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San Francisco Bicyclists, Pedestrians Get Their Own Space Atop Twin Peaks

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- San Francisco's Twin Peaks is about to get a lot more bicycle and pedestrian-friendly with a new two-year pilot program set to begin in June.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board voted unanimously last week to approve a pilot project that prohibits motorized vehicles on the east side of Twin Peaks Boulevard. The east side faces downtown and the East Bay.

Twin Peaks, at 922 feet in elevation, is a world-famous tourist attraction, to which most people drive, or take a tourist bus, according to the San Francisco Recreation and Parks department's Twin Peaks visitor information.

"Many miss an opportunity to experience the coastal scrub and grassland communities of this 64-acre park," according to SF Rec and Park.

Originally called Los Pechos de la Choca, or Breasts of the Maiden, by Spanish settlers, SF Rec and Park maintains that the adjacent peaks provide not only stunning views, but "a treasure trove of animal and plant diversity."

According to Moving SF, the SFMTA's blog, "the road that loops around the mountain top in a 'figure 8' is underused by car traffic and the loop's intersections are confusing."

Using paint and temporary barriers, the SFMTA and SF Rec and Park's pilot program will turn the eastern half of the figure 8 roadway into a car-free area.

For visitors who drive to Twin Peaks, the SFMTA plans to incorporate parking spaces at the peaks' center and south intersections.

The west side of Twin Peaks will be redesigned to accommodate two-way traffic.

Come June, people biking and walking atop Twin Peaks will have a new open space from which to enjoy the scenic views of San Francisco, free from vehicular traffic.

By Hannah Albarazi - Follow her on Twitter: @hannahalbarazi.

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