Cesar Chavez Street, San Francisco


Cesar Chavez showcases how to successfully redesign a primary arterial route into a neighborhood destination, improving modal share, water sensitive design, biodiversity and safety whilst maintaining through traffic efficiency.

The Cesar Chavez Street Improvement Project was undertaken on the western portion of one of San Francisco’s busiest corridors from 2011 to 2013.  The project successfully transformed a high speed, unsafe six lane “highway” to a much safer, more pedestrian-focussed street.

Project Summary


Cesar Chavez Street is a major corridor running east-west from San Francisco Bay through several inner city suburbs to the central area of San Francisco.  

The street had been uniformly widened during the 1930s and 40s to its present six lane configuration.

The 2011 project included both major improvements to the existing sewer system in and around the local area as well as major streetscape improvements.

The western end of this long street is surrounded by residential neighbourhoods and city parks while the eastern part of Cesar Chavez Street is a vital truck route connecting the City’s main industrial districts to highways leading to the Bay Bridge and to the peninsula.

Work is now underway to similarly improve and slow the eastern section of this corridor.​