Plans for Balboa Park Station, where three Muni trains, four BART lines and seven bus lines converge, include a reimagined plaza that’s more accessible to pedestrians, cyclists and those with mobility impairments as well as a more inviting community space to surrounding neighborhoods.

BART staff members have been leading town halls this month showing design changes made in response to feedback, such as more variety to open space and greater safety upgrades including new lighting and security cameras in the plaza, along pedestrian paths and around the station’s perimeter.

BART Board member Janice Li, whose district includes the Balboa Park Station, spoke at a virtual town hall last Saturday— the second of three scheduled to round out the year — to tout the “public benefits” to riders that will flow from the project.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE

From the San Francisco Business Times
By Laura Waxmann

More than five years of community planning to redevelop a 17.6-acre swath of land west of the City College of San Francisco’s Ocean campus came to a head on Thursday when a proposal for a 1,100 unit residential project on a portion of the Balboa Reservoir received its first significant approval.

With an unanimous vote, the San Francisco Planning Commission certified a final environmental impact report for the project and green-lit a development agreement with master developers Reservoir Community Partners, LLC.  The plan is to break ground in late 2021 or early 2022.

“I’m really persuaded by the unique opportunity of the site,” said Commissioner Sue Diamond. “It is rare to have this sized piece of land on the west side of the city that allows for the amount of master planning that has gone into creating an entire neighborhood.”

Read the entire San Francisco Business Times article here

Read the San Francisco Examiner’s article here

Justice4Amilcar Mural unveiled at Mission Housing site

More than four years after tragedy struck in the Mission, the people of the community can now take another step in their healing process.

The Justice4Amilcar Mural, “Alto al Fuego en La Misón” located at 3250 24th Street was unveiled Sunday morning. The mural is the largest in the Latino Cultural Corridor in a decade.

“It’s been an honor to partner with the community to support something that will hopefully bring us all together to heal,” said Mission Housing executive director Sam Moss. “This incredible work of art was created to celebrate the life and impact of Amilcar and Mission Housing is truly honored to be a part of it all.”

RELATED: Listen to the San Francisco inFlux podcast and their interview with the Justice4Amilcar Mural artists on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play or Podbean

The mural is dedicated to Amilcar Perez-Lopez, who was shot and killed by officers from the San Francisco Police Department on February 26th, 2015. For just under five years, Perez-Lopez’s death has elicited widespread protests throughout the city and media attention throughout the world. While charges were not filed against the officers responsible, Perez-Lopez’s family in Guatemala, and the Mission community where he lived and died, refuse to forget him and others lost to police violence.

“We’ve always believed that our buildings are part of the fabric of our community and a canvas in which our community can express their voices,” said Marcia Contreras, Deputy Executive Director at Mission Housing. “As such, it is their voice that matters the most.”

The mural portrays Perez-Lopez, his family demanding justice, and the other community members recently killed by SFPD: Mario Woods, Alex Nieto, Luis Gongora Pat, and Jesus Adolfo Delgado. The mural also depicts immigrants and migrants killed along the United States’ southern border: Roxana Hernandez, Claudia Patricia Gomez Gonzalez, and Oscar and Valeria Martinez.

“This mural not only remembers the tragedy and trauma of these police killings, but also the hope and resilience of the community that refuses to forget them,” said Father Richard Smith, one of the mural’s chief organizers. “It represents the ongoing struggle to purge SFPD of its decades-long racism, brutality, and corruption. Too many young people of color have been needlessly killed, too many moms and dads still remain in tears. May this mural both honor their deceased loved ones and be a prayer not only of lamentation but also for their healing and hope.”

Located on the new offices of the Calle24 Latino Cultural District, the mural is latest in improvements at one of Mission Housing’s scattered sites — work that began in 2017.

“Alto al Fuego en la Mision” supported by Mission Housing Development Corporation, Mission Night Walks, and organized by Homies Organizing the Mission to Empower Youth (HOMEY). The mural was funded by Mission Housing, the San Francisco Foundation Rapid Response Fund, CHALK, and many generous community donations through fiscal sponsors Saint John’s Episcopal Church, HOMEY, and Fr. Richard Smith.

The mural was designed and directed in community and collaboration by Carla Elana Wojczuk with, HOMEY, Justice4Amilcar Coalition, Mission community, Lucía González Ippolito, and assisted by Flavia Elisa Mora; Lead Muralists: Carla Elana Wojczuk, Lucía González Ippolito, Cristian Muńoz, Anna Lisa Escobedo, Adrianna Adams, Flavia Elisa Mora (painting and poetry), Pancho Pescador; lettering: Sonia G Molina.

In the News: Planning Commission Approves Safe Parking Site at Balboa Upper Yard

The San Francisco Planning Commission on Thursday unanimously approved plans for a temporary vehicle triage center that would provide a safe parking space for people who live in their vehicles.

According to the plan, the center would be located at 2340 San Jose Ave., the future site of Balboa Upper Yards, a 138-unit affordable housing complex developed by Mission Housing Development Corporation. Construction on the complex won’t start until October 2020, so the space would only serve as a temporary spot.

“We’re proud at Mission Housing to continue our tradition of leading with bold ideas to battle our housing shortage crisis,” said Sam Moss, Executive Director at the nonprofit.

The pilot program would provide space for 33 vehicles, allow people to park long-term and camp in their vehicles overnight, and offer amenities like restrooms, showers, laundry facilities, a kitchen and eating areas.

“Connecting families to services and supporting them during difficult times should be our direct response to the needs of our community,” said Mission Housing’s Deputy Executive Director, Marcia Contreras. “It’s a fundamental act of human compassion and kindness. Mission Housing believes strongly in supporting our families in need and connecting them to resources.”

Residents would be allowed to stay for up to 90 days, and after that their stay could be extended at the director’s discretion.

The space would also be equipped with security and office space to provide onsite services for those living in their vehicles.

Read more about it from Bay City News here.