Pedestrians crossing in pedestrian scramble in Chinatown at Kearny and Jackson Streets

Photo by SFMTA Photography Department

We joined with Transportation Authority Vice Chair Aaron Peskin (District 3), community leaders, and the SFMTA at Kearny and Jackson streets to unveil the city’s newest safety improvements: the pedestrian "scramble" signal and pedestrian curb extensions. 

In a scramble (also known as a diagonal crossing), traffic stops in all directions, making it safer for pedestrians to cross an intersection along some of the city’s most congested streets and without fear of any cars turning. These safety improvements will increase visibility and shorten crossing distances for both pedestrians and bicyclists.

The Kearny/Jackson project is part of the broader Pedestrian Safety Improvements project in District 3, making it the eighth pedestrian scramble signal throughout Chinatown. Other scrambles in the neighborhood include intersections at Kearny and Clay streets, Kearny and Jackson streets, and Kearny and Washington streets.

“Today I want to thank everybody that made this possible,” said District 3 Supervisor Aaron Peskin and Transportation Authority Vice Chair. “I want to start by thanking the community that has been the wind at our back for the advocacy. Also, most importantly, the voters of San Francisco because the original funds came through the half-cent sales tax, allowing this project to be completed.” 

The Chinatown Transportation Research and Improvement Project, a community volunteer organization, has also been driving the Chinatown scrambles and improving pedestrian safety through research and planning. “For the last 25 years, we’ve been working and advocating for safer streets for our community,” said Landy Dong from TRIP. 

The project also includes pedestrian curb extensions that are part of the broader Safe Routes to School Project at nearby John Yehall Chin Elementary. Located on a busy section of Broadway, this school is on the Vision Zero High-Injury Network, which accounts for 75% of San Francisco’s severe and fatal injuries. 

“I’m really proud of bringing in the engagement of our school district,” said Jenni Lam, SFUSD Board President. “When the school district partners with the city and the community, we know it’s going to create greater outcomes for our children and our families.” 

Safety improvements like these have seen successful results over the years: Kearny Street north of California Street has been removed from the latest Vision Zero High Injury Network.

The Transportation Authority funded all phases of these new projects, providing more than $4.7 million in half-cent sales tax funds for street safety in and around Chinatown. 

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The SFMTA-led District 3 Pedestrian Safety Improvements project will focus on planning, design, and construction of pedestrian safety improvements on and near Kearny Street.

San Francisco has vowed to eliminate all traffic-related deaths by 2024 through education, enforcement, and road infrastructure redesign.