Rob Anderson's commentary on San Francisco politics from District 5
Labels: Housing in the City
posted by Rob Anderson @ 10:11 AM
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One can skip the body text and just read to the byline of this citilab.com article on SF housing costs:What's the Matter With San Francisco? -- the words: "by GABRIEL METCALF" tell the whole story of What's the Matter With San Francisco.Metcalf: "I moved to San Francisco for its radical politics. Lots of people did, for generations. Maybe it was like moving to Los Angeles if you wanted to be a movie star: If you wanted to be part of the grand project of reconstructing the American Left in the petri dish of a single city, San Francisco beckoned."The quirky, counter-cultural San Francisco so many of us fell in love with is almost gone now, destroyed by high housing costs. We’ve lost not only the politics, but all kinds of cultural experimentation that just doesn’t thrive in places that are expensive.We are watching the old San Francisco slip away before our eyes." (shades of Chris Daly!)Of course he wasn't here to be a part of, or even witness, the "quirky, counter-cultural old San Francisco," it was the arrival of his kind with their stories already written that destroyed it.Over ten years ago Metcalf, SPUR, et al, turned Valencia St. into Columbus, Ohio and they're trying to do it to the rest of SF. When the "Greening Guerrero" crowd (led by SPUR's transportation expert) finally gets rid of Mitchell's Ice Cream they will have run out everything left of the "quirky, counter-cultural old San Francisco" Metcalf missed out on but professes to love so dearly. The line of real San Franciscans waiting outside Mitchell's, that evil car parking lot behind the shop (the only reason they're still in business) and the dearth of bicycles just flies in the face of SPUR "urbanism." In recent years Mitchell's has become surrounded by bike lanes, a Google bus stop, an empty and ugly "Pocket Park," a City CarShare space, a bicycle boulevard and a coffee house with both a parklet and bike corral on the street. It remains a tiny island of old SF in an ever swelling ocean of sterile conformity.Since his kind tout the "data-driven" approach so much (Wiener is the champion of this 3Ts babble) why don't they correlate data on the increase in SF rents with data on a concomitant increase in bicycling or in number of parklets? The increase in number of registered automobiles in SF certainly doesn't correlate with increase in rents. But Metcalf's article doesn't mention things like that.As Jane Jacobs noted, "when a place gets boring, even the rich people leave."
Mitchell's is dying because their ice cream sucks compared to Three Twins, Bi-Rite and Humphrey Slocumb. The line of people waiting at Mitchell's are from Daly City.
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