Archive for April, 2010

On Saturday, April 17, the Ropes Course at Fort Miley celebrated 30 years of ropes, challenges and fun. I gave you a little peak of what the event was like last week and now you can see even more of the event and those who were involved in it. I hope you enjoy it and again, you can find out more about the ropes course at Fort Miley and how you can see it for yourself here.


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A Look at Sutro Baths

If you live in the Richmond, or even if you don’t, you have probably been by Sutro Baths. But how much do you actually know about the ruins and the history behind them? I went out and talked with a couple of people very familiar with the Baths and their history and put together this audio slideshow to tell a little of the history of Adolph Sutro and his bath house. Special thanks thanks to Woody LaBounty from the Western Neighborhoods Project for all of his help and for allowing me to use some of their pictures.

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The Ropes Course at Fort Miley in the Presidio celebrated its 30th birthday on Saturday with a free event where anyone could come check out the course and even try out some of the elements. The event was organized by a group of SF State students as a project for an Event Management class and included not only the Ropes Course event but a reception later on at the Lincoln Park Golf Course club house. Before Saturday, I had only ever walked by the ropes course so I was happy to check out this unique event and see for myself what it was like, I was definitely not disappointed! Here is an interview with Ian Mosier, one of the team leaders of the event. It is just a small excerpt of a longer video of the event to come so stay tuned. And if you would like more info about the Ropes Course at Fort Miley, check them out here.

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A couple of months back Mayor Gavin Newsom announced that the city intended to install a handful of “parklets” throughout the city.

A parklet isa kind of ultra mini park that would take the place of two or three successive parking spaces and would, according to the Chronicle,  “consist of raised platforms to make them level with sidewalks for seating, planters and bicycle parking.” The Chronicle also reports that each parklet will come at a cost of about $7,000.

One of these parklets is planned to go into the Richmond District at 5th Ave and Clement St., in front of Toy Boat Cafe. And it seems that that many people in the neighborhood are pretty positive about the parklet program.

And I must admit that I am a little surprised at how receptive the Richmond seems to be to this idea. Concerns about the cost and parklets usefulness aside, I have to wonder why residents and merchants would support the elimination of even a few parking spaces in an area already known for terrible parking.

The first thing I thought of was the controversial Geary Bus Rapid Transit Program. This program is a source of seemingly endless controversy in the Richmond and its primary opposition is led by merchants.

BRT opponents contend that the elimination of parking spaces on Geary will dramatically hurt their business in already tough economic times. Now, I know that a parklet only calls for the elimination of a few parking spaces on one block and BRT could potentially eliminate dozens of spaces throughout the Richmond, but all  the same no merchants seem to find this distressing.

Additionally, another big concern for BRT opponents is that they feel that Geary BRT was part of a larger effort to re-characterize the Richmond District, saying that “urban renewal” conditions were attached to the proposal. But couldn’t this parklet program easily be considered an “urban renewal” project.

Now, I’m not saying that all BRT opponents should suddenly come out against the new parklet in their neighborhood, I’m merely wondering why this proposal has gone over so easily in a neighborhood that tends to be very protective of its small businesses and wary of these kinds of city projects. What do you think?

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It’s the start of a new month and there is so much constantly going on in the Richmond I thought I would do something a little different. here is an interactive map of many of the events going on in the Richmond this month. I couldn’t include everything but I thought I would pick a few of the most relevant/interesting events happening in April and provide a few details. If you are having trouble viewing the map, make sure you click on “view larger map” underneath the picture.

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