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Rerouted bus through heart of Mission District hurts business, neighbors say

SF Public Press/Mission Local
 — Mar 29 2012 - 8:36am

Riders and businesses in the Mission District say the rerouting of major Muni bus lines is causing confusion and hurting commerce.

The 14-Mission, 14L-Mission and 49-Mission/Van Ness, which usually travel along Mission Street, have been rerouted to South Van Ness since the beginning of March because of a repavement and infrastructure project by the Department of Public Works and Public Utilities Commission. The project affects Mission Street between 16th and Cesar Chavez streets.

“Fewer people have been coming into the store since the buses stopped coming” said Aide Diaz, an employee at Factory Bargains at Mission and 19th streets. The Goodwill store has also seen a decrease in customers. “The construction has been very bad for business.”

“In the morning it’s dead,” said Maria Zarate, an employee at Goodwill. “There are less people on the street. It looks like a ghost town.” 

Not only is the project hurting businesses, but it is also confusing Muni riders because of the new stops on South Van Ness Avenue. A bus driver who regularly drives the 14-Mission said riders ask if the bus still travels along Mission Street, and said riders are not familiar with the stops on South Van Ness.

Muni spokesman Paul Rose said the transit agency provided signage and staff at the affected bus stops between March 2 and 6, but riders still seem not to be familiar with the new stops.

“I don’t know where I am or where the bus is heading on this new route,” said Muni rider Candy Fonseca. “The route is something that I still need to get used to.”

Another Muni rider echoed the same sentiment. “This new route makes me not want to head to the Mission to do my shopping — it is very confusing,” said Rosa Galeano.

The reroutes will continue for six months, the approximate time it will take the repavement project to be completed.

Muni riders can find a list of affected stops on the transit agency’s website.

This article was produced in collaboration with Mission Local, a non-profit community news organization covering San Francisco's Mission District online and in print.


I took the 14L about 1-2 months ago and I must agree, people are indeed confused. (I speak spanish and I hear the passengers say in spanish, "where is this bus going? I'm getting off."
It would be great if MUNI hired people that spoke Espanol to tell the community and station at the old bus stop with flyers (bilingual flyers) and to station other workers (pay them minimum wage) at the new temporary stops. Perhaps this can help the community and businesses who are being affected by the loss of foot traffic, etc. It really isn't difficult. MUNI does have money. Tell their drivers to inform/announce or have the automated woman say in the three languages that the bus will be temporary driving a different route while the streets get fixed! (Finally after so many years, as a native, and a voter, the streets in the Mission District tend to be at the bottom of the list.)
Hire volunteers, hire min., wage people that will get them excited to help the community communicate clear and have a manager that will monitor these hires and volunteers. Treat them to lunch, pizza and mineral water.

MUNI bus flying down south van mess at 23rd and swerving into the left lane.

Is there a way to post a video link on this site so I can show the doped of the buses on South Van and other traffic as well as the red light the buses are plowing through?

 In fact there is. If you post this video to a third-party video service, say YouTube, then you can put a link in a comment and it will take readers right there.

Thanks...sorry about the typos in my previous post.

FACT: Mission Street needs repaving, and other infrastructure work.

FACT: Taking buses off one of our main arteries will ALWAYS hurt business.

FACT: No one that lives on South Van Ness likes hearing or seeing buses.

FACT: ACCEPTANCE of what we cannot change will make us stronger and able to cope until the buses come back to Mission Street.

Maybe we should just stop repaving Mission Street?! The people in this damn city, I tell you...

Maybe we can run then down your street for a bit and see what you think.

MUNI.....why are empty buses using South Van to return to the yard even when the construction is done for the day. There are buses going by every thirty seconds to a minute day and night. Please direct to Mission when the construction workers are done for the night. We were told the 14 and the 49 would use our street, not the whole yard from Bryant St.

I think we all agree Mission needs to be repaved. However there are those who are implying the buses should stay on Svn and weare are trying to avoid this. So it is not about "Damn" people. Your reaction would be similar if you had a bus ripping by every thirty seconds 24 hrs daily.

Please get the buses back to Mission asap. South Van Ness is residential allthough everyone seems intent on slowing down traffic on Folsom, Harrison and Bryant Sts which are more industrial. NEWS FLASH....ALL TRAFFIC CAN'T FIT ON GUERRERO AND SOUTH VAN Ness AVE. please

As far as I'm concerned, those damn buses can go back to Mission street. The amount of litter on South Van Ness is annoying.

What would the riders and businesses say if the infrastructure (pavement, sewer, and water lines) instead remained in a state of disrepair?