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Scenic

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Ease

October 1998
5.0* mi.  AVS50  G13  6" (for city streets section, add est 20"- 50")
* freeway section only

4/4 lanes as the James Lick Freeway, 3/3 as the Van Ness connector (elevated expressway), 3/3 as both Van Ness Av and Lombard St, 2/2 as the Doyle Drive Expressway (elevated).

Events: southbound from South Van Ness on ramp to San Mateo County line
0.4: JCT I-80 and 101 South
0.7: interchange with I-80 complete
1.8: Army St, Bayshore Blvd
2.7: JCT 280, down to 3/3
3.2: Silver Ave
3.9: Paul Ave: use for McLaren Park, Bay View Park, Candlestick Park
4.1: Cow Palace, 3rd St, Visitacion Valley, back to 4/4
4.8: 3Com Park exit
5.0est: Brisbane city limit, San Mateo County line

E
vents: northbound from San Mateo County line to Marin county line
0.0: San Mateo County line
0.5: 3rd St, Silver Ave: use for McLaren Park, Bay View Park, Candlestick Park
1.2: JCT Hwy 280 (2 mandatory lanes right, 2B: N & S 280)
1.6: Silver Av
1.9: Alemany Blvd, Bayshore Blvd
2.7: Army St, Portrero Av
3.9: Vermont St
4.1: Central Freeway transition (101: 2 lanes left, I-80: 2 lanes right)
4.4: 9th St, Civic Center
4.6: transition complete
5.0: Duboce Ave, Mission St: Use Mission St for 101 North
5.3: S Van Ness (left, north)
5.5: Market St
5.7: Grove St: City Hall
6.2: Geary St
7.3: Lombard St (3 left lanes mandatory left) left here
8.3: Divisadero St
8.6: Lyon St: last street before expressway: Palace of Fine Arts
8.9: 19th Ave exit
9.3: View Area, last S.F. exit: Presidio Cliffs-Fort Scott Overlook, Presidio
10.7: Marin County line on Golden Gate Bridge

Hwy 101 can be thought of in two distinct sections: the expressway which hands its baton to Interstate 80 for the Bay Bridge, and the descent to Van Ness Ave to Lombard St which connects to the Golden Gate Bridge. Hwy 101 is probably the most difficult way to traverse San Francisco to the Golden Gate Bridge on a 'freeway.' This is because it is forced by limited space to descend onto local streets near downtown, and downtown means heavy traffic, aggressive driving, and career panhandlers at every intersection soliciting cars. Lombard St completes the circuit via Doyle Drive Expressway and the Golden Gate Bridge. The lights along Van Ness are not well timed, but left turns are generally allowed alternately where extra lanes are provided. Hwy 101 is 3.6 miles on city streets compared to 5.1 for Hwy 1, but you must pass through 41 lights on 101 compared to 29 for 1. The one great reward for taking this route is the Palace of Fine Arts. Access from here is preferred. Turn right on Lyon St which is the last street before Richardson Av transitions to the Doyle Drive Expressway and park easily on the street. Get back on Richardson easily from the same location. The route also passes by Davies Symphony Hall, City Hall, Ghirardelli Square (reasonably close), Fort Mason, and The Presidio. To access Crissy Field, continue straight on Lombard to Lincoln. The only way to access The Presidio from 101 is from the very last (or first) San Francisco exit just south of the toll plaza for the Golden Gate Bridge. This 'tourist perch' view area gives access to Merchant St, which means also to the highlight area of the Presidio cliffs via Langoon Ct. The best time to take 101 through the city is after 7pm. Then it's pretty fast.

East of Van Ness, 101 is elevated 3/3 for 0.4 where it interchanges with I-80 and becomes a large expressway. South of this interchange it is the James Lick Freeway. It is 4/4, pumping cars through the southeastern city. It is subject to rush-hour congestion and aggressive driving is the rule in this 4/4 section, but it is fast during non-peak times. The county line can be marked by Candlestick Park/Stadium and it is here that 101 passes very close by two interesting parks, Bay View Park and John McLaren Park (see Parks) The interchange for this access is difficult however. Candlestick State Recreational Area is another park here.

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