That "commercial vehicle" only section of Downtown San Francisco
September 28, 2009 3:41 PM   Subscribe

San Francisco Filter: What's the deal with the 'commercial vehicle' only area in the financial district? No one seems to notice or care.

Reading about tomorrow's six week passenger car shutdown of Market Street reminded me that they also restrict passenger vehicles in that two or three block square patch of the Financial District (roughly) between Montgomery and Battery St. There are all these no-left turn and do not enter signs bordering this area that say "Commercial Vehicles excepted" but I always see regular cars drive right in and cops are never around to enforce it. Has anyone heard of anyone getting busted in this area? If i were driving in this area would you advise obeying those signs? Does anyone care?
posted by sammich to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (2 answers total)
My wife got a ticket for making a left in one of those commercial vehicle excepted no-left turns. I also see people ignore em all the time. My friend says it best, "I'm aware that I will eventually get a ticket, but if you look at it as a toll road and divide the cost of the fine over a year or more of convenience, I think it's worth it."
posted by analogue at 5:13 PM on September 28, 2009

Some of the restricted lanes in the financial district are physically impossible to obey. For instance, if you're coming down Clay and want to make a right onto Battery, you basically have to drive in the bus/taxi lane for a bit unless it's the middle of the night and the street is abandoned. Doing the legal thing and attempting to merge over in the block before your turn would just block traffic far more.

Plus, "commercial vehicle" most probably means any vehicle with commercial license plates. IIRC, these look like normal plates, but start with a different series number. So what looks like a "normal" passenger car making an illegal turn may just be a commercial vehicle without distinguishing marks; nothing says your commercial vehicle has to be a big delivery van and lots of them aren't.
posted by zachlipton at 6:34 PM on September 28, 2009

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