A literal earthquake struck Tuesday just before the SFMTA Board of Directors approved a one-year pilot program to move the grounds of the Valencia Street bike lane into the middle of the street instead of the side.

“What do we do if there’s an earthquake during public comment?,” board member Manny Yekutiel asked at Tuesday’s San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) Board of Directors meeting, when an earthquake did in fact occur during public comment. But the bigger issue is what the board was discussing; an earth-shaking and highly controversial proposal to move the Valencia Street bike lanes to the center of the street, rather than their current configuration closer to the curbsides, between the traffic lanes and the parking spaces.

Image: SFMTA

And the board voted unanimously in a 6-0 vote to approve a “center-running bike lane” design that would run between 15th and 23rd Streets on Valencia Street (seen above in blue), in a temporary pilot program that will be reevaluated after a year.

Image: SFMTA

If you’ve ever seen the Valencia Street bike lanes, you’ve probably seen cars in the Valencia Street bike lanes. The above graphic illustrates that and other problems. The center-running bike lane is a design supporters say can reduce the number of double-parked cars blocking bicycle access in those lanes. This new design also purports to be a Vision Zero-ey move that would enhance safety and reduce collisions.

And as seen above, there will be slightly different configurations for the bike lanes between 15th and 19th Streets, and between 19th and 23rd Streets.

Screenshot: SFGovTV

There are obvious concerns with the plastic bike lane barriers used to secure these lanes (they’re called “bollards”), and one commenter showed the image above indicating these are no match for automobiles. As the Examiner explained before the vote, “The bike lanes are protected by temporary plastic posts. Each bike lane is six feet wide, buttressed by a two-foot buffer lane between it and the lanes for car traffic.”

A ton of cyclists gave public comment both for and against the one-year pilot of this design, and that community is clearly torn over the now-approved proposal. But given the unanimous 6-0 vote, the SFMTA board is clearly less conflicted over it.

“I was around when everyone was shocked and appalled at Van Ness BRT going to the center from the side,” board member Gwyneth Borden said before the vote. “But it works.”

Related: Stanley Roberts Takes On Valencia Street Bike Lane Parking [SFist]

Image: Google Street View