letter to the editor

Letter to the Editor: Re-Open the Upper Great Highway


I respectfully ask that the Upper Great Highway (UGH) be re-opened.

I live in the Outer Richmond and use the UGH often for travel to Sloat Boulevard to businesses and to access the South Bay. It is an incredibly scenic wonder of San Francisco and saves significant time when traveling south. It allows people who cannot walk or bike to enjoy the ocean and dunes.

Could the district please re-consider permanently closing the UGH? I walked along it when it was closed to cars and found it was like walking in a parking lot, whereas the landscaped pedestrian path along the side is elevated and allows for better views.

I’ve talked to many neighbors who agree that the UGH is an integral route to those living in this area and the Sunset. There is already a wonderful pedestrian path along the road and ample room for bicyclists on the road itself.

Please, please, please don’t close the UGH!

Elisa Ignatius, Outer Richmond Resident

9 replies »

  1. Please open the Great HIGHWAY!!!!
    Lifelong resident (67) and I have never had a problem walking the trail and driving the road!!! We can do both as we have done for years!!!
    The area and residents are suffering with the closures and detours .
    Please open the Great “HIGHWAY “
    Thank you


  2. Elisa, I second what you are saying, and thank you for stating what so many of us are feeling. Not to mention, the GH is never has enough people on it to justify closing it for recreation. If anyone is in doubt, please look at the GH Flickr account – https://flic.kr/ps/3Wm2LH.


  3. The short-term closure has caused a dangerous environment for those who live in the Sunset. And a long-term closure makes that situation worse.

    It also creates a situation that limits our ability to build more dense housing projects and thus increasing diversity in the area, which is much needed.

    While most of us understand that in early days of SIP outdoor space was needed, the impact to the area was surprising.

    Funneling four lanes of fast-moving traffic has made the local residential streets dangerous.
    And as we move toward full opening of the city and traffic get worse, so will this situation. Many people who can’t live near their jobs, have kids that need dropping before work, have to transport supplies or are not as able bodied or without flexibility in their schedule, need this important traffic artery. Reopening the UGH would keep the infrastructure we need as a growing city and create relief to the neighborhood.


  4. Please open the great highway! So many of us depend on it for commuting. I’m a teacher in Pacifica but live in the Richmond. Traffic on sunset and (particulary) 19th ave have become atrocious.


  5. It’s mind-boggling that in this city of all places, government would create a situation that does nothing but significantly INCREASE carbon emissions by forcing 18k-20k drivers each day to detour out of their way–thus being forced to burn more fuel–onto streets requiring a far greater amount of stop-and-go driving (which causes far more air pollution than smooth driving at a steady pace, as is the Great Highway allows). Complete hypocrites!


  6. My comments and letters to London Breed and Supervisor Mar’s office remain unanswered. My constant pleading for common sense and logic about reconsidering opening the UGH to cars during the week Monday – Friday are ignored. The inconvenience and danger this closure has caused has infuriated the residents in the west part of the city to the point of needing petitions and actual protests planned!, The real slap in the face~ The flashing signs posted as you approach 19th avenue. “Expect Delays, M-F, 7am-5pm Use Alt Routes”..Followed by another flashing sign, Great Highway Closed, Use Alt Routes”. This being the ONLY road one can take from the Richmond headed south makes one wonder what Alt Routes are they talking about? Please for the love of this city and all logic.. OPEN THE UGH Monday – Friday!


  7. I agree with my neighbors! Open the Great Highway! The current situation leaves people in the Outer Richmond with one less way to get out of the City! Can’t wait for Outside Lands and other GG park events which clog our streets and neighborhoods.


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