Sunday, September 27, 2020
News + Politics The problem with the Google bus program

The problem with the Google bus program

Why the supes should demand an environmental study for the tech-shuttle program

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On Tuesday, Jan. 26, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors will hear an environmental appeal of the permanent commuter shuttle program. That program, now in a pilot phase, transports thousands of Apple, Google, Genentech, Facebook, and other employees in the technology industry from their homes in San Francisco to their jobs south of the city.

A shuttle bus blocks a Muni stop, forcing a passenger in a wheelchair to get off in the middle of the street
A shuttle bus blocks a Muni stop, forcing a passenger in a wheelchair to get off in the middle of the street

An environmental appeal? I can hear you all asking: Don’t the shuttles get cars off the road — and haven’t we been here before?

They might get cars off the road. But anecdotal evidence indicates that the availability of the shuttles for on-average better-paid tech workers is driving up housing costs in SF – and fueling evictions and displacements of low- to moderate income people to the suburbs and preventing other, low- to moderate-income people from moving in to be closer to their jobs. And with anticipated expansion of Silicon Valley companies, these problems could be exacerbated. Apple alone intends to expand by 27,900 employees in coming years (it has 25,000 in the Bay Area now). What is the housing plan for these new employees?

On the second matter, yes, we have been here before.

On January 21, 2014, the five members present of the seven-member San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority Board of Directors adopted an 18-month pilot program to test “sharing” public bus stops in San Francisco with the private, employee shuttles.

The mayor appoints all members of the board, and he can dismiss them at will. Proposition A, the 2007 charter amendment, was supposed to make them politically independent. It didn’t. Even Chair Tom Nolan admitted as much at an SFMTA Citizens Advisory Council meeting that he attended last fall. When asked about the independence of the directors from the mayor, he replied, “We are independish.”  If that.

 

The shuttles have been operating in Muni bus stops illegally for years.  Contrary to the message put out by the SFMTA that it was the “Wild West” before the pilot, emails obtained through public records requests reveal extensive communication between SFMTA staff, transportation managers from the various tech companies, and shuttle companies going back at least to 2011.  In 2012, one staffer at the SFMTA even arranged to take a ride on a “regularly scheduled” shuttle that picked up employees at Van Ness at Grove at 10 a.m.  Another email revealed a “handshake agreement” between the SMFTA and Bauer’s not to ticket the tech shuttles when in public bus stops.

There were problems with the adoption of the pilot program – the Planning Department stamped it categorically exempt from environmental review, which is at least better than what the Super Bowl 50 NFL marketing event on Market Street is getting. Planning decided that the Super Bowl 50 event didn’t rise to the level of a “project” in need of even a categorical exemption from review, even though your one-day block party, which closes off a street, does.  (If there is no environmental designation, no pesky member of the public can appeal it to the Board of Supervisors.)

And the pilot was for the most part – and is – still illegal.  California Vehicle Code 22500 (i) prohibits private carriers from operating in public bus stops for good reasons – to keep public transportation flowing smoothly and quickly, and to protect riders, especially the disabled, and senior citizens.

When the directors adopted the pilot program, members of the Coalition for Fair, Legal, and Environmental Transit appealed the decision to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. On April 1, 2014, they lost that appeal on a vote of eight to two (David Campos and John Avalos in support of the appeal; Eric Mar was out of town) and immediately filed suit.

Based on the vehicle code pre-emption matter, it should have been open and shut. But curb space is apparently really valuable. Apple, Google, Facebook, and other Silicon Valley technology companies offer the chance to live in San Francisco and take free, private, luxury transportation to work as job perks. The shuttle bus companies – Loop, Bauer’s, and others – make money, and the technology companies get tax write offs for offering free transportation.

The city? The SFMTA gets a revenue-neutral fee of $3.67 per stop per day and enormous liability risks for selective non-enforcement of the vehicle code.

The pilot started on August 1, 2014.  It ends on January 31, 2016.

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit have two very strong arguments: vehicle code pre-emption and the low, low bar that the California Environmental Quality Act sets for requiring an environmental review.  An environmental review would evaluate environmental impacts from air quality (most of the buses are diesel, and they make multiple trips, to and from the Silicon Valley – so in at least one direction, they may have no passengers) and slowing down public transportation, to the demographic transformation of the city into an expensive Silicon Valley bedroom community – and the degraded air quality that comes with forcing low- to middle-income people into the suburbs where cars are a necessity and commutes are longer.

An environmental review could include mitigations – building workforce housing for tech workers, expanding public regional transportation, restricting the shuttles to an as-yet un-built “Port Authority of the West,” and so on. (This past fall, the 15-member SFMTA CAC missed passing, by one vote, a motion in support of recommending that the SFMTA disaggregate the shuttles from Muni bus stops, perhaps because only 12 members were present at the time.  That’s too bad because another public records request email reveals that some of the tech companies actually want an EIR and even offered to pay for it. Planning rejected that offer.)

The other side – the city, which is the defendant, and the tech companies, which are the real parties in interest, have money. So much money that they have filed motion after motion to drag out the lawsuit and essentially wage a war of attrition against the plaintiffs. First the real parties in interest wanted out of the lawsuit.  The judge granted their motion. Then they wanted back in.  The judge granted their motion. There have been so many motions – including one to deny standing to the plaintiffs, which the judge denied – that they essentially amount to harassment.

The judge finally heard the case on November 13, 2015.  He had until February 11 to release a decision. But then the other side filed a motion to dismiss the case because the pilot was almost over. The judge is now asking both sides to reappear in court on February 16.

 

Meanwhile, the SFMTA Board of Directors adopted the plan for the permanent program on November 17, 2015. The Coalition is appealing the absence of an environmental impact report for the permanent program on Tuesday, January 26 at the Board of Supervisors. The permanent program includes no limits on the number of shuttles that can be permitted and this language, below, indicating no limit on the number of pubic bus stops that can be converted to shared stops:

The Director is authorized to establish up to 200 Designated Stops for the purposes of this pilot program. The Director may establish additional Designated Stops following a public hearing.

In the meantime, the parts of the program that allow the private shuttles to operate in public bus stops remain in violation of the California Vehicle Code.

So on December 12, 2014, Assemblymember Travis Allen, R-Huntington Beach, introduced legislation to amend the vehicle code.  I tried to find out for whom Allen was working, but was prevented from sunshining his communications by the ironically named Legislative Open Records Act.

However, my local public records requests reveal that the SFMTA and the office of the mayor knew about the bill, AB 61, three days after it was introduced. In fact, a red-marked version of the bill, dated January 13, 2015, was passed between Sacramento and the SFMTA, and then another one dated January 22, 2015. But no one in local government told the public.  The red-marked version had language that sounded suspiciously similar to language used by Sup. Scott Wiener to defend the original pilot when AB 61 came up at the San Francisco County Transportation Authority a month later:

This bill allows clarifies the existing authority of local authorities to permit shuttle service vehicles to stop for the loading or unloading of passengers alongside municipal curb spaces upon agreement between a transit system operating buses engaged as common carriers in local transportation and a shuttle service provider.

But in the end, Allen’s office decided not to go with the “clarification” language.

The legislation never got heard in committee in 2015, and Allen made it a two-year bill.  On January 4, 2016, staff at the Assembly Transportation Committee scheduled it to be heard on January 11.  Opponents got busy and most got their letters into the analysis.  In support was one private citizen.  Opposed in the analysis are:

AFSCME/AFL-CIO

AFSCME District Council 57

Amalgamated Transit Union

Bernal Heights Democratic Club

California Alliance of Retired Americans

California Council of the Blind

D5 Action

FDR Democratic Club of San Francisco

Gray Panthers of San Francisco

Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club

Haight Ashbury Neighborhood Council

Pacific Felt Factory

Potrero Hill Democratic Club

San Francisco Green Party

San Francisco Latino Democratic Club

San Francisco Senior and Disability Action

San Francisco Tomorrow

Save Muni

California SEIU

TWU Local 250a

Unite Here Local 2

Upper Noe Neighbors

And 18 private citizens

 

Other organizations also opposed AB 61, but their letters were not submitted in time to make it into the analysis. They include:

 

California Walks

Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association

Progressive Democrats of San Francisco Steering Committee

Protect Noe’s Charm

Richmond District Democratic Club

United Educators of San Francisco

 

Yet Allen remains undaunted.  On behalf of that one, nameless private citizen who supports amending the vehicle code, he has introduced two more pieces of legislation that are nearly identical to AB 61, AB 1641 and ABX1 25.

Both are urgent, meaning that they will go into effect as soon as the governor signs them into law. ABX1 25 requires that the governor call an extraordinary session of the legislature to get it passed. But getting either passed will be an up-hill struggle, as both require a two-thirds majority of each house.

What makes getting either or both passed so urgent?  Here is the language at the bottom of both that explains the urgency:

SEC. 3.

This act is an urgency statute necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within the meaning of Article IV of the Constitution and shall go into immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:

In order to permit the utilization of curb spaces designated for the loading or unloading of passengers of transit system buses by shuttle service providers at the earliest possible time, it is necessary that this act take effect immediately.

 

The public peace?  All I can imagine is that Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page, Tim Cook, Marissa Mayer, Reid Hoffman, Sean Parker, and Ron Conway, among other tech company founders, CEOs, and/or angel investors, are going to start a riot unless we hand over our public bus stops to them.

I say we don’t give in to the temper tantrum threat so easily.

The likelihood of either of these bills passing is low. What might happen, however, is that the language of any one of these bills could be inserted into another measure, for example a bill to declare June 10 as “We Love Bunnies Day,” as part of the gut-and-amend process. It’s my understanding that this sort of gut and amend is most likely to happen in August or September at the end of the annual legislative process when assemblymembers and senators are trying to get everything passed – and get out of Sacramento. At that point, I have been told, public disclosure requirements may be waived.  Which sounds downright unconstitutional for a democracy, if you ask me.

But if you are among the constellation of the wealthiest and most politically powerful corporations that the world has ever known, democracy and the rule of law are inconveniences to you. Throw enough money against them and maybe they will go away and you will own government.

That is certainly what has been happening in San Francisco in recent years.  It’s going to take constant – and more – citizen activism to make these corporations – whose products we appreciate – to be better corporate citizens than they are now.

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  30. Wrong: You’ve been “charged with three felony counts of filing a false document with a government agency, two felony counts of perjury, and two felony counts of false voter registration”

  31. The District Attorney didn’t think it was weak.

    He thought it was enough (along with other evidence I’m sure) to charge you with seven felonies.

  32. And help me: Am I supposed to think the Genentech buses are good or bad? How about the shuttle in my neighborhood that takes retirees to the community center? I mean they use Muni stops after all.

  33. yes the one near the highway so it’s easy access for the busses to come and go, the place that you will need to drag your lazy tech ass to, to get the google shuttle when the people of San Francisco take back the city and force you fuckers to play nice with others and get your fucking annoying crap busses off of surface streets where they DO NOT BELONG.

  34. Maybe half a dozen pick up points throughout the city located within easy access to freeway entrances; EG, ACTransit, SamTrans. Keep the monsters out of the neighborhoods and off city streets.

  35. People care that you acted like far right anti-abortion activists to present false information to infiltrate a group.

    http://www.vice.com/read/why-are-redditors-and-a-cyberbully-trying-to-take-over-san-francisco-sierra-club-1118

    Some or your sfbarf enablers said it was just like being an undercover journalist, but journalists don’t register to vote at a false address for a story (and so far, you haven’t published anything you learned through your lies). Thougn enough sfbarfers cared that you got around 80 votes less than the other legit members of your slate

    https://groups.google.com/forum/m/#!topic/sfbarentersfed/Skr1ZoQn4YY

  36. It is pretty clear in 2014, you voted at an address you didn’t live at.

    It is also pretty clear you intended to vote at a false address against Peskin in 2015 in violation of election laws. Even though it made you a hypocrite for repeatedly telling people to vote for Prop A and against Props F & I, you didn’t vote (though you did get a Nov 2015 ballot at a false address) because you were been investigated by Vice (and it was too late to change your registration to the district you actually were living in.

    You threated to sue Vice unless the article was taken down or changed, but it is still up and there are no corrections

    http://www.vice.com/read/why-are-redditors-and-a-cyberbully-trying-to-take-over-san-francisco-sierra-club-1118

  37. It’s against state law, and I address this in the story. The program violates California Vehicle Code 22500.5. Otherwise, why would someone be attempting to amend the vehicle code at the state level, which I also address in the article? The city was tremendously arrogant — and reckless — in choosing not to enforce the vehicle code (handshake agreement is also addressed in the above story) and moving ahead with the approval of this program.

  38. What you are proposing is not that different that what SFMTA is proposing. The bulk of riders are currently picked up at just a couple of dozen stops.
    I love your closing comment…..so indicative of modern day “San Francisco values”…we don’t like you, you’re not like us, go live somewhere else!

  39. Did you read my comment? I didn’t say anything about only one mega-hub.

    And there are several areas in the city where this wouldn’t be a huge bother. The financial district doesn’t have a lot of people living there. Balboa Park already has a BART station, a Muni Metro station and a few bus stops. There are several Muni yards around the city, including one in North Beach that would be a good meeting points as well.

    Having to further pamper already pampered employees in order for them to not drive is ridiculous. Go have your little tantrum in another town.

  40. You mean the bus terminal that’s still several years away from completion? the one that’s in the middle of downtown in the opposite direction of where most shuttle riders need to go? That bus terminal?

  41. Yes transit studies show that you lose half your riders when you have to take more than one mode of transit and make a connection. Where would this mega hub be? downtown is already at gridlock because of transbay construction. Which neighborhood are you proposing all these MUNI buses and Ubers converge? perhaps we could put it next to your home?

  42. Do you know that if a Google employee had to take Muni, Uber, a cab to a feeder lot to catch a Google bus that they would instead drive 90+ minutes each way to the Google campus?

  43. From the SMFMTA who designed the shuttle permit program. I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that they know more about state law as it relates to transportation than you do.

  44. Because obviously, when presented with a problem of public policy, the appropriate response is ¯_(ツ)_/¯

  45. You misunderstand me. I’m not saying the shuttles don’t have any effect on the price of housing, I’m saying they’re not going away.

    Even if the Board of Supervisors does shut down the program, that doesn’t stop shuttles from stopping at Muni stops. The SFMTA was not ticketing shuttles before, and it may not start now. And even if it does, the shuttle companies may just pay the fines as part of the cost of doing business. They also could put the shuttle program on the ballot, and let the voters pass it (it has pretty high approval ratings)

    And of course, the shuttle companies could just start leasing private land to park on. There are plenty of surface parking lots they could lease. What authority does the city have to police who parks there?

    And if all of that fails, somehow, tech companies can just open more office space in the city so their workers don’t have to commute down to Silicon Valley anyways.

  46. “The tech shuttles did not ask for permission. They broke the law
    repeatedly for years, until the city contrived to make a special
    exception for them, without studying its effects.”

    That is not true. Operators of the corporate shuttles sought permission and got SF MTA allow them the use of 200 Muni stops throughout the city. Use of those stops was free until the SF MTA could work out a pricing scheme. (CA state law disallows municipalities from charging any more than an amount necessary to recoup the costs of use.) Now a policy has been implemented to change for the usage.

    http://allthingsd.com/20130721/san-francisco-may-crack-down-on-corporate-shuttle-buses/

  47. “Jesus, not this shit again.”

    Soon it will be time to revisit Acedemy of Art’s hording of residential housing, followed by techies trashing Deloris Park. (Actually that one’s past due. Anyone know who’s on duty?) Then we can harp on tech super-villin Conway and his multi-tentacled machine to turn SF into a corporate campus for Silicon Valley.

    Sadly, I’m not seeing any good substitute for the $10 toast crisis (which is no longer a thing, apperently) so we’ll have to go straight from Conway to the illegitimate conversion of live/work zoned lofts to into live only condominiums, which of course further increases housing costs by increasing supply. Then it’s time for a bit of fun with another round of: rejoice! The tech bubble is bursting.

  48. Then let’s frame it that way, do an EIR, and see if that’s workable. If it is, fine. If it isn’t, then the big corporations should not have any more right to public bus stops than anyone else.

  49. We have a bus terminal, in fact we are spending millions on a new bus terminal all buses not Muni should be forced to use the Bus Terminal, that’s what a bus terminal is for. Use the BUS TERMINAL. Get off neighborhood streets! These huge smoke belching motor rumbling stinky noisy ass busses like this do not belong in anyone’s neighborhood. Do YOU wnat one hanging out in front of you house? We have to deal with muni and that’s enough. Use the f-ing bus terminal you tools.

  50. I want Bauer’s off my street, out of my life. I don’t need an idling bus across from my house where there is no bus stop, every day of the week so Joe Google can get to work.

  51. Forgotten there providing “chosen” non-profits in stagnated neighborhoods discount free Muni passes Ed what next Google lease. S.F Airport repeal is need what training residents so make ideal, gentrified salaries to retain there residency since cartels leasing majority of urban units!

  52. No, idiot. The companies don’t need the help. Their employees—you know, human beings just like you—need to get to work and the employers are pitching in to help avoid highway congestion and public transit saturation. It’s that simple. Sure, the employees could drive. And most of them did. I know because I was one of them making the slog back and forth on 101 daily.

    We need a new day but not for the reasons you think. You, however, need a new brain.

  53. Agreed. I think if they got their wish on this matter, they’d simply complain about any number of other things once they saw that the tech industry didn’t immediately evaporate: the added traffic of cars belonging to individual commuters or, hell, tech employees living in the city, period. They want tech employees to disappear and they’ll choose any moving target “issue” as their cause du jour. And alternatives to the shuttle program? Not a one. Unless you count such absurd “solutions” such as compelling employers to build their own dormitory-style mandatory housing for workers.

    What’s more, I don’t think half of the complainers even have a clear picture of the facts; namely, what companies have commuter shuttle programs in the first place. I’ve heard Airbnb and Twitter (don’t have buses) mentioned several times in the same breath as Google and Facebook (have buses) when it comes to these shuttle complaints. This confirms that most of the knee-jerk herpderp masses don’t fact-check or bother to do any real critical thinking.

  54. VICE uncovered evidence that Donald Dewsnup, the SFBARF member
    spearheading the campaign, has a track record of using shady activism
    tactics in his attempts to make the San Francisco housing market more
    amenable to development, including providing multiple false addresses to
    the Department of Elections to gain access to a neighborhood
    organization he wished to influence. VICE also learned that Dewsnup has
    been banned from the neighborhood-oriented social network Nextdoor for
    making online threats so severe that they led users of the service to
    file a restraining order against him.

  55. One neighborhood activist lamented on the site
    in October of last year that “Dewsnup’s posts are at times bordering on
    defamation of people he disagrees with, and he seems to knowingly post
    mistruths and wild exaggerations.” This past August, Dewsnup was
    suspended from the site for allegedly threatening another user via
    direct message.

  56. Over the past two years, Dewsnup has risen to relative infamy within multiple neighborhood groups on Nextdoor, a community forum that restricts participation based on residence. Multiple users of the site have accused Dewsnup of taking his activism on the platform too far, with his alleged transgressions ranging from threadjacking and trolling to outright harassment.

  57. VICE uncovered evidence that Donald Dewsnup, the SFBARF member
    spearheading the campaign, has a track record of using shady activism
    tactics in his attempts to make the San Francisco housing market more
    amenable to development, including providing multiple false addresses to
    the Department of Elections to gain access to a neighborhood
    organization he wished to influence. VICE also learned that Dewsnup has
    been banned from the neighborhood-oriented social network Nextdoor for
    making online threats so severe that they led users of the service to
    file a restraining order against him.

  58. These buses should have stops at 4 or 5 places in the city, such as Balboa Park, 16th and Mission, etc. The should not be travelling all over the city adding to the congestion.

  59. Ah of course, anything to ignore the elephant in the room, which is that San Francisco needs more housing. Vaughan and the NIMBY squad’s wishful thinking is that if only tech buses didn’t exist, tech workers wouldn’t/couldn’t live in SF anymore. They’re just grasping at anything to prevent anything from ever having to be built in SF again.

    The other flaw in the NIMBY squad’s ideas is that they seem to ignore the simple idea that correlation is not the same thing as causation. Statements like “anecdotal evidence indicates that the availability of the shuttles for
    on-average better-paid tech workers is driving up housing costs in SF” tell you everything you need to know, which is that they either don’t care about the facts or that they’re just dumb. Last I checked, tech shuttle stops don’t just pick their locations at random.

  60. Its not against state law if the city gives its permission and charges fees to recover any associated costs. Which is exactly what is happening. And Peskin and Kim want to blow the whole thing up. Right now the shuttles are well regulated and they pay fees. The Stupidvisors are pushing us back to the days before regulation and the big buses will once again be back on small streets, they’ll be using MUNI stops, and there’ll be chaos. Is this what are elected officials are elected to do? create problems out of solutions?

  61. Are you really naive enough to think that if the buses can’t stop at a Muni stop San Francisco is going to suddenly become affordable again?

  62. I think his point is that all kinds of factors go into the dynamics behind what drives housing values, and so trying to look at one factor in isolation can be misleading.

    For instance, if a Google bus stop drives up demand local to it then so does Muni stops, a BART station, UCSF shuttles, freeways and all kinds of transportation assets. One can go further and identity great restaurants, good schools, better night-life, diverse shopping and everything from a nearby police station to a Trader Joes or WholeFoods.

    If we are going to investigate what drives desirability in housing, we have to consider everything. And we cannot simply dismiss something as bad because it makes the immediate area more desirable.

    And how successful local residents are at keeping new homes out is surely a part of that too.

  63. Calvin Welch has NO Housing Plan at all for these new employees and does not inspire other Bay Area communities to house them either. He just sits in his house and pays his mortgage as a retiree collecting his pension from the State.

  64. We need more muni and commuter buses not less. We need to get rid of cars all together in SF! I am glad to see the yellow taxis going away because they never pay their drivers enough money to live in SF compared to Uber and Lyft. We need PROGRESS now!

  65. I couldn’t agree more, thank you for your comment. Yup, this anti-tech b.s. by the seniors of San Francisco is getting way old. We are all tired of this patriarchal b.s. when they themselves displaced the current SF residents at the time between 1967 and 1971. Boomers who are balding with pony tails are a “self righteous” lot to say the least.

  66. You can drive whatever you want in SF: a car, a commuter bus, a delivery truck. You don’t need permission for that. You do need permission to stop at bus stops. The tech shuttles did not ask for permission. They broke the law repeatedly for years, until the city contrived to make a special exception for them, without studying its effects.

  67. The commuter shuttle program was not created as a “perk,” but as a way to mitigate the miserable entity known as the Bay Area’s pathetic excuse for a transit system

    While technically true, the ultimate effect has been to make San Francisco a nicer and more desirable place to live for more people, which is exactly what 48hills wants to put a stop to, because it causes people to want to move here.

  68. What is the housing plan for these new employees?

    That’s for every single Bay Area city between SF and Cupertino to come up with. Given the increase in people moving to the area, they may want to start thinking about that rather than pretending more people aren’t going to move here

  69. Jesus, not this shit again. The buses get gainfully employed people to work; that’s why the program was created; it is not part of some evil plan to destroy San Francisco. Also, everyone is acting like the buses recently appeared out of thin air. They’ve been around for over ten years at this point. The commuter shuttle program was not created as a “perk,” but as a way to mitigate the miserable entity known as the Bay Area’s pathetic excuse for a transit system. The people working for Google (and they weren’t even the first to operate shuttles, mind you) were already living in SF and commuting to Mountain View, pre-shuttle, since the company’s inception in the late 90s. The Google employee who initially proposed the shuttle system did the math (the company was much, much smaller then) and realized that fuel costs on an individual basis, traffic, etc. resulted in far less efficiency and could be solved by getting everyone to work en masse. There were other benefits: company-wide human factors reliability, in terms of when people were able to be in the office or not, etc.

    Believe me, when an opportunity for Google employees to avoid their commute presents itself, they take it. There is a sizable real-estate presence in SF and the prospect of being relocated to an office close to home is one many SF-dwelling employees fantasize about daily. I assure you, at no time does any bus-boarding employee rub their hands together in glee at the prospect of riding “luxury” buses, which is another idiotic concept dreamed up by people who have obviously never ridden one.

    In short: it’s a bus. It gets people to work. It’s a necessary evil. Get over yourselves. And get a life, Tim.

  70. Know what else is against the law? Camping on sidewalks, begging on median strips and public defecation. Where are the Progs (and their enablers) out in force demanding those laws be enforced?

  71. Why not. If the bus stop is not being used, and the private bus pays the city for the privilege. The alternative is cars. Single occupant cars.

  72. San Francisco Sierra Club continuing their war against the environment. First they support height limits in downtown San Francisco because the views from their homes atop Telegraph Hill are more important that transit oriented development, then they opposed the removal of parking lots, 75 Howard and Mission Rock to build transit oriented homes, and now they want to stop people from taking the bus to work! Climate deniers aren’t just hillbillies from Arkansas, they are progressives from San Francisco too.

  73. THIS. No, just the shuttles for the richest companies in the world because, you know, they really need the help. What utter crap. We need a new day in SF.

  74. If it’s against state law, SUE them, please! What, Google and others can’t afford to run private shuttles and buy parking lots where the buses can stop or something? What utter ****. What do they have now, $80B in cash reserves or something? Make they play by the same rules as everyone else. Like Louis CK says, when you are rich, they pay you for having money. **** Google, **** Genentech, **** Bauer’s, **** every one of these companies and the SFMTA, the Supes and anyone encouraging this illegal behavior. The idea of ‘the public’ has been forgotten or thrown out the window. Now we are a corporate campus for these companies, and have no say. Throw every one of these spineless, incompetent bastards out of office. End of corruption, now! I am tired of my city being abused by transplant opportunists. F*** these people and the horse they rode in on.

  75. Solve for X:

    “But anecdotal evidence indicates that [X] is driving up housing costs in
    SF – and fueling evictions and displacements of low- to moderate income
    people to the suburbs and preventing other, low- to moderate-income people from moving in to be closer to their jobs.”

    Hmm, “allowing NIMBYs to stop us from building housing” appears to fit in the box. Maybe we should do an EIR on that?

  76. If the argument is that Google Buses get private cars off the road, should other shuttles be able to use bus stops? Senior vans? Airport shuttles? Carpools?

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