Finding Common Ground

By Supervisor Mar : sfrichmondreview – excerpt

As we emerge from the pandemic, we’re stepping into a neighborhood, City and world that look different. The pandemic has revealed and exacerbated long-standing inequities, forced us all to adapt to survive, and perhaps forever shifted our understanding of what’s essential, what’s possible, and how deeply our health and wellness are connected to our neighbors.

And some changes, like the temporary transformation of the Upper Great Highway, have been deeply divisive. As the end of the pandemic grows nearer, we as a City must shift our work from these temporary, reactive measures to proactive ones. Over the next few months, the SFMTA and Recreation and Parks Department will be preparing a proposal or proposals for the next phase of the Great Highway. I believe there’s room for compromise and we can all find common ground on a debate that has deeply divided our neighborhood. Alongside Supervisors Connie Chan and Myrna Melgar, I am pushing City departments for a transparent, inclusive, and equitable public process in designing and deciding the next phase of this street.

The vision of a waterfront promenade and a managed retreat from the coastline is the future, but we live in the present. While I believe it’s possible to make the changes necessary to our street network to properly manage traffic flow with the Great Highway fully closed, this work would take years, and it’s unreasonable to continue a full closure beyond the emergency period without taking the long-term steps – including real investments in westside transit service, adding signal lights along Lincoln Way west of Sunset Boulevard, and redesigning the intersection at Sloat and Skyline boulevards – needed to make it successful.…(more)

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