1. What is the Better Market Street Project?
The Better Market Street project offers a special opportunity to envision a new Market Street that is more beautiful and green; has enlivened public plazas and sidewalks full of cafes; showcases public art and performances; provides dedicated bicycle facilities; and delivers efficient and reliable transit. The goal of the project is to revitalize Market Street and reestablish the street as the premier cultural, civic and economic center of San Francisco and the Bay Area.
2. What is the study area?
The project encompasses Market Street between Octavia Boulevard and The Embarcadero, though the transportation system analysis may include blocks immediately south and north of Market.
3. What are the project goals?
- Create a sense of PLACE through sustainable designs that celebrate local culture and diversity, and elevate Market Street as the signature destination in the Bay Area;
- Optimize sustainable MOBILITY so the system is accessible and that all users have a pleasant, reliable, efficient, and comfortable experience; and
- Foster ECONOMIC development for a productive, healthy, resilient and vibrant corridor.
4. What is the project schedule?
- 2011 - 2012 (Phase 1): Public Visioning, Existing Conditions studies and Concept Planning. Click here to view the Existing Conditions, Best Practices and Public Outreach Reports from Phase 1.
- 2013 - 2016: Finalize concept drawings and conduct environmental review.
- 2016 - 2017 (Design Phase): Begin advertising and accepting contract bids.
- 2017: Construction and repaving begins.
5. How is the public involved?
The Better Market Street visioning process is collecting broad input from the local communities through a series of coordinated workshops, online comments, surveys, social media and other outreach venues. The resulting consensus will inform the types of improvements and enhancements on how to better Market Street. A community advisory committee (CAC) was formed and provides feedback to the project team. Two series of community workshops and webinars will be conducted as part of this initial phase of work, with the second series anticipated in spring 2012.
6. How much will the project cost?
The construction of the project is anticipated to cost up to $250 million. Lower cost alternatives and phasing will be considered as part of the study process. The importance of Market Street as a local, regional, national, and international transportation corridor and destination warrants significant investment. The current planning process is funded through multiple federal, state and local sources, including Safe Routes to Transit, Caltrans Planning Grants as well as Proposition K and general fund.
7. Are you considering car restrictions on Market Street?
This strategy is one of many under consideration as a potential component to meet the goals of the project, including improvements to transit reliability, bicycling and pedestrian safety, economic development and placemaking. The potential impacts will be studied carefully and we will weigh the impacts of each of the strategies along with their potential benefits to arrive at the preferred strategy.
8. What is the construction schedule and how will its impacts be mitigated?
The current phase of work is studying the many options for improving Market Street, and our goal is to time a first phase of enhancements to coincide with the next expected cycle for street resurfacing (in 2015/16). Once a preferred design is chosen, the city will work with the community and business stakeholders to ensure the least impact possible during construction.
9. How is the project affected by the status of the Redevelopment Agency?
It does not impact the Better Market Street project. Establishment of a Mid-Market redevelopment area was initiated in January 2010 as part of the larger Central Market Partnership – a broad coalition of city agencies, community organizations and neighborhood stakeholders, though a redevelopment area was never actually established. The Central Market Partnership continues and will seek alternative sources of financing to fund capital improvements such as: façade and tenant improvements, arts-oriented catalyst projects, historic rehabilitation, affordable housing and streetscape improvements.
10. Who is guiding the project?
The Better Market Street project is being conducted by an interagency design team, led by staff from the Department of Public Works (DPW), and includes: the Planning Department (urban design lead), the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (transportation lead), the Public Utilities Commission (stormwater lead), the Office of Economic and Workforce Development (economic revitalization lead), and the San Francisco County Transportation Authority. In addition, the City has contracted with a team of experts with international and local knowledge of the demands of Market Street from a transportation and public realm perspective including Perkins+Will, Gehl Architects, CMG Landscape Architects, Parisi Associates, Nelson/Nygaard, Fehr & Peers, CirclePoint, Kate Keating Associates, CHS Consulting Group, Environmental Science Associates, Nevue Ngan, and Wilsey Ham.
For a print version of this page, download the Better Market Street FAQs (pdf) in the following languages:
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Better Market Street: