The Newspaper of the San Francisco Bay Chapter
March - April 2007
San Francisco briefs
Piers 27 - 31
The Sierra Club opposes the Shorenstein Corporation's development proposals for Piers 27 - 31.
Shorenstein purchased development rights there from the Mills Corporation, after the Board of Supervisors rejected Mills' plans, but Shorenstein is still making the same mistake: proposing too much office space and parking and not enough open space and recreational use for this valuable spot on San Francisco's waterfront.
The Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) and the State Lands Commission have indicated similar concerns, and BCDC has asked for changes to the proposal.
The Club also supports undertaking a complete planning process for the northeast Bayfront before any development is allowed to take place.
San Francisco Public Utilities Commission staff and consultants are planning improvements to the city's wastewater system. The Club wants to make sure that the changes will provide environmental benefits and no harm.
The Sierra Club has signed on to the Sustainable Watersheds Alliance's objectives for a sustainable Wastewater Master Plan. These include:
Muni bus storage yard
The Sierra Club opposes Muni's idea of leasing its entire Kirkland bus storage and services site and moving the operation to a new site, to be acquired from the state, at Islais Creek. The Kirkland Yard is the entire block surrounded by Powell, Northpoint, Stockton, and Beach Streets. Muni hopes to use the lease revenue as a new source of operating funds.
The new location would be significantly further from the end points of most Muni runs, and so buses would have to consume more operator time and fuel, "deadheading" between the yards and their starting/ending points. The move would therefore increase Muni's operating costs. It would also increase diesel pollution to a part of San Francisco already impacted by industrial pollution and two freeways.
As an alternative, the Club proposes retaining the current bus yard and developing housing above it. The yard, surrounded by apartment buildings, a hotel, and an art school, is an appropriate housing location. Such development could raise nearly as much money as leasing the entire site.
The Marina renovation project needs to be modified to meet the needs of small-boat recreation.
City policies require that recreational facilities built on public land with public funds should be accessible to all users, including those of moderate means. This project, however, would remove almost all berths for boats under 25 feet while building more berths for boats 30 feet and longer. Access to the Bay should not be limited to those who can afford large yachts.
We don't want to stop truly necessary renovations, and the public should not subsidize even small-boat private yachting. The Group supports converting a portion of the parking lots at the Marina to dry storage for small boats, which should cost substantially less to build per boat than constructing larger berths in the Bay.
The goal is to keep the Bay accessible to all, without public subsidy.
The Trinity Project, a proposal to tear down about 300 rent-controlled apartments at Eighth and Market Streets and replace them with 1,900 new units, was the product of difficult negotiations among the owner, tenants, and Supervisor Chris Daly. The owner received an increase in the number of permitted units, in exchange for agreeing to resettle existing tenants into the new building and to preserve rent control for the existing and future residents of these units.
Some supervisors have criticized this agreement and are calling for it to be reopened. The Sierra Club San Francisco Group supports the agreement because it combines housing, density, and mixed uses sited near transit, with affordability and rent-control protection. We see this sustainable addition to the housing supply as a win-win for the developer, the city, and existing and future tenants.
© 2007 San Francisco Sierra Club Yodeler
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