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Sweeping changes are coming to two of San Francisco’s deadliest streets, which will get miles of two-way protected bike lanes, shorter street crossings, specially timed traffic lights and a red transit-only lane to speed Muni buses.

The changes to Howard and Folsom streets, approved Tuesday by the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s Board of Directors, are designed to slow traffic through the booming South of Market area, making the streets safer for bicyclists and pedestrians while speeding public transit. They’ve been in the works for years but the need for them was underscored by the death of Tess Rothstein, a 30-year-old bicyclist who was struck and killed by a truck while riding on Howard near Sixth Street in March.

Still, it will take until 2023 before the changes are completed.

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