Despite one pending lawsuit and one already filed, construction of the Central Subway begins next week, and that is going to entail the partial closure of Columbus Avenue near Washington Square Park. That's in addition to the section of the bottom of Stockton Street that's already closed, and causing major bus lines like the 30 and 45 to be rerouted around Union Square, and further mucking up traffic for an already confused populace. Indeed, you need to know this city like the back of your hand AND have an up-to-date navigation system in your car shouting out directions at every turn just to get from A to B on our warren of one-way streets, especially now that you can't even drive straight down Market legally and unharassed.
Willie Brown's dubbed it the "Central Circus" and a "fast track to chaos" even though his man Lee and his gal pal Rose Pak remain supporters of the project. He points out that the city recently decided to change two blocks of Grant Avenue, between Bush and Geary, into a two-way street, causing many a near-miss with pedestrians who haven't caught on.
But let's not forget the various lane closures and utter clusterfuck surrounding the Transbay terminal construction, and we don't even know all the detours that will entail over the next year or five.
And the Broadway Tunnel is currently closed in the evenings after 10 p.m. for its annual cleaning and re-striping, making of North Beach somewhat of a construction-clogged island until that's finished on August 11.
Then there's the ongoing re-routing of non-commercial traffic off of Market Street, which confuses the hell out of all tourists and infrequent drivers to downtown. You can still, sort of, though not totally legally, drive past 8th Street down Market. You will once again be "encouraged" to turn right on Sixth Street, and you might get a ticket if the SFPD is feeling frisky that day on lower Market. Basically, Folsom Street is the best route from the Castro/Mission to downtown, but good luck once you get to Fourth Street or further down.
Anyway, best of luck! Or buy a bike. Or just get everywhere on foot like we do, cursing the Muni underground at every step the next time it melts down at rush hour for no good reason.