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Area surrounding San Francisco's Fairmont Hotel in Nob Hill closed to traffic through Wednesday

PIX Now afternoon edition 9-26-23
PIX Now afternoon edition 9-26-23 07:30

SAN FRANCISCO -- The SFMTA has closed multiple blocks in the area surrounding the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco's Nob Hill to vehicle traffic starting at noon Tuesday, with the closure lasting through early Wednesday evening.

The agency first posted about the planned street closures on social media Monday afternoon, saying the closures were "due to a VIP visit." 

While authorities would not confirm that the closure was related to President Biden coming to the Bay Area on Tuesday and Wednesday to attend several campaign events, there was rampant speculation online that the presidential visit triggered the streets being shut down.  

UPDATE: President Biden arrives at Moffett Field for Bay Area campaign visit

According to the announcement the closures from 12 p.m. Tuesday through 6 p.m. Wednesday would impact:

  • California between Mason & Stockton
  • Sacramento between Mason & Powell
  • Mason between California & Clay
  • Powell between California & Clay

California is closed where it intersects at Mason, Powell and Stockton, while Sacramento is closed where it intersects with Mason and Powell.

The closure is impacting service on all three cable car lines: Powell-Mason, Powell-Hyde, and California Street. The two Powell Street cable cars will have switchbacks with bus service substitutions, while the California Street cable car will be replaced by a bus line. Those buses will be routed to get around the closed area, as will the 1 California bus. Additional information on the closures and reroutes is available on the SFMTA website

Video from the area showed that pedestrian traffic was still being allowed on the closed streets, though a number of vehicles that had been parked where tow-away signs were posted could be seen getting removed by tow trucks. 

President Biden was scheduled to arrive in the Bay Area Tuesday afternoon at Moffett Field in Mountain View shortly before 4 p.m., but landed early at around 3:30 p.m.

While the White House did not release information on the campaign events when the visit was confirmed last week, there is a Tuesday reception for the Biden Victory Fund being hosted by Mark Heising and Liz Simons. The sold-out event in Atherton required campaign donations ranging from $5,000 to $100,000, according to the event website.   

According to the White House, on Wednesday the President will meet with the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) in addition to attending two campaign receptions. One of those events is reportedly set to be held in San Francisco and is being hosted by Democratic fundraiser Gretchen Sisson, who is married to tech executive and Facebook co-founder Andrew McCollum.

The president was last in the region in June for a three-day trip. During that visit, he met with tech leaders to discuss artificial intelligence technologyannounced a $600 million investment in climate change adaptation strategies around the country, and went to two campaign events in Los Gatos and Atherton.

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