Pavement-to-Parks Plaza Opens Today in SF

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom will officially open the new pedestrian transit plaza on 17th St., built on a swath of land in the Castro district that until recently allowed cars.
May 13, 2009, 8am PDT | Tim Halbur
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DPW crews have been working at a feverish pace to complete the city's first "Pavement-to-Parks" plaza, pouring yellow, slip-resistant road paint over the surface and installing 70 demarcation bollards that will be filled with soil and gravel and adorned with fan palms, yucca jewels and birds of paradise. Crews are installing movable barriers at both ends of the plaza to allow for emergency fire access. Tables and chairs will also be situated around the plaza, and locked at night on a nearby catenary poll.

"The goal of this opening on Wednesday is to show how you can do something really quick, really simply," said Andres Power, an urban designer at the SF Planning Department.

Liz Ogbu, an architect with Public Architecture, which has designed the project pro bono, said, "This is a little nuts. It's sort of forced everyone to have to think out of the box and sort of roll with the punches and just be quick on their feet."

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Published on Tuesday, May 12, 2009 in Streetsblog SF
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