distance 
between  bus  stations  would  increase  from  approximately  700  feet  under  the  No  Build 
Alternative  to  1,170  feet  in  each  of  the  build  alternatives  (1,150  feet  under  the  LPA  and 
1,080  feet  under  the  LPA  with  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant).  In  addition,  some 
GGT  passengers  would  need  to  walk  farther  under  the  build  alternatives  due  to  stop 
elimination.  As  a  result,  the  average  maximum  distance  from  a  location  halfway  between  two 
stops  would  increase  from  350  feet  to  590  feet  (570  feet  under  the  LPA  and  540  feet  under 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Design  Variant  scenario).  In  addition,  some  GGT 
passengers  would  need  to  walk  farther  under  the  build  alternatives  due  to  stop  elimination. 
Van  Ness  Avenue  has  few  hills  and  only  one  block  with  an  average  slope  steeper  than  8 
percent  (Pacific  Avenue  to  Broadway),  which  is  the  maximum  permitted  slope  for  an  ADA- 
compliant  ramp,  although  there  may  be  some  portions  of  other  blocks  that  exceed  this 
slope.  Nevertheless,  the  increased  distance  between  stops  may  be  difficult  to  traverse  for 
some  passengers,  such  as  elderly  or  disabled  patrons.  Under  the  LPA,  the  only  stop  spacing 
greater  than  4  blocks  occurs  between  Market  and  McAllister  streets.  In  this  area,  grades  are 
less  than  1.5  percent.  In  all  of  the  project  alternatives,  low-floor  buses  would  decrease  the 


3-112 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


physical  effort  required  to  board  a  transit  vehicle,  although  their  interior  configurations  may 
require  stepping  up  to  reach  some  seats  once  onboard. 

In  summary,  due  to  the  increased  distance  between  stops,  all  of  the  build  alternatives 
(including  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  increase  the  physical  effort  required  to 
reach  transit  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  may  pose  a  burden  on  some 
passengers. 

Size  and  Space  for  Approach  and  Use.  Transit  platforms  under  all  of  the  build  alternatives, 
including  the  LPA,  are  designed  to  provide  adequate  space  for  wheelchairs  and  other  j 
assistive  devices.  The  existing  sidewalks  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  the  approximate 
14-foot- wide  BRT  station  platforms  under  Build  Alternative  4  would  provide  the  largest 
space  for  approach  and  use.  Build  Alternatives  2  and  3  and  the  LPA  would  provide 
somewhat  narrower  station  platforms  (approximately  9  feet  wide)  that  would  slightly  reduce 
Size  and  Space  for  Approach  and  Use  compared  with  the  No  Build  Alternative,  although 
Build  Alternative  2  would  allow  for  the  patron  waiting  area  to  spill  onto  the  adjacent 
sidewalk. 

As  noted  under  Perceptible  Information,  BRT  alternatives  with  center-lane-located  stations 
(Build  Alternatives  3  and  4)  improve  the  line  of  sight  to  stations. 

In  summary,  Build  Alternative  4  (including  Design  Option  B)  would  improve  Size  and  Space 
for  Approach  and  Use  in  comparison  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  due  to  the  large  platform 
size.  Build  Alternatives  2  and  3  (including  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  reduce  Size 
and  Space  for  Approach  and  Use  in  comparison  to  the  No  Build  Alternative  because  the  9- 
foot  platforms  would  provide  less  room  than  the  No  Build  Alternative  condition. 


Bicycle  Impacts 

The  bicycle  impact  analysis  considers  the  speed  of  adjacent  traffic  (i.e.,  in  the  right-most 
travel  lane  and  other  travel  lanes),  bicycle  volumes,  the  width  of  the  right-most  travel  lane 
adjacent  to  parking  or  the  curb,  volume  of  right  turning  motorized  vehicles,  bicycle  safety, 
and  comfort,  as  well  as  bicycle  delay.  Potential  impacts  resulting  from  the  build  alternatives 
are  discussed  relative  to  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

Speed  of  Adjacent  Traffic.  Speed  of  adjacent,  motorized  traffic  can  affect  the  safety  and 
comfort  of  bicycle  users  along  Van  Ness  Avenue.  As  demonstrated  in  Chapter  3.3, 
automobile  speed  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  be  similar  under  the  No  Build  Alternate  e 
and  the  build  alternatives.  In  addition,  the  speed  limit  would  remain  the  same  (25  mph)  for 
all  of  the  alternatives,  including  the  No  Build  Alternative,  meaning  that  there  would  he  no 
regulatory  change  that  would  impact  vehicle  speeds.  Finally,  the  coordination  of  signal 
timing  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  with  the  implementation  of  TSP  would  mean  that  vehicles 
would  travel  at  a  more  consistent  speed,  leading  to  less  accelerating  and  braking,  lor  these 
reasons,  there  would  be  no  impact  on  bicyclists  with  the  implementation  of  BRT  with 
respect  to  the  speed  of  adjacent  vehicles. 

Bicycle  Volumes.  At  present,  relatively  tew  bicyclists  use  Van  Ness  Avenue  for  travel  because 
a  dedicated  bicycle  facility  is  on  Polk  Street,  which  is  located  one  block  to  the  east.  Bicycle 
volumes  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  likely  continue  at  a  similar  level  in  the  future  w  hen 
compared  with  the  rest  of  the  bicycling  network,  whether  or  not  one  of  the  MKT  build 
alternatives  is  implemented. 

Width  of  Travel  Lane  Used  by  Cyclists.  It  is  assumed  that  under  the  No  Build  Uternative 
bicyclists  using  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  continue  to  ride  with  vehicles  in  the  tight  most, 
mixed-flow,  travel  lane.  The  narrower  the  travel  lane,  the  mote  likely  conflicts  could  occur 
(Arup,  2013).  Table  3.4-15  shows  the  width  of  the  right-most,  mixed-flow  travel  lane.  The 
right-most,  mixed-flow  travel  lane  would  remain  approximately  1  1  feet  wide  throughout  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  under  Build  Alternative-  I 
and  4;  under  the  LPA,  the  typical  width  for  the  right-most,  mixed-flow  travel  lane  would  be 


Build  Alternative  4  would 
improve  the  Universal  Design 
area  of  Size  and  Space  for 
Approach  and  Use  in  comparison 
to  the  No  Build  Alternative  due 
to  the  large  platform  size. 
Build  Alternatives  2,  3,  and  the 
LPA  would  reduce  Size  and 
Space  for  Approach  and  Use  in 
comparison  to  the  No  Build 
Alternative. 

Bicycle  volumes  on 
Van  Ness  Avenue  would  likely 
continue  at  a  similar  level  in  the 
future  when  compared  with  the 
rest  of  the  bicycling  network, 
whether  or  not  one  of  the 
proposed  BRT  build  alternatives 
is  implemented. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


1 1  feet  in  both  SB  and  NB  directions.  Build  Alternative  2  would  have  the  narrowest  lanes 
for  cyclists  since  they  would  use  the  center  mixed  traffic  lane,  approximately  1-foot  narrower 
than  under  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

Table  3.4-15:  Width  of  Travel  Lane  Used  by  Bicycles 


ALTERNATIVE 

SB  LANE  (FT) 

NB  LANE  (FT) 

AVERACE  LANE  WIDTH  (FT)" 

No  Build  Alternative 

11 

11 

11 

Build  Alternative  2 

lO 

lO 

lO 

Build  Alternative  3 

11 

11 

11 

Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B 

11 

11 

11 

Build  Alternative  4 

11 

11 

11 

Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B 

11 

11 

11 

-Refers  to  right-most,  mixed-flow  travel  lane. 

Source:  SFCTA,  2010. 


Bicyclists  are  more  likely 
to  take  the  Polk  Street 
bicycle  route  parallel  to 
Van  Ness  Avenue  when 
traveling  north  or  south  along 
the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 


All  of  the  build  alternatives 
would  have  fewer  high-volume 
right-turn  locations  compared  to 
the  No  Build  Alternative,  helping 
to  reduce  conflicts  between 
bicycles  and  motorized  vehicles. 

Under  Build  Alternative  2, 
bicyclists  would  be  riding 
between  two  lanes  of  moving 
vehicles.  This  would  also  mean 
that  bicyclists  would  have  to 
cross  the  bus  lane  to  turn  right, 
something  that  would  not 
be  necessary  under  the 
No  Build  Alternative  and 
Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
and  the  LPA. 


A  wider  travel  lane  could  increase  cyclists'  perception  of  comfort  and  safety.  On  the  other 
hand,  with  any  of  the  average  lane  widths  under  consideration,  it  can  also  be  argued  that 
there  is  insufficient  width  to  expect  bicyclists  to  create  their  own  safe  travel  zone;  bicyclists 
riding  along  with  moving  traffic  in  a  narrow  lane  would  be  expected  to  "take  the  lane"  as 
allowed  by  the  California  Vehicle  Code  whenever  they  feel  it  is  warranted  for  safety, 
particularly  when  riding  adjacent  to  a  parking  lane  to  avoid  being  hit  by  opening  car  doors. 
This  would  effectively  remove  bicyclists  from  the  zone  of  opening  car  doors;  however, 
under  Build  Alternative  2,  it  would  place  bicyclists  between  auto  and  bus  traffic.  Overall,  this 
situation  would  not  alter  the  nature  of  the  travel  lane  and  its  expected  use  by  bicyclists; 
bicyclists  would  still  "take  the  lane,"  whether  to  avoid  parked  cars  or  moving  buses.  In 
addition,  as  described  in  Section  3.4.2.2,  bicyclists  are  more  likely  to  take  the  Polk  Street 
bicycle  route  parallel  to  Van  Ness  Avenue  when  traveling  north  or  south  along  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor. 

Vehicle  Right-Turn  Volume.  The  number  of  vehicular  right  turns  affects  bicyclists. 
Intersections  with  heavy  right-turn  volumes  may  have  increased  chances  of  vehicular 
incidents  with  pedestrians  or  bicyclists.  Table  3.4-12  in  Section  3.4.3.1  shows  the  number  of 
locations  with  right  turns,  grouped  by  hourly  volume  for  each  build  alternative.  The  LPA 
would  perform  similarly  to  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B.  Locations  with 
right  turns  include  vehicles  turning  from  side  streets  onto  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  vehicles 
turning  from  Van  Ness  Avenue  onto  side  streets.  Alternatives  with  fewer  high-volume  turn 
locations  and  more  low-volume  locations  are  considered  safer  for  bicyclists. 

Overall,  all  of  the  build  alternatives  (including  Design  Option  B)  and  the  LPA  would  have 
fewer  high-volume  right-turn  locations  (i.e.,  with  more  than  150  per  hour)  and  more  lower- 
volume  locations  (i.e.,  with  150  or  fewer  per  hour);  therefore,  all  of  the  build  alternatives 
would  improve  bicycle  collision  conditions  compared  to  the  No  Build  Alternative. 

Bicycle  Safety  and  Comfort.  All  of  the  build  alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  would  eliminate 
buses  weaving  into  and  out  of  traffic  lanes,  reducing  some  of  the  conflicts  between  bicyclists 
and  buses. 
• 

The  presence  of  parked  cars  to  the  right  of  bicyclists  creates  the  possibility  of  bicyclists 
hitting  opening  doors.  Under  the  No  Build  Alternative  and  center  lane  alternatives,  including 
the  LPA,  bicyclists  would  ride  adjacent  to  parked  cars.  Under  Build  Alternative  2,  bicyclists 
are  expected  to  ride  in  the  mixed-flow  traffic  lane  next  to  the  bus  lane,  so  they  would  not 
experience  the  same  hazard  of  hitting  parked  vehicle  doors;  however,  under  Build 
Alternative  2,  bicyclists  would  be  riding  between  two  lanes  of  moving  vehicles,  with  autos  to 
their  left  and  buses  to  their  right.  This  would  also  mean  that  bicyclists  would  have  to  cross 


3-114 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


the  bus  lane  to  turn  right,  something  that  would  not  be  necessary  under  the  No  Build 
Alternative,  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  the  LPA. 

Bicycle  Delay.  TSP  to  speed  transit  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  would  decrease  bicycle  signal 
delay  in  the  north-south  direction,  while  increasing  bicycle  signal  delay  crossing  Van  Ness 
Avenue  in  the  east-west  direction. 


3.4.4 1  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 

The  proposed  project  would  not  result  in  adverse  impacts  to  non-motorized  transportation;  j 
therefore,  no  mitigation  measures   are  required.  Nonetheless,   the   following  impact 
minimization  measures,  or  improvement  measures,  will  be  incorporated  into  project  design 
to  enhance  use  of  the  BRT  system: 

IM-NMT-i.  Include  comprehensive  wayfinding,  allowing  all  users  to  navigate  to  and  from  the 
correct  platform. 

IM-NMT-2.  For  Build  Alternative  4,  bus  vehicle  design  should  incorporate  an  intuitive  seating 
space  for  users  requiring  level  or  near  level  boarding  that  is  easily  accessible  to  both  the 
front  door  on  the  right  side  and  the  door  behind  the  operator  on  the  left  side. 

IM-NMT-3.  For  Build  Alternative  4,  bus  vehicle  design  should  incorporate  audible  cues,  such  I 
as  stop  announcements,  of  which  door  will  open  to  avoid  any  confusion  for  passengers. 

IM-NMT-4.  Provide  sufficient  information  to  educate  less-ambulatory  passengers  that  board 
at  BRT  stations  that  they  would  need  to  exit  through  the  front,  right  doors  for  stops  outside 
the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor. 


KEY  FINDING 


"1 


The  proposed  project  would  not 
result  in  adverse  impacts  to 
nonmotorized  transportation. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  201 


J"5 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


3.5  Parking 

This  section  presents  on-street  parking  supply  and  demand  conditions  within  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT  project  study  area.  Off-street  parking  was  not  included  in  this  analysis  because 
the  proposed  project  would  not  affect  any  existing  off-street  parking  facilities.  The  parking 
analysis  study  area  encompasses  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  Lombard  to  Market  streets  and 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue  from  Market  to  Mission  streets. 

The  LPA  included  in  this  Final  EIS/EIR  is  a  refinement  of  the  center-running  alternatives 
with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B),  as  described  in 
Chapters  2  and  10.  The  changes  in  parking  under  the  LPA  are  identified  as  part  of  the 
analysis  presented  for  the  build  alternatives  in  this  chapter;  however,  because  the  LPA 
configuration  is  a  variation  of  the  configurations  analyzed  for  the  center-running  alternatives 
(Build  Alternatives  3  and  4),  the  LPA  with  or  without  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station 
Variant  has  slightly  different  results  for  parking  gains  and  losses.  However,  the  overall 
impact  findings  with  the  LPA  are  consistent  with  the  findings  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4 
with  Design  Option  B,  as  presented  in  this  subsection. 

3.5.1 1  Existing  Conditions 

Data  on  existing  on-street  parking  conditions  were  collected  on  Wednesday,  May  21,  2008, 
and  Wednesday,  December  17,  2008,  between  the  hours  of  11:00  a.m.  and  3:00  p.m.  The 
parking  survey  documented  block  by  block  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness 
Avenue  from  Mission  Street  to  Lombard  Street  the  following  information: 

•  Number  of  parking  spaces  by  type: 

-  Metered  parking 

-  Nonmetered,  time-limited  parking 

-  Short-term  parking  (green-colored  curbs) 

-  Truck  loading  zones  (yellow-colored  curbs) 

-  Passenger  loading  zones  (white-colored  curbs) 

-  Parking  for  the  disabled  (blue-colored  curbs) 

•  Occupancy  for  each  type  of  space  during  weekday,  midday. 

Table  3.5-1  summarizes  the  total  number  of  on-street  parking  spaces  on  Van  Ness  Avenue 
and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  their  midday  occupancy.  Parking  studies  conducted  in 
2010  and  2011,  and  reported  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR,  identified  442  on-street  parking  spaces 
in  the  study  area,  with  approximately  equal  numbers  of  spaces  on  the  east  and  west  sides  of 
the  street.  Most  of  the  parking  spaces  identified  in  the  study  (74  percent)  along  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue  are  metered  or  nonmetered,  time-limited,  general 
parking  spaces;  5  percent  of  the  spaces  are  designated  for  loading  (yellow  curbs),  11  percent 
are  for  passenger  loading  (white  curbs),  7  percent  are  for  short-term  use  (green  curbs),  and 
3  percent  are  for  disabled  vehicle  parking  (blue  curbs). 


Table  3.5-1:  Parking  Supply  along  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenues  between 
Mission  and  Lombard  Streets  (2010,  2011) 


GENERAL 

(METERED  AND  NONMETERED) 

GREEN 

YELLOW 

WHITE 

BLUE 

TOTAL 
SUPPLY 

Parking  Spaces 

326 

30 

23 

50 

13 

442 

Between  Mission  and  Broadway  streets,  most  of  the  on-street,  general  parking  spaces  are 
metered  with  a  1-hour  time  limit.  Between  Broadway  and  North  Point  streets,  nonmetered 
parking  spaces  have  a  2-hour  limit,  except  vehicles  with  a  residential  parking  permit. 


3-1 1 6 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Metered  parking  spaces  are  priced  at  $2.50  per  hour  from  Mission  to  Eddy  streets  and  SI. 50 
per  hour  from  Eddy  to  Broadway  streets. 

The  observed  weekday  midday  parking  occupancy  rates  for  the  general  (i.e.,  metered  and 
nonmetered)  and  green  parking  spaces  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue 
are  fairly  consistent  along  the  2-mile  study  area,  with  66  percent  of  the  occupied  spaces  on 
the  east  side  and  64  percent  on  the  west  side  of  the  street  (see  Table  3.5-2). 


Table  3.5-2:  Parking  Occupancy  along  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenues 


between  Mission  and  Lombard  Streets  (2010) 

LOCATION 

GENERAL  (METERED 
AND  NONMETERED) 

GREEN 

TOTAL 

SPACES  OCCUPIED 
(METERED,  NONMETERED, 
AND  GREEN  ONLY) 

OCCUPANCY  RATE 
(METERED,  NONMETERED, 
AND  GREEN  ONLY) 

East  Side 

146 

20 

166 

no 

66% 

West  Side 

180 

TO 

190 

121 

64% 

Total 

326 

30 

356 

231 

65% 

In  general,  parking  occupancy  is  slighdy  higher  (i.e.,  70  percent)  than  the  average  in  the 
middle  portion  of  the  corridor  between  Golden  Gate  Avenue  and  Broadway  Street,  which 
supports  mixed-use  commercial  and  high-density  residential  uses.  Parking  occupancy  is 
lower  than  the  average  (55  percent)  north  of  Broadway  Street,  which  is  more  residential  in 
nature.  For  a  detailed,  block-by-block  breakdown  of  occupancy,  see  Appendix  B.  The 
occupancy  rate  for  the  yellow  parking  spaces  is  higher  on  the  west  side  of  the  street 
(80  percent)  than  on  the  east  side  (50  percent).  Less  than  half  of  the  white-colored  curb 
spaces  were  occupied  at  the  time  of  survey  on  both  sides  of  Van  Ness  and  South  Van  Ness 
avenues.  A  limited  number  of  blue  disabled  parking  spaces  (13)  are  available  on  Van  Ness 
Avenue,  most  of  which  are  located  near  the  Civic  Center  area.  The  occupancy  rate  for  blue 
parking  spaces  is  approximately  60  percent. 

SFCTA  surveyed  double-parking  behavior  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Mission  and 
Clay  streets  on  Tuesday,  July  15,  2008,  between  5:00  p.m.  and  6:00  p.m.  In  general,  no 
double-parking  was  observed,  except  for  the  segment  between  Bush  and  Sutter  streets. 
While  doubie  parking  may  occur  occasionally  at  discrete  locations  along  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  corridor,  the  frequency  of  double  parking  and  its  impacts  on  traffic  is  not 
considered  significant. 

As  described  in  Secdon  2.6.1,  SFMTA  has  installed  parking  sensors  and  new  meters  in  the 
Civic  Center  and  Hayes  Valley  area  as  part  of  the  SFpark  pilot  project.  The  SFpark  sensors      Sensors  and  new  meters  in  the 
and  meters  are  located  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Golden  Gate  Avenue  and  I  Cckory     Civic  Center  and  Hayes  Valley 
Street.  In  2011,  the  real-time  occupancy  data  will  begin  being  used  to  implement  demand-     area  are  part  of  the  SFpark  pilot 
responsive  pricing,  which  is  andcipated  to  improve  parking  availability  in  these  areas.  SFpark      text  project  Real-time 
will  be  evaluated  by  SFMTA  through  mid-2012  for  Citywide  expansion/"'  occupancy  data  will  be  used  to 

implement  demand-responsive 

3.5.2  I  Environmental  Consequences  pricing,  anticipated  to  improve 

parking  availability.  For  more 

The  parking  analysis  assesses  the  change  in  total  parking  supply  expected  as  a  result  of  the      information,  visit 
Van  Ness  BRT  project,  and  it  highlights  significant  additions  and  reductions  of  puking  www.sfpark.org 
along  the  corridor.  Appendix  B  provides  detailed  informadon  of  these  expected  changes  in  | 
total  parking  supply  on  a  block-by-block  basis.  The  expected  changes  are  approximate  based 
on  the  current  project  engineering.  Exact  changes  in  parking  will  be  determined  during 
project  final  design.  Parking  impacts  for  each  project  alternative  are  identical  in  the  near 
term  (2015)  and  long-term  (2035)  horizon  years;  therefore,  impacts  arc  not  presented 
separately  for  each  year.  It  should  be  noted  that  parking  demand  along  Vail  Ness  Avenue 


\v\v\v..st'p.irk.»r)- 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  201 


j-117 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


SFCTA  and  SFMTA  have  worked 
to  reduce  parking  removal 
through  the  following  project 
design  principles,  as  feasible: 

•  Replacement  of  on-street 
parking  where  bus  stops 

are  consolidated  or  moved 
to  the  center  of  the  street; 

•  Addition  of  street  parking 

made  possible  by  lane 
restriping;  and 

•     Provision  of  infill  spaces 
where  they  do  not  exist 
today  where  feasible. 


may  change  in  the  future  as  a  result  of  the  proposed  project  and  changing  land  uses,  as  well 
as  separate  efforts  to  manage  parking  demand  such  as  variable  pricing  of  parking  through 
the  SFpark  project. 

SFCTA  and  SFMTA  have  worked  to  reduce  parking  removal  through  the  following  project 
design  principles,  as  feasible: 

•  Replacement  of  on-street  parking  where  bus  stops  are  consolidated  or  moved  to  the 
center  of  the  street; 

•  Addition  of  street  parking  made  possible  by  lane  restriping;  and 

•  Provision  of  infill  spaces  where  they  do  not  exist  today  where  feasible. 

Thus,  the  parking  figures  reported  for  each  project  alternative  in  subsequent  sections  are  the 
net  result  of  incorporating  the  aforementioned  design  principals  in  project  design  thus  far. 

Significance  Criteria.  The  City  and  County  of  San  Francisco  (CCSF)  does  not  consider  parking 
supply  as  part  of  the  physical  environment;  parking  conditions  are  deemed  to  be  nonstatic  in 
that  parking  demand  changes  from  day  to  day,  year  to  year,  and  in  response  to  changing  land 
uses  and  transportation  options,  among  other  factors.  Hence,  the  availability  of  parking 
spaces  is  not  a  permanent  physical  condition  but  changes  over  time  as  people  change  their 
modes  and  patterns  of  travel.  Therefore,  the  displacement  of  existing  parking  spaces  is  not 
considered  a  significant  impact  for  environmental  review  purposes. 

SFCTA  and  SFMTA  acknowledge,  however,  that  if  parking  losses  caused  by  a  project  are 
great,  the  secondary  effects  of  drivers  circling  for  parking  could  trigger  traffic  impacts.  In 
addition,  NEPA  guidance  encourages  a  discussion  of  the  human  environment  and  social  and 
economic  impacts  of  a  project.  Thus,  the  social  impacts  from  parking  removal  are  discussed 
in  Section  4.2,  Community  Impacts,  and  changes  in  parking  under  each  build  alternative, 
including  the  LPA,  are  presented  in  this  chapter  for  informational  purposes  to  the  public 
and  decision  makers. 

3.5.2.1  I  NO  BUILD  ALTERNATIVE 

No  changes  to  the  existing  parking  supply  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  are 
expected  under  the  No  Build  Alternative  in  the  2015  and  2035,  with  one  exception 
associated  with  the  proposed  CPMC  project.  The  Draft  CPMC  Long-Range  Development 
Plan  (LRDP)  EIR  specifies  that  the  CPMC  project  would  remove  the  following  parking 
spaces  on  Van  Ness  Avenue  (San  Francisco  Planning  Department,  2010): 

•  3  metered  parking  spaces  on  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Post  Street  and 
Geary  Street;  and 

•  2  metered  loading  spaces  on  the  east  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Cedar  Street 
and  Geary  Street. 

Because  the  CPMC  project  has  not  yet  been  approved,  this  parking  removal  is  not  included 
as  a  baseline  condition  in  the  presentation  of  parking  conditions  in  this  chapter  and  is 
considered  in  the  cumulative  impact  analysis  presented  in  Chapter  5. 

Another  planned  project  that  would  affect  parking  in  the  project  area  is  SFpark,  which  is 
described  in  Sections  2.6.1  and  3.5.1.  SFMTA's  SFpark  project  is  anticipated  to  increase 
turnover  of  spaces,  increasing  the  availability  of  parking  along  the  corridor.  The  changes  in 
parking  supply  and  demand  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  resulting  from  the  SFpark 
pilot  test  project  are  unknown  at  this  time;  therefore,  they  are  not  considered  in  the  parking 
analysis,  although  it  is  likely  that  the  SFpark  pilot  test  project  and  subsequent  permanent 
expansion  of  this  parking  management  program  will  have  beneficial  effects  on  parking  in  the 
corridor. 

3.5.2.2  I  BUILD  ALTERNATIVES 

Future  parking  supply  was  estimated  by  identifying  losses  and  gains  in  on-street  parking  for 
each  block  that  would  result  under  each  build  alternative,  including  consideration  of  Design 


3-11 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Option  B  under  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4,  and  the  LPA.  Parking  loss  can  result  from  new  | 
station  platforms,  the  addition  of  corner  bulbs,  or  new  lane  striping  to  accommodate 
exclusive  right-  and  left-turn  pockets.  Parking  gains  can  be  a  result  of  bus  stop  consolidation 
or  from  moving  existing  curb  bus  stop  locations,  restriping  existing  curb  lanes  for  parking, 
or  adding  additional  parking  spaces  through  reallocation  of  existing  parking.  When 
estimating  parking  losses  and  gains,  20  linear  feet  is  assumed  as  the  distance  required  for 
each  parking  space,  per  SFMTA  standards.  Table  3.5.-3  summarizes  the  anticipated  parking 
supply  changes  under  the  project  alternatives.  The  expected  changes  are  approximate  based 
on  the  current  project  engineering.  Exact  changes  in  parking  will  be  determined  during 
project  final  design.  When  parking  spaces  are  able  to  be  retained  on  a  block,  it  is  assumed 
that  a  priority  is  given  to  the  retention  of  colored  parking  spaces. 

As  explained  above  under  the  No  Build  Alternative,  the  Likely  expansion  of  SFMTA's 
SFpark  project  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  is  anticipated  to  increase  turnover  of 
spaces  and  increase  the  availability  of  parking  in  the  corridor.  This  anticipated  change  in 
parking  would  occur  under  all  build  alternatives  and  the  LPA. 


Table  3.5-3:  Parking  Supply  and  Demand  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  -  No  Build  and 
Build  Alternatives1 


PARKING  SUPPLY 

NET  CHANCE +/(■) 

METERED, 
NON- 
METERED,  AND 
GREEN  SPACES 

COLORED 
ZONE  SPACES 

TOTAL 
SPACES 

METERED, 
NON- 
METERED,  AND 
GREEN  SPACES 

COLORED 
ZONE  SPACES 

TOTAL        %  SPACES 
SPACES 

Alternative  1: 
No  Build 

356 

86 

442 

Build 

Alternative  2 

328 

81 

4O9 

-28 

-5 

-33  -7 

Build 

Alternative  3 

304 

70 

374 

-52 

-16 

-68  -15 

Build 

Alternative  3 
(Design 

339 

72 

4" 

-17 

-14 

-31  -7 

Option  B) 

Build 

Alternative  4 

325 

72 

397 

-31 

■14 

-45  -10 

Build 

Alternative  4 
(Design 

378 

77 

455 

22 

-9 

13  3 

Option  B) 

1  The  expected  changes  are  approximate  based  on  the  current  project  engineering  at  the  time  th 
changes  in  parking  will  be  determined  during  project  final  design. 

e  201 1  parking  study  was  conducted  Exact 

Build  Alternative  2:  Side-Lane  BRT  with  Street  Parking 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Build  Alternative  2  is  expected  to  cause  a  tut  loss  of  33  on-strcct  parking 
spaces  (12  on  the  east  side  and  21  spaces  on  the  west  side)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue.  Most  of  the  net  parking  loss  would  occur  between  Broadwaj 
Street  and  Golden  Gate  Avenue,  with  a  17  percent  loss  of  parking  in  this  segment. 
Appendix  B  provides  the  parking  gains  and  losses  by  block. 

Of  the  12  spaces  that  would  be  displaced  on  the  east  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  7  spaces 
would  be  metered,  nonmetered,  and  green  zone  spaces,  and  5  would  be  spaces  in  yellow, 
white,  and  blue  zones.  No  block  would  lose  all  of  its  parking  under  Build  Alternative  2, 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


3-119 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


although  nearly  all  parking  would  be  removed  on  the  east  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between 
Sutter  and  Bush  streets. 

On  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  21  parking  spaces  are  expected  to  be  displaced  under 
Build  Alternative  2.  All  of  the  displaced  parking  would  be  general  parking. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Build  Alternative  3  is  expected  cause  an  approximate  loss  of  68  on-street 
parking  spaces  (30  spaces  on  the  east  side  and  38  spaces  on  the  west  side)  along  both  sides 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Of  the  30  spaces  expected  to  be  displaced  on  the  east  side,  22  would  be  metered, 
nonmetered,  and/or  green  parking  spaces  and  8  would  be  yellow,  white,  and  blue  spaces. 

Parking  would  be  removed  completely  on  the  east  side  in  the  following  blocks: 

•  Between  Market  and  Fell  streets  (6  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  yellow  colored 
spaces  and  1  blue  colored  space). 

•  Between  Jackson  and  Pacific  streets  (5  existing  spaces  removed)  to  accommodate  dual 
platforms. 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  (8  existing  spaces  removed)  to  accommodate  dual 
exclusive  SB  left-turn  lanes. 

•  Between  Green  and  Union  streets  (7  existing  spaces  removed,  including  1  white  colored 
parking  space)  to  accommodate  the  combination  of  a  platform  and  left-turn  pocket. 

On  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  38  parking  spaces  would  be  displaced  with  Build 
Alternative  3.  Of  the  38  spaces,  30  would  be  general  spaces  and  8  would  be  yellow,  white, 
and  blue  spaces. 

The  following  blocks  would  experience  the  removal  of  all  parking,  or  nearly  all  parking,  on 
the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  Build  Alternative  3: 

•  Between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  white 
colored  spaces)  to  accommodate  the  dual  platforms  for  the  length  of  the  block. 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Broadway  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white  parking 
spaces)  to  accommodate  dual  exclusive  SB  left-turn  lanes. 

•  Between  Hayes  and  Fell  streets  (8  out  of  11  spaces  on  the  west  side  would  be  removed). 

•  Between  Golden  Gate  Avenue  and  Turk  Street  (8  out  of  10  spaces  on  the  west  side 
would  be  removed). 

For  specific,  expected  parking  losses  and  additions  on  a  block-by-block  basis,  see  Appendix  B. 


Build  Alternative  3:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Right-Side  Boarding  and  Dual  Medians  (with  Design 
Option  B) 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Design  Option  B  results  in  fewer  parking  removals  because  the  absence  of 
turn  pockets  would  allow  lane  restriping  to  provide  additional  parking  spaces. 

Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B  would  cause  a  loss  of  31  on-street  parking  spaces 
(14  spaces  on  the  east  side  and  17  spaces  on  the  west  side)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Of  the  14  spaces  that  would  be  displaced  on  the  east  side,  7  would  be  metered,  nonmetered, 
and/or  green  colored  parking  spaces  and  7  would  be  yellow,  white,  and  blue  spaces. 

The  following  blocks  would  experience  the  removal  of  all  parking  on  the  east  side  of  Van 
Ness  Avenue  under  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B: 

•     Between  Market  and  Fell  streets  (6  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  yellow  colored 
spaces  and  1  blue  colored  space)  to  accommodate  a  right-turn  pocket. 


3-120 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  Between  Jackson  and  Pacific  (5  existing  spaces  removed)  to  accommodate  dual 
platforms. 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  (8  existing  spaces  removed)  to  accommodate  dual 
dedicated  SB  left-turn  lanes. 

On  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  17  net  parking  spaces  would  be  removed  in  Build 
Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B.  Of  the  17  spaces,  10  would  be  general  spaces  and  7 
would  be  yellow,  white,  and  blue  spaces. 

The  following  blocks  would  experience  the  removal  of  all  parking  on  the  west  side  of  Van 
Ness  Avenue  under  Build  Alternative  3  with  Design  Option  B: 

•  Between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  white 
colored  spaces)  to  accommodate  the  dual  platforms  for  the  length  of  the  block. 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Broadway  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white  parking 
spaces)  to  accommodate  dual  exclusive  SB  left-turn  lanes. 

For  specific  parking  losses  and  additions  on  a  block-by-block  basis,  see  Appendix  B. 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  Single  Median 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Build  Alternative  4  is  expected  to  cause  a  loss  of  45  on-street  parking 
spaces  (15  spaces  on  the  east  side  and  30  spaces  on  the  west  side)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue 
and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue.61 

Of  the  15  spaces  that  would  be  displaced  on  the  east  side,  13  would  be  metered, 
nonmetered,  and/or  green  parking  spaces,  and  2  spaces  would  be  yellow,  blue,  or  white 
(between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets).  The  following  blocks  would  experience  the  removal 
of  all,  or  nearly  all,  parking  on  the  east  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  under  Build  Alternative  4: 

•  Between  Golden  Gate  Avenue  and  Turk  Street  (9  out  of  10  spaces  would  be  removed). 

•  Between  Bush  and  Pine  streets  (8  out  of  9  spaces  would  be  removed). 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  (all  8  existing  spaces  removed)  to  accommodate  dual- 
dedicated  SB  left- turn  lanes. 

•  Between  Green  and  Union  streets  (7  existing  spaces  removed,  including  1  white  colored 
parking  space)  to  accommodate  the  combination  of  a  platform  and  left-turn  pocket. 

On  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  30  parking  spaces  would  be  displaced  in  Build 
Alternative  4.  Of  the  30  spaces,  18  would  be  general  spaces  and  12  would  be  yellow,  white, 
and  blue  spaces.  Parking  would  be  removed  on  the  west  side  in  the  following  blocks: 

•  Between  Hayes  and  Fell  streets  (9  out  of  1 1  spaces  on  the  west  side  would  be  removed). 

•  Between  Golden  Gate  Avenue  and  Turk  Street  (9  out  of  10  spaces  on  the  west  side 
would  be  removed). 

•  Between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  white 
colored  spaces)  to  accommodate  the  dual  platforms. 

•  Between  Bush  and  Pine  streets  (10  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  yellow  colored 
spaces  and  1  white  colored  space)  to  accommodate  a  left-turn  lane. 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white 
spaces)  to  accommodate  a  left-turn  lane. 

For  specific,  estimated  parking  losses  and  additions  on  a  block-by-block  basis,  see  Appendix  B. 


Up  to  5  parking  spaces  on  Chestnut  Street  may  also  be  removed  to  lengthen  the  existing  eastbound  MI  NI  bus  stop 
and  to  create  a  new  westbound  bus  stop  to  accommodate  GGT  vehicles  in  the  event  ofGGT  rerouting  .is  put  of  Build 
Alternative  4  described  in  Section  3.2.2. 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Build  Alternative  4:  Center-Lane  BRT  with  Left-Side  Boarding  and  a  Single  Median  (with  Design 
Option  B) 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Design  Option  B  results  in  fewer  parking  removals  because  the  absence  of 
turn  pockets  would  allow  lane  restriping  to  provide  for  additional  parking  spaces.  Build 
Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B  would  cause  a  gain  of  13  on-street  parking  spaces  (gain 
of  12  spaces  on  the  east  side  and  1  space  on  the  west  side)  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  and 
South  Van  Ness  Avenue.62 

Some  spaces  would  be  displaced  under  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B,  including 
5  metered,  nonmetered,  and  green  parking  spaces.  The  following  block  would  have  all  of 
their  parking  displaced  on  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  Build  Alternative  4  with 
Design  Option  B: 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white 
spaces). 

The  following  blocks  would  have  all  of  their  parking  displaced  on  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  » 
Avenue  in  Build  Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B: 

•  Between  Geary  and  O'Farrell  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  5  white 
colored  spaces)  to  accommodate  dual  platforms. 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white 
spaces). 

Nevertheless,  7  general  parking  spaces  would  be  added  on  the  west  side  under  Build 
Alternative  4  with  Design  Option  B;  therefore,  one  parking  space  overall  would  be  added  on 
the  west  side  in  this  project  alternative. 

For  specific,  estimated  parking  losses  and  additions  on  a  block-by-block  basis,  see  Appendix  B. 


LPA:  Center-Running  BRT  with  Right  Side  Boarding/Single  Median  and  Limited  Left  Turns 

Van  Ness  Avenue.  Because  the  LPA  included  in  this  Final  EIS/EIR  is  a  refinement  of  the 
center-running  alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design 
Option  B),  the  LPA  results  in  slightly  different  parking  gains  and  losses,  presented  in  Table 
3.5-4.  The  LPA  would  cause  the  loss  of  approximately  105  on-street  parking  spaces 
(49  spaces  on  the  east  side  and  56  spaces  on  the  west  side)  along  both  sides  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  and  South  Van  Ness  Avenue. 63 

Of  the  49  spaces  that  would  be  displaced  on  the  east  side,  42  would  be  metered, 
nonmetered,  and/ or  green  parking  spaces  and  7  would  be  yellow  and  white  spaces. 

Parking  would  be  removed  completely  on  the  east  side  in  the  following  blocks: 

•  Between  O'Farrell  and  Geary  streets  (5  existing  spaces  removed,  including  2  white 
spaces). 

•  Between  Broadway  and  Vallejo  Street  (9  existing  spaces  removed). 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed).64 

On  the  west  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue,  56  net  parking  spaces  would  be  removed  under  the 
LPA.  Of  the  56  spaces  removed,  48  would  be  general  and/or  green  spaces  and  8  would  be 
blue  or  white  spaces. 

The  following  blocks  would  experience  the  removal  of  all  parking  on  the  west  side  of  Van 
Ness  Avenue  under  the  LPA: 


62  Ibid. 

63  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  result  in  the  removal  of  one  fewer  parking  space  between  Vallejo  and 
Green  streets  on  the  east  side  of  the  street. 

64  Seven  spaces  would  be  removed  under  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant. 


3-1  22 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


•  Between  Market  and  Mission  streets  (1 1  existing  spaces  removed). 

•  Between  Vallejo  and  Broadway  streets  (9  existing  spaces  removed,  including  3  white 
spaces). 

•  Between  Green  and  Vallejo  streets  (9  existing  spaces  removed,  including  1  green  space 
and  3  white  spaces). 

•  Between  Lombard  and  Greenwich  streets  (8  existing  spaces  removed,  including  1  green 
space  and  4  white  spaces). 

For  estimated  parking  losses  and  additions  on  a  block-by-block  basis,  see  Appendix  B. 

The  LPA  would  provide  a  net  351  parking  spaces,  which  is  fewer  spaces  than  the  amounts 
shown  in  Table  3.5-3  for  the  other  alternatives.  This  is  due  in  part  to  a  more  refined  analysis 
of  parking  changes  that  was  conducted  for  the  LPA  than  the  build  alternatives.  This  more 
refined  analysis  considered  the  following  factors  that  were  not  part  of  the  analysis  of  the 
other  build  alternatives  in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR:  use  of  updated  existing  conditions  data; 
incorporation  of  longer  curb  bulbs  per  the  Caltrans  Highway  Design  Manual  May  2012 
update;  inclusion  of  wider  BRT  lanes  per  MTA  requirements  set  forth  in  2012;  and  stricter 
adherence  to  ADA  design  requirements  such  as  provision  of  curb  ramps  behind 
handicapped  spaces  (which  largely  are  not  present  in  existing  conditions).  Thus  the  parking 
analysis  for  the  LPA  is  a  more  refined  analysis  than  that  presented  for  the  build  alternatives 
in  the  Draft  EIS/EIR.  A  sensitivity  analysis  taking  into  account  the  aforementioned  factors 
was  performed  for  Build  Alternative  3;  this  analysis  indicated  that  applying  the  methodology 
used  for  the  LPA  to  the  other  build  alternatives  would  result  in  up  to  32  more  spaces 
removed  for  the  alternatives  than  was  presented  in  Table  4.5-3  of  the  Draft  EIS/EIR.  This 
would  result  in  a  similar  number  of  on-street  parking  opportunities  for  the  LPA  as  Build 
Alternative  3. 


Table  3.5-4:  Parking  Supply  and  Demand  along  Van  Ness  Avenue  -  No  Build  and 
LPA1 


PARKING  SUPPLY 

NET  CHANGE  +/(-) 

METERED, 
NON- 
METERED,  AND 
GREEN  SPACES 

COLORED 
ZONE  SPACES 

TOTAL 
SPACES 

METERED, 
NON- 
METERED,  AND 
GREEN  SPACES 

COLORED  TOTAL 
ZONE  SPACES  SPACES 

%  SPACES 

Alternative  1: 
No  Build2 

358 

98 

456 

LPA3. 4 

26l 

90 

351 

-97 

-8  -105 

-23 

1  The  expected  changes  are  approximate  based  on  the  current  project  engineering.  Exact  changes  in  parking  will  be  determined  during 
project  final  design. 

2  The  refined  analysis  conducted  in  October  2012  (see  Appendix  B  of  this  Final  EIR/EIS),  resulted  in  a  higher  number  of  existing  parking 
spaces  in  the  study  area  than  were  identified  in  the  2010  and  2011  parking  studies,  which  are  the  basis  for  Tables  3.5-1  through  3.5-3. 

3  The  LPA  is  a  refinement  of  the  two  center-running  build  alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B). 

3  Existing  conditions  were  revised  during  the  supplemental  parking  survey  for  the  LPA  that  was  completed  in  October  2012. 

4  The  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant  would  result  in  removal  of  one  fewer  nonmetered  space  between  Vallejo  and  Green  streets  on  the 
east  side  of  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

3.5.3  I  Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures: 
Build  Alternatives  (2015  and  2035) 

As  discussed  in  Section  3.5.2,  the  City  of  San  Francisco  does  not  consider  parking  supply  as 
part  of  the  physical  environment,  and  the  displacement  of  existing  parking  spaces  is  not 
considered  a  significant  impact  in  the  City  of  San  Francisco;  therefore,  no  significant 
environmental  impact  from  changes  in  parking  would  occur  under  any  of  the  projeci 
alternatives,  including  the  LPA,  and  no  mitigation  is  required.  Nonetheless,  the  follow  ing 
design  principles  intended  to  reduce  parking  removal  will  continue  to  be  incorporated  into 
project  design  as  impact  improvement  measures  applicable  to  each  build  alternative: 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


1  uj 


Chapter  3:  Transportation  Analysis 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


IM-TR-i:  On-street  parking  will  be  created  where  bus  stops  are  consolidated  or  moved  to  the 
center  of  the  street. 

IM-TR-2:  Additional  on-street  parking  will  be  provided  where  feasible  by  lane  striping. 

IM-TR-3:  Infill  on-street  parking  spaces  will  be  provided  where  they  do  not  exist  today  as 
feasible. 

IM-TR-4:  SFMTA  will  give  priority  to  retaining  color-painted  on-street  parking  spaces,  such 
as  yellow  freight  loading  zones,  white  passenger  loading  zones,  green  short-term  parking, 
and  blue  disabled  parking. 

IM-TR-5:  Blue  handicapped  parking  spaces  will  be  designed  to  provide  a  curb  ramp  behind 
each  space. 

The  aforementioned  improvement  measures  would  be  carried  throughout  project  design  to 
identify  any  additional  areas  where  parking  can  be  retained. 


3-124 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  |  July  2013 


Chapter  4 

Affected  Environment,  Environmental 
Consequences  and  Avoidance,  Minimization, 
and/ or  Mitigation  Measures 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Avoidance, 


Chapter  4:  Affected  Environment, 
Environmental  Consequences,  and 
Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 


CHAPTER  SUMMARY:  This  chapter  summarizes  how  the  No  Build  and  the  three  build  alternatives 
(including  the  LPA,  with  or  without  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant)  are  expected  to  affect  the 
environment,  both  positively  and  adversely,  and  also  proposes  avoidance,  minimization,  and 
mitigation  measures  for  any  adverse  impacts.  Topics  covered  in  this  chapter  include  Land  Use, 
Growth  Inducement,  Community  Impacts,  Utilities,  Visual/Aesthetics,  Cultural  Resources,  Hydrology 
and  Floodplain,  Water  Quality  and  Storm  Water  Runoff,  Geology/Soils/Seismic/Topography, 
Hazardous  Waste/Materials,  Air  Quality,  Noise  and  Vibration,  Energy,  Biological  Environment,  and 
Construction  Impacts. 


CHAPTER 


4 


Affected  Environment, 
Environmental 
Consequences, 
and  Avoidance, 
Minimization,  and/or 
Mitigation  Measures 


Environmental  analyses  presented  in  this  chapter  are  primarily  based  on  a  series  of  technical 
studies  prepared  for  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Project.  These  studies  consist  of  the 
following: 

Tree  Removal  Evaluadon  and  Planting  Opportunity  Analysis  (BMS  Design  Group,  2013) 
Air  Quality  Technical  Report  and  Addendum  (Terry  A.  Hayes  Associates  Inc.,  2013) 
Natural  Resources  Technical  Memorandum  (Garcia  and  Associates,  2009) 
Historic  Property  Survey  (Parsons,  2010) 

Archaeological  and  Nadve  American  Cultural  Resources  Sensitivity  Assessment 
(Far  Western  Anthropological  Research  Group,  2013) 

Historic  Resources  Inventory  and  Evaluation  Report  (JRP  Historical  Consulting,  2009) 
Finding  of  Effect  (Parsons,  2013c) 

Visual  Impact  Assessment  Memorandum  (Parsons,  2010) 
Geologic  Impacts  Assessment  Report  (AGS  Inc.,  2009) 
Initial  Site  Assessment  Report  (AGS  Inc.,  2009) 

Overhead  Cable  System  Support  Poles/Streetlights  Conceptual  Engineering  Report 
(San  Francisco  Department  of  Power  and  Water,  2009) 
Noise  and  Vibration  Study  (Parsons,  2010) 
Storm  Water  Data  Report  (Parsons,  2013d) 
Water  Quality  Technical  Report  (Parsons,  2013b) 

Vehicular  Traffic  Operations  Technical  Memorandum  (CHS  Consulting,  2013) 
Analysis  of  Non-motorized  Transportation  Impacts  Technical  Report  and  Addendum 
(Arup,  2013). 

BRT  Design  Criteria  Technical  Memorandum  (BMS  Design  Group,  2008) 
Van  Ness  Avenue  BRT  Feasibility  Study  (San  Francisco  County  Transportation 
Authority,  2006) 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


4.14 


Chapter  4:  Affected  Environment, 
Environmental  Consequences,  and 
Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation 


Measures 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


•     Van  Ness  Corridor  Initial  Land  Use  and  Urban  Design  Needs  Assessment  (City  of  San 
Francisco  Planning  Department,  2004) 

I  The  above  technical  studies  were  incorporated  in  the  EIS/EIR  by  reference  and  are 
available  upon  request  to  SFCTA  through  the  following  contact: 

I  Michael  Schwartz 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority 
1455  Market  Street,  22nd  Floor 
San  Francisco,  CA  94103 
415-522-4823 

michael.schwartz@sfcta.org 

4.0  Introduction 

The  Locally  Preferred  Alternative  (LP A)  is  a  refinement  of  the  two  center-running  build 
alternatives  with  limited  left  turns  (Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  with  Design  Option  B).  For 
many  of  the  environmental  impact  areas  described  in  Chapter  4,  the  LPA,  with  or  without 
the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  has  identical  environmental  consequences  to  Build 
Alternatives  3  or  4  with  Design  Option  B  and  is  so  noted.  For  some  environmental 
consequences,  the  LPA,  with  or  without  the  Vallejo  Northbound  Station  Variant,  falls 
within  the  range  presented  for  Build  Alternatives  3  and  4  in  this  chapter.  When  this  is  the 
case,  it  is  described  as  such,  and  detailed  information  is  provided  in  Chapter  10,  Section 
10.4.1,  to  explain  the  specific  effects  of  the  LPA  for  the  following  environmental  factors: 
community  impacts,  aesthetics/visual  resources,  biological  resources,  cultural  resources, 
utilities  and  public  services,  hydrology  and  water  quality,  and  construction  impacts. 

4.1  Land  Use 

4.1.1  I  Affected  Environment 

This  section  describes  the  land  use  setting  or  "affected  environment"  for  the  Van  Ness 
Avenue  BRT  Project,  presenting  an  overview  of  the  corridor  land  use  and  development 
patterns  in  the  areas  and  activity  centers  along  the  2-mile  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  in  San 
Francisco.  Land  use  is  broadly  defined  to  encompass  types  of  land  uses,  development  and 
growth  trends,  activity  centers,  and  local  and  regional  land  use  policies. 

4.1.1.1  I  EXISTING  LAND  USES 

The  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor,  along  with  side  and  parallel  streets,  includes  diverse 
neighborhoods  and  land  uses  within  the  project  limits.  Land  uses  in  the  vicinity  of  the  Van 
Ness  Avenue  corridor  include  residential,  commercial/  tourism,  institutional,  open  space, 
and  mixed  uses.  Figure  4.1-1  shows  land  designations  in  the  project  area  based  on  zoning. 
Figure  4.1-2  shows  designated  areas  of  commercial  and  industrial  land  uses.  As  shown  in  the 
aforementioned  figures,  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  a  major  shopping  corridor,  zoned  primarily  as 
High  Density  Residential-Commercial  Combined  (RCA).  Existing  land  use  is  described  below  from 
south  *to  north  between  Mssion  and  North  Point  streets  in  the  City  and  County  of  San 
Francisco. 

Between  Mssion  and  Market  streets,  Van  Ness  Avenue  extends  through  primarily  civic, 
commercial/ tourism,  light  industrial,  and  mixed-use  land  uses.  This  stretch  of  Van  Ness 
Avenue  is  zoned  Doivntoivn  Commercial  (C3-6)  and  Public  (P).  Automobile  dealerships,  retail 
shops,  and  art  galleries  are  also  located  along  this  stretch  of  the  corridor.  Residential  land 
uses  are  located  west  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  between  Franklin  and  Laguna  streets  and  east  of 
Van  Ness  Avenue  between  12th  and  7th  streets. 


4.1-2 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  !  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Chapter  4:  Affected  Environment, 
Environmental  Consequences,  and 
Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 


Public  Arnai 

m  p  Rib*: 

Residential,  House  Character 

RH-10   Che  UiitftrLo^Detditd 
Rrl-1      Che  Unit  fti  Let 
RH.1{«}Oie  Unit  Per  l/>t  uhor  Sewndaiy  iJnr 
RH-2      Taw  Uirb  ftr  Ut 
RH-3     Duet  Uiifa  Per  Ut 

Residential,  Ml  ixed  (Howes  a  Appts) 
RM.1      Uw Dena%  (1  Unrtf.-r  800  jfj 
RM. 2      wbdemfc  Denier  ( 1  Uiit(>«r600  jj) 
RM-3>    lAdiim  Denser  (1  Ukiitp«r  400  aQ 
RM.4      ffah  Denial  LhitperZOOifj 

Residential  -  Commercial  Combined 

RC-3      LMiim  DensV  (1  Uiitper400  9fj 
RC4      hljh  DtniV  ( 1  Ulitper  200  al) 

Residential  Transit  Oriented 

t     RTO  F-»)-nfclTreniti:»Kntd 

I    RTO-  M  RtalcnklTmnstCMenHUBinn 
Bcnwntovvn  Residential 
■I    RH.ftTRF4i<»ii  rl 

I    SEkOTRStuli  letch 

I    TM1TR  Ti»n*»)r 


ZONING   USE  DIS 

South  of  Market  Mixed  Use 

H  3PD  5>u1i  ftik 

I  RBD  Residtiibl  Bicbut 

I  RSD  ResdtnfcrSeiuce 

1  SLR  SeiukxrLjjhthdiismrlfeadenal 

I  3  LI  Seiuoe/Ujhthdurtal 

|  380  SerwoefSecondirf  Offct 

Eastern  Neighborhoods  Mixed  Jse 

H    MUG     Moed  the,  Geiteml 
|    MJO     Itoed  U*,OnV* 
i     MJR     Uttd  (Jhe,  Resdenfcl 
JMU     utwi  uiied  Use 


Commercial 

■1  C-2 

I!  C-3.S 


Conrmnn/  fanes 
Downfovn  Support 
|    C-3-R      rv.Mit.wi  fM 
|    C-3-C     Downbwi  Geneml 
I    C-G-O     C^Mit  wi  Offae 

■ CfVO  /•  n\  D°wn>wi  Offae 
la°>(^ed.l  Deuelepmenq 

Industrial 

]  Hetur  Conmercal 

I  M-1  Ujht  hdu  jt»I 
I    M«2       Heiif  hdunvl 


TRIGTS  LEGEND 

Neighborhood  Commercial 

tiC-1     Cusfcr  (1  Conroereal  Sfcrj) 
NC-2    Smnl  Sole  p  Comnercal  Stiries) 
I    NC-3  l*den»fcSo^p-^«niiiercaiSferiea) 
I    MC5  ShopprjCentrpConwiereilSfcriej) 
I    NCD     MUtoal  (famed,  Conteh  i«rj) 

Neighborhood  Commercial  Transit 
■■    NCM  Clisfcr 
H    MCT.2  Sral  Sole 
I    NCT.8  M>der»fcS«le 
H    NCT     hdirtutl  (Named,  CoitfeBVfcr;) 

Chinatown  Mixed  Use 

CRNC  ResJenfcrNegfeoitnodConineKBl 

CCy     Comrunnf  Busies 


Production,  Distribution,  a  Repair 
|     POR.1-8  Buffer 
|     POR.1-0  Desgn 
PDR-1-G  Genenl 
P0R.2  Core 

Mission  Bay 

fPJPJ    M9-OS     Caen  Sp«oc 
MB-O  Oft* 

Redevelopment  Agency 

m   mb.ra  Bi^nJaaanlWi 

u  p  aa     See  ha*n  fttit 


1M 


:->«■• 


GRAPHIC  SCALE 
Sourw:  ModHttdfrom  Sin  Francisco  Punning  PepirBnent 


Figure  4.1-1:  Zoning  and  Land  Use 

San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


4  'J 


Chapter  4:  Affected  Environment, 

Environmental  Consequences,  and 

Avoidance,  Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Figure  4.1-2:  Commercial  and  Industrial  Land  Use 


4.1-4 


San  Francisco  County  Transportation  Authority  I  July  2013 


Van  Ness  Avenue  Bus  Rapid  Transit  Project 
Final  Environmental  Impact  Statement/ 
Environmental  Impact  Report 


Avoidance, 


Chapter  4:  Affected  Environment, 
Environmental  Consequences,  and 
Minimization,  and/or  Mitigation  Measures 


Land  uses  between  Market  and  McAllister  streets  are  primarily  institutional,  civic,  and  arts. 
The  Civic  Center  is  a  major  activity  center  in  the  Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor  that  includes 
the  San  Francisco  City  Hall,  Supreme  Court  of  California,  and  other  government  facilities,  in 
addition  to  the  Civic  Center  Plaza,  San  Francisco  Symphony,  Opera  Center,  Herbst  Theatre, 
Civic  Auditorium,  and  other  performing  arts  venues.  This  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  is 
zoned  Downtown  Commercial  (C3-6)  and  Public  (P).  Residential,  commercial,  and  mixed-use 
land  uses  are  located  one  to  two  blocks  west  and  east  of  Van  Ness  Avenue. 

Van  Ness  Avenue  supports  a  broad  range  of  land  uses  between  McAllister  and  California 
streets,  including  mixed-use,  commercial/ tourism,  residential,  and  institutional.  This  stretch 
of  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  zoned  High  Density  Residential-Commercial  Combined  (RCA)  and 
Community  business  (C-2).  A  variety  of  retail  and  residential  uses  are  situated  in  the 
Tenderloin/Polk  Street  and  Cathedral  Hill  areas.  The  AMC  Theatres  multi-screen  movie 
theater  complex,  automobile  dealerships,  and  hotels  are  also  located  in  these  areas.  The 
Regency  Center  is  a  landmark  hotel  and  event  venue,  and  it  is  a  major  activity  center  in  the 
Van  Ness  Avenue  corridor.  Various  high-density  housing  developments  have  been 
completed  recently  or  are  nearly  complete  in  this  segment  of  the  corridor. 

Between  California  Street  and  Broadway,  Van  Ness  Avenue  passes  through  residential,  mixed- 
use,  institutional,  and  commercial  land  uses.  This  stretch  of  Van  Ness  Avenue  is  zoned  High 
Density  Residential-Commercial  Combined  (RCA).  A  variety  of  religious  and  other  institutions,  as 
well  as  neighborhood-serving  retail  uses,  are  located  along  Polk  Street,  which  is  t