The death of a bicyclist last week on San Francisco’s Howard Street spurred the city’s transit agency to announce immediate changes to the traffic lanes there.
Tess Rothstein, 30, died Friday near the intersection of Howard and Sixth streets. Riding a rented GoBike, she had swerved out of the bike lane to avoid a suddenly opened car door and was hit by a truck.
The bike lane on the part of Howard Street where Rothstein died is not protected, or separated from the traffic lanes. Officials with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency said Tuesday that parking on the north side of Howard Street between Fourth and Sixth streets will be restricted immediately, making more room for bicyclists.
SFMTA officials will also begin immediately designing a parking-protected bike lane on Howard between Third and Sixth streets, adding to the existing protected bike lanes on the north side of Howard Street between Sixth and 11th streets. Howard is a one-way, westbound street.
The protected bike lanes are separated from traffic by striped markings about three feet wide.
Howard Street has been identified as a high-injury corridor by the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, having some of the highest concentrations of fatal and severe traffic-related injuries.
According to SFMTA officials, Rothstein’s death is the fourth traffic-related fatality to occur on Howard Street in the past three years.
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Rothstein was a 2012 graduate of Stanford University and worked as a design researcher for Airbnb and the online publishing platform Medium.
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