Posts Tagged ‘walking tour’

Nimbies Save Presidio’s Great Northern Parking Lot – Will Burger King Now Come Back?

Thursday, July 2nd, 2009

Boy, it was touch and go for a few years there, but news comes today that our beloved NIMBYs have managed to preserve the Great Northern Parking Lot of San Francisco.

See it? 700 spaces, free of charge. It’s historic, you know. When the U.S. Army wasn’t out there killing a million or so Filipinos it managed to create the GNPLoSF. Therefore, these parking spaces are sacrosanct:

img_5582-copy

Now that that pesky modern art has been gotten rid of, a question remains over what to do with the upper end of the Main Post. You know the Burger King corporation had an outlet that served as an Army Mess on the Presidio for so many years, it would be only fitting to give it the right of first refusal to get a chance to replace the famous itty bitty bowling alley that’s up there now.  

An artist’s conception, avec just one installation of evil modern art thrown in to see if the NIMBYs can tolerate it.  

museum-fisher copy

You see, that old, historic Presidio BK was a place “where a simple guy serving his country could get an inexpensive meal with a stunning view.” Wouldn’t it be nice to honor those memories with the biggest Burger King in the world? Put it right where the museum was supposed to go.

Either that, or a Jollibee. Your choice.

Presidio Update: Two More Open Houses Announced – Public Comment Ends June 1

Monday, May 11th, 2009

Your Presidio Trust has just announced another two Open House sessions concerning the Main Post. Make note of the location at Building 105, that Brokedown Palace (but I can assure you that parts of it are excellent). It’s sandwiched between Lincoln (no, not THAT Lincoln), Taylor (no, not THAT Taylor) and Montgomery (no, not THAT Montgomery). Just pop open the Google Map here. See? It’s right near where the Google Maps car got busted (or not, if you believe a certain U.S. Park Police Sargeant, who, really, oughta know).

Just get to the Building 104 Mouse House and then go downhill a skosh. There’s probably not going to be a program or anything – just drop by and yickety yack a bit… 

Main Post Open House with Presidio Trust Staff
Monday, May 18, 9 to 11 am
&
Wednesday, May 20, 6 to 8 pm
Main Post Information Center, 105 Montgomery Street

There’s always room for one more:

“Please join us for informal “open house” sessions at which Presidio Trust staff members will be available to respond to questions about proposed projects for the Main Post as well as questions about historic resources, transportation and parking, visitor use , and environmental sustainability. The public comment period for Main Post planning ends on June 1, 2009. Comments may be emailed to mainpost@presidiotrust.gov.”

Mercedes-Driving NIMBYs Pack Presidio Trust Transportation Workshop

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

As promised, the Presidio Trust Main Post Planning Transportation Workshop went off on April 22, 2009. Look here later on to see when and if two more similar meetings will occur in the very merry month of May. (The first should deal with historic resources and the other is slated to be a kind of catch-all open-mike night.) 

122 souls sat through a presentation of answers to a dozen key questions that people have been asking about concerning transportation – signalization, fees for parking, traffic loads, etc. I vowed to leave as soon as the public speakers veered off-topic – that took about ten seconds, so oh well. Regardless, this appeared to be a more-productive-than-average public yammer session. Assemblymember Tom Ammiano sent a representative (the well-informed Noriko Shinzato) as did Supervisor Michela Alioto-Pier, so it appears that interest in the plans for the Main Post remains strong.

Click to expand

Fully eleven Mercedes-Benzeses were out front, or in the lot up the hill, or in the overflow lot even further up the hill near the chapel. BMW was also well-repped, and there were a least three Porsches, including two expensive Porsche Cayenne minivans and one hepped-up Neunelfer.A richer group of parking-hungry NIMBYs would be hard to find. One bicycle.

All this Powerpoint stuff should be online in the near future, or maybe it already is.

Presidi-Go is already up to 300,000 trips per year.

Should the NIMBY’s, the people of means, be given more votes on this matter than tourists from Tempe? Only Time Will Tell. 

So there you have it, To Be Continued.

Presidio Update: Main Post Planning Transportation Workshop Set for April 22nd

Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

The Presidio Trust has replaced the cancelled April 16 meeting with a Transportation Workshop at 6:30 PM on April 22, 2009. There will be an overview of the transit issues being analyzed through the Main Post planning process, and staff will be on hand to answer questions about transportation issues. 

Main Post Planning Workshop: Transportation
Wednesday, April 22, 6:30 p.m.
Golden Gate Club, 135 Fisher Loop

Some drivers strongly oppose losing this gigantic, historic 700-car parking lot:

Oh well.

How will the NIMBYs get to this meeting about having too many cars in the Presidio?

A short, pleasant evening stroll? No.

Or perhaps a bike ride? No.

Guess again!

Presidio Update: April 16th Main Post Public Meeting Postponed

Monday, April 13th, 2009

Here’s the news of the morn regarding developments at the Presidio.

Please be advised that the Presidio Trust is cancelling the Main Post Public Meeting that was to be held on Thursday, April 16, at 6 pm at the Golden Gate Club. There will be no meeting on that date. Future meeting dates will be announced at www.presidio.gov as soon as the information becomes available.” 

Here’s what you’ll miss:

Word from Tia Lombardi, Director of Public Affairs at the Presidio Trust, is that this meeting will be rescheduled to a date yet to be determined.

On it goes…

500 People at Presidio Trust Board Meeting – Main Post Plans, Including CAMP Museum

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

Well, there were a few surprises at last night’s Presidio Trust  Board of Directors meeting at the Palace of Fine Arts. Get up to speed on the issues here, and then take a look below to see what it was like. Here’s a take from John Upton over at the Examiner and here’s another from Curbed SF.

After Presidio Trust Director Craig Middleton gave the crowd an update, everyone got to see more-detailed plans on the controversial CAMP museum proposal via a Powerpoint slideshow. The architect from San Francisco-based WRNS Studio received sustained applause when he finished his presentation. That was a surprise, certainly.

In fact, the audience seemed just about evenly split, with half supporting the Main Post plans and the other “flamethrowing” half opposing. That was a surprise as well.

Click to expand:

What’s this? Pro-museum protesters or supporters, or whatever you want to call them? Never before have I seen this:

For those of you who like to see issues simplified into dramaturgical dyads, a portion of the happy CAMPers are on the left and a portion of the opposing NIMBY and preservationist groups are on the right, the site of the anti-CAMPers’ putative news conference. 

The mise-en-scene. Were more people here than at the last board meeting on December 9th? Yes. The Palace of Fine Arts Theatre (made famous by the appearance last Fall of ukulele-playing Jake Shimabukuro - 3 million astounded YouTube viewers can’t be wrong) was half-full or half-empty, depending on your point of view. So that’s about 500 souls motivated enough to show up:

This chart actually makes sense to me now. It shows how far we’re progressing to the end of the process and the beginning of the inevitable lawsuit designed to chuck all these plans out the window.

And here we are, the proposed Contemporary Art Museum of the Presidio 2.0. (Learn about CAMP 1.0 here, via the New York Times.) The Gallery Building dominates but don’t forget about the quasi-subteranean Art Handling Building on the left and Building 101 in the upper right hand corner. There’s your ”B”-as-in-boy, billion-dollar CAMP museum:

Here’s a 3D view:

The Pavillion level is up top…

…and the Courtyard Level is down below:

Sections, just like my grandmother’s MRI!

The Future is Now:

All of the Gallery Building is below the altitude of the eaves of the Presdio Theatre, seen in foreground:

Subteranean by design/ I wonder what I would find if I met you:

The Gallery is three buildings, three buildings in one. Historic Building 100 and the defunct Presidio Theatre rise above:

Oh no! It’s the kids from UC Berkeley Law School. They practically hijacked the meeting. And that was the final surprise of the evening, before I had to get home to some Java curry. Now it’s one thing to be a millionaire homeowner NIMBY living in the Marina or Cow Hollow, but there’s literally millions of millionaires out there. On the other hand there are only so many folks able to get into Berkeley Law. The nine or ten speakers from the law school contingent displayed far more intellectual candlepower than typical speakers at these kinds of public meetings. 

This didn’t make for good theater, because the college kids were basically speed-reading their ideas into the record, but diverse and novel viewpoints were expressed, and that’s a Good Thing, right? It will be interesting to see the transcript when it comes out, certainly.

Here’s how I left it:

Oh, and about that crowd size estimate. The Examiner is saying just 250 people? So if four times as many people showed up, almost everybody would have had a seat in the venue (one that can handle 1000 if you include the small number of people who prefer to stand on the sidelines)? No way, Jose. The proper count is about 500.

To Be Continued…

Presidio Trust Public Board of Directors Meeting a Huge Success

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

The Presidio Trust wanted a big turnout, and that’s what they got. How many folks showed up last night at the Presidio Trust Public Board of Directors meeting? More than 500 and less than 1000. Read a vivid account here.

go8f0035-copy.jpg

These poor souls had to wait about 45 minutes before being admitted, but nobody was “turned away,” as has been alleged. Across the street you can see the “First Amendment Area” at Moraga and Monkey. That’s the nicest time, place, manner free speech area this lawyer has ever seen.

image_257-copy.jpg

The news of the evening is that public comment period will be extended to September, so expect another big meeting like this one. A transcript will be available soon, so let’s wait on that before getting into this too much.

Is there a NIMBY backlash developing among area youth?

The Mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom, was booed by a good chunk of the mob after he voiced support for the CAMP museum as well as the entire Presidio Trust proposal. Only in San Francisco….

go8f0052-copy.jpg

In the words of world-famous architect Richard Gluckman, “Working in San Francisco is not like anywhere else.”

Here’s what Angelo King of the Bayview Hunter’s Point Project Area Committee has to say, and here’s the official case made for the museum:

  • Over one thousand works of art from every facet of modern art – from sculptures and video installations to paintings and prints.
  • Greening of the Main Post Parade ground that is now a parking lot into a magnificent public park.
  • Rehabilitating existing historic buildings
  • Hands-on artists, ceramic and photography studios
  • C.A.M.P. is privately funded and will be a gift to the people of San Francisco
  • To be continued…

    Presidio Trust Public Board of Directors Meeting Tonight at 6:30 PM. It’s on!

    Monday, July 14th, 2008

    Well it seems like it takes forever to get anything done in this town, but we’ll be passing another milestone tonight. In the words of well-informed Marisa Lagos:

    Controversy over a series of proposed developments in the Presidio’s Main Post- most notably Gap founder Don Fisher’s 100,000-square-foot modern art museum – is heating up in advance of a meeting Monday.”

    Make sure you get to the correct location

    Presidio Herbst International Exhibition Hall, 385 Moraga Avenue (next to the Presidio Officers’ Club on the Main Post). The public is invited to offer comments on the draft Presidio Trust Management Plan Main Post Update Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (read more). If you have questions, please call the Presidio Trust Public Affairs Office at (415) 561-5418. View the board meeting agenda.”

    There seems to be a lot of interest in these developments:

    img_9412-copy.jpg

    This is what the start of the Main Post Walking Tour looks like. Feel free to check out this guided tour before tonight’s board meeting:

    “Monday, July 14, 4:30 to 6 pm. Meet Outside the Presidio Officers’ Club, 50 Moraga Avenue. On this easy-to-moderate 90-minute guided walk, Presidio Trust staff will discuss ideas for revitalizing the Main Post as the heart of an urban national park. Get answers to your questions and find out how you can make your opinions heard in this public process.”

    But what about you? Where can you protest?

    “A ‘First Amendment’ Area has been established on the lawn at the northwest corner of the intersection of Montgomery Street and Moraga Avenue, set back five feet from any sidewalk.”

    (Yes, it’s odd that the San Francsico index of streetnames has two Moragas and two Montgomerys.)

    Conveniently, this location is right next to the board meeting, the site of our new Richard Gluckman-designed CAMP museum, and the defunct movie theatre that’s scheduled to be reopened one of these days.  

    But the whole idea is to get inside and participate in the process, so why not? You’ll be able to see how many NIMBYs will turn out – you know, San Francisco has more than its fair share of NIMBYs. They’ll identify themselves by telling you how many years they’ve lived in such and such neighborhood.

    Then they’ll proceed with their favorite rhetorical trope, the metaphor. Which metaphor will prove most popular?

    A. Monster. Includes “giant” and other words connoting size.

    B. Alien. Includes any reference to otherworldliness.

    C. Disease. Includes anything cancer-related, such as “spread” or “metastasize.” (This one is a long-shot)

    D. Any other metaphor.

    And while we’re on the topic, the drinking game watchwords tonight will be separated into two categories, adjective and adverb. Hoist a drink upon hearing any mention of the word inappropriate. That game is for professional drinkers only, so as an alternative, take a drink of your favorite intoxicant when you hear either completely or totally in the same sentence as the aforementioned inappropriate.

    So there you have it. See you there!

    Check out the Presidio Main Post via Free Walking Tours this Summer

    Monday, June 16th, 2008

    Well, as promised, park officials over at the Presidio led a tour on Sunday describing new proposals for the area around the Main Post.

    Yesterday, a good turnout of about 75 people went on a 1.5 hour tour of El Presidio and the Main Post. Tour participants inside the Presdio Officer’s Club, click to expand:

    img_8590-copy.jpg 

    It’s your Presdio, of course, so feel free to attend other walking tours scheduled for this summer:

    Come see for yourself what proposals for the Presidio are all about. On this easy-to-moderate 90-minute guided walk, Presidio Trust staff will describe the birthplace of San Francisco at the heart of the Presidio – the historic Main Post – and discuss ideas for revitalizing it as the heart of an urban national park. Learn about proposals for a heritage center, an archaeology lab, public uses in the iconic brick barracks, a park lodge, reuse of the historic theatre, and a museum of contemporary art. Get answers to your questions and find out how you can make your opinions heard in this public process.

    img_8606-copy.jpg

    July 14th will be the next big event in the process of Bringing Back the Heart of the Presidio, as they say.

    See you there!

    The SFChron’s John King Proposes Moving CAMP Museum, Louvre Pyramid

    Friday, June 13th, 2008

    Well, just kidding about the San Francisco Chronicle Urban Design Writer John King wanting to move La Pyramide du Louvre, but wouldn’t that big old museum in Paris be so much nicer if this modern glass pyramid were moved, say, just 150 yards to the south?

    If you agree (or even if you don’t), head on over to Curbed SF and get your vote on about the siting of the soon-to-be fabulous Contemporary Art Museum of the Presidio.

    350320449_42baf1ec20_o.jpg

    Juxtaposition! Sacrebleu! Quelle horreur! Caio Basillio via Flickr 

    And while you’re at it, you might as well mark your calenders for the walking tour of the Main Post of the Presidio scheduled for 2:00 PM on Sunday, June 15th

    Come see for yourself what proposals for the Presidio are all about. On this easy-to-moderate 90-minute guided walk, Presidio Trust staff will describe the birthplace of San Francisco at the heart of the Presidio – the historic Main Post – and discuss ideas for revitalizing it as the heart of an urban national park. Learn about proposals for a heritage center, an archaeology lab, public uses in the iconic brick barracks, a park lodge, reuse of the historic theatre, and a museum of contemporary art. Get answers to your questions and find out how you can make your opinions heard in this public process. Layered clothing and comfortable shoes are recommended.

    Of course, comfortable shoes are always recommended. See you there, mon frère!