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The car-free ‘Great Walkway’ is safe (for now)

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On February 7, the San Francisco Board of Appeals rejected an appeal of the Coastal Zone permit allowing car-free space on weekends on the Great Highway.

The backstory: At the end of 2022, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted 9 to 2 to continue car-free space on the Great Highway on weekends for the next 3 years as a pilot, with the approval of Mayor London Breed. The San Francisco Planning Commission unanimously issued the Coastal Zone Permit for the ‘Upper Great Highway pilot project.’

The takeaway: what we like to call the ‘Great Walkway’ should be safe through the end of the pilot in 2025.

Walk SF wants this incredibly important space for pedestrians to continue indefinitely, with a secure future like we now have for JFK Promenade. The exact timing of the public process deciding the long-term fate of the Great Highway is unknown. But do know Walk SF will be part of the campaign to save the Great Walkway!

Thank you to so many of you for helping defend this incredibly important space for pedestrians with your emails and public comments.

And big thanks to our friends at the Great Highway Park for leading the effort to protect this oceanside open space for all.

As the New York Times wrote in 2022 when it listed the car-free Great Highway in its annual list of 52 places to visit around the world: “The Great Highway has become a unique destination — in a city full of them — to take in San Francisco’s wild Pacific Ocean coastline by foot, bike, skates or scooter…. It’s also a telling microcosm of the ways in which our cities, and our values, shifted during the pandemic.”

Do you love car-free spaces and believe San Francisco needs more of these to be a safe, pedestrian-friendly city? Support Walk SF with a donation today!

Banner image by Marta Lindsey