PROTEST $173,212 FOR NORTHERN CENTRAL SUBWAY STUDY!

The SF County Transportation Authority (SFCTA) is hoping to allocate $173,212 for a Phase 3 Study to extend the Central Subway into North Beach and the Waterfront.  But the Central Subway extension is not even on the priority lists of the Mayor’s Transportation Task Force (TTF).
TTF REPORT: http://www.sfcontroller.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=4912
With many urgent needs, scarce funding should be used to improve Muni now.

TUESDAY, MARCH 18, 10:30AM, City Hall Room 263
On the first big item, speak against the wasteful expenditure of $173,212 for the “study” of the Central Subway’s northern extension.
http://www.sfcta.org/plans-and-programs-committee-march-18-2014
Let’s set the record straight!  The Central Subway has caused service cuts.  It is illogical to cut Muni service to subsidize expensive projects—when less costly projects can improve and restore Muni service.  Don’t be misled by the media campaign by special interests.

CENTRAL SUBWAY HAS TAKEN TOO MUCH MONEY FROM MUNI
Since 2007, Muni has cut service, eliminated routes, shortened bus lines, deferred maintenance and reduced schedules in order to subsidize the $1.58 billion Central Subway.  Over $595 million of state and local matching funds have been taken from the rest of the Muni system.  With contingency funds falling to 4% of construction cost, the Central Subway faces cost overruns—taking more money from Muni needs.  We shouldn’t study any Phase 3 extension until the true cost of Phase 2 is assessed.

In 2007, the T-Line (Central Subway Phase 1) eliminated the 15-Kearny Bus/ 20 Columbus Bus and cut hours for the 41-Union Bus.  In 2009-10, SFMTA eliminated 6 routes, shortened 16 routes and reduced operating hours on 22 routes.
In FEIR and FTA documents, the Central Subway (Phase 2) will cut 34,000-76,000 bus hours/ year from the 8X, 30, 45 bus lines.  With elimination of the T-Line’s Embarcadero/ Market Street loop, the Central Subway will decrease service to BART and Metro.

NORTHERN NEIGHBORHOODS ARE PERPETUAL TARGETS FOR DEVELOPMENT
Instead of improving public transit, the Central Subway decreases transit—but drives up land values.  For decades, the northeast neighborhoods and waterfront have been targets for developers.  In 2008, the Planning Director and a Planning Commissioner convened a neighborhood meeting to discuss “Rezoning Chinatown”—because of the Central Subway.

“If they build the Subway, it will ensure major, major new development at the stops in Chinatown and North Beach; and in terms of scale, these neighborhoods will never be the same again.”
—Allen B. Jacobs,  Past SF Planning Director & Dean of UC Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design

“The extension of the Subway tunnels to Washington Square to make a ‘removal pit’ will transform North Beach into something it mustn’t be — and permanently mar its traditional village feeling.  With the extension of the Chinatown Subway into the very heart of historic North Beach, the special ambience of this fragile quarter will be greatly diminished.”
—Lawrence Ferlinghetti & City Lights Books, SF Poet Laureate Emeritus

SPUR made the Central Subway Phase 3 one of its top ten priorities for 2013.  On April 13, 2013, SPUR convened an invitation-only Fisherman’s Wharf Transportation Meeting—led by Central Subway advocates.  From this “community” meeting, SPUR’s conclusion was that the Central Subway was a top priority.  Like 2008 EIR meetings, North Beach is noticeably avoided.
WHAT PEOPLE WANT: A world-class citywide Muni system—not a Central Subway that takes away funds from the rest of Muni.
Regards, SaveMuni.com

 

Negotiations, approvals still await Muni’s plans to extract Central Subway tools

By: Will Reisman : SFExaminer – excerpt

While Muni negotiates with a North Beach property owner on how it will remove boring tools for the Central Subway project, major planning and approval decisions regarding the controversial extraction process await.
Outrage among residents and merchants over plans to remove the machines at Columbus Avenue led the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which operates Muni, to propose taking out the equipment at the Pagoda Palace, a derelict former movie theater.:…  (more)

CENTRAL SUBWAY/ PAGODA THEATER COMMUNITY MEETING

CENTRAL SUBWAY/ PAGODA THEATER COMMUNITY MEETING

TUESDAY, JANUARY 22, 2013, 6:30PM

Telegraph Hill Neighborhood Center, 660 Lombard St. (Columbus & Powell)

ANNOUNCEMENT:  http://us5.campaign-archive1.com/?u=c178f3dd9100b6963a6cf2cea&id=b683f2f23f&e=8676f27def

EVERYONE AGREES that North Beach merchants and neighbors need not suffer economic losses because the Central Subway stops 2,000 feet away in Chinatown (Stockton & Washington Streets).  In 2005, the northerly tunnel extension from Chinatown was a political decision—to gain support from organizations who criticized the Central Subway’s high costs for small benefits (which is still true).  The northerly tunnel variant was never discussed with North Beach—because it was only an option.  And SFMTA was careful to avoid meeting with North Beach organizations.

LATEST PROPOSAL is to lease the Pagoda Theater for 2 years for TBMs (Tunnel Boring Machines) extraction—demolishing the building and creating a Special Use District for the owner’s development project.  SEE ATTACHED ORDINANCE. 

EXAMINER:  “Negotiations, approvals still await Muni’s plans to extract Central Subway tools”

http://www.sfexaminer.com/local/transportation/2013/01/negotiations-approvals-still-await-muni-s-plans-extract-central-subway

MORE QUESTIONS need to be answered because many merchants will still suffer. 

  • As stated in the Project Specifications, will the tunnel in North Beach/ Pagoda Theater be used to move materials/ equipment to the Chinatown construction site?  What deliveries, storage and street-use will be required?  For how long?
  • How will adjacent buildings and streets be protected?
  • Will vertical ventilation shafts and exit shafts be required?
  • Why not bury TBMs in the ground at Chinatown—saving $21-$70 million that can implement the 2003 Stockton Street Transit Improvement Project and improve transit throughout the northeast quadrant?

KEEP OPEN OPTIONS FOR BURYING TBMs

New York City’s new subway construction is leaving TBMs in the ground for cost-savings.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/25/nyregion/deep-below-park-avenue-a-200-ton-drill-at-rest.html?_r=1&src=un&feedurl=http://json8.nytimes.com/pages/nyregion/index.jsonp  

http://www.mta.info/news/stories/?story=320

In 2005, the original Central Subway design was to retrieve TBMs at Chinatown (Stockton & Clay Streets).

Also, tunneling reduces high risk construction and cost overruns.  The older historic districts of North Beach, Chinatown and Downtown are extremely susceptible to unstable ground conditions.

COLOGNE BUILDING COLLAPSE: 

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/cologne-archive-catastrophe-were-subway-builders-cautious-enough-a-612129.html

http://www.theage.com.au/world/fears-for-missing-three-after-building-collapse-in-germany-20090304-8ogm.html

SAO PAULO SUBWAY’S DEADLY COLLAPSE

http://enr.construction.com/news/transportation/archives/070129a.asp

KOREAN SUBWAY TUNNEL COLLAPSE

http://kojects.com/2012/02/20/subway-construction-suspected-in-incheon-street-collapse/

Regards, Howard Wong, AIA

www.SaveMuni.com