Monday, September 13, 2010

Anti-car folks oppose CityPlace today

A picture of what Levy and Radulovich want to preserve

The Planning Commission
approved the EIR for CityPlace---a shopping mall to be constructed on the most blighted block of Market Street---but the anti-car Tom Radulovich has appealed the approval to the Board of Supervisors, which will hear his appeal this afternoon. Radulovich, of the anti-car group, Liveable City, opposes the project because it includes 188 parking spaces for the mall's customers.

Radulovich will be represented by Arthur D. Levy, best known in District 5 for helping to preserve the derelict Harding Theater property from being turned into housing units and retail space. Thanks to Levy, Supervisor Mirkarimi, and David Tornheim, the owner of the Harding property is now unable to either develop the property or to sell it, and it continues to blight the middle of the Divisadero corridor. Levy is so proud of "saving" the Harding, he provides a link to a picture of the eyesore on his website! Levy will post the picture above on his site if the appeal is successful.

One of Radulovich's recent victories includes preventing the Port Authority from providing more parking spaces near the successful Ferry Plaza.

Today's vote by the supervisors on Radulovich's appeal will reveal how far the city is willing to allow the anti-car movement to determine city policy, not just on traffic but on development. If the city is going to reject a company that's proposing a major development for the worst block on Market Street, we'll know that the inmates are truly running the asylum.

Postscript: I should have known that the Bicycle Coalition also opposes the CityPlace development. Andy Thornley contributes a lie to to the discussion: “We do not want to stop the project. We want to improve environmental analysis in this city.”

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26 Comments:

At 11:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Today's vote by the supervisors on Radulovich's appeal will reveal how far the city is willing to allow the anti-car movement to determine city policy."

You have it backwards. City policy already in place set the number of spots allowable for this location. That policy was overriden by a developer wanting more parking. What's already happened is car-centric thinking has overriden existing City policy.

 
At 11:19 AM, Anonymous mikesonn said...

Both CityPlace and the Ferry Building have no access to transit - oh wait...

Also, no mention about the AMPLE amounts of parking within blocks of both locations.

Head planted firmly in the sand.

 
At 11:22 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

The Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors determine what city policy is. It would be dumb if they vote in favor of the anti-car fanatics to in effect veto a much-needed development for San Francisco.

 
At 12:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"to in effect veto"

Drama bomb.

Just because CityPlace gets fewer parking spots than they want does not mean the project won't happen...

 
At 12:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"One of Radulovich's recent victories includes preventing the Port Authority from providing more parking spaces near the successful Ferry Plaza."

What a terrible thing! You said it yourself, the Ferry Building is wildly successful, despite the lack of additional parking.

"If the city is going to reject a company that's proposing a major development for the worst block on Market Street, we'll know that the inmates are truly running the asylum."

I beg to differ, the WORST block on Market St. isn't between 5th and 6th, but rather between 6th and 7th.

 
At 1:48 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

The city should give them as much parking as they want.

 
At 2:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

they can have parking as long as there is a bike lane in the parking lot.

 
At 2:50 PM, Anonymous mikesonn said...

"The city should give them as much parking as they want."

And you take Muni? How do you suppose those cars are going to get into the parking spaces? Fair dust? They drive on our streets, clogging up and polluting our public spaces, endangering pedestrians and cyclists alike, and slow Muni to a crawl. The more cars given free storage in the area, the more cars that are going to be driven there. BART and Muni (underground and above-ground) are withing a stone's throw along with AMPLE parking within several blocks.

CityPlace definitely does not need more parking then is already zoned for that area. I think they'll do just fine.

 
At 11:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

City Place basically agreed to give the SFMTA 1.8 million bucks. Clearly that wasn't breaking their backs. Unless you think that CityPlace having 1.8 million bucks is inherently better than the City getting that money...

 
At 12:03 PM, Anonymous Najko said...

THe much bigger problem is rounding up the drunk homeless people and putting them in crates or some other storage facility. You solve that problem and you can have some parking!

I couldn't care less about more chain stores and drooling tourists, but in general, I support this plan.

 
At 12:11 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Yes, MTA needs the money to pay Ford's $300,000 salary and $225,038 for this guy they hired earlier this year to "be responsible for all of Muni’s management and operation strategies." What does that leave for Ford to do?

 
At 12:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ford will be left with the task of re-routing the 43 once Masonic becomes a congested bike lane nightmare.

 
At 9:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, the city should give them as much parking as they want!

...so they can put in some chain stores in the most anti-corporate and anti-car city in America.

 
At 9:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

For being a so called "anti-car" city, there are plenty of cars that seem to function just fine on our streets.

I don't ever confront traffic congestion where I'm driving here. Pretty easy to get around as a matter of fact.

I support lots of parking in the new Cityplace, as well.

 
At 10:12 AM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

More than five years ago, Curt Sanburn wrote an article "Driving San Francisco Sane," June 29, 2005) for the SF Weekly that annoyed the city's bike people because he said the same thing: once you master the city's peculiar traffic grid, driving in SF is easy.

The city's anti-car movement hates the very idea that driving in SF can be convenient, and they'd like to put an end to that.

 
At 12:27 PM, Anonymous mikesonn said...

Sadly, not many people drive like that. But just like you take a few instances of a certain action and blow it up to be the norm, this fits your narrative. If people drove the speed limit and had patience for pedestrians, then we'd all be better off. Sadly, that isn't really the case.

 
At 12:47 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Oh Mike, don't be sad! According to the city's annual reports, SF is in fact becoming safer for everyone---cyclists, motorists, pedestrians---over the years. The bike lobby's "narrative" requires a perpetual sense of danger and that there's a great safety problem on our streets, but the facts say otherwise.

 
At 12:56 PM, Anonymous mikesonn said...

Rob, we've had this conversation.

 
At 1:55 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Yes. I provided facts and provided rhetoric---and now, sadness.

 
At 3:56 PM, Anonymous mikesonn said...

Sadness that you don't focus your efforts to make Muni run faster and better, but instead waste your breath and energy fighting against any change.

I will give you the fact that you are very good at finding and manipulating data to fit your argument.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to walk to AT&T park.

 
At 4:41 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

Spent an awesome day at the Academy of Sciences. Awesome space and exhibits. Parked in the great underground garage that borders the Academy building and the De Young. The garage was nearly full, easy to get into and out of.

Lots of families, young and old, kids etc at the Academy.

Saw only about 10 bikes in the bike racks near by...hmmmm..

I could swear someone here told us that cars were on the way out, and that most families should get around by bike. Gosh, what happened to that notion?

 
At 6:06 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

"Sadness that you don't focus your efforts to make Muni run faster and better, but instead waste your breath and energy fighting against any change."

I'm fighting a defensive battle to prevent the city from delaying the Muni lines that run on the busy streets where the city plans to take away traffic lanes to make bike lanes. Won't you join me in this struggle, Mike? Your allies the bike people have targeted Masonic Ave. for bike lanes by removing street parking and eliminating the ability to change lane configurations during commute hours on a street that carries more than 32,000 vehicles every day. The new bike lanes will effectively "calm"/jam up traffic on Masonic and thereby delay the #43 Masonic Muni line, which is used by more than 12,000 people every day.

"I will give you the fact that you are very good at finding and manipulating data to fit your argument."

I find most of the data I "manipulate" in the city's own traffic and accident reports, which are all available through the MTA's website.

 
At 6:17 PM, Blogger Rob Anderson said...

Rocky's Dad:

Yes, the anti-car movement, including the SF Bicycle Coalition, bitterly fought the garage both before and after city voters chose to build it way back in 1998. Supervisor Mirkarimi supported that misguided cause early in his first term, though he backed off after he finally got some real information on the situation from Mike Ellzey, executive director of the Concourse Authority.

 
At 8:24 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

Yes, exactly Rob. They fought the concourse garage bitterly. I'm so glad it was built.

It's done now and well used and it didn't destroy GG Park one bit. It serves a lot of families, elderly and disabled who enjoy going to the museums and the music pavilion.

At the same time, I saw lots of bike riders and walkers in the park enjoying the day. And lots of cars parked along the perimeter roads. Everyone seems to co-exist together just fine.

When are the anti-car pro-bike people going to understand this and work TOGETHER to understand that both cars and bikes are possible in the city? They are so myopic and narrow focused that they can't see past their own handlebars.

Thanks for continuing to bring their misguided directions to our attention.

 
At 1:33 PM, Blogger murphstahoe said...

"When are the anti-car pro-bike people going to understand this and work TOGETHER to understand that both cars and bikes are possible in the city?"

Give me a break. If you or Rob could, you'd ban bicycles. You can claim otherwise, but nobody believes you. Given that, you have no credibility - of course this is not a precedent.

Nothing but a bully ;)

 
At 3:44 PM, Blogger rocky's dad said...

You don't get a break.

I suppose I could say that you and the bike nuts would like to ban ALL cars.

But I'm pretty sure that's not what you think or believe. You just don't care to acknowledge that cars are a valid and useful form of transportation for many people in The City. Remember: bikers are a pretty small percentage of the population; largely young, white males, to be blunt.

I clearly described how much the new concourse garage is used at GG Park and how well integrated it is into the park fabric. No bikes were harmed.

So you have a hard time dealing with the success of the garage, and you're angry that more people don't live just like you and ride a bike EVERYWHERE. Not gonna happen.

Deal with it.

 

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