Van Ness BRT construction impact set to increase

If you think street construction on Van Ness Avenue is bad now, it’s about to get worse, says The City’s top transit official.

The $316 million Van Ness Improvement Project has seen Van Ness Avenue torn up to craft a new bus rapid transit system featuring buses that will run in separate lanes like trains, using center medians like train stops. But the project isn’t just about buses, as the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is also conducting major utility repair.

That work is entering its second sub-phase in July, announced Ed Reiskin, director of transportation at the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, on Tuesday.

The shift to underground utility work means that “folks will see more street space taken up by construction,” Reiskin warned the SFMTA Board of Directors on Tuesday.

“It is pretty disruptive,” Reiskin said.

This utility phase includes replacing 22,000 feet of 1800s-era water mains, earthquake resiliency construction, installing new streetlights and more, according to the SFMTA.

Though Reiskin warned the SFMTA board of a rocky road ahead for Van Ness, he added “the expansion of the work zones is a good sign — it means work is progressing.” Progress is likely especially welcome in light of previously announced construction delays of five months and one year, which the San Francisco Examiner first revealed in April.

At the time, SFMTA project manager Peter Gabancho detailed growing problems encountered as crews dug up Van Ness Avenue to the Board of Supervisors. Crews found century-old gas pipes not detailed on any city maps that must be carefully tested and reviewed, which contributed to the project’s delays, he said.

Gabancho said that some radar technology may help more in the future, but for now, crews must move slowly for safety reasons. SFMTA spokesperson Erica Kato previously said crews had to sometimes dig “by hand.”

Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez
Share
Published by
Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez

Recent Posts

What I am grateful for on this Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a few days away, and soon we will gather with friends and family to eat and give thanks.…

7 hours ago

Residents face eviction after federal lawsuit shuts down state’s largest sober living provider

More than 250 residents of California’s largest sober living provider could face evictions on Monday, after a trustee who has…

8 hours ago

USF basketball’s Jamaree Bouyea returns home for a resounding win over LIU-Brooklyn at Cal State Monterey Bay

SEASIDE, Calif. — Two minutes and 17 seconds after entering Sunday's game against LIU-Brooklyn, University of San Francisco sophomore Jamaree…

13 hours ago

SF street safety advocates urge public to stop calling crashes ‘accidents’

Neeti Chokshi was crossing the street with her one-year-old dog on an evening in January when a car blew through…

13 hours ago

Victorian Christmas in full swing at Dickens fair at the Cow Palace

Charles Dickens, greeting guests in his home at the Great Dickens Christmas Fair in its first weekend at the Cow…

14 hours ago

USF Basketball: Dons women edge Cal Poly under clear skies in Seaside at Cal State Monterey Bay

 SEASIDE, Calif. -- University of San Francisco freshman Julia Nielacna scored just seven points in the first half on Sunday…

16 hours ago