Wednesday, September 05, 2007
  Velocabs and 2-Way Streets

I just ate dinner at one of my very very favorite Sacramento eateries, Cafe Rolle. That made me happy, but even more enthusiasm came from an unlikely source: the most recent issue of Inside The City, the little monthly tabloid published by Inside Publications, which is usually a fairly mundane publication.

Not this month, however! There are two articles that made me happy:

1) An article about the new Velocab service in downtown/midtown Sac. Yay! Not only is the service environmentally friendly, it also provides a much-needed alternative to Sacramento's overpriced and hopelessly inept taxi drivers. (Seriously, I once asked a taxi driver to take me to the corner of 57th St and H St, and he had no idea how to get there. I had to give him turn-by-turn instructions. This town is a grid of numbered and lettered streets -- I mean, come on! And his first, and I assume only, language was English.)

2) Anyone who has heard me moan about the large number of one-way streets in downtown/midtown knows I am excited to learn that there is a full-scale plan to return many of those streets to two-way. Yay!!! I am so pleased.

Here's the rundown of the significant midtown/downtown streets that are returning to two-way in the coming months:

J St btwn 30th St and Alhambra
N St from 16th St to 28th St
L St from 16th St to 29th St
P St from 16th St to Alhambra
Q St from 16th St to 29th St

Now, if only they'd put a lane of traffic and a few parking spots on the K Street Mall, I'd have all my wishes!

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I think they ought to leave a few streets as one-way-- when I ride my bike, it's much easier to navigate P and Q because of how large the bike lanes are. This is less so on two-ways.

Of course, I would really love for some streets to be off-limits to cars entirely. Safer that way.
I don't think traffic would work on K Street. First, it's dominated by light rail. Second, it's only a few blocks long (okay, seven or eight).

But I'm happy about the street changes. I can't wait for 19th and 21st to be finished going from 3 lanes to 2.
Maya - I hear ya about the biking, but I'm hoping that since both P and Q are currently 3 lanes, and will be 2 lanes after conversion to 2-way, the bike lanes will be nice and wide.

UR - My K Street proposal is controversial. But I think pedestrian malls are failures because of the lack of visibility. I tend to avoid K Street mall, and even the Crest, because it feels so desolate. I'm sure the issues are more complicated, but I think a big part of the problem is that it's such a pain to get there because there is no lane to drive in and nowhere to park.
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