Posts Tagged ‘sutro tower’

Frisco’s Highest Elevator Car

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

Here it is:

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I don’t think it ever gets level, so you’re standing on a sloping floor the whole time:

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And then you go up up up to the highest horizontal point of Sutro Tower:

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I haven’t seen it in action lately, but here’s a shot from aught-four:

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And more recently:

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Or you can take the stairs I guess…

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.  

San Francisco’s Best (If Scariest) Commute: Riding the Elevator Basket Up Sutro Tower

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

As seen a few days back – that square, that’s your elevator car. Haven’t seen it in a while:

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And here’s the close-up color version, from all the way back in 2004:

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(I remember thinking how the workers in the basket should have appeared clearer in this photo. I guess I was super-far away, oh well.)

In closing, take that, Great Pyramid. Pwned:

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San Francisco: “A City on the Grow” – Tower Cranes Everywhere

Tuesday, October 28th, 2014

It’s $an Francisco, 2014:

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Click to grow

Streetfighter 94117: New SFPD Park Station Captain Raj Vaswani Takes Down a Shoplifter at the Lucky, You Know, Personally

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

That is, if I’m reading this right:

Probation Violation – Fulton/Masonic – 10/02/2014 4:25PM

Captain of Park Station who was on routine patrol is approached by a loss prevention agent. The agent states a theft had just occurred at Lucky’s supermarket and the suspect was still in sight. Captain observed the subject walking away and immediately ordered the thief to stop, which the thief was reluctant to do. The Captain was able to catch up to the thief and attempt to take him into custody. The thief would not go down without a fight. After a brief struggle, the Captain was able to overpower the thief and take him into custody. The thief was on felony probation for the transportation of drugs.”

PARK STATION, COMPANY F, WHERE THE SUMMER OF LOVE NEVER ENDS:

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“Man Out Watching the Lunar Eclipse” – A Ten-Second Night Shot of Sutro Tower from Kite Hill

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

It’s yet another great photo from Trophygeek:

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Sutro Tower + Mothra = HAIGHT ASHBURY COMMUNITY NURSERY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

Based upon the wingspan, I’m thinking the kids are referencing Showa-era Mothra:

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If you want, Follow Sutro Tower on Twitter – perhaps that will inspire it to Tweet more than once per year.

(Thank you, Sutro Tower, for broadcasting the recent World Cup for free at 1080i.)

Now let’s close with a bunch of NIMBY complaints about the tower plus the Sutro Tower, Inc FAQ:

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Mount Sutro Cutty Sark – A Short Skirt Made o’ Fog

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

Her cutty-sark, o’ foggy wan
That while a lassie she had worn, 
In longitude tho’ sorely scanty, 
It was her best, and she was vauntie,- 
Ah! little ken’d thy reverend grannie, 
That sark she coft for he wee Nannie, 
Wi’ twa pund Scots, (’twas a’ her riches), 
Wad ever grac’d a dance of witches!

LONDON CALLING! 4/20 Day 2014 Coming This Easter Sunday – Haight-Ashbury Supervisor London Breed Wants a Crackdown

Wednesday, April 16th, 2014

Here’s what Annual 420 Day looks like, not too far from the Haight Street McDonalds on Stanyan.

That’s not fog, that’s a cloud of exhaled Mary Jane:

An excellent capture from world-famous Broke-Ass Stuart.

All right, Happy 420 Day 2014!

And now, let’s hear from London Breed:

“April 16, 2014

Sunday, April 20th Activities in Golden Gate Park and the Haight-Ashbury

This Sunday, April 20th, will see not only Easter celebrations throughout the City, but the likely return of an informal and unpermitted “4/20” gathering in Golden Gate Park and the Haight, which has caused significant problems in the community over the years and was particularly problematic last year.

Crowds strained police, Muni, and park resources, overwhelmed residential streets, and in several instances, damaged public and private property. Traffic came to a standstill as cars swarmed thearea. Garbage overflowed from curbside cans that proved unequal to the occasion. And on Sunday, 4/21, staff and volunteers with the Recreation and Parks Department had to laboriously collect over 10,000 pounds of litter left in the parks, not to mention the trash collected by the Department of Public Works from the upper Haight to Hayes Valley.

I am determined not to allow these impacts again this year. Over the past months, I have worked closely with the Police and Parks Departments, Mayor Lee’s office, and the MTA on a comprehensive city approach to this event. There is no sponsor for 4/20, no organizer to hold to account. But I want the community to know that their Supervisor and their government are doing everything possible to ensure a safe, peaceful April 20th for both visitors and residents.

San Francisco, as always, welcomes celebrants with open arms, but this Sunday there will be boundaries to keep the community safe, and there will be no tolerance for anyone using 4/20 as an excuse to harm our parks or neighborhoods.

 There will be increased law enforcement presence both uniform and plainclothes—including Juvenile Probation Officers—in the Park, upper and lower Haight, and surrounding neighborhoods with a strict enforcement approach to all code violations.

 Parking is very limited in the area, and there will be Parking Control Officers (PCOs) ticketing and/or towing vehicles parked illegally in any way, e.g. on lawns or in neighbors’ driveways. PCOs will also be deployed at busy intersections to keep traffic and transit moving.

 Unpermitted booths and concessions in the Parks will not be allowed. Such enterprises will be immediately cited and removed.

 Traffic control officers, SFPD, and Muni will be on hand in the afternoon to help move visitors out of the neighborhoods quickly and safely. Muni will reroute buses off Haight Street between Stanyan and Masonic to avoid delays. 

If our neighborhoods and parks are expected to continue hosting a large gathering, without an organizer or any resources beyond those provided by the taxpayer, we must all be vigilant in ensuring the event is safe, clean, and responsible.

LONDON N. BREED

City Hall 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place San Francisco, California 94102-4689 (415) 554-7630

Fax (415) 554 – 7634 TDD/TTY (415) 554-5227 E-mail: London.Breed@sfgov.org

Photo: Twin Peaks, Christmas Tree Road, and the Sutro Tower, All Being Flooded with Fog

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

Carl Sandburg. 1878–

76. Fog

THE fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches 
and then moves on.

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