What streets in San Francisco have timed lights?
September 5, 2007 11:09 AM   Subscribe

What streets in San Francisco have timed series of stoplights for faster travel? I've heard that Bush is timed. And I've been told that Franklin is a good alternative to Van Ness going north. Does the "timedness" of the lights vary by time of day?

Some lights in SF are timed so that a driver going the speed limit will tend to hit green lights all in a row. Now that Google Maps lets us drag the route to a desired point, we can take advantage of this in directions!
posted by k7lim to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (12 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Pine and Bush, Oak and Fell are the 2 sets I know of.
posted by bitdamaged at 11:11 AM on September 5, 2007

Franklin and Gough are absolutely better alternatives to VanNastiNess.

Great Highway out by the beach is timed to keep you at the speed limit.
posted by ambrosia at 11:17 AM on September 5, 2007

Oh there's a stretch of Fell/10th Street as well heading south.

The way to hit is to make the left turn off of Van Ness onto Fell (Note this is the World's Shortest Turn Light ...I kid you not, its only green for 4 seconds 3-4 cars max - the yellow is longer). When you make the turn the lights will start timing up at market until you hit the on ramp at Bryant.

Not sure if they are timed the other way on 9th since I'm mostly there during traffic hours.
posted by bitdamaged at 11:19 AM on September 5, 2007

19th Avenue south of Golden Gate Park is timed sometimes but not as usefully as Oak/Fell Bush/Pine. I still get stuck sometimes on 19th.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 11:22 AM on September 5, 2007

And I disagree about Franklin/Gough always being better than Van Ness. In heavy traffic, those two totally suck with all the turns and pedestrians. It's often much better to take Van Ness and hope for the best, even if it isn't timed.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 11:24 AM on September 5, 2007

Isn't Lombard (the flat part) timed? (I don't drive so I don't know, but that was my impression.)
posted by trip and a half at 11:32 AM on September 5, 2007

Franklin and Gough are absolutely better alternatives to VanNastiNess.

Agreed. I used to have many clients in Pac Heights when I worked in the Mission. Much driving back and forth at various times of day, and F and G always worked out to be faster, even if crowded.
posted by oneirodynia at 11:32 AM on September 5, 2007

"Isn't Lombard (the flat part) timed?"

No.. and this pisses me off every day monday through friday ;-)

Franklin definitely beats Van Ness, Gough can be hit or miss.
posted by bitdamaged at 11:45 AM on September 5, 2007

Broadway tunnel!
posted by muscat at 12:22 PM on September 5, 2007

I take Bush every morning to work and whenever else I can. The "timedness" does vary in that during the morning commute the lights stay green longer than at other times. If I catch everything just right (first in line at the light on Masonic), I can make it all the way from Masonic to Sansome without stopping (or driving recklessly) despite there being more people on the road. At non-peak hours or on weekends this never seems to happen no matter how I catch the light on Masonic.
posted by BigBwana at 1:50 PM on September 5, 2007

Response by poster: My friend says:
Kearny! is timed for sure.
posted by k7lim at 3:10 PM on September 5, 2007

The 'new' octavia is totally timed -- if everything's going as it should, you can often get from one end to the other without hitting a light from the offramp. in fact, the only problem with octavia is that no-one seems to understand how to STAY IN THEIR LANE when they're turning right onto it.

octavia, of course, leads to oak/fell.
posted by fishfucker at 4:43 PM on September 5, 2007

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