Monday, December 17, 2007

Only the bike people opposed the garage

In last Sunday's much-deserved bouquet John King threw to the transformation of the Concourse in Golden Gate Park, he only notes in passing the remarkable controversy over the underground garage:

The garage sparked opposition, including lawsuits that in 2004 brought construction to a halt. Critics ignored the overall benefits and focused on details such as alterations to the pedestrian tunnels leading into the bowl, or the supposed sacrilege of tucking a garage inside a park. But now that everything is in place, the ensemble works great.

Exactly who was it that opposed the garage under the Concourse? Who thought it was "sacrilege" to put a garage in the park? Even though it was a $55 million gift to the city, it was only the city's bike people who fought the garage bitterly from the start---and continued to fight it in court long after city voters passed Propostion J in 1998 authorizing its construction.

For the historical context of the opposition to the garage, click on "Concourse Garage" below.

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