Simon MacMichael May 14 2017
The initiative from the San Francisco Transformation Agency (SFMTrA), involved 15 campaigners dressed in yellow t-shirts linking arms to provide physical segregation – literally – between cyclists and motor vehicles on Golden Gate Avenue.
We’re sponsoring a #PeopleProtected bike lane on Golden Gate Ave. Visit, and #DemandMore at the @sfmta_muni hearing: https://docs.google.com/a/sfbike.org/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeJfbvu-_33Vp0oLMTL4gFQCTMJbww9ONX0ihU1zVXffaPaAQ/viewform?c=0&w=1 …
— SF Transformation (@SFMTrA)
It happened on 1 May, the day before the director of the San Francisco Municipal Transport Authority (SFMTA, the name of which inspired that of the campaign group) was due to meet to discuss possible protected cycle lanes on Market Street and Turk Street.
SFMTrA organiser Matt Brezina told Bicycling.com: “My friend Maureen actually came up with the idea.
“She thought, ‘I put my unarmoured body in this unprotected space next to cars – the bike lane – daily. What if a bunch of us put our bodies in this dangerous space to make a statement about our daily unsafe riding conditions and temporarily make the bike lane more safe for other cyclists?’
“I heard the idea and thought it was brilliant.”
He continued: “Our shirts have an illustration of a parent bicycling with a child.
“If a parent wouldn’t walk a stroller in an unprotected bike lane next to moving car traffic, why do we expect them to bicycle with their children in this dangerous space?”
The reaction, according to Brezina?
“Cyclists cheered and said ‘thank you!’ Drivers stayed in their lane instead of entering the bike lane, which was a goal of our effort.
“No-one was aggressive. We weren’t blocking car lanes, we were just making an unprotected bike lane safe.”