Posts Tagged ‘earthquake’

Shabby, Rusted Japantown – We’d All Have Been MUCH Better Off Without REDEVELOPMENT, Ch. CCLIX – Concrete And Clay And General Decay

Thursday, August 17th, 2017

Our J-Town is sort of a mess, not that I’m complaining, not that I’m calling for a “Fix-It Team” to drop everything and work on the solitary issue, that I, the monomaniacal activist, care about, no not at all. Let me explain.

All this Redevelopment stuff, all this concrete put in in the 1960’s is not up to snuff earthquake-wise – the garage, the east mall, the west mall, just entire blocks of Redevelopment. How on Earth can you bring things up to 2017-era minimal standards without spending a metric shit-ton of (non-existent) money? Well IDK.

And if even if you had the money to spend, how long would it take? How many years? What they’ve been talking about, for years/decades is an entire redo, a Re-Redevelopment, which would entail kicking out all the shops and restaurants, the bustling successful ones along with those just scraping by, and have them go … go where exactly? How about excessively wide Webster Street? I’m talking about the actual street itself – take out a couple lanes and the median and set up temporary shops, you know, Hayes Valley-style. That was a proposal.

And then, tens of millions of dollars (and who knows, nine figures?) could be poured in to seismic up.

(And to pay for this, there would have been a $100k tax on condos, so good luck with that – do you want to build up Japantown with slivers filled up with 500-1000 new condo units? Well, that’s what some people wanted.

Anyway, the moral of the story is for SFGov to not be so goddamned confident with future projects. Kind of like, “Don’t Just Do Something, Just Stand There.” And maybe we should instead spend our money on fixing up our Mistakes From The Past.

JMO.

And now, Japantown, a land of Wind and Ghosts:

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And car break-ins, of course, for tourists and locals alike. The expensive signs make everything better though, some feel:

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So you want to build a bridge, young Designers and Architects and Planners, but you don’t want to maintain it, that’s Someone Else’s Problem? You want to get it on to Make the Baby, but you don’t have the Staying Power to take care of the Baby. It sure as Hell looks that way:

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But newish banners – that’s the solution, so far:

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In the meantime, Concrete and Clay. 

And General Decay

FIN

Rec and Park’s Anti-Vandalism Effort at the McKinley Statue in the Panhandle Gets Hit with … Vandalism

Wednesday, August 9th, 2017

Here’s your background and here’s how this site looks today:

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Suffice to say that this statue was going to need some work done anyway, and if the Arts Commish / RPD got a permanent fence put up (the way some people want) any sort of tagging wouldn’t look this bad, and it’s probably going to be a lot more difficult to get your painted message to the streets to stick (literally stick) around – suffice to say all that, but nevertheless Rec and Park’s Anti-Vandalism Effort at the McKinley Statue in the Panhandle Gets Hit with … Vandalism.

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Shakedown 1998: How the Neighbors of Sutro Tower Held Digital TV Hostage for Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars

Friday, July 21st, 2017

[Feel free to boot up (Shakedown) 1979 by the Smashing Pumpkins while you read – that’s the reference.]

Here it is, noble Sutro Tower, beloved symbol of Frisco. The vertical part in the middle is an add-on – it brought / brings digital TV to the Bay Area.

Well, two decades ago it caused consternation to certain (and certainly now) millionaire homeowners of Midtown Terrace, Forrest Knolls and basically the whole Twin Peaks area what’s located in the “fall zone.” (Uh, that’s in quotes due to the fact that this phrase was made up by some area attorney homeowner back in the day. But it’s center of gravity is like 16 underground, so as long as it stays together as a rigid body (and, you know, it probably will – I’m not promising you anything though), I don’t think it can fall down.

Anyway, noble Sutro. I think this is as close as I’ve ever been to it at an altitude higher than the base, if that makes sense:

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So, just as area attorneys (and USF law students) banded together back in the 1970’s to deprive us of our landmark, area attorneys banded together in the 1990’s to fight the relatively minor addition of a 100-foot long metal “auxiliary antenna” for digital TV broadcast.

All this digital antenna fooforall was ably covered by INTERESTED PARTY the San Francisco Chronicle in 1998. And look:

“The 977-foot Sutro Tower is owned by four television stations: KRON, KTVU, KGO and KPIX. KRON is owned by Chronicle Publishing Co., which also controls The Chronicle.” 

Hello! (The writer properly put fall zone in quote marks. Good.)

Obviously the fretful homeowner lawyers were threatening to sue, but also obviously we now have this auxiliary antenna, so how did that happen? Well, Sutro Tower Inc. (STI) had to fork over some cold hard cash:

“STI agrees to contribute:

a. $3,000.00 per year to the Midtown Terrace Home Owners Association. The initial contribution payable prior to December 31, 2008. Subsequent contributions to be made on or before July 1 of each year

b. $4,500.00 one time contribution to the Twin Peaks Improvement Association for an open space improvement project.

c. $6,000.00 one time contribution to the Forrest Knolls Neighborhood Organization to replace the Forrest Knolls entrance sign.

d. $ 10,000.00 one time contribution for the benefit of the surrounding area to purchase two drinking fountains one each at the walking paths around two area reservoirs. The contribution will be payable only when the fountains are approved by the appropriate agencies and actually purchased.”

The big winner? Well it’s gotta be the MTHOA, which gets three grand every year from here to eternity, paid for by Channels 2, 4,* 5, und 7.** All that’s gotta add up to a couple hundred thou eventually.

Read the rest of the agreement if you want. (You don’t hear so much about the RF concerns anymore – I guess people have other things to worry about these days. And what else, a few people were complaining about red and white lead paint chips falling down and landing in the soil a while back. I haven’t heard about that issue lately either.)

On the up side, the people who live there have benefited from some nice middle class welfare over the years such as mortgage interest deductibility, Prop 13, and massive massive home price appreciation since the 1970s / 1990’s, the times when the yammering was going full tilt.

It’s pretty much a happy ending. Play us out, Wiki:

Despite the initial revulsion of some residents, Sutro Tower is now recognized by many as a Bay Area icon, it appears in local art, television shows, and movies as one of the architectural symbols of the city. The tower is featured in video games, business logos, on clothing, as furniture and even tattoos. The U.S. band Information Society used it on the cover of their album Don’t Be Afraid. A local entertainment guide, SF Station, uses it as a logo, as does the collaborative art game SFZero and the Expose SF art competition.”

And Don’t Be Afraid, Midtown. Your tower is 100% Pure Energy. It brings us our Information Society.***

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And oh, I just came across this:

Sutro Tower: The Origins of an ‘Eyesore’ By Jessica Placzek

Enjoy.

*Which is no longer owned by the Chronic – it’s master is now Nexstar Media Group.

**I can’t host a Super Bowl party when NBC is doing the broadcast, cause I’m a cutter, a cable cutter since like aught-nine. And no Olympics either. 

***Or Vast Wasteland, your pick. When somebody presses the remote button wrong, the digital TV turns on. Like 16 channels – home shopping network, plus Spanish and Chinese language programs.  

SF Arts Commission vs. KKKatie et. al. – McKinley Statue in GGP Panhandle Shrouded for Seismic Upgrade, Conservation

Friday, June 30th, 2017

I hadn’t seen this new construction.

Let’s start with this:

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That was from a while back, from KKKatey, who ended up getting arrested by the SFPD.

And this was about as bad as things got:

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Fell free to go back back back into history – keep on scrolling for the photos.

Anyway, RPD  / SFAC / SFPD didn’t have a handle on graffiti a decade or two back, but you see a lot less of it now.

Here’s the fantasy, held by some in power, of how SFGov should handle ‘tings:

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See, it’s a hippie fence!

IDK, man.

So now have the current effort. I guess things started here, back in ’13.

And this is how things look now, in the summer of ’17:

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Scaffolding and everything:

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Like a tiny Statue of Liberty:

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And there you have it…

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Ungradeable Backyard, Frisco, Just a Few Miles from the San Andreas Fault

Tuesday, March 28th, 2017

This is the high-rent district of Sea Cliff, where you can’t expect much from your backyard except making sure your house doesn’t slide away during the next Big One:

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Hydraulic Seismic Dampers: These Contraptions are What’s Going to Keep You Alive When Another Big One Hits Frisco

Thursday, August 18th, 2016

These kinds of things are what holds up Frisco’s State Building in Civic Center:

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Normally you can’t see them, but Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP designed a nice window for at least one:

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Hurrah SOM!

Concrete and Clay and General Decay: Maintaining a Tall Christian Cross High Atop Earthquake Country Must Not Be Easy

Wednesday, September 16th, 2015

As seen in the Western Addition:

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Note internal cross-bracing…

With Love from Japan: Earthquake-Proof and Tsunami-Proof Soccer Ball Houses – As Seen at the Randall Museum

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Oh c’mon!

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Head on up to our Randall Museum to see other outside of the box / 20-sided truncated icosahedron ideas on earthquake safety.

From the source, the “Barier” people:

“Is your present house OK? Is it strong enough to endure a great earthquake or flood to be caused by global warming? Barier offers a safe, living space, a multi-functional, elegant and playful space, emphasizing each individual personality.

Barier is a soccer ball-shaped house developed by us (international patent pending). A soccer ball with which you played in your childhood gets bigger like a dream ball and appears as a place to live in. It floats on the sea and can be a rescue ship. We believe it will be a gift to those who never give up a dream.”

1906 Earthquake Shack: Reclaimed Wood From Before It Was Reclaimed

Tuesday, January 6th, 2015

This is what they looked like back in the day, before getting gussied up:

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Click to expand

The Next Big One, she is coming. Sooner or later. In the meantime, be sure to check out Earthquake: Life on a Dynamic Planet, a major exhibit at our California Academy of Sciences

Don’t Forget Your Broccoli! – It’s Time to Go Diving at the California Academy of Sciences

Friday, December 12th, 2014

Fish at our California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium love broccoli, apparently.

Arc of a diver/ broco-co-li:

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Who knows, maybe the seasonal reindeer do too?

Of course the big thing these days at the CAS is ‘Tis the Season for Science, running through January 4th, 2015.

And don’t miss out on the Shake House, which does a pretty good impression of the Loma Prieta Earthquake of 1989…