San Francisco will temporarily close Lombard Street, or the “Crookedest Street in the World.”
On Tuesday, the city’s Municipal Transportation Agency voted that the street will be closed to vehicles for four weekends, starting late June. It will also be closed on the Fourth of July weekend.
Lombard Street is a world-famous street that thousands of tourists visit each year. It is famous for having a steep section that consists of eight sharp turns. Tourists take pictures of the zigzag road from the top, and then drive down, as if it were one of the rides in an amusement park. Reports say that Lombard Street is probably one of the most visited tourist destinations in San Francisco.
A drive down Lombard Street
The idea to temporarily close the street came from Supervisor Mark Farrell, as residents in the area are complaining about the amount of tourists that visit the street each year, especially during the summer and holidays. Aside from being a bother to the residents, the visitors also take their time enjoying the scenic view of the street, which in turn causes traffic to build up.
Paul Rose, the MTA spokesperson said, “This will be a test to improve the safety for residents, pedestrians, and motorists in the area.” He also said that lengthy delays in the area happen due to people who visit the street to take pictures.
Tourists also agree that they cause traffic in the area. One tourist, Dylan Giordano, said that he visited Lombard Street on Tuesday and was greeted with an “insane amount” of traffic. Giordano said that it is unfair for the residents who live in the area, since they have to endure the traffic just to reach their own driveway.
The temporary closure of Lombard Street will give the MTA an opportunity to assess the impact that it will have on the area. They are not looking into permanently shutting down the street. Instead, they are considering having parts of Lombard Street open to the residents only.
Image via YouTube