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Creative street design ideas for enhancing the livability of our neighborhoods

Here's an opportunity to step off the financial rollercoaster ride we've all been experiencing and focus on ways to bring more pleasure to our respective surroundings.   While the specific projects we'll explore are scheduled to take place in the Yerba Buena neighborhood of SF, they offer a roadmap that can be applied to improving the public realm in our own cities...even if they wouldn't stop a riot...{8^D.

Vest pocket plaza alongside the Old Mint

As San Francisco mayor Ed Lee noted  “These are important programs to facilitate vibrant social interaction and to promote pedestrian safety, beauty, sustainability and community pride."

This is the third is a recent series of Meetup events featuring urban design.  Previously we attended presentations by Rebecca Solnit with her imaginative atlas on the Infinite City, and Chron architecture critic, John King, who presented his list of appealing Cityscape views.

As with all such programs we'll meetup next door after for a beverage or dinner to discuss our impressions.  I will bring an array of Pinot Noirs to rate and rank in order to submit our collective assessment to the global "Smackdown" happening two days later. To learn more about this "people's choice" competition go to:   http://www.winetonite.com/2011/06/09/2nd-annual-pinot-noir-smackdown-august-18th-2011/

The  Yerba Buena Street Life Plan  was hatched over many months of neighborhood input led by CMG Landscape Architects.  The specific 36 recommendations have been rendered and are hanging at the  SPUR Urban Center.   The Principal of  CMG Landscape ArchitectsKevin Conger, who personally guided the proposals through the process, has been invited to present the plan to our group on an evening when SPUR stays open later.   

Most of you know about the reuse of Belden Place.  This plan has identified a number of similar places around Yerba Buena that follow the spirit of introducing more life into underutilized spaces like alleys and creating a friendlier sense of place.   Kevin will explore how these local recommendations have transferability to other locales.   Such recommendations cover such ideas as sites for public art, pedestrian interaction, food truck zones, even dog runs.   We will visit a "parkmobile" (below), now located around the corner from SPUR, that brings temporary gardens to a highly urban streetscape.

I hope you can join us for an absorbing few hours.

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  • tom m.

    Only a third of those who RSVP'd yes, including the photographer, moi, showed up. The usual Meetup member flakiness (one who did show said she was thinking of not coming but did so to honor her commitment--very unusual and laudatory). But what we lacked in quantity we gained in quality and as the photos show we had a good discussion format which led to a good discussion--the reason I continue to hold these sorts of events.

    August 18, 2011

  • Janet P.

    I'm not sure if I can make this evening event, but SPUR has also been holding lunchtime events on similar topics for those who work in the downtown area. They are extremely well attended so I think you have to RSVP.

    August 9, 2011

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  • tom m. +29
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