Getting around San Francisco with a folding bike became a little bit easier last month (the killer hills not withstanding), thanks to a decision by the San Francisco Metro Transit Authority to allow folding bikes on MUNI (San Francisco Municipal Railway) subways, light rail, and buses at all times. Prior to the May decision, no bikes of any kind were allowed inside MUNI vehicles and all bikes (folding or not) are still prohibited on cable cars. If you ride a non-folding bike, there are racks on MUNI buses that can accommodate up to 2 bicycles at a time, but for now, at least, only folding bikes will be allowed inside buses and train cars.

Photo courtesy of Alison Chaiken.

SFMTA took the decision to allow folding bicycles in its system at all times in order to increase the number of commuting options available to people, and thereby increase its ridership. Allowing folding bikes on MUNI will make transit more accessible to people who currently have difficulty getting to MUNI on foot or connecting via other transit options. And, of course, allowing folding bikes on the transit system is great for the already thriving San Francisco cycling community.

Other San Francisco transit agencies, most notably BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) and Caltrain, already allow folding bikes at all times. BART operates a subway/light rail service from Oakland to the San Francisco area, and Caltrain runs a passenter trail from San Jose to San Francisco.

Thanks SFMTA, for getting on board (no pun intended) with the other San Francisco area transit agencies, and letting folding bike riders use MUNI. Having access to public transportation with a folding bicycle is an important step in transforming the ways Americans commute.

Do you Commute with a Folding Bicycle?
Do you live in the San Francisco area? Have you taken your first MUNI/folding bike ride recently? Are you allowed to take folding bikes on the transportation where you live? Do you have plans to visit the Bay Area with your folding bike?