Changes proposed for bus routes in Richmond District

by Thomas K. Pendergast

Significant changes to bus lines traveling through the Richmond District are proposed by the San Francisco Planning Department and the SF Municipal Transportation Authority (Muni) in a recently-released "Initial Study of the Transit Effectiveness Program (TEP)."

Lines or routes where changes are proposed include the 5-Fulton Street "short-line" and the 5L-Fulton Limited; 28- and 28L-19th Avenue; 29-Sunset Boulevard; 33-Stanyan Street; 18-46th Avenue; and the 91-Owl.

There are also minor changes coming for the 1BX-California Express and 2-Clement Street bus lines and additional stops will be created to serve the 38AX and 38BX Geary Boulevard and 31AX and 31BX Balboa Street express lines.

Some of the more notable changes will be on the 28- and 28L-19th Avenue lines that run through the Richmond District on Park Presidio Boulevard. Instead of terminating at Fort Mason in the Marina District, the 28 would terminate at the Golden Gate Bridge and the 28L would provide service to Van Ness Avenue and North Point Street. The 28L would have new streets added, including Lombard Street between Laguna Street and Van Ness Avenue; sections of Alemany Boulevard between Sagamore Street and San Jose Avenue; Interstate 280 between the Ocean and Sickles avenues exits; Brotherhood Way between Junipero Serra Boulevard and Sagamore Street; and Niagra Avenue between Alemany Boulevard and Geneva Avenue.

Limited-stop service would operate seven days a week from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., with wider stop spacing than the current route. The 28L now operates on weekdays only, between 7 to 9 a.m. and 2 to 4 p.m.

The 29-Sunset would go down Ocean Avenue to the Balboa Park Station instead of its current route on Mission Street and Geneva Avenue. It would be extended from Persia Avenue to Ocean Avenue to Plymouth Avenue, and a new street segment would be added between Mission Street and Ocean Avenue. Service would be eliminated on Mission Street between Persia and Geneva avenues and on Geneva Avenue between Mission Street and Ocean Avenue.

New limited service routes for the 5-Fulton "short-line" and the 5L-Fulton limited would make local stops west of Eighth Avenue, and limited stops between Eighth Avenue and Market Street, before resuming local stops on Market Street to the Transbay Terminal. The limited would be supplemented by the short-line, which would provide local service the entire length of its route.

The 33-Stanyan would cross Potrero and continue east on 16th Street to Connecticut Street, south to 18th Street, to Third Street, to 20th and Tennessee streets to cover the Potrero Hill segment of the 22-Fillmore that would be eliminated. Service would be rerouted onto Valencia Street between 16th and 18th streets to alleviate transit congestion on Mission Street and provide better connections with the 22-Fillmore.

The 18-46th Avenue line would operate on a more direct route between the San Francisco Zoo and Stonestown Galleria via Sloat, Sunset and Lake Merced boulevards and Winston Drive. Service would be replaced on Skyline Boulevard, John Muir Drive and Lake Merced Boulevard between Font Boulevard and Winston Drive by a proposed 17-Parkmerced route. Service along Lake Merced Boulevard between John Muir Drive and Font Boulevard would be discontinued.

New transit stops would be added at Pine and Bush streets on Van Ness Avenue to serve multiple lines, including the 1AX-California express and the 1BX-California express lines. There would be no changes to the 1AX-California route but the 1BX-California route alignment would change. Where the eastbound route currently turns south on Fillmore Street, the proposed route would continue on California Street and turn south on Gough to Bush streets. The route segment that extends south on Fillmore Street and east on Bush to Gough streets would be discontinued.

No changes to the 2-Clement route are proposed, but a supplemental trolley coach service would be added between Downtown, at the intersection of Sansome and Market streets, out to Presidio Avenue to maintain current transit frequencies on Sutter and Post streets. The revised service would eliminate the 3-Jackson Street line.

Because of the developing Geary BRT plan, no route changes are proposed for the 38-Geary Boulevard or the 38L-Geary limited, however, the frequency of the 38-Geary schedule will be changed from 16 to 15 minutes west of 33rd Avenue and limited stop service would be expanded to Sundays.

The new transit stops at Pine and Bush streets on Van Ness Avenue would also begin serving the 38AX-Geary express and 38BX-Geary express lines, as well as the 31AX-Balboa and 31BX-Balboa express lines.

The 91-Owl would end and service would be split between a new 91-Owl A and 91-Owl B. Owl service would be between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. on weekdays, and between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. on weekends. The frequency of the owl lines would remain at once every half hour.

For more information about the revised transit plan, go to the SF Department of Planning's website at