L Taraval Rapid Project

What’s Coming to Taraval Street

We’re making Taraval Street safer for everyone and Muni’s L more reliable for riders.

Safety Matters

Did you know that 50% of pedestrians hit on Taraval Street are struck getting on or off the L, making it one of the most dangerous places in San Francisco for pedestrians? It doesn’t have to be this way.

The SFMTA, Muni Forward, and Vision Zero SF are working together to bring safety improvements to Taraval Street. Engineering projects like the L Taraval Rapid Project incorporate effective safety improvements, such as pedestrian bulbs at sidewalk corners, transit boarding islands, and traffic signals to make the street safer for all those who depend on it. Near-term, interim solutions like painted safety zones and clear zones will get critical safety improvements on the ground now.

Investments in improved safety help create a more livable and vibrant city.

How is Taraval Street Changing?

As part of the L Taraval Rapid Project, roadway changes will roll out in early 2017 to enhance safety for people getting on and off Muni and make the L more reliable. These include:

  1. New Clear Zones at Train Stops
  2. New Painted Safety Zones at Sidewalk Corners
  3. Parking Changes
  4. 6-Month Boarding Zone Pilot
  5. Transit Stop Removal
  6. New Transit Only Lanes

We Heard You

We’re moving forward with changes to Taraval Street that will improve safety and enhance the street for all of those who depend on it, including the 30,000 daily riders on the L Taraval. These changes, like the 6-Month Boarding Zone Pilot, were designed based on input from the community.

This is all part of a much-needed rehabilitation on Taraval Street that will replace infrastructure like the worn rails, overhead wires and sewers, as well as repave the entire street.

Starting in January 2017, you’ll begin to see a variety of changes along the L Taraval – from new paint on the street to enhanced signage reminding drivers to stop for loading Muni passengers.

We appreciate all of the great input we’ve received during this process. All of these improvements are there to make you, and other pedestrians, safer!

Improvements Coming in January 2017:

1) New Clear Zones at Train Stops

Cable car in a clear zone

Example of Clear Zone

Clear zones are painted markings on the street that provide a separation between streetcars and the traffic lane. Clear zones make the street safer by giving pedestrians a safe space to step off Muni.

To enhance safety along Taraval Street, clear zones will be installed at eight intersections:

  • Westbound only (north side of Taraval Street): 26th, 30th, 32nd, 40th and 46th avenues.
  • Both directions: Taraval Street at 19th, 42nd and 44th avenues.
The law requires cars to always stop behind trains where passengers load in the street, including at all clear zone locations. Do not pass until the doors are closed.

2) New Painted Safety Zones at Sidewalk Corners

A Pedestrian crosses in a painted safety zone

Example of a Safety Zone

Safety zones at sidewalk corners help make pedestrians more visible to drivers when crossing the street. Painted safety zones will temporarily extend the sidewalk until permanent, concrete pedestrian bulbs can be installed.

To enhance safety along Taraval Street, painted safety zones will be installed at six intersections, including: 20th, 21st, 22nd, 24th, 33rd and 38th avenues. Concrete pedestrian bulbs will be installed with the larger project starting 2018.

3) Parking Changes

Enhancing safety to make you and other pedestrians safer will require some parking along Taraval Street be converted into a new travel lane. Parking along the following blocks will be removed:

North side of Taraval Street:

  • 18th – 19th: seven spaces
  • 25th – 26th: nine spaces
  • 29th – 30th: seven spaces
  • 31st – 32nd: eight spaces
  • 39th – 40th: four spaces
  • 41st – 42nd: seven spaces
  • 43rd – 44th: five spaces
  • 45th – 46th: eight spaces

South side of Taraval Street:

  • 19th – 20th avenues: nine spaces
  • 42nd – 43rd: ten spaces
  • 44th – 45th: seven spaces

You will start to see meters or time limits at the first few spaces on some side streets just off Taraval to encourage turnover. Angled parking was proposed for some blocks of Santiago and Ulloa streets to offset parking removed on Taraval. This change is on hold pending further SFMTA review and resident outreach during the 6-month boarding zone pilot.

4) 6-Month Boarding Zone Pilot

Street markings indicating the boarding zone

Example of a Boarding Zone

The 6-month boarding zone pilot will include visible painted street markings and new signage at five transit stops along Taraval Street, along with a robust evaluation of driver compliance to assess safety. The pilot will test the effectiveness of painted street markings and improved signage in getting drivers to stop behind loading trains. The pilot will also be paired with an education and enforcement campaign.

Painted boarding zones will be installed at the following five intersections in the eastbound direction: Taraval at 26th, 30th, 32nd, 35th and 40th avenues.

SFMTA will be evaluating driver compliance to the law at the five pilot locations over the next six months. If a compliance rate of 90 percent is not achieved, concrete boarding islands will be installed.

5) Transit Stop Removal

Eight L Taraval stops will be removed starting Saturday, February 25, 2017 to improve travel time and increase reliability.

  • In both directions: Taraval at 28th and Ulloa at 15th
  • Towards downtown: Taraval at 24th.
  • Towards SF Zoo: Taraval at 17th, 22nd and 35th

6) Transit-Only Lanes

Transit-only lane markings will be painted along the track lane of Taraval Street in both directions. The SFMTA is committed to closely evaluating the transit-only lane to measure its impact on congestion and traffic flow for one year to identify any necessary adjustments or mitigations. The lane will not be raised like it is on Judah, allowing cars to enter to pass double-parked vehicles. During the evaluation period, the lane will not be painted red.

Starting 2018:

Street Cross Section

  1. Rail track and overhead line replacement
  2. Water and sewer line replacement
  3. Surface repaving
  4. Curb ramp upgrades
  5. Concrete boarding islands and pedestrian bulbs
  6. Traffic signals

What Do I Need to Know?

I’m a driver. What do I need to know?

  • It’s the law to stop for streetcar passengers. At every clear zone and pilot location, it’s illegal to pass loading streetcars. Next to concrete boarding islands, you may pass at 10 MPH.
  • Parking on some blocks of Taraval Street will be removed.
  • The track lane on Taraval Street will now be dedicated to Muni. You can enter the lane when making a permitted left turn, but otherwise drive in the right lane.

I ride the L. What do I need to know?

  • The new clear zones and boarding zones are designed to keep you safe while getting on and off Muni. However, do not stand and wait for Muni within the zones or you could risk being hit.
  • Take note of which stops are being removed starting Saturday, February 25, 2017.


January 2017:

  • Parking changes made
  • Street painting installed for clear zones, boarding zones, safety zones and transit-only lane
  • New signage installed

February 2017:

  • Transit stops removed (Saturday, February 25, 2017)
  • Pilot period begins

May 2017:

  • Half way through the pilot program – midway analysis takes place

August 2017:

  • Pilot ends, final results shared


  • Construction begins

Additional Project Information

Informational pamphlet
Pedestrian collision map
Project plan view renderings
Parking relocation strategy
Parking details
Pilot explanation
Boarding island example
Stop spacing map
Webinar powerpoint presentation
Letter to Residents

Questions? Email us at muniforward@sfmta.com.