Friday, September 30, 2011

Riding with Dennis Herrera

Today Mayoral Candidate Dennis Herrera showed up for SF2G.

Herrera showed up, shook a hand or two and said "All right! Let's get some coffee". He's clearly a very high energy guy and 6:30 AM didn't really bother him. Scott asked him a general question about vision/cycling and he discussed that he is really positive on car-free Market Street. He mostly referred to bikes, which is important, to me the faster transit portion is more important but he was playing to his impression of the audience.

"If you had a time machine, and went back to when Rob Anderson sued the city, what would you do differently". He gave no meaningful answer

I asked about the Central Subway, saying "If you become Mayor, what then". The answer was also a little off pivot but basically I would say he is against the status quo of the project, as has been clear. He pivots first to "I supported it when it was 600 Million but 1.6 Billion! Come on!" I think this is standard politico but my position is that there isn't much difference between 9 figures and 10 figures - either way it's a lot of money and the project should be done properly. The cost increases to me are just a very good opener to allow one to point out the problems in design.

His concept of the design flaws matches mine, and he understands the demographic in Chinatown does not match the transit system they are being delivered (They use the 30 like a 2 block shuttle bus!). Mike Sonn lives in North Beach and for a variety of reasons would really prefer Stockton to go car free - and soon rather than a subway 10 years from now - Herrera seemed to agree (why I didn't audiotape this whole thing I have no idea, so I could have a better description).

He is very high energy and engaging, chatty, friendly. And he acquitted himself fine on the bike.

Chavez was crap as always but we made it. Delivered Herrera to 3rd Street while Dave Blizard pointed out how crappy Chavez is and got a good picture that shows what we are up against on that street. Crosby mentioned that Pennslyvania is quite frankly worse than Chavez and I have to agree. "You're riding between trucks headed to the interstate and others headed North, and you're in the canyon pothole of doom" was sort of how Scott described it.

It was good to get another politico out in a small group and get to chat.

The ride was nice, relaxed pace which was just what I needed.

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