Public Press wins an Excellence in Journalism award for ‘Public Schools, Private Money,’ in the winter 2014 edition

 

Chasing Muni

America's Cup may be scaled-down, but transportation challenges are unchanged

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Mar 28 2012 - 4:47pm

City scrambles to invent temporary bus and train lines for legions of yacht race spectators

A version of this story appears in the Spring 2012 print edition of the San Francisco Public Press.

The effect of a scaled-down America's Cup plan on an ambitious transit effort is unclear as the city continues to view the expected flood of visitors for America’s Cup pre-events this August and October as a chance to experiment with new transit options. On Tuesday, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved an agreement with America's Cup organizers that will put more of the spectator activity along the Marina Green. The transit plan for the game calls for an estimated 300,000 spectators around the waterfront — the equivalent of almost half the average weekday Muni ridership of 637,000 — city planners said they have to get nearly everyone out of cars to prevent transportation chaos.

Muni operators deserve payout from settlement, says Mayor Lee

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Dec 14 2011 - 5:04pm

San Francisco transit workers got an unexpected holiday bonus, of sorts, after winning back a contested $8 million in health care payouts that the city initially refused to give because it was trying to cut its 2011 budget. Mayor Ed Lee said Tuesday that he agreed with the decision by the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency to relinquish the funds to the Transport Workers Union 250-A.

Muni chief optimistic despite projected budget shortfall

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 14 2011 - 5:40pm

Muni is projecting close to an $80 million budget deficit by 2013-2014. The agency released its preliminary budget report Monday. Despite the shortfall, Muni wants to change the minds of riders and drivers who are skeptical that the service can be reliable and on time. The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which oversees Muni, has drafted goals for the next six years that Muni chief Ed Reiskin calls  “ambitious.”

Get drivers out of their cars and onto transit: mayoral candidate Leland Yee on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 4 2011 - 11:45am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 8

State Senator Leland Yee is running for San Francisco mayor and said his main goal for Muni is to get drivers out of cars and onto buses and trains. He wants to add 100,00 new riders by 2020. Yee said in order to do this, Muni needs to update its technology for with more real-time data and focus on how the transit agency is spending its budget. He said the agency should be focused on fixing broken Muni vehicles.

City must hit the reset button on transit: mayoral candidate Phil Ting on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 3 2011 - 11:22am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 7

Assessor-Recorder and San Francisco mayoral candidate Phil Ting wants Muni riders to join him in “resetting” Muni. He is behind the online community known as Reset SF, where residents get a chance to share their ideas with Ting on improving city government transparency. One of the central topics of Reset SF is Muni and how to improve service and reliability.

Central Subway costs have gotten out of control: mayoral candidate Dennis Herrera on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 2 2011 - 9:38am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 6

One of the leading voices against the Central Subway project has been City Attorney and San Francisco mayoral candidate Dennis Herrera. Herrera said that he supported the project at the initial cost of $650 million, but now cost projections have reached $1.6 billion.

Giving transit workers a boost will help improve the system: mayoral candidate Bevan Dufty on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Nov 1 2011 - 10:39am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 5

Former supervisor and San Francisco mayoral candidate Bevan Dufty is standing up for the Muni operators. Dufty said he knows what Muni drivers go through each and every day and he wants to help them if he comes mayor. His plan is to offer life coaches to Muni operators and other city employees working on the front lines.

Boost the vehicle license fee to help fund S.F. public transit: mayoral candidate David Chiu on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 31 2011 - 10:55am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 4

San Francisco mayoral candidate David Chiu said that if he becomes mayor, he will work to get the state to boost the vehicle license fee in order to help cash-strapped Muni. In 2003, when Arnold Schwarzenegger became governor, the first thing he did was slash the vehicle license fee. Chui, who does not own a car and uses a bike and Muni to get around town, won one of three endorsements handed out by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

Make S.F.'s transit system 'magnificent' to lure drivers from their cars: mayoral candidate Terry Baum on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 28 2011 - 11:38am
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 3

San Francisco mayoral candidate Terry Baum said that if she becomes mayor, she would make Muni “magnificent.” She said wants to change the mentality of people who drive cars to give public transportation a chance. Her plan is to transform the Muni subway stations into a museum with mosaics and murals. She said Muni has to be fun and a place where people want to be at. She wants Muni to be the focus of positive energy for riders.

S.F. needs to improve transit service outside downtown: mayoral candidate John Avalos on Muni

Jerold Chinn, SF Public Press — Oct 27 2011 - 5:12pm
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Can S.F.’s next mayor save Muni? - Part 2

San Francisco Supervisor John Avalos, who is seeking the mayor’s job, says Muni has an infrastructure problem within the transit system. He has said that  Muni is too centered in the downtown area. He wants all residents in the city to have better access to Muni and wants to stop the practice of switchbacks, where Muni buses or trains change direction during mid-route.

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