This evening, the SFMTA Board endorsed 7-0 the latest set of revisions of the Transit Effectiveness Project, which was the subject of rather extensive public hearing last month. The Board’s unanimous vote effectively closes the planning phase and moves the project forward into the environmental assessment and implementation phase. Rollouts of specific recommendations are anticipated to begin in July 2009, to be preceded by pilot projects during the first half of 2009. The Board also approved a $1.2 million contract with PB Americas (division of Parsons Brinckerhoff), who will act as consultants for the implementation phase of TEP.
The recommendations endorsed by the Board include both the TEP staff proposals and further changes from the Ad Hoc Committee. The Ad Hoc Committee revised the latest reincarnation of proposals, particularly the route realignments that instigated the most controversy. The Committee largely supported TEP staff proposals, including: (1) complete elimination of the 3-Jackson, 10-Townsend, 26-Valencia, and 53-Southern Heights; (2) elimination of segments of the 2-Clement and 37-Corbett, as well as the Ocean Beach branch of the 38-Geary; and (3) the longer-term plan to further study reallocating single-car J-Church service to the lightly-used segment of the M-Oceanview west of Balboa Park, a recommendation that proved controversial for residents who enjoy direct M service to West Portal. However, the Ad Hoc Committee set forth certain changes, including: (1) for the 39-Coit, restoring the controversial Union Street deletion as a pilot project to observe if ridership increases would justify permanently retaining that segment; (2) retaining 66-Quintara service on 30th Avenue; and (3) retaining the controversial 36-Teresita segment between Monterey and Portola. The committee also recommended further study in the environmental assessment of proposed changes to the 6-Parnassus and 7-Haight.
Several capital investments are packaged into a more long-term enhanced plan, but they are not part of the budget neutral plan, because of the additional funding needed to build them. The enhanced plan establishes as a future priority projects like the 30-Stockton extension to the Presidio Transit Center, and the historic streetcar extension to Fort Mason — as well as expansions that would enhance Muni connections to regional rail service, notably the M-Oceanview extension to Daly City BART, and T-Third extension from Sunnydale to Bayshore Caltrain.