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Posts from the Bayview Category


Muni Rider Profile: Hoi Chong Wong on the T-Third and Stockton Buses

IMG_1407.jpgPhoto: Michael Rhodes
Hoi Chong Wong can tell you about the commute from 3rd Street in the Bayview to Chinatown or the commute in Guangzhou, China. Though retired now, he's been making the trip to Chinatown on Muni almost daily since he immigrated to San Francisco in 1997, first on the defunct 15-Third bus line, and now on the T-Third Street light rail line, with a transfer to the 30-Stockton or 45-Union-Stockton bus line near 4th and King. In Guangzhou, he also traveled mostly by bus, plus the occasional bicycle ride.

When he went back to visit Guangzhou recently, Wong, 71, said, he was inspired by improvements that have been made on the bus system since he left 12 years ago.

"There is a huge difference in terms of the bus line services for Guangzhou and here," explained Wong, speaking through a translator since he's a monolingual Cantonese speaker. Boarding is much more orderly than it is on the 30 and 45, and "instructions on the buses are very clear," said Wong. "They have an automated system where it's very clear in terms of which station is next. They have a map, and the next stop has a blinking light."

Wong said Guangzhou's buses announce stops in three languages: English, Cantonese and Mandarin. Most announcements on Muni are made only in English, so navigating the system when he first arrived 12 years ago was a challenge. "It was very difficult and confusing for him because he felt like all the instructions and all the maps are not clear as to where he should take the buses, and which of the lines goes to which neighborhoods," said Tammy Hung, translating for Wong. "So it took him quite a long time to navigate his way throughout the city."


Environmentalists Oppose Bridge Over Yosemite Slough

Picture_8.pngArtist's rendering of new development at Hunter's Point and Candlestick Point. Courtesy Lennar
If all goes as planned for San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development and one of the nation’s largest home builders, the Lennar Corporation, a causeway over the Yosemite Slough wetlands restoration project between Hunters Point and Candlestick Point will be built sometime in the next few years. This fact is not making environmentalists happy.

Greenaction, the Sierra Club, Arc Ecology, and the Audubon Society all have concerns about the impact of the bridge to surrounding residents and wildlife. Environmentalists with these organizations are concerned that bridge construction will stir up contamination in the ground, and that the bridge itself – and the road it will connect to on either side – will divide the state park, Candlestick Point State Recreation Area, through which it will travel. They are also concerned it will endanger wildlife and undermine the restoration of the slough.

The proposed bridge over Yosemite Slough will serve the residents of the 10,500 or so new homes planned for 763-acre Candlestick Point and Hunters Point developments, and a few other, smaller developments planned for the area. The United States Navy has occupied Hunters Point since World War II, but is now turning it over to the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency and Lennar. For decades, the Navy disposed of toxic waste in parts of Hunters Point now known as Parcels E and F.



A Garden Bike Tour in Bayview

A lot of what makes living in a city so fun is the ability to walk or bike around and see surprising things that you wouldn’t expect, made possible by being in the streets and moving at a human pace, without the membrane of a steel box and corporate radio to mediate your experience. It’s even more fun when you juxtapose the oddities that you encounter with the history that is obscured or revealed by those discoveries. I took such a ride Saturday, down to the Bayview neighborhood to visit some community gardens I’ve been reading about via the Quesada Gardens website. I’ve visited Quesada Gardens a half dozen times since its original establishment in 2002, but this was the first time I met Annette Smith, one of the founders and guiding lights of the neighborhood renaissance that has accompanied the flowering of this remarkable garden.

annette_smith_7402.jpgSaturday, February 21: Annette Smith at the Quesada Garden she co-founded in 2002.

What I’d only heard about before was the new gardens that had started nearby, inspired by the success of the Quesada effort. To get there on an overcast day, I rode from my home in the Mission through the gauntlet of junkies under the freeway that is still the best-and-only way to bicycle from the Mission to the southeast. Read more...