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Can Richmond Put an End to 60-Year Stagnation?

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Can we revive the recent conversation about faster Muni and growing population in the Richmond one more time? We'd like to point out this post about Transit-Oriented Design (TOD) on the blog of the same name. In a nutshell: Faster transit and denser populations go hand-in-hand: more space for people equals less space for cars, which equals more need for transit, traffic calming, and pedestrian amenities.

Or you can turn the equation around: better transit equals less need for cars, which equals more room for people. Growth in a city is inescapable; and the only two places to build more housing is up into the air or on top of former parking lots. As one Curbed commenter points out, SF's neighborhoods may wield a lot of control over their own development, but they can't make themselves a gated community. The people are coming, and so are their buses and bikes.

What's especially galling about the Richmond's reluctance to join modern SF neighborhoods is that the mistakes of the 1930s (failing to build a Geary subway) and the 1950s (shutting down Geary streetcars) are holding up progress today. As SF Transit Oriented Design points out -- and as isolated Richmonders are discovering -- it's more politically palatable to build brand new development around existing transit than to build brand new transit in an existing neighborhood.

Sixty years ago, when streetcars ran down Geary, the neighborhood was a model for Transit Oriented Design. But now that their removal is barely even a memory, it's harder than ever to imagine a fast, comfortable, convenient journey into the Richmond.

· Time For a Muni Pub Crawl to the Outer Richmond? [Curbed SF]
· How Much Longer can the Richmond Shut Out San Francisco? [Curbed SF]
· Using What We Have [SF Transit Oriented Design]
· A Tale of Geary Street [Transbay Blog]
· Nimby Stirrings in the Sunset [Curbed SF]
· Progress on Geary BRT Almost as Agonizingly Slow as the 38 [Curbed SF]